After Indian Armys stronglyworded statement Pakistan PM Imran Khan repeats cluster bombs

first_imgNew Delhi: Days after the Indian Army foiled a cross-border infiltration bid by Pakistan’s Border Action Team (BAT), Prime Minister Imran Khan Sunday accused India of using cluster bombs against civilians living across the Line of Control (LoC).”I condemn India’s attack across LOC on innocent civilians & it’s use of cluster munitions in violation of int humanitarian law and it’s own commitments under the 1983 Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons. UNSC must take note of this international threat to peace & security,” Khan tweeted. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss bank a/c details The Indian Army had on Saturday termed as “lies and deceit” Pakistan’s allegations that Indian troops used cluster bombs targeting civilians along the Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir. The strong reaction by the Army’s additional directorate general of public information (ADGPI) came after Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi and it’s military’s spokesperson Asif Ghafoor accused the Indian Army of using “cluster ammunition” to target civilians along the LoC. Also Read – Tourists to be allowed in J&K from Thursday”Pakistan army regularly attempts to push terrorists through infiltrations and opens up with a multitude of weapons to assist them. India, during numerous Directorate of Military Operations (DGMO) level talks, has maintained the right to respond. Such responses are only against military targets and infiltrating terrorists who are aided by Pakistan Army,” the Army said in a statement. jammu and kashmir situation, jammu and kashmir news, jammu schools closed, line of control, india pakistan, pakistan border action team, border action team, pakistan BAT, BAT pakistan, jammu and kashmir governor, satya pal malik, india news, Indian Express Bodies of four Pak SSG personnel located. Khan also recalled US President Donal Trump’s offer to mediate on the Kashmir issue, saying “this has the potential to blow up into a regional crisis”. India has however rejected any mediation on Jammu and Kashmir, with Minister of External Affairs, S Jaishankar saying, “any discussion on Kashmir, if at all warranted, will only be with Pakistan and only bilaterally.” Meanwhile, the Indian Army has asked Pakistan to take back the bodies of four intruders who were shot dead in Jammu and Kashmir’s Keran sector on the intervening night of July 31 and August 1. The Pakistan side has been offered to come with a white flag and take the bodies for last rites. Islamabad is yet to respond on India’s offer. Four “possibly SSG” commandos or “maybe some of terrorists” were killed along the Line of Control while they were trying to infiltrate into India and strike a forward post in the Keran sector, the Indian Army said on Saturday. (With inputs from Indian Express)last_img read more

Cong to hold next CWC meeting on August 10

first_imgNew Delhi: The Congress Working Committee will meet on August 10 amid a leadership crisis and finding Rahul Gandhi’s successor is likely to top the agenda when the party’s top brass meets at the AICC headquarters here.The meeting comes after several top party leaders such as Shashi Tharoor and Karan Singh voiced concern over lack of clarity over the leadership issue. The party has also seen a series of desertions by leaders from Karnataka and Maharashtra to the latest being that of Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Singh, with several leaders citing indecision and confusion within the rank and file of the party after Gandhi’s resignation as a reason to quit. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss bank a/c details”It has been decided to hold the next Congress Working Committee Meeting on Saturday, 10th of August, 11 AM at AICC,” Congress general secretary organisation K C Venugopal tweeted. The party had said last week that the CWC will meet after the current session of Parliament, that ends next Wednesday. The meeting would be the first since Gandhi had announced his decision to quit as party chief on May 25 after the Lok Sabha polls debacle. The CWC rejected his resignation and authorised him to restructure the party at all levels. Gandhi has made it clear that he will not continue as president and neither will any member of his family be the next chief. The crucial meet is likely to deliberate on the way forward for the party in the wake of Gandhi quitting. Issues related with settling the leadership question are likely to top the agenda, sources said. Also Read – Tourists to be allowed in J&K from ThursdayMany names have been doing the rounds as a possible choice for Congress president, with a debate generated within by some party leaders to install a young leader to lead the party. Interestingly, even though Rahul Gandhi had ruled out the possibility of a Gandhi family member succeeding him, several leaders such as Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh and Shashi Tharoor have voiced support for Priyanka Gandhi Vadra throwing her hat in the ring. See P5last_img read more

TV umpires to call noballs for overstepping on trial basis

first_imgDubai: ICC is planning to empower TV umpires become the sole adjudicators of front-foot no-balls in cricket matches and for this it will be conducting trials in the coming days. Over the period of next six months, the world cricket body will identify number of limited-overs series in which it can implement a system where the TV umpire — instead of on-field umpires — will call no-balls for overstepping. In the 2016 ODI series between England and Pakistan, the system was put into trial but it will be rolled out on a much broader scale this time. Also Read – Puducherry on top after 8-wkt win over Chandigarh “Broadly, yes (the same technology as 2016 will be used),” Geoff Allardice, the ICC’s general manager cricket operations told ESPNcricinfo. “The idea is the third umpire will be presented an image of the front-foot landing within a few seconds. He would communicate to the on-field umpire that a no ball has been delivered, so every delivery on the field would be played as a fair delivery until called otherwise.” During the previous trial in 2016, a Hawkeye operator was used who presented a still image to the third umpire independent of the normal broadcast. Also Read – Vijender’s next fight on Nov 22, opponent to be announced later “The footage is shown on a slight delay, it goes to super slo-mo as the foot approaches the point of landing and then it freezes,” Allardice said. “The routine works well, with the third umpire judging the no-ball off a picture that is not always shown on the broadcast.” The move to conduct this trial has come after the ICC’s Cricket Committee wants this system to be used in as many limited overs matches as possible. “The Cricket Committee recommended that we do it in all ODIs and T20Is. In 2018 there were about 84,000 balls delivered around the world in those formats in men’s international cricket. So to monitor the no-ball on each of those deliveries at all of the different venues is a big exercise,” said Allardice. “We just need to understand all the challenges before implementing this across all matches. “Can this technology be implemented consistently across the 80 venues that hosted ODIs and T20Is last year? There are different levels of television coverage across these matches, so it will be easier to implement at some matches than at others. “We now have 104 members who play T20I cricket and many of their matches are not televised, so what do we there? Thinking through all of the implications of introducing this is the exercise for us over the next six months,” he added. There have been many incidents in the recent past where on-field umpires have failed to spot a front-foot no-ball. The most noticeable one came in this year’s IPL edition when umpire S. Ravi missed Lasith Malinga overstepping in a game between Mumbai Indians and Royal Challengers Bangalore.last_img read more

