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Former President Nasheed Seeks Indian Intervention to End Maldives Emergency

first_imgFormer Maldives President Mohamed Nasheed, who is living in exile, urged India to use its military to end the political crisis in the Island nation. State of Emergency (SOE) was declared in Maldives for 15 days, starting Feb. 5 night, after President Yameen Abdul Gayoom said that the Supreme Court was in defiance of the constitution for ordering for release of political prisoners and lawmakers.Despite the declaration of the SOE, there will be no enforcement of a curfew and general movements, services and businesses will not be affected, said the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Maldives. The SOE doesn’t force any restrictions on travelling to or within the Maldives. All International and domestic airports, tourist resorts, hotels, guest houses, safari boats, marinas etc. are in full operation. International and domestic flights, seaplanes and all modes of transport are in operation, the Maldives government said on Feb. 6.The SOE could affect tourism in the Island nation but the government would want to make sure that all transport services, hotels, etc. operate without interruption as tourism contributes 33 per cent to Maldives’ GDP.On behalf of Maldivian people we humbly request: 1. India to send envoy, backed by its military, to release judges & pol. detainees inc. Prez. Gayoom. We request a physical presence. 2. The US to stop all financial transactions of Maldives regime leaders going through US banks.— Mohamed Nasheed (@MohamedNasheed) February 6, 2018India and other nations have, meanwhile, issued an advisory warning to its citizens to defer all non-essential travel to the Maldives. At least 83,019 Indians traveled to Maldives between in 2017, an increase of 24 per cent in 2016.“The prevailing political developments in Maldives and the resultant law and order situation are a matter of concern for the government of India,” a statement issued by the foreign ministry said.“Indian nationals are, therefore, advised to defer all non-essential travels to Male and other atolls until further notice. Indian expatriates in Maldives are also alerted to the need for heightened security awareness, and urged to exercise due caution in public and avoid public gatherings,” it added.According to the Indian Ministry of External Affairs, about 25,000 Indian nationals and 108 Persons of Indians Origin (PIOs) live in Maldives.Maldives President Yameen Abdul GayoomThe emergency situation will also affect India as a large number of Maldivians come to the country for educational purposes and advanced medical treatments at hospitals in Kerala and Tamil Nadu. Maldives also imports items, including essential commodities, that are restricted to other countries.India and Maldives have been at loggerheads recently after the Island nation snubbed India by suspending three councilors belonging to the main opposition party MDP for meeting India’s ambassador to Maldives, Akhilesh Mishra. The restrictions on meeting officials of other countries took place after Gayoom visited China and signed a Free Trade Agreement with Beijing. Related ItemsMaldivesMalelast_img read more

Indian-Origin Ex-Assistant of Harvey Weinstein Approaches New York State Court

first_imgHarvey Weinstein’s Indian-origin ex-assistant, who had sued the disgraced Hollywood producer, approached the New York state court on Feb. 27 after her case was dismissed in a federal court on jurisdictional grounds, according to the Hollywood Reporter. Sandeep Rehal had sued, besides Weinstein, Bob Weinstein, The Weinstein Co. (TWC), and human resources executive Frank Gil for aiding and abetting harassment in a federal court.Judge Jesse Furman of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York dismissed the matter on jurisdictional grounds on Feb. 26. He questioned in January if his court was the proper venue for the case. Rehal is a resident of California and TWC is a Delaware limited liability company (LLC) that’s primarily based in New York. The LLC is considered a citizen of each state it members reside in.As per jurisdiction, Rehal had to prove that the defendants were resident of California. Since she couldn’t achieve that, the matter was dismissed. The next day, her attorneys Laura Schnell and Genie Harrison filed the case in a New York state court.Rehal, 26, had alleged that she was emotionally distressed because of the “pervasive and severe sexually hostile work environment at the Weinstein Company LLC.”She said that she was “required to be involved in and aware of the preparation for, and clean up after, Harvey Weinstein’s extremely prolific sexual encounters,” according to her suit. “Another ‘task’ Ms. Rehal was forced to do to aid Harvey Weinstein’s sexual encounters was to clean up the semen on the couch in Harvey Weinstein’s office… on a regular basis,” it added.She also said that she had to maintain a stock of Caverject shots for his erectile dysfunction. “She had to obtain the shots and keep them stocked in a ​cabinet behind her desk at Harvey Weinstein’s TWC office,” the suit says. “Every time Harvey Weinstein went to meet a woman at a hotel, in the office, or elsewhere, which occurred on average at least three times a week when he was in New York, Ms. Rehal was required as part of her job to provide [him] with a shot, which she placed in his jacket pocket or in a brown paper bag.” Related ItemsHarvey WeinsteinHollywoodwomen’s rightslast_img read more