Dispatches from Charleville

first_imgThe Academy held a reunion on August 10 and 11 for all its employees who worked here and superannuated after 1997 to mark the Diamond Jubilee of the Mussoorie campus and to acknowledge their contribution in making LBSNAA one of the finest institutions of the country. The main celebrations will be held on September 1 when Minister of State for Personnel Public Grievances & Pensions, Jitendra Prasad will deliver the keynote to members of the 94th FC, lay the foundation stone for a new 900-seat auditorium, launch the coffee table book ‘Karmasu Kaushalam: Excellence in Action’ and release the special first-day cover on the Academy, besides interacting with existing employees. We had over 400 of our ex-faculty and employees ranging from ex-Directors Wajahat Habibullah, DS Mathur and Padamveer Singh and Joint Directors VK Agnihotri and Prem Gera to our Mess employees, horse riding assistants, housekeeping, and the watch and ward staff coming in with their families. Many came with their grandchildren to show them the place they had worked for their lifetime. Many of the children who grew up on this campus hold responsible positions in the civil services, defence forces, academe and the corporate world. There was a general sense of cheer and some wonderment at changes in the Academy. For those who superannuated in the last century and were visiting the Academy after two decades, the changes were quite stark. Almost everything was now on an auto mode, and most transactions were paperless. Gardens were cleaner, sports facilities had improved, and most importantly, power-cuts were a thing of the past – both on account of the much-improved power situation in Uttarakhand, and the presence of back-up gensets. Also Read – A special kind of bondThe highlights included a welcome High Tea in the Officers Mess on August 10 which opened its portals to all employees, irrespective of rank – many ex-Mess workers and bearers were quite overwhelmed at being served on the same tables they had waited upon earlier in their lives. Many eyes were filled, including those of your columnist when they held hands with the Directing staff to convey their joy and delight. The celebrations on the next day started with morning ragas by Ayan Sen Gupta on the sitar and Indranil Bhaduri on the tabla playing the Rag Lalit and Rag Bhairavi in the verdant lawns. What a mesmerising performance with the clouds and the mist flowing by the lovely Deodars, Himalayan Cypress, Chinars and Magnolias and Silver Oaks which adorn the Director’s lawns. Even the artists were so happy to perform the morning Ragas in the open – for an auditorium can be air conditioned but it cannot recreate the morning in the hills of Mussorie! Also Read – Insider threat managementWe then had the children of the academy faculty and employees – Sanvi, Yusra, Maitreyi, Anaya, Shalu and Yumna – perform the Ganesh Vandana and kids from the Balwadi, our kindergarten school – Kavya, Anisha, Avani, Shivangi, Ruhi, Ananya,Tanisha, Kanishka, Anshika, Avantika and Harshika – sing a very cheerful welcome song, a quiz on the Academy and Mussorie, an exhibition of pictures, portraits, souvenirs and memorabilia from the times Mussorie was established, and an afternoon of painting, sketching and creative expressions by all employees. Your columnist also got a prize for spelling out the acronym of MALL – Military Area Limited Lines! Growing up in a cantonment town has many in-built advantages! The ex-Directors and senior faculty colleagues also spoke on the occasion. While recalling his time, former Director, Habibullah spoke of how the Academy remains eternally young – it has the ability to bring out the best in everyone. Another former Director, DS Mathur mentioned the great and significant changes made in the infrastructure and the transformation of LBSNAA. From being the centre for foundation training alone to research and mid-career training as well, the Academy was also now a respected think tank on governance and development interventions. Padamvir Singh wanted the Academy to strengthen the research and global outreach programs. Dr VK Agnihotri offered to assist the Academy in updating its publication “Skills for Effective Administrators” and Sarojini Thakur promised her help to make the National Gender Centre, the ‘Numerous Uno’ centre in its genre. Ashok Thakur recalled how he got over the fear and inhibition in the use of computers and IT during his stint in the Academy and my batch mate Prem Gera offered everyone a great Garba treat in Baroda where he currently heads the GACL. Your columnist also shared with everyone present the expectations which the government has placed on the Academy. From next year all the successful candidates in CSE will receive the FC training here at one place – rather than at two or three Academies which really affected the esprit de corps – the raison d’être for the Foundation Course, and this will involve the construction of a new 900-seat auditorium to accommodate the entire batch. The souvenir shop received a large number of visitors – and stocks nearly ran out for several key items like Academy T-shirts, tracksuits and walking sticks! The weather gods were kind and the evening dance and dinner to the accompaniment of the Gurkha Regiment band marked the grand finale to the two-day event which made the hills come alive to the sound of music, dance, remembrance and fond expectations! (Dr. Sanjeev Chopra is Director, LBSNAA, Mussoorie, and Honorary Curator, Valley of Words: Literature and Arts Festival, Dehradun. The views expressed are strictly personal)last_img read more

Rockin n rollin on Mars Rolling Stones have space rock named after

first_imgThe Rolling Stones have rocked stages around the world in their more than 50-year career. But now their influence has gone into space after NASA’s Mars InSight Mission named a rock on the planet after the band. Slightly larger than a golf ball, the “Rolling Stones Rock” is said to have rolled some 3 feet (1 meter), spurred by the InSight spacecraft’s thrusters during touchdown on Mars in November, NASA said. “In images taken by InSight the next day, several divots in the orange-red soil can be seen trailing Rolling Stones Rock,” it said. “It’s the farthest NASA has seen a rock roll while landing a spacecraft on another planet.” Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss bank a/c detailsHollywood actor Robert Downey Jr. announced the name as Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Ronnie Wood and Charlie Watts were about to perform on Thursday night at Pasadena’s Rose Bowl Stadium, close to NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. The Rolling Stones, known for hits such as “Sympathy For The Devil” and “Brown Sugar”, called the honour “a milestone in our long and eventful history”. While the “Rolling Stones Rock” name is informal, it will feature on working maps of Mars, NASA said, but only the International Astronomical Union can give official scientific names for locations, asteroids and other objects in the solar system. NASA is using its robotic mission to Mars to help set the stage for manned missions to the Red Planet. As a gateway to that lofty goal, the space agency’s Artemis programme will send humans to the moon, to prepare them for further space exploration. A giant leap for mankind — and the Rolling Stones, already immortalized in popular culture, are now also a part of space exploration history.last_img read more

11th house collapses at Bowbazar in wake of EW Metros tunnel boring

first_imgKolkata: Another building collapsed at Syakra Para Lane in Bowbazar on Monday, in the aftermath of East-West Metro’s construction work. The Kolkata Metro Rail Corporation Limited (KMRCL) subsequently conducted meeting and formed a committee that will go for inspection on Tuesday.The incident at Syakra Para Lane comes on a day when KMRCL has initiated the work for pulling down five buildings at Durga Pithuri Lane, which have been badly damaged due to the tunneling work. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari Puja”A five-member Building Assessment Committee (BAC) has been formed. They are expected to visit the site on Tuesday,” said A K Nandy, general manager (Administration), KMRCL. The BAC members are former Jadavpur University professor Nitin Som, professor Dr Somnath Ghosh, Indian Institute of Engineering Science and Technology professor Dr Amitabho Ghosh, Indian Institute of Technology Chennai guest lecturer Dr N K Pichumoni and Ken Wong, an expert for the Metro project. Also Read – Bengal civic volunteer dies in road mishap on national highwayThe committee will find out the reason of collapse and determine whether the buildings have collapsed due to tunnel boring work. The committee will also find out the soil condition of the place and how old the houses are. The four-storey building situated at 8 B Syakra Para Lane collapsed at around 9.45 am on Monday, adding to the list of 10 buildings in the Bowbazar area that have already collapsed fully or partially since August 31. More houses are under the threat of collapse apparently due to tunneling work for the under-construction 16.60-km East-West Metro Railway project. The most affected areas are Durga Pithuri Lane, Syakra Para Lane and Gour De Lane. Nandy reiterated that the Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) is verifying the residents whose houses have been affected and are thus eligible to get compensation. “After the verification gets done by KMC, we are releasing the compensation amount. However, tomorrow we will not release the amount because of Muharram. 19 people have been handed over the Rs five lakh cheques last Saturday. Now onwards, we have decided to send the compensation amount directly to the bank accounts of the residents,” said Nandy. The residents of Durga Pithuri Lane, whose buildings would be demolished, were allowed to take their belongings from their houses on Monday. “We were able to take out television and documents after breaking the window of our house. However, we were unable to take out furniture. Today, the engineers are doing the inspection work. They will start the demolition work on Tuesday,” said Avinandan Dutta, a resident of 11, Durga Pithuri Lane, whose house will be demolished.last_img read more

Doctors in staterun hospitals to write dosages in prescriptions in Bengali

first_imgKolkata: In state-run health care establishments, doctors will now write dosages in prescriptions in Bengali, thanks to an initiative by state government that makes life easy for numerous patients. This apart, e-prescription has been recently introduced in the Bidhannagar Sub Divisional hospital.As dosages are being written in Bengali, the patients or their relatives do not have to ask the pharmacists to clarify them. It may mentioned that many doctors practicing privately are already writing dosages in Bengali. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari PujaThe doctors at Bidhannagar Sub Divisional Hospital said for the convenient of the pharmacists the generic names of the medicines have been written in English while the dosage are written in Bengali. The doctors said many patients, even those who are educated, fail to understand prescriptions and call up doctors and medicine shops to know details about the dosages. Citing examples, they said OD is one time a day while BD is twice daily. Similarly, TDC is thrice daily. AC means before meal and PC means after meal and HS is before bed time. Also Read – Bengal civic volunteer dies in road mishap on national highwayWhenever the doctors of the state-run hospitals will write the dosage as OD or BD, it will be automatically translated into Bengali in case of e-prescriptions. Along with the Bidhannagar Sub divisional hospital, e-prescriptions will be shortly introduced in Calcutta Medical College, Burdwan Medical College, Bankura Samelani Medical College and R Amhed Dental College. Slowly it will be introduced in all the state-run health care establishments in the state. The doctors felt it would be excellent to write the entire e-prescription in Bengal but this would be not easy as the Bengali spellings of many diseases written on the left of the prescriptions will be difficult. It may be mentioned that it was very difficult for both patients and pharmacists to follow the handwriting of Dr BC Roy. For the convenience of the patients, Dey’s Medical had engaged a person who used to read Dr Roy’s prescriptions and to provide the dosage to the patients.last_img read more