The Killer Belly

first_imgHere’s a life-or-death test for you.Pick up a tape measure. Wrap it around your waist at navel level.If you’re an Indian woman and measure more than 32 inches or an Indian man over 35 inches, brace yourself.Within the next 10 or 20 years you are almost certain to get diabetes or heart disease – or both.You have the killer belly, a condition that specially afflicts Indians.While heart disease declined 60 percent in the last 30 years in the United States, it has escalated by 300 percent in India. U.S. studies have found that Indians in the United States have three to four times the heart disease rate of the mainstream U.S. population.Another study by the HMO Kaiser Permanente in California found that hospitalization rates for heart surgery among Indian Americans is four times that of the mainstream population.Indian men, no matter where they live, have one of the highest rates of heart disease in the world, even if they have low levels of traditional risk factors such as cholesterol. In fact, even non-smoking vegetarians under 40 who exercise regularly may be at high risk.While 60 percent of heart attacks amongst Americans occur after age 55, nearly half of all heart attacks among Indian men strike under the age of 55 and 25 percent under the age of 40. Indian women share these high rates of heart disease. Thousands of Indian American men in their 40s and 50s succumb to a first, fatal heart attack every year. “With abdominal obesity, insulin resistance increases and so you have more insulin circulating in the body. As a result, it’s a vicious circle and you end up depositing more fat on your belly. To add fuel to the fire, a sedentary lifestyle and stress makes the situation even worse.” Dr. Naras Bhat“Every population gets heart disease and diabetes, but Indians get more of it and get it at least ten years earlier,” says Dr. Enas A. Enas, Director of the Coronary Artery Disease among Asian Indians (CADI) Research Foundation and Advanced Heart Lipid Clinic in Downers Grove, Ill, and a clinical associate professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago.Enas, who has done pioneering research on heart disease among Indians during the last 15 years, is author of more than 50 articles published in major cardiology journals. He not only was among the first to sound the alarm on the high rate of heart disease amongst Indians in the United States, but also reported the high levels of lipoprotein (a) – a genetic variant of LDL cholesterol among Indians and its crucial role in the high rates of pre-mature heart disease among the Indian population.The research at the CADI Research Foundation shows that abdominal obesity is two to three times more common among Indians than in general obesity measured by BMI (Body Mass Index). Fat around the waist and abdomen is the most dangerous fat for cardiovascular and diabetic risk, compared to fat in thighs and buttocks. The problem with the big belly is that visceral fat serves as an active chemical factory, producing biological and active molecules and hormones that lead to the development of diabetes and heart disease.Weight control is crucial because Indians get diabetes and heart disease even though they are 30 pounds lighter than mainstream Americans. So not only do Indians get heart disease earlier than the rest of the population, they get it at weights 30-40 pounds lower than the others. Enas says the traditional BMI measures don’t apply to Indians.Under mainstream standards, a BMI of 25 is considered normal, 25-30 is considered overweight and more than 30 is considered obese. Says Enas: “Indians have a tendency to collect fat collectively in their abdomen. Women have a tendency before menopause to collect the fat in their thighs and buttocks, not in their bellies. But after menopause the fat distribution is different, and they have a tendency for abdominal obesity at earlier and lower weight. So the cut point for Indians is different. A BMI of 23-25, which is normal for Americans, is considered overweight for Indians and 25 becomes obese.”The most significant measure is the waistline. Even children as young as 8 years old in the UK showed a propensity for diabetes and high cholesterol as their waistline increased. For an Indian child, Enas says, the abnormality is double that of a white child, because of the different distribution of abdominal obesity and general obesity. Few physicians know of this Indian paradox and because the relative size of the population is small (under 1 percent of the national) these facts have not registered in mainstream research. Few survivors are willing to discuss their experiences, so not only is heart disease a silent killer, but there is also a deafening silence about its widespread prevalence within the Indian community. You never slow down after bypass surgery. You need to be more active. Relatives in India say they have heart problems so they can’t do anything. But that is absurd. I love fried food, but I don’t eat it now. I do treadmill five days a week at 4/5 miles per hour every morning. I walk the nine holes of golf three to four times a week. I’ve maintained my weight since the last 10 years. Every six months I go for a cholesterol check up and stress test.” Anil Kapoor Rajan (name altered at request), a business executive in New Jersey with two children, had his world turned upside down when he, suffered a heart attack at age 35.He was a heavy smoker, in a stressful job and had a family history as several uncles died before the age of 45. Both his father and brother died in their 50s. Yet his doctors ruled out heart disease, because of his young age. They gave him several tests for shortness of breath, including a stress valium test, all of which proved negative.So when he started throwing up one night, heart problems were the last thing on his mind. He assumed he was suffering from food poisoning. His wife and children were away in India, but his brother called 911 and the ambulance whisked him away to the hospital. In the emergency room doctors found that four of his arteries were blocked and he had to undergo quadruple bypass surgery. Not for nothing is heart disease known as the silent killer. It creeps up on people, many of who seem to have no symptoms at all. “Indians have a genetic predisposition and if you have a family history you know you have a higher risk of heart disease,” says Enas. “Now we have what we call a national history of heart disease, a country history of heart disease. And it’s not just limited to India. Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and other South Asian countries also have the problem, so it’s almost like a sub continental history of heart disease.”Rajan’s life changed overnight and he gave up his sedentary lifestyle, drinking and stressful job. He quit smoking cold turkey, because his surgery, he says, was like “shock therapy”; he knew his life depended on it. Fifteen years later he is vigilant about his health and plays by the rules.Sudesh Kannan took preventive steps to avoid becoming the same casualty. Just six months after he entered school in IIT Madras, his father, who was diabetic, died of a heart attack. A joyous time turned traumatic for the 19-year-old. He recalls that another three students in his batch also lost their fathers to heart disease during that time.Kannan came to Madison, Wisc., for his masters from the University of Wisconsin. After completing his PhD at the University of Virginia, he got a job as an engineer and settled in North Carolina. He was just 35 when a routine check up in his doctor’s office showed he had very high cholesterol and triglcerides, even though he was quite thin. He says, “I thought, my father had died young and I don’t want to die young. I tried to exercise and went on a completely vegetarian diet, but it was not helping lower my cholesterol level at all.”Then his brother, a physician, gave him a research paper by Enas, and suddenly Kannan was able to connect the dots. He says, “At that time the connection between Indians and their propensity for heart disease was totally unknown. Dr. Enas had the data to prove it and being a PhD, the science made a lot of sense to me. I changed my lifestyle. I realized the way I eat my food, the way I exercise all that had to change. ”From a sedentary person, Kannan transformed into a marathon runner over several months. In the beginning, he recalls, he could not even go a block without running out of breath. By finally he was running marathons: 10 miles, then 26.