Modric adds to Zidane injury worries before CL start

first_imgMadrid: Real Madrid’s Luka Modric has been diagnosed with a groin injury, the Spanish club said on Thursday, less than a week before they face Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League.The reigning Ballon d’Or winner is a doubt for Saturday’s La Liga fixture against Levante and could miss the trip to the French capital on Wednesday. Real’s website confirmed the club’s medical service had diagnosed “a muscle injury in the adductor of the right leg”. Modric, 34, adds to coach Zinedine Zidane’s injury concerns with summer signing Eden Hazard, midfielder James Rodriguez as well as attacker Isco among those recently sidelined. Playmaker Hazard and Colombia’s Rodriguez returned to training with the squad on Tuesday which suggests they could be available for Real’s opening group stage tie at the Parc de Princes.last_img read more

QuickQuotes Just what was said Tuesday about new national security legislation

first_imgOTTAWA – The Liberal government finally introduced its long-awaited new national security legislation Tuesday. Some quotes:“Canadians expect their governments to do two things: protect our communities and uphold our rights and freedoms. Getting that balance right has always been the focus of the Liberal party, and that’s exactly what we’re focusing on doing in government.” — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.——“We all have a stake in it, so all Canadians can have confidence that our security and our freedoms are being protected. That is the goal of this legislation.” — Public Security Minister Ralph Goodale.——“Canadians have made it very clear that they don’t trust the NDP with their safety and they don’t trust the Conservatives with their rights.” — Goodale.——“Law enforcement and security agencies sometimes have only mere minutes to react to threats. The Liberals’ new bill is removing the ability of security agencies to take proactive steps when sometimes just seconds matter.” — Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer.——“I think it’s a dangerous step back from certain provisions that allowed law enforcement to intercede when there was a threat to public safety in Canada.” — Erin O’Toole, Conservative public safety critic.——“We’re once again compromising our freedoms in our country. Mr. Trudeau promised to get rid of the worst parts of Bill C-51. He hasn’t done that. This is not constant oversight. It’s review, and it falls well short of what Mr. Trudeau promised.” — NDP Leader Tom Mulcair.——“This legislation is a positive step forward, but does not fully address the fundamental privacy concerns expressed by Canadians throughout the government’s own consultation. In particular, we have yet to see any proactive measures to protect Canadians from the use of invasive mass surveillance devices such as Stingrays, or legislative protections for encrypted communication technologies which are critical to our digital and economic security.” — Laura Tribe, executive director, OpenMedia.——last_img read more

Scheer names rookie MP as Quebec lieutenant

first_imgVICTORIAVILLE, Que. – Conservative leader Andrew Scheer has named a rookie MP as his Quebec lieutenant.Scheer announced Saturday that Alain Rayes will be his political lieutenant in the province.Rayes, who represents the riding of Richmond-Arthabaska, was elected to the House of Commons in the 2015 election.Scheer issued a statement Saturday saying that Rayes, a former mayor of Victoriaville, has shown his talents as an organizer.last_img

New Brunswick introduces exotic animal legislation after boys deaths

first_imgFREDERICTON – New Brunswick is introducing new legislation to regulate exotic animals, four years after two young boys were killed by an African rock python.Four-year-old Noah Barthe and his six-year-old brother, Connor, died after the python escaped its enclosure while they slept in a family friend’s apartment in Campbellton in August 2013.Energy and Resource Development Minister Rick Doucet said Tuesday the new Exotic Animals Act will strengthen safeguards for public safety and human health, and the health and safety of native species and their habitats.“Chances are, if the legislation had been in place in 2013 we would not be here today,” said Bruce Dugan, chairman of the province’s Exotic Animal Task Force, which in 2015 recommended the government review existing laws.Better communication between different agencies and regular inspections would have made the difference, he said.“There are going to be instances where things slip through the cracks no matter how much legislation, regulation and enforcement you have in place, but in this particular case I don’t think we’d be here today if the legislation had been in place in 2013,” Dugan said.African rock pythons were not allowed in New Brunswick at the time without specific permits. Savoie did not have one.The python was kept in a large enclosure within the apartment of reptile store owner Jean-Claude Savoie, where the Barthe brothers were attending a sleepover. Last November, a jury found Savoie not guilty of criminal negligence causing death.The python escaped by travelling through a ventilation duct and dropping into the living room where the boys slept. A pathologist said the boys died of asphyxiation, and each was covered in puncture wounds from snake bites.The snake was about 3.7 metres long and weighed about 24 kilograms.The boys had spent the day petting animals and playing at a farm owned by Savoie’s father. An expert testified at Savoie’s trial that snakes become more aggressive when they detect possible sources of food — and an attack would have been unlikely had there been no animal smells on the boys.Campbellton Mayor Stephanie Anglehart-Paulin said Tuesday her community on the province’s north shore suffered an emotional blow with the boys’ deaths, and the new legislation will help.“It’s just nice to know that their death isn’t in vain — that the government did take it seriously, and they acted. We can’t go back. We can’t press rewind, but we certainly can make it better to go forward,” she said.She said there are a lot of mixed emotions.“We were torn between having lost children and having lost a community member. We were all aware and we were all guilty to know that, that place was there. We were bringing our school children there. Then all of a sudden we had to be mad at this gentleman for operating this. It’s a little of both,” Anglehart-Paulin said.Dugan, of the Magnetic Hill Zoo, said the government has completed 14 of the task force’s recommendations, and is in the process of acting on 13 more, leaving just two outstanding.The proposed legislation will regulate the import, possession, sale, public display, propagation, export and release of exotic animals.The province will compile a list of exotic animals not requiring a permit, and all others will require one through the Department of Energy and Resource Development.Doucet said the legislation’s definition of exotic animal will include certain fish, wildlife and invertebrates such as scorpions and spiders.He said the legislation, which will include fines of up to $20,000, will be introduced in the coming days. Exotic pet owners would have a year to comply.last_img read more

Babcocks last phone call connected with cell tower near Millards homecourt

first_imgTORONTO – When the final outgoing call came from the cellphone of a Toronto woman who vanished five years ago, her accused killers’ phones pinged off cell towers nearby, court heard Thursday.The prosecution in the first-degree murder trial of Dellen Millard and Mark Smich in the presumed death of Laura Babcock methodically walked two witnesses through a trove of cellphone tower location data for all three phones during the summer of 2012.The records show Babcock’s phone arriving at a cell tower near Kipling subway station in the early evening of July 3, 2012. Around the same time, Millard’s phone connected with the same cell tower.The pair of phones moved to a tower near Millard’s home on Toronto’s western edge where Smich’s phone connected with a nearby tower, according to data from a police analyst.Millard, 32, of Toronto, and Smich, 30 of Oakville, Ont., have pleaded not guilty in the presumed death of Babcock, whose body has not been found.The Crown contends Babcock was killed at Millard’s home because she was the odd woman out in a love triangle with Millard and his girlfriend.Court has heard that Millard was sleeping with several women at the time of Babcock’s disappearance and didn’t care much about the animosity between Babcock and his girlfriend.The final outgoing call from Babcock’s phone came at 7:03 p.m. on July 3, 2012, according to testimony from Danielle Fortier, who works with Rogers Communications.There have been no outgoing texts sent from her phone since, she said.Her final call was “consistent with someone calling voicemail and putting in a password,” Fortier said. She noted the numbers 2-2-2 were pressed on that call, which lasted 60 seconds.That call connected with a cell tower in Toronto’s west end, 450 metres from Millard’s home.The jury then watched the movements of three phones — Millard’s, Smich’s and Babcock’s — in animations created by Nicole Rebelo, an intelligence analyst with Toronto police.She compiled cellphone data provided by various phone companies, including Rogers, where Babcock had a phone registered in her mother’s name.“I took the electronic version of all three phones, sorted it by day and time and imported that into software and created a series of mapping motions,” Rebelo told court.Shortly after midnight on July 4, 2012, the phones began to move. They started at a tower near Millard’s home before all three moved westbound.The data showed Millard’s phone moving westbound, eventually pinging off towers near his farm near Waterloo, Ont., and his business, an aviation company, nearby. Then his phone headed back to Toronto.Smich’s phone moved westbound, eventually pinging off towers near his home in Oakville, Ont.Babcock’s phone moved west, but stopped in the middle of Mississauga, Ont.The Crown alleges the pair killed Babcock on July 3 or 4 at Millard’s home and burned her body in a large incinerator that was later found on Millard’s farm.last_img read more

Dal restricts search for new VP to racially visible Indigenous candidates

first_imgHALIFAX – Dalhousie University says its search for a new senior administrator will be restricted to “racially visible” and Indigenous candidates, part of its efforts to increase underrepresented groups on the Halifax campus.In a memo to the university community, provost and vice-president academic Carolyn Watters said the prerequisite is in line with the principles of Dalhousie’s employment equity policy.“We have embarked on the process of selecting a new vice-provost student affairs,” she stated in the memo last month, adding that the search “will be restricted to racially visible persons and Aboriginal Peoples at this time.”Jasmine Walsh, Dalhousie’s assistant vice-president of human resources, said Tuesday Dalhousie has been “deliberate and proactive” in its recruitment so students will be able to see themselves reflected throughout the university’s ranks.“This is a position where we’re looking across our senior admin ranks at Dalhousie, we note that there are representation gaps for racialized and Indigenous People, and so the decision was made to try and target our recruitment efforts to find qualified candidates who will help to increase our representation in the senior ranks,” Walsh said.The search comes after incumbent Arig al Shaibah announced she would be leaving the university at the end of March after less than two years in the role. She became the public face of the university’s high-profile decision to consider disciplinary action against student leader Masuma Khan who criticized “white fragility.”The recruitment process for her successor raises questions about whether such restrictions could be a form of either tokenism or discrimination.Walsh dismissed any suggestion that the recruitment is a symbolic gesture to give the appearance of racial equality in the university workforce.“If this were the only thing that we were doing, that would be a different conversation. But it’s part of a broader context,” she said. “We’ve been working hard for the past several years in relation to diversity and inclusiveness on campus.”As for the suggestion that limiting the competition somehow constitutes “reverse racism,” Walsh said the university is taking a “fair approach” to recruitment.“What we’re ultimately striving for is fairness in our recruitment processes” she said, explaining that university’s goal is to align Dalhousie’s workforce with the general labour market.The latest Statistics Canada census figures show that visible minorities make up just over 21 per cent of the country’s total employed workforce.A Dalhousie report from 2016 found the percentage of racially visible employees at the university was about 11 per cent.The numbers were lower among high ranking university officials, with only 4.7 per cent of senior academic management and 2.8 per cent of senior staff management identifying as racially visible.The Masuma Khan dispute sparked debate about free speech, inclusion and equity on campus and eventually led al Shaibah to acknowledge that the university’s code of conduct may not place two core institutional values — freedom of speech and the prevention of demeaning and intimidating behaviour — in sufficient and proper context.Al Shaibah, who has accepted a position at McMaster University as the inaugural associate vice-president, equity and inclusion, declined an interview request Tuesday.last_img read more