“We are in a prosperous country, right?” he says. “So we can get unlimited amounts of food, but we have to realize we have to eat the right amount of food and the right kind. I cut down my rice and rotis and added fruit and vegetables. When I ate it in the right combination I found I had this unlimited source of energy and could run marathons, I could bike. My thinking style became clearer, there was no sluggishness.”And here we return to the killer belly.Says Kannan, “I was not overweight when you looked at me, but I had a big paunch. Indians may look skinny, but we have big paunches. I dropped just ten pounds but my stomach went flat. So you know there’s a connection basically. I had the classic combination – and if I hadn’t taken care of myself I would have been a diabetic by now.” “I’ve quit smoking, I have only home food and I go for cardiac rehab exercises three times a week.” Vijaya Benjamim Dr. Naras Bhat, author of Reversing Heart Disease and Preventing Cancer, is a noted cardiologist in private practice in San Francisco and has seen over 295 South Asian patients in his practice. Along with several other physicians, he is on the Physician Advisory Committee of the newly created South Asian Heart Center at El Camino Hospital in Santa Clara in Silicon Valley, which is home to many Indian IT professionals. The Center’s mission is to dramatically reduce the high incidence of coronary artery disease among South Asians through a comprehensive, culturally appropriate program, incorporating education, advanced screening, lifestyle changes and case management.He says that genetically all the people of the subcontinent have common indicators of impending heart disease and diabetes. “We quickly develop abdominal obesity and that leads to the condition known as metabolic syndrome, whereby your triglycerides and small, dense LDL, the worst part of bad cholesterol, goes up, while HDL2B, the best part of your good cholesterol, goes down.” He adds, “With abdominal obesity, insulin resistance increases and so you have more insulin circulating in the body. As a result, it’s a vicious circle and you end up depositing more fat on your belly. To add fuel to the fire, a sedentary lifestyle and stress makes the situation even worse.” “Genetics loads the gun, environment pulls the trigger. So if you get heart disease, don’t blame your parents and grandparents. Do something.” Dr. Enas EnasAbdominal obesity is something that Dr. Valavanur Subramanian, a noted cardio surgeon, also cautions against. Subramanian, who was named one of New York’s best doctors by New York magazine, is chairman of the Cardiothoracic Surgery department at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York. Since 1995, he has developed various innovative techniques for minimally invasive and beating heart coronary bypass surgery, and with his colleagues is working on robotic heart surgery. He sees many Indian patients and says waist girth is is greatest concern.“Especially if your abdominal weight is increased, it co-relates with the fact that you may have underlying diabetes or coronary heart disease,” he says. “If people do not have an active lifestyle that also gives rise to abdominal obesity. If someone has an increased abdominal girth and has not been to a doctor, he should check his blood sugar, and he should go to a primary care doctor or cardiologist to figure out if he has coronary heart disease.”He points out that Indians have a far higher rate of diabetes than other nationalities. Since there is a high co-relation between diabetes and heart disease, Indians have to take special care. He says, “We do have a very high carbohydrate intake, we do eat a lot of rice. Many Indians tend to have a mild form of diabetes and rice tends to exaggerate that.” He suggests cutting down on oil, carbohydrates and sugar and turning to a high protein diet and vigorous exercise. Sudesh Kannan, who had a very high cholesterol at the age of 35 and whose father dies of diabetes and heart disease, was so out of shape that he couldn’t run a block. Today he is a marathon runner.Bhat says all aspects of the tripod or three legged model of heart disease need to be treated: the plumbing or blockage of arteries, the chemicals like cholesterol and the emotional aspect, such as anger, depression and stress.Curiously enough, there are cultural factors too for the high incidence of diabetes and heart disease among South Asians. Enas says cultural mores, such as arranged marriages within caste and sub caste and socio-economic parameters, contribute to the Indian propensity for heart disease. Gene abnormalities are magnified through such relationships, increasing the genetic predisposition to heart disease. In fact, one of the major reasons for early heart disease amongst Pakistanis is the practice of arranged marriages within close family, as this increases the chance of gene abnormality.Heart disease often comes without major symptoms. In the 1990s, Vijaya Benjamin of Chicago went to India to celebrate his daughter’s wedding, but ended up with his first heart attack, immediately after the festivities. Since he had normal cholesterol levels, the attack was blamed on stress. Back in Chicago, he had to have coronary quadruple bypass surgery and was found to have an abnormal level of lipoprotein a.Benjamin, who worked in a diagnostic service, says he has a family history of heart disease, but had never watched his diet. When he came to the United States from Trivandrum 30 years ago, he was just 128 pounds and in the course of the first year he gained 40 pounds living off fast food, smoking, and pursuing a sedentary lifestyle. “See, in our culture, we can show our tummies, but not our legs! It’s the reverse from here, where they are showing their legs, but cannot show their tummy!” Madhuri Mathur After his bypass surgery he is a changed man and has maintained an active lifestyle for 10 years: “I’ve quit smoking, I have only home food and I go for cardiac rehab exercises three times a week.” After his experience, he says, his colleagues at work have also started going for walks and exercise.Meanwhile Kannan, who had moved from North Carolina to Chicago, contacted Enas who had helped him get on the path to better health. He recalls, “His house was on the way to the temple and I passed it every time I visited the temple.” The two men finally met and decided to collaborate on a book about heart disease in layman’s language to get the message out to South Asians. The result was the just published book, How to Beat the Heart Disease Epidemic Among South Asians: A Prevention and Management Guide for Asian Indians and their Doctors.Out in Houston, Texas, Anil Kapoor also had a family history of heart disease and some distressing moments led him to double bypass surgery at the age of 50. Kapoor, who is from Allahabad, came to the United States 30 years ago and is a shipping executive. In 1986 he had agina and a stent was inserted. He says, “I read up and I thought I was doing good things on my own, but I don’t think I was.” He had pre-heart attack symptoms and a cardiologist told him he needed bypass surgery.Kapoor says, “My view is that we Indians are very susceptible to heart disease, because of our lifestyle, our food, our culture. I had not been paying much attention to the food. The weight was not what it should have been and the exercise was not enough.” “They are basically in denial. Many have high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes and heart disease, and they don’t watch their diet, they eat what they want, and they get very little exercise.” Dr.Tara Shani He changed his lifestyle after the bypass. Did he have to slow down? He says, “No, that’s a wrong idea. You never slow down after bypass surgery. You need to be more active. Relatives in India say they have heart problems so they can’t do anything. But that is absurd. I love fried food, but I don’t eat it now. I do treadmill five days a week at 4/5 miles per hour every morning. I walk the nine holes of golf three to four times a week. I’ve maintained my weight since the last 10 years. Every six months I go for a cholesterol check up and stress test.”He adds, “I get upset when people say ‘Oh, I’m doing yoga and not taking too much of ghee.’ We Indians are not like Americans. We do not exercise, all we do is take a stroll in the evening, and that stroll I call ‘Jhanwase ki chaal’ – or the relaxed walk of the bridegroom and the baraat! That’s not going to cut it. To lose weight you have to pump your heart. You have to burn more calories than you take in. Yoga is good, but it’s not going to make you lose weight.” From his experience, he says, it’s necessary to change the Indian cooking style. Instead of deep frying, he sautés onions in Canola oil and then adds water and masalas. He says, “For the last five years I have given up rice, chappatis, bread and potatoes, and emphasize vegetables and fish. I eat a lot of fruit. My wife says I eat fruits like a meal.” Indeed, for those with heart disease and diabetes, a huge life change is mandatory, but it can be taken in little steps. Madhuri Mathur of Long Island knows the tribulations of trying to follow the rules Her husband, Madan Mohan discovered his major heart problem quite by accident when she asked him to accompany her during a checkup and since they had the same primary care doctor she convinced him to have an EKG too. The results raised flags and Mohan was sent for a stress test and an angiogram. Most people are not happy at such news and her husband jokingly told her, “All my life I listen to you. This is the last time! See what happened!” He had to undergo an angioplasty since three of his arteries were totally blocked and he also needed open-heart surgery. Yet, he had experienced no pain or symptoms to signal that his heart was in such trouble.Mohan had been a diabetic all his life and his mother was one too. People with diabetes are especially prone to heart disease, but many don’t see the connection. Now Mohan takes prescription medicines for his health problems and also uses the treadmill regularly. At 74, he’s taken charge of his health.Madhuri Mathur came to New York from Delhi after staying some years in Kabul, Afghanistan. At that time she was just 30 and had two small children. She became diabetic in 1999 and both her mother and grandmother had diabetes. A good cook, she was into entertaining and eating out socially. Mathur discovered she was diabetin also by accident. She tended to get thirsty and drank water all the time. Her daughter insisted she check her sugar level, which she did on her husband’s Glucometer. The figure was a whopping 500! She thought the instrument was faulty, but a visit to her doctor confirmed that she had diabetes.For Mathur, who is a vegetarian, “being good” is harder, as it is for many people used to the Indian food habits. Now that mithais are available freely here, she says, she has stopped making them at home, but cannot resist the ready products just waiting to be brought home. She also finds it hard to turn away from rice and rotis, which people with diabetes have to avoid. “I love chole bature, but I had to cut that down,” she says regretfully. “Everything is paired with carbs – rajma chaval, curry chaval and so I have had to cut them out. But I find it hard to cut out the potatoes, because all the sabzis require it – alu baigan, gobi alu, even cabbage. I used to put four potatoes, but now I put only one. I cannot stop it, but I can cut down like that.”Weight loss is crucial for people with heart disease and diabetes, but exercise often is a problem for an aging population afflicted with arthritis. Mathur had to give up her walks due to knee problems, but now has a spiffy new treadmill, thanks to her daughter who is a therapist. So her daughter must be guiding her on health issues?