RCMP member launches appeal to avoid new hearing over alleged harassment

first_imgOTTAWA – An RCMP member who was fined for disgraceful conduct in the workplace has launched a fresh court challenge to prevent further disciplinary actions against him.Marco Calandrini is asking the Federal Court of Appeal to overturn a recent decision that opens the door to a conduct hearing for alleged sexual assault and harassment, which could lead to his dismissal.The court action comes as the national police force grapples with new accusations of lewd and sexist social media posts by RCMP members.The Mounties have been wrestling for years with problems of bullying, harassment and other inappropriate behaviour in the police force.Calandrini, a civilian member of the force, was fined five days’ pay in early 2015 following an investigation into complaints of nudity at the explosives training unit of the RCMP-administered police college in Ottawa.Meantime, a male co-worker brought allegations of sexual assault and harassment against Calandrini, saying he had touched his buttocks, inner thigh area while making suggestive remarks on three occasions between Aug. 31, 2012, and Oct. 29, 2013.The RCMP notified the Ottawa police, but the local force did not lay criminal charges.However, an internal RCMP probe substantiated the allegations in October 2015 and a penalty of 15 days’ pay was levied against Calandrini, who apparently accepted responsibility and expressed a desire to resolve the matter promptly.The RCMP Act says that a conduct hearing — a more serious disciplinary step — may not be initiated against a member for an alleged contravention of the Code of Conduct more than one year after the alleged infraction becomes known.But the RCMP invoked a time extension clause in the law and Calandrini was told in May 2016 that a conduct hearing would be in the public interest.Calandrini unsuccessfully challenged the validity of the time extension in the Federal Court, which ruled last month the delay on the part of the RCMP “was not excessive.”On Thursday, Calandrini’s counsel filed a notice of appeal, alleging the judge made errors of law.When news of the controversy at the police college broke in early 2016, Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale expressed outrage to Bob Paulson, commissioner of the RCMP at the time.Paulson, who retired last year, spent much of his tenure as top Mountie implementing measures aimed at making the police force more respectful and responsive.Fresh concerns emerged Friday as the CBC reported a new Facebook group supposedly created by, and limited to, male RCMP officers contains sexually suggestive material that has angered female colleagues.One post viewed by the broadcaster showed a painting of a fictional frontier scene of an RCMP officer with a burlesque dancer performing what appears to be oral sex on him.When concerns about disrespectful content believed to be written by an RCMP employee are brought forward, “they are and will be investigated and addressed,” said Cpl. Annie Delisle, an RCMP spokeswoman.“The RCMP has initiated Code of Conduct investigations in the past based on inappropriate comments in third-party applications or on social networking sites and we will continue to do so when these situations arise.”Public trust is essential for the RCMP to effectively fulfil its mandate, she added. “As a result, RCMP employees are expected to conduct themselves in a manner that meets the rightfully high expectations of Canadians.”Scott Bardsley, a spokesman for Goodale, said some of the behaviour that has been reported on the Facebook site “clearly cannot be a part of the modern, respectful workplace Canadians expect in the RCMP.”“Our government is committed to taking whatever action is necessary to help all women and men feel safe and respected at work.”Goodale has been clear with RCMP leadership that the expects comprehensive, transparent investigations, serious disciplinary measures, support for victims and concrete action to end toxic behaviour, he added.Earlier this week, RCMP said it would undertake a Code of Conduct investigation into a private Facebook group posting by someone believed to be an officer who reportedly said a young Indigenous man deserved to die.An Aboriginal Peoples Television Network report said a Mountie on the Prairies posted the message, which said the shooting of 22-year-old Colten Boushie on a Saskatchewan farm should never have been about race.Boushie died two years ago when he and four others drove onto Gerald Stanley’s farm near Biggar, Sask.— Follow @JimBronskill on Twitterlast_img read more