“Yes, she’s guiding me, but it depends on how much I’m listening,” says Mathur. “She gives me so many exercises which she says are easy, but I say, ‘Theek hai, kal karloongi, kal karloongi. (Okay, I’ll do them tomorrow.)” Dr. Tara Shani, an internist in private practice in Houston, Texas, has seen many Indian patients who suffer from heart disease and diabetes. “They are basically in denial. Many have high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes and heart disease, and they don’t watch their diet, they eat what they want, and they get very little exercise. Their compliance is very poor and they don’t really understand the disease or its complications. You really have to pin it down to them and they’ll take the medicines, but with a lot of reluctance. I don’t see active participation, like watching their diet or doing exercise.”She finds resistance to making lifestyle changes, like giving up smoking, losing weight or controlling alcohol. But don’t they realize the seriousness? “They do,” she says of the large South Asian community. “However, I think there’s a denial. They don’t like to be labeled, so they don’t want to acknowledge they have a problem. When you don’t acknowledge you have a problem you’re not going to treat it.”Often she finds Indians will seeks ways to avoid taking the prescribed medicine, turning to ayurveda or homeopathy or eating foods that they’ve been told help their diabetes. Only when they experience a severe health setback do they turn to the medications. Even though most Indians are highly educated, she attributes their inhibitions to cultural factors. “They tend to stay away from taking medication. They’ll take the prescription, they’ll put it in their bags, but in follow up visits you learn they haven’t taken the prescribed medicines.”Enas says Indians also have a psychological obstacle in their misguided view of karma and that everything is pre-ordained. “If you get diabetes, or heart disease and you put it on karma – that doesn’t leave any room for action,” he says. “When we want to send our kids to the best schools, we don’t leave it to karma, we push to the maximum. But when it comes to our own health, we leave it to karma. So the concept of prevention does not exist, even though heart disease and coronary artery disease have now become the most predictable, the most preventable and most treatable of all chronic diseases.” However, as awareness sets in, many Indians are making lifestyle changes, even though it means overcoming their cultural conditioning. Madhuri Mathur, who had never worn a swimsuit in her life, now gets into the pool for water exercises for her arthritis and diabetes.“Going into the pool with other people was a big step for me. I had never worn a swimsuit or even shorts,” she recalls. “I was saying to my daughter-in-law, ‘Oh, my god, other men are in the pool. How are we going in the same pool?’ She told me, ‘Mummyjee, it’s OK, but I said ‘For me going in a swimsuit. no, no!’ So I wear a tee shirt and shorts in the pool. Even putting on shorts and going into the pool is a big change and a big compromise from my side.” She adds with a laugh, “See, in our culture, we can show our tummies, but not our legs! It’s the reverse from here, where they are showing their legs, but cannot show their tummy!”Yes, even small, seemingly inconsequential changes often require courage, but yield dramatic results. Sudesh Kannan, whose father died of a heart attack many years ago, tried to rewrite his destiny and work at ridding himself of the killer belly. His changed lifestyle and the foods fed to the family by his nutritionist wife Akila have been a big influence on their children, Vinesh, 9 and Pavan, 3. On a visit to Disney World, the Mickey Mouse character asked Vinesh for his favorite food. Vinesh, then 5, promptly and enthusiastically replied, “Broccoli!”Children are savvy. They follow not what you say, but what you yourself do. Says Kannan: “That’s exactly right. And you have to integrate right eating and exercise into your daily life. When we go hiking, I carry my younger son in a backpack, and when my elder son goes biking, I run alongside him.”“If you don’t have a family history of heart disease or diabetes, and you drink, smoke or are obese, yours is a manmade history,” says Enas. “Genetics loads the gun, environment pulls the trigger. So if you get heart disease, don’t blame your parents and grandparents. Do something.”Heart to Heart A Quick Quiz for Indians1. Do you smoke?2. Are you a man over 25 with a waist size larger than 35 inches or a woman over 35 with a waist size larger than 31 inches? Use a simple tape measure to measure your waist (around your belly button/ navel).3. Do you get chest pains with moderate physical activity, for example when you walk a couple of blocks?4. Is your blood pressure above 120 systolic or above 80 diastolic (If your blood pressure has not been measured in the past 12 months, answer yes to the above question)5. Has your physician expressed concern about your cholesterol levels? (If you have not measured your cholesterol levels in the past 1 year, answer yes to the above question)6. Have you been diagnosed with diabetes or do you have a family history of diabetes?7. Do you have a family history of early heart attack or stroke (less than 55 years for male family member and less than 65 years for female family member?The antidote from Dr. Enas… If you answer yes to any of these questions, Dr Enas recommends a medical evaluation and complete lipid profile (cholesterol test) without delay by a physician familiar with the high risk of heart disease among Indians.Heart attacks strike many Indians at a relatively young age (40-60 years). Heart disease among Indians tends to be severe, malignant and diffuse (spread along an artery instead of in just one or two spots). This means that, despite repeat surgeries, the blockages of arteries can often return and cause death.Indians seem to be more vulnerable to heart disease because of a combination of heredity risk and lifestyle factors. The good news is that heart disease has become highly predictable, preventable, and treatable. We now have the technology, diagnostic tests and medications to help combat the disease. This, in combination, with appropriate lifestyle changes can help you significantly reduce your risk factors. Early prevention, detection and management of heart disease are vital. Talk to your physician today.“How to beat the heart disease epidemic among South Asians: A Prevention and Management Guide for Asian Indians and their Doctors” by Dr. Enas A. Enas with Sudesh Kannan. The Genetic Factors“In all populations, including Indians, the major factors that determine the severity of heart disease are diabetes, high levels of lipoprotein (a), low levels of HDL cholesterol, and a high ratio of total cholesterol to HDL. Indians may be the only population with an excess of all four of these factors.Premature, severe heart disease often causes death or disability in the prime of life. When a person develops severe heart disease before the age of 40 and dies from it, never having made their full contribution to society, and often leaving behind a young dependent spouse and young children, the consequences can be truly tragic. Early testing, aggressive treatment, and diligent management of risk factors through lifestyle alterations is imperative among Indians to reduce the devastating economic, emotional, and social consequences to the individual and society that premature, severe, malignant heart disease currently poses to Indians everywhere.” Dr. Enas. A Enas.  The Paradox of the Indian HeartHeart disease among Indians strikes early, strikes hard, and strikes unexpectedly.  Heart disease among Indians under 45 is often severe and diffuse, and it follows a malignant course that may be classified as Type I heart disease.Indians typically develop a heart attack 10 years earlier than other populations.Young Indians have a much higher risk of heart attack than similarly aged people in other populations. Approximately one-third of all first heart attacks among Indians occur in Indians younger than 45 and their heart disease is often comparable in severity to that of older Indians. Serious forms of coronary artery disease, especially left main coronary artery disease and three-vessel disease are twice as common among Indians as in whites, and even more common among Indian women. Indians have high levels of newly discovered “emerging” risk factors such as homocysteine, CRP and LP(a). Together, these constitute the most likely cause of the prematurity and severity of heart disease among Indians.Losing the Jelly BellyThe key to losing your belly is a combination of regular physical activity and nutrition. Physically active women have a 50 percent lower risk of heart disease than sedentary women. Increased physical activity along with proper nutrition can prevent a rise in LDL and weight gain, especially around the waist. An active lifestyle (including yard work and working around your home) can help improve HDL (good cholesterol) and lower LDL (bad cholesterol) and insulin levels. Other benefits of exercise include reduced risk of breast cancer and reduction in stress level.   Related Itemslast_img read more

Horoscopes Admissible Evidence

first_imgThe Indian Supreme Court has ruled that a horoscope is admissible evidence to prove a person’s date of birth, although a claimant would have the heavy burden of establishing its authenticity. The court ruled: “We reiterate the proposition of law laid down by this court in the earlier decisions that horoscope is a very weak piece of material to prove age of a person and that heavy onus lies on a person who wants to press it into service to prove its authenticity.” Related Itemslast_img read more

The Night the Oxygen Ran Out in an Indian Hospital

first_imgIt was around 6 a.m. last Friday, said Mohamed Jahid — the father of a very sick little girl being treated at a government hospital — when the oxygen stopped. The situation was desperate, but the parents of children in the intensive care unit did not panic, because they had no idea what was going on.Most were villagers like Jahid, who said they all thought it was normal procedure when the nurses unhooked the ventilators that had been helping keep their children alive, handed out small plastic hand-operated resuscitators and quickly showed the parents how to use them.With his daughter gasping for air, Jahid got right to work.“I pumped and pumped,” he said. He looked around the ward. All the parents were pumping and pumping. Unbeknown to them, the hospital’s supplies of oxygen had been steadily dwindling, after the supplier cut off shipments of liquid oxygen for lack of payment. On Friday, despite repeated warnings from the supplier and hospital technicians, the oxygen ran out.A view of children admitted at the Baba Raghav Das Medical College (BRDMC) hospital in Gorakhpur on Aug 12, 2017.Photo Credit: IANS By the time the flow was stabilized, more than 60 children had died. Many were sick with Japanese encephalitis and other tropical diseases and may have died from other causes, but doctors admitted that the oxygen interruption is likely to have claimed at least several lives.The children’s deaths have become a national outrage, headlining front pages of all the major newspapers and marring celebrations this week of India’s 70th anniversary of independence.The government hospital, part of the larger Baba Raghav Das Medical College in Gorakhpur, was considered the area’s best, a beacon to millions of people. It is now a symbol of India’s swamped, mismanaged and often corrupt public health care system. As this episode underscored, the system is so enormous and has so many people moving through it that mistakes are often not corrected until many lives are lost.The medical college is a monument to that sense of scale. It is a hulking, sprawling network of buildings with nearly 1,000 beds and 10-foot-wide corridors a city block long. With such a deluge of patients, some coming from hundreds of miles away, doctors sometimes work 36-hour double shifts with just a six-hour break, and children are crammed two or three to a bed. Families are camped out everywhere, their bedrolls, blankets, water jugs and round steel food tins clogging the hallways.The case has cast a glare on the government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in no small part because Gorakhpur is the home turf of one of Modi’s most contentious allies, Yogi Adityanath. A divisive politician and Hindu ascetic, Adityanath recently became chief minister of India’s most populous state, Uttar Pradesh, which, at 200 million, has more people than all but a handful of the world’s nations.The state government’s initial response to the oxygen fiasco was to imply that it was perfectly normal for 10 children to die every day at the Gorakhpur hospital, especially at this time of year, the rainy season, when swarms of mosquitoes spread deadly Japanese encephalitis, a virus that causes brain swelling and seizures.Police detains a volunteer protesting against deaths of 60 children at a Gorakhpur hospital, in New Delhi on Aug 12, 2017.Photo Credit: IANS That explanation was widely criticized as the height of insensitivity. “Who have we become?” asked Pratap Bhanu Mehta, a leading commentator, in a recent column. “In our republic poor children are fated to die.”The government response continues to be confused. Adityanath’s administration is adamant that the oxygen problem was not responsible for any deaths, even though no autopsies were performed. At the same time, it has suspended the head of the medical college and called for a full investigation.Lying just south of the India-Nepal border, Gorakhpur is very lush, especially now, during the monsoon. Some parts of it are beautiful, with dripping banyan trees, brightly painted houses and new shops. There’s even a Domino’s pizza place. But in other areas, stagnant water covers the roads and garbage is stuffed into every nook and cranny — between houses, along riverbanks, heaped up in vacant lots. Entire neighborhoods seem to be sinking under piles of their own waste.The town is surrounded by wet green rice fields that during the rainy season are infested with mosquitoes.Brahamdev Yadav, a rice farmer, had never heard of Japanese encephalitis. But by putting his hand to the foreheads of his newborn twins, he could tell they were sick.He checked them into the hospital on Aug. 3, around the same time that the hospital’s oxygen supplier was issuing increasingly urgent pleas for payment. In a string of letters to the medical college, the Indian media reported, the supplier insisted it had its own bills to cover and could not keep delivering liquid oxygen for the hospital’s central oxygen system unless a $100,000 bill was settled.In India, public officials often squeeze their vendors for “commissions.” It is widely acknowledged that even after public contracts are awarded, vendors have to grovel for payment, and that the best way to lubricate the bureaucracy is to give the officials in charge a 2 to 5 percent cut. When asked whom they blamed for the tragedy, several parents of children who died in the oxygen shortage said simply, “corruption.”The head of the medical college, R.K. Mishra, who has resigned, was under suspicion for misusing public money, Indian news outlets reported. In this same part of India, millions of dollars have vanished in other public health corruption scandals.The medical college clearly needs all the funds it can get. While a new Japanese encephalitis wing is state of the art, with its plate glass windows and beeping machines, other parts of the hospital are in chaotic disrepair. Giant holes have been punched in the walls, the wide corridors reek of urine, many lights have burned out and water drips from the ceiling, pooling on the floor.The hospital is “overburdened 10 times,” said Dr. K.P. Kushwaha, former head of the medical college.Doctors said that many Indian hospitals are like this, often with deadly consequences. In 2011, 16 new mothers died at one crowded hospital in Jodhpur before it was discovered that many intravenous fluid bags were contaminated with bacteria. That same year, 22 babies died at another hospital over a four-day period, though the cause remains unclear.On Thursday night, Jahid arrived at the medical college with his 5-year-old daughter burning with fever and struggling to breathe. This was just hours after the Gorakhpur Newsline, a website featuring local news, published an article warning that the hospital’s oxygen supply was about to run out.Jahid, a jewelry salesman, had not seen that report. Like most others with children at the hospital, he had passed through several smaller facilities before getting there.“They told me, ‘Take her to the medical college, where there are good doctors and machines, and she’ll be OK,’” he recalled. He said the oxygen cut out five times on Friday.Around this time, Yadav’s newborn twins died. Both of them had been on ventilators. They were 10 days old, and did not even have names. “I thought about killing myself,” Yadav said.As news of the children’s deaths spread, the hospital scrambled to make a partial payment. Liquid oxygen was delivered Saturday morning and hospital officials insist there was only a two-hour gap between 11:30 p.m. Thursday and 1:30 a.m. Friday without a central oxygen supply.They say they brought in cylinders of compressed oxygen during the shortage and kept the oxygen flowing to crucial areas, like the intensive care unit. But several parents disputed that, saying the oxygen flow had not been restored until Friday evening, when journalists with video cameras showed up.Several pediatricians interviewed at the hospital said it would be difficult to pinpoint a cause for each of the more than 60 child deaths last week, but that the oxygen cutoff by itself claimed at least two or three lives.Jahid is haunted by thoughts about what he could have done differently. Sitting at home, holding a picture of his daughter, Khushi, he said he had squeezed the manual resuscitator as best he could.“She was so affectionate,” said her grandfather, Ilahi. “She would bring me tea, she would bring me food, she would bring me water.”He gazed into the alleyway in front of the family home, seeming to see her out there again, walking toward him, and said softly, “She was like my hand.”© 2017 New York Times News Service Related Itemslast_img read more