Jackhammer wire helps crack open fully blocked coronary arteries researchers

first_imgTORONTO – In what’s being touted as a world first, Montreal researchers have been able to bust open coronary arteries completely blocked with calcium deposits using an innovative device that produces a “jackhammer” effect.Doctors at the McGill University Health Centre are testing the SoundBite Active Wire in a small group of patients who have “chronic total occlusion” of one of their coronary arteries, which severely restricts blood flow to the heart.Principal researcher Dr. Stephane Rinfret, chief of interventional cardiology at MUHC, said Wednesday the condition affects about 20 per cent of people with coronary atherosclerosis, often called hardening of the arteries.Interventional cardiologists typically treat arteries with varying degrees of plaque buildup using angioplasty — a procedure in which a fine guide wire and catheter are fed into the blood vessel and a tiny balloon is inflated to widen the opening. A stent is usually inserted to keep the vessel clear and blood flowing freely.But with chronic total occlusion, or CTO, safely breaching a wall of rock-like calcium with a traditional guide wire is a highly complex, time-consuming procedure, which many interventional cardiologists are reluctant to perform because it can have a poor success rate, said Rinfret, who specializes in complex angioplasties.Between 10 and 50 per cent of all CTO angioplasties are unsuccessful, primarily because ordinary wires can’t break through the wall of calcium, he said.The SoundBite guide wire, developed by a Quebec company named SoundBite Medical Solutions, provides a new twist that could help increase success rates.The wire is connected to a shock wave generator, which causes it to vibrate like a jackhammer inside the artery, allowing it to create cracks in the calcium blockage while leaving the walls of the blood vessel unharmed.“This wire could mean the difference between the success and failure of a CTO angioplasty because it will be able to break through areas where other guides fail to penetrate,” said Rinfret. “It will clear the way and allow us to treat the diseased artery.”Animal studies have shown the device doesn’t pulverize the calcium blockage to create debris — which could lead to heart attack-causing clots — but opens up tiny fissures that allow a second guide wire and balloon catheter to pass through.“We’re going to use it as a point-and-shoot,” he said, noting that another version of the guide wire was used for the first time in 2016 to clear blockages in leg arteries.MUHC researchers performed the first CTO angioplasty using the SoundBite wire in June and have since done two more. They plan to do 10 in total as part of a preliminary study, along with another 10 that will be performed by colleagues at Columbia University in New York.That study will be expanded to include 150 patients at several more centres in Canada and the U.S., with the aim of demonstrating that the device is safe and effective.The goal is to have the SoundBite approved for widespread use by regulatory agencies like Health Canada and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, said Rinfret. An estimated 300,000 people in North America could benefit from the technology.“The problem is there are too few patients who have access to chronic total occlusion angioplasty” because relatively few interventional cardiologists feel confident tackling the complicated procedure, he said.“What we need is to make sure pretty much everyone is more comfortable in attempting those vessels … so more patients have access that really changes their life and quality of life.”— Follow @SherylUbelacker on Twitter.last_img read more

Liberals looking to make homebuying more affordable for millennials Morneau

first_imgOTTAWA — Finance Minister Bill Morneau says the federal government is looking at ways to make home-buying more affordable for millennials.Following a speech today north of Toronto, Morneau made the comment when he was asked if Ottawa has any plans to help first-time buyers enter the housing market at a time of rising interest rates.Housing is expected to be a campaign issue ahead of October’s federal election — on Monday, NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh proposed measures he says will help build 500,000 new affordable housing units across Canada over the next 10 years.Morneau says the Liberal government has focused on three primary housing-related issues since coming to office in 2015: Canada’s shortage of affordable housing, a run-up in real-estate prices in some markets and ensuring millennials can afford homes.He says Ottawa has already taken steps to increase the supply of affordable housing and to ease hot markets by introducing stress tests to limit people’s ability to take out big mortgages.Morneau says the challenge of helping millennials enter the housing market is now the priority and that there’s multiple things the government is examining — but he didn’t elaborate on what measures are on the table.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Quebec taxi industry suspends pressure tactics after owner harms self on TV

first_imgMONTREAL — Quebec’s taxi industry says it is suspending all pressure tactics until further notice after a member harmed himself on live television.An industry group says the decision was made today after the dramatic incident at the end of an interview with a taxi owner.It explained its decision was to protect taxi owners and drivers who are experiencing great psychological distress.Taxi drivers have been protesting all week in Montreal and Quebec City, claiming the government’s decision to overhaul the industry will drive many of them into bankruptcy.Transport Minister Francois Bonnardel tabled Bill 17 last week in an attempt to modernize the province’s taxi industry in response to ride-hailing applications like Uber, announcing it would get rid of a quota system.Quebec had regulated the number of taxis permitted in each city to control competition and provide drivers a stable revenue.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Stars Help End The Use Of Elephants In Indian Circuses

first_imgWith the support of John Abraham and numerous other stars and following a nine-month-long investigation of circuses across India, which was conducted by a team that included representatives from People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) India and Animal Rahat and was authorised by the Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI) – a statutory body operating under the Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF) – the AWBI has confirmed that it has decided to end the registration of elephants for performances because of the cruelty and abuse that they endure.The notes from the 39th general meeting of the AWBI held in Chennai also indicate the group’s support for a ban on the use of all animals in circuses and state that the board “decided to stop immediate performance of all the injured and aged animals in the circuses mentioned in the report and seize them after making arrangement for rehabilitation”. It also said that PETA India’s findings will be forwarded to the Central Zoo Authority (CZA) for further action.In April, Abraham fired off a letter to the MoEF stating, “Unlike human performers, animals are forced to entertain through the use of fear, pain or hunger”. He urged the government to “make the compassionate choice by issuing an immediate ban on the use of all animals in circuses”. Other stars who have supported PETA India’s campaign against the use of animals in circuses include boxer Vijender Singh, cricketer Wayne Parnell, rapper Hard Kaur, dancers Pt Chitresh Das and Lauren Gottlieb, Malaika Arora Khan, Rakhi Sawant, Sherlyn Chopra and Shilpa Shetty.“The AWBI’s decision to end the slavery of elephants in Indian circuses – animals who have spent their lives in chains, in fear of being hit and jabbed with hooked weapons – is cause for celebration”, says PETA UK Associate Director Mimi Bekhechi. “We hope this prompts other countries to follow suit. Until then, anyone with a conscience should stay away from circuses that make the lives of the animals they use a living nightmare.”PETA India’s investigation of 15 circuses – conducted from November 2012 to July 2013 – documented rampant apparent violations of India’s Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960; the Performing Animals Rules, 1973; and the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972; among other guidelines aimed at protecting animals from abuse. The investigation revealed that animals had died from inadequate care or had simply “gone missing”, drunken circus staff were handling animals and animals with wounds and diseases had not received veterinary care.PETA India is now calling on the AWBI, the CZA and the MoEF to permit circuses with only willing human performers by immediately banning the use of all animals in circuses, following the lead of Bolivia, Austria, Greece, Cyprus and Bosnia and Herzegovina.Source:PETA UKlast_img read more