U.S. Decision on Visa Restrictions is Disappointing: Indian Commerce Minister

first_imgIndia has urged the United States to take “corrective actions” and reconsider its plans to tighten norms for the H-1B visa, and to end work permits for H-4 visa holders — the spouses of H-1B visa holders.“The U.S. decision to put certain restrictions on visas is quite disappointing and we hope that the U.S. will take corrective actions,” Commerce and Industry Minister Suresh Prabhu said during the annual meeting of the American Chamber of Commerce in India on April 26 in New Delhi, the Hindu BusinessLine reported.India has already spoken about its apprehensions to the United States, Prabhu said, adding that Indian companies in America have added to its growth story.“We would like to have the reality put into perspective that Indian companies in the United States are contributing significantly in the growth of the U.S. economy. We feel that the U.S. must understand the concern of India,” Prabhu said.Talking about the role played by Indian American IT workers in enhancing the productivity and improving the services in the sector, Prabhu stressed that “the U.S. must understand the concern of India.”Arun Kumar CEO @KPMGIndia moderates a session with @CimGOI @sureshpprabhu Amit Bansal of Corning Tech, Sanjay Koul CMD @Timken Pratyush Kumar @pratkumar president @Boeing_In and Palash Roychowdhury MD @prattandwhitney pic.twitter.com/QoUkzIW0Qo— AmCham India (@AmchamIndia) April 26, 2018Prabhu also talked about bilateral trade, and said: “The United States is putting certain conditions on trade front which has created issues at both bilateral and multi-lateral levels. I think we need to put this behind as growth in global trade would benefit all.” In March, U.S. President Donald Trump imposed import tariffs of 25 per cent on steel and 10 per cent on aluminium.Prabhu had said earlier as well that the issues regarding the H-1B and L1 visas, which have been instrumental in facilitating the migration of IT professionals from India to the United States, were being brought up with the U.S. administration.“We are very disappointed by some of the actions by the U.S. administration,” he said on April 24 in New Delhi, according to PTI. Prabhu pointed out that new jobs have been created in the United States as a result of Indian companies’ investment into the country, and that if spouses of Indian IT professionals are competent and qualified, they would add value to the economy instead of being a threat to local jobs, the report added.The Trump administration is planning to scrap the employment authorization document (EAD) for H-4 visa holders, who are the spouses of H-1B visa holders, according to a recent communication between the director of United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Francis Cissna and the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee. In a letter written to Charles E. Grassley, the chairman of the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee, Cissna gave an update on USCIS’ efforts to ensure integrity of the immigration system. “Our plans include proposing regulatory changes to remove H-4 dependent spouses from the class of aliens eligible for employment authorization, thereby reversing the 2015 final rule that granted such eligibility,” Cissna stated in the letter.The U.S. administration is facing criticism over the issue, with advocacy group FWD.us, which comprises some of the biggest IT companies such as Facebook, Google and Microsoft, disapproving the government’s decision to end the H-4 work authorization regulation. Related ItemsH-1B visah-4 visaUnited Stateslast_img read more

CEU Scorpions ‘overachieved’ despite loss to Cignal in finals

first_imgRobredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games “I think we overachieved,” he said, after the Hawkeyes dealt the Scorpions a 79-69 Game 2 defeat.“I’m so proud of my players because they always gave their best and that’s the reason why we made it in this stage.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSBoxers Pacquiao, Petecio torchbearers for SEA Games openingWith the decks stacked against them, CEU shocked top-seed Flying V in the semifinals to arrange the date against Cignal behind the heroics of Rod Ebondo and the troika of guards in JK Casiño, Aaron Jeruta, and Orlan Wamar.Unfortunately, that dream run didn’t get a happy ending as the Hawkeyes swept CEU in the best-of-three championship series, 2-0. Though Garcia rued the missed chance, the youthful mentor shared that he’s hopeful that the Scorpions picked up valuable lessons through the course of the campaign.“I just told them that every time we’re given these kinds of opportunities, we have to grab it. We can’t be content and we have to continue giving our best to make it to the next level,” he said.Garcia will now prepare CEU for its title retention bid in the UCBL.ADVERTISEMENT Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Biggest Pogo service provider padlocked for tax evasion LATEST STORIES Hotel says PH coach apologized for ‘kikiam for breakfast’ claim NATO’s aging eye in the sky to get a last overhaul Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. MOST READcenter_img Trump signs bills in support of Hong Kong protesters SEA Games: Centeno, Amit on course for 9-ball gold medal battle Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ Robredo should’ve resigned as drug czar after lack of trust issue – Panelo Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ Celebrity chef Gary Rhodes dies at 59 with wife by his side JK Casiño. Photo by Tristan Tamayo/ INQUIRER.netFor Centro Escolar University coach Yong Garcia, there’s no shame in losing to Cignal HD in the 2017 PBA D-League Foundation Cup Finals.After all, even he did not expect his side to make it this far in his first conference at the helm.ADVERTISEMENT View commentslast_img read more

Maria Sharapova suspended for 2 years for failed drug test

first_imgTweetPinShare0 Shares PARIS (AP) — Maria Sharapova was suspended Wednesday for two years for failing a drug test, labeled “the sole author of her own misfortune” because she hid regular pre-match use of a newly banned substance from anti-doping authorities and members of her own entourage.The tennis star said she would appeal what she called “an unfairly harsh” punishment to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.The ban, handed down by a three-person Tennis Anti-Doping Program tribunal appointed by the International Tennis Federation, is backdated to Jan. 26, when Sharapova last played. She tested positive for meldonium that day after losing to Serena Williams in the Australian Open quarterfinals. The panel said various elements of Sharapova’s case “inevitably lead to the conclusion” that she took the substance “for the purpose of enhancing her performance.”Sharapova, who faced up to a four-year suspension, loses all ranking points and prize money she earned in Melbourne.More significantly, if her suspension withstands an appeal and runs through Jan. 25, 2018, the 29-year-old Russian will wind up missing this year’s Rio de Janeiro Olympics and a total of eight Grand Slam tournaments during what might have been prime competitive years.It certainly throws into doubt the on-court future of a former No. 1-ranked player and owner of five Grand Slam titles who is one of the most well-known and — thanks to a wide array of endorsements — highest-earning athletes in the world.She is one of 10 women in tennis history with a career Grand Slam — at least one title from each of the sport’s four most important tournaments. Sharapova was the 2004 Wimbledon champion at age 17; No. 1 in the rankings at 18; U.S. Open champion at 19; Australian Open champion at 20. An operation to her right shoulder in 2008 took her off the tour for months, and her ranking dropped outside the top 100. But she worked her way back, and in 2012, won the French Open, then added a second title in Paris two years later.Now comes a dark chapter to the story of someone who was 9 years old when her father moved her from Russia to Florida to pursue a tennis career.Sharapova was provisionally suspended in early March; shortly afterward, she announced at a news conference in Los Angeles that she had failed a doping test for meldonium in January. She did not mention, as the panel’s 33-page ruling does, that she also failed an out-of-competition test for the same drug in February.Sharapova’s defense: She was not aware that the World Anti-Doping Agency barred athletes from using meldonium, also known as mildronate, as of Jan. 1. The panel’s ruling, in a nutshell: She should have been aware — and would have been, had she followed proper protocols.One bit of good news for Sharapova on Wednesday: Sportswear giant Nike announced it “will continue to partner” with her, adding: “We hope to see Maria back on court.” In March, Nike said it would suspend its business relationship with Sharapova while an investigation was ongoing.Sharapova said she was first prescribed the Latvian-made drug, typically used for heart conditions, for medical reasons in 2006, part of a Russian doctor’s “medicinal and nutritional regime which at the outset comprised about 18 medications and supplements,” according to the panel’s findings.By 2010, that doctor’s list of recommended substances grew to 30, the ruling said. She left his care in 2013.In 2012, Sharapova reduced her pill intake, but continued with meldonium, the panel found.Meldonium — not approved for use in the United States or European Union — increases blood flow, which improves exercise capacity by carrying more oxygen to the muscles.“The manner of its use, on match days and when undertaking intensive training, is only consistent with an intention to boost her energy levels,” the ruling said. “It may be that she genuinely believed that mildronate had some general beneficial effect on her health but the manner in which the medication was taken, its concealment from the anti-doping authorities, her failure to disclose it even to her own team, and the lack of any medical justification must inevitably lead to the conclusion that she took mildronate for the purpose of enhancing her performance.”The panel, which held a two-day hearing last month, found that only Sharapova’s manager, Max Eisenbud of IMG, and her father knew she was taking the drug then.In what Wednesday’s report refers to as “the evident implausibility of his account,” Eisenbud said he would check Sharapova’s list of medications against WADA’s list of prohibited substances during an annual Caribbean vacation after the season ended, but he did not take that same trip in 2015 and, therefore, did not do his usual cross-check.“The idea that a professional manager, entrusted by IMG with the management of one of its leading global sporting stars, would so casually and ineptly have checked whether his player was complying with the anti-doping (program), a matter critical to the player’s professional career and her commercial success, is unbelievable,” the tribunal wrote.Sharapova also did not note her use of mildronate on any of the seven doping control forms she turned in from Oct. 22, 2014, to Jan. 26, 2016, the panel found.“She must have known that taking a medication before a match, particularly one not currently prescribed by a doctor, was of considerable significance,” the decision said. “This was a deliberate decision, not a mistake.”Keeping her use of meldonium secret from her team and anti-doping authorities constituted “a very serious breach of her duty to comply with the rules,” the panel ruled.Russian Tennis Federation president Shamil Tarpishchev told the Tass news agency that Ekaterina Makarova would take Sharapova’s spot on the country’s Summer Games roster. Makarova is ranked 36th, 10 spots below Sharapova this week.last_img read more