George Fest An Evening To Celebrate The Music Of George Harrison

first_imgGeorge Fest: An Evening To Celebrate The Music Of George Harrison will take place at the Fonda Theatre in Los Angeles On September 28.Among the stars who will perform are Brian Wilson, Norah Jones, Brandon Flowers & Mark Stoermer of The Killers, Ann Wilson of Heart, Wayne Coyne & Steven Drozd of The Flaming Lips, Britt Daniel of Spoon, Weird Al Yankovic, Nick Valensi of The Strokes, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, Dhani Harrison, Ian Astbury, Butch Walker, Cold War Kids, Karen Elson, Brian Bell of Weezer, Big Black Delta, Chase Cohl, Jamestown Revival, Matt Sorum, Ryan Miller of Guster, The Black Ryder, Gingger Shankar And many more surprise guests.100% of ticket sales proceeds to benefit Sweet Relief Musicians Fund via The Jameson Neighborhood Fund.Find out more here.last_img read more

Stars Join Forces In First USProduced Benefit Album For Gaza Relief

first_imgA diverse group of famed musicians including Peter Gabriel, The Police’s Stewart Copeland, Rick Allen of Def Leppard, System Of A Down frontman Serj Tankian and Grammy Award-winning opera singer Sasha Cooke, have come together for a first-of-its-kind benefit album to deliver urgent humanitarian aid to Palestinians in Gaza.Produced by Project Peace On Earth (PPOE), the album features 26 powerful musical tracks of healing and peace.Peter Gabriel says of his decision to participate: “Although I am sure both the Palestinian and Israeli people would benefit enormously from a just and fair two-state agreement based around the ’67 borders, we have watched the Palestinians subjected to more and more suffering for far too long, especially in Gaza. Meanwhile their long held land is repeatedly stolen by force for illegal settlements. I am not and have never been anti-Israeli or anti-Semitic; I am anti-Israeli government policy, anti-injustice, anti-oppression and anti-occupation.“There is clearly a growing movement around the world willing to speak out, including my own country’s Parliament. I am happy to be one of these voices now asking the Israeli government, ‘Where is that two state solution you have so long said you wanted?’ and more simply, saying, ‘Enough.’”Serj Tankian adds that “helping to rebuild the lives of Palestinians in Gaza is a necessary and noble worldwide humanitarian prerogative that we must not shy away from. It’s the least we can do for a people that have suffered under an occupation, embargo, and invasion.”Steve Robertson, PPOE founder and Executive Producer of the album, has conducted several awareness-raising peace projects in Palestine. He says that 2 Unite All was inspired by a report he saw about a young Palestinian girl who was in a coma from the bombing. “The doctors weren’t sure if she would survive, but said if she did regain consciousness, she would learn that her mother, father and sister had all been killed,” says Robertson. “My tears wouldn’t stop and I said to myself, ’That’s enough. I have to do something now and offer some sort of healing support to the people of Gaza and this Middle East crisis.’”Robertson called on acclaimed Indian composer Ricky Kej to produce the album, and he immediately accepted. “I just knew how important it was for me, and all people, to help bring awareness and an end to the suffering of the people of the Holy Land,” Kej says.With over 2,100 people dead, more than 3,000 children injured, and over 370,000 Palestinian children in Gaza left traumatized after this summer’s assault, 2 Unite All proceeds will go directly to support the surgical and medical teams of {“Palestine Children’s Relief Fund} (PCRF) and the vital psychological counseling supported by UNRWA USA. PPOE will also lead a PTSD therapy effort with renowned psychotherapist Dr. Edward Tick and continue its peace initiatives in the Holy Land.“Our music may not be able to rebuild homes nor bring back victims of violence, but at least it can soften hearts,” says Stewart Copeland. “Hard hearts allow violence in the Holy Land and softening up allows persuasion. Even the most flinty realpolitik analysis shows that ‘Kumbaya’ is more credible than ‘They Must Go.’”Rick Allen of Def Leppard says, “Our world is finally focusing on resolving this conflict. Too many lives have been lost and too many innocent children and families remain perilously injured.” Lauren Monroe, Allen’s wife and songwriting partner, adds, “The beautiful people of Palestine require the world’s immediate medical support. Contributing a song to help bring necessary healing and resources to Gaza was the least Rick and I could do.” Allen concludes, “I’m encouraging all Def Leppard fans to buy a copy of 2 Unite All and support this cause.”The 2 Unite All album, which features cover art from renowned illustrator Greg Spalenka and was made possible with the assistance of TuneCore distribution, is available for purchase at www.2UniteAll.com.last_img read more