Coolpad Mega 5A review: Low price but that is all

first_imgCoolpad may not be a brand as recognised as Xiaomi but it’s also not a newbie. The China-based smartphone maker entered India a few years ago and it already has a bunch of decent pocket-friendly phones in its product lineup. Most Coolpad phones are priced under Rs 10,000 tag and the latest addition to the list is the Coolpad Mega 5A. Coolpad launched the Mega 5A in September this year at a price of Rs 6,999. The Mega 5A comes in only one variant, which has 2GB RAM and 16GB storage.With the Mega 5A, Coolpad takes an aim at offline buyers. This is smart. Most of the good phones in this price range — the Redmi 5A, the Redmi 6A, the Honor 7S — are only available online and that too rarely, because of low stock issues. To succeed, all that the Mega 5A has to do is be a decent phone. But is it?Unfortunately not. I used the Coolpad Mega 5A for a few weeks and found in some areas is a decent phone, but in most of the crucial aspects it disappoints. But more on that later, for now a quick look at the phone and its feature set:– The Mega 5A comes with a 5.45-inch HD+ display that has an aspect ratio of 18:9 and resolution of 1440 x 720 pixels.– The Mega 5A uses Spreadtrum SC9850K quad-core processor that runs at 1.3GHz.– It runs Android 8.1 Oreo software and comes with features like split screen, which allows two apps to be run side by side.advertisement– The Mega 5A sports a dual-camera setup on the rear and single cam on the front. The dual-cameras setup is definitely the first in this price range. The primary camera uses 8-megapixel sensor, paired with a separate lens that has a 0.3-megapixel sensor. On the front there is a 5-megapixel camera.– The phone comes with a 2500mAh battery, which Coolpad claims can deliver one day of battery backup.Looks good, bright displaySo, more about the phone now. Coolpad does a good job with the design of the Mega 5A. In fact, I feel it is one of the best looking smartphones available in the market at this price point, thanks to the metal used in it. The mid-frame of the smartphone is made of metal, and that enhances the looks, even as it also makes the phone slightly heavier relative to its size. The back cover is made of plastic and is thin and fragile. I often feared breaking it in the process of removing it to insert SIM cards and battery. But, keeping aside some of these bits, overall, I feel the Mega 5A is a compact phone and usable with one hand, looks good, and has build quality that is neither worse than what you get otherwise in phone in this price range nor better. One of the things that Coolpad highlights about the phone is its display. It calls the Mega 5A screen “great”. That is hyperbole, but if not great I do find it good. It is bright enough to display text legibly under blazing sunlight. Keeping brightness level around 40 per cent inside a room works perfectly fine for me. Under bright sunlight, around 70 to 80 per cent works best. It’s same when you want to watch a nice video or play something like Subway Surfer, bump up the brightness a little. The Mega 5A isn’t one of the best phones to watch videos or play games though, but it’s not bad either. It gets the work done. The viewing angles could have been better. I also like that the touch response of the Mega 5A screen is smooth and there doesn’t seem to be any discernible touch lag.Not for the gamers or multitaskersThe screen is where the good bits end. It’s the performance where the Mega 5A struggles. Not that I expect a powerhouse of a phone at this price bracket, but even for basic tasks the Mega 5A struggles. There is lag when you switch between open apps. It takes some time when moving from one app to another. If you have too many apps open, the phone becomes sluggish. Scrolling in apps like Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp shows lags.Even for basic tasks the Mega 5A strugglesThe poor performance is a problem even when you want to play some games on the device. Forget the graphics-heavy games like Asphalt 8: Airborne, the Mega 5A struggles with Subway Surfers and Temple Run 2. Clearly, if you game a lot there are better phones like the Redmi 5A and the Honor 7S in the market for you.advertisement The Mega 5A comes with both face unlock support and fingerprint sensor, which is placed right under the rear camera setup. These are features that are rarely seen on phones under Rs 7,000. We should credit Coolpad for putting them in Mega 5A but I wish they were fast. Both the face unlock and fingerprint sensor are extremely slow at unlocking the phone. I mostly had to rely on unlocking the phone by entering the PIN or using the pattern.Battery life is decent with this phone. The Mega 5A lasts around 10 hours, which is pretty decent for a phone that comes with a smallish 2500mAh battery. There is no fast charging in this phone, but then at this price point you shouldn’t also expect it.Cameras mostly missThere is lots of hardware. There is not enough good performance to justify it. Coolpad has put a dual-camera setup on the Mega 5A. But I wish it had one single, but decent, camera. Both the front and rear cameras of the Coolpad Mega 5A failed to impress me. Whether it is daylight or tricky lighting scene — for example dusk — the cameras of Mega 5A click uninspiring and bland photos that lack details and have dull colours. It was rare that the Mega 5A clicked picture I felt like sharing on Instagram or Facebook.IMAGE SAMPLESBoth the rear and front cameras take a lot of time to focus on the object. It gets frustrating at times. Most pictures clicked with the Coolpad Mega 5A, including selfies, looked washed out. Both the front and back cameras come with portrait mode support, but they that is mostly on paper because in practice the results are poor. Pictures clicked in the portrait mode don’t have a background that you can call “blurred”. There is almost no bokeh. The Mega 5A allows users to adjust the amount of bokeh after the picture has been clicked — the iPhone Xs too has this feature — but it doesn’t work properly in this phone. It hardly changes anything about the photo. The Mega 5A camera comes packed with several features like manual mode that lets users control exposure, ISO, white balance, contrast, saturation, and brightness as per their need. The selfie camera comes with a beautify mode which smoothens the skin and makes it look unnatural. But just like other features, these are features mostly to check boxes. They don’t work all that well.Should you buy the Coolpad Mega 5A?Design is okay, screen more than okay and camera performance of the Mega 5A is something I can forgive and forget. The software too is good, as it is based on Android 8 and battery life is decent. But the performance issues mean the Mega 5A is not a phone that can be recommended.The Coolpad Mega 5A comes with a price tag of Rs 6,999. At this price point there are better options available. May be you can try your luck and attempt buying the Redmi 6A. Or get the Honor 7A. Or may be pick a phone like 10.or E or 10.or G. The Mega 5A could have been a decent phone but unfortunately lets down by its performance.advertisementCoolpad Mega 5A review6/10ProsDesignBatterySoftwareConsPerformanceCameraslast_img read more

Viking to Build Worlds 1st HydrogenPowered Cruise Ship

first_imgzoom Cruise ship owner Viking Cruises unveiled plans for a liquid hydrogen-fuelled cruise ship in an effort to develop the world’s first cruise ship with zero-emission technology.Serge Fossati, project manager at the shipping company, presented the plans at the Norwegian Maritime Authority’s Safety at Sea Conference in Haugesund.To feature a length of around 230 metres, the cruise ship would be able to accommodate more than 900 passengers and a crew of 500.“This is a world sensation. Very exciting. If they pull this off, a distribution network may be established, which will enable others as well to use hydrogen as fuel, and could contribute to a zero-emission shipping industry,” Olav Akselsen, Director General of Shipping and Navigation, said.Viking Cruises envisions constructing a ship based on the same design as their seagoing cruise ships, such as the recently delivered Viking Sun. Additionally, the shipping company informed that the hydrogen ship would be registered in the Norwegian Ship Registers (NIS) if it is realised, and is already in dialogue with the Norwegian Maritime Authority.“As a Norwegian and with Norwegian ships, we want to lead the way to zero-emission ships through fuel cell technology. The road to that point is still long, but here at Viking we want to be ahead of the game,” Torstein Hagen, Chairman of Viking Cruises, said.So far, liquid hydrogen has not been used as marine fuel. One of the technical challenges is to maintain the fuel at minus 253 degrees to keep it from evaporating. A fuel cell will convert the hydrogen to electricity for propulsion and electric power on board.At present, liquid hydrogen is not produced on a large scale in Europe, but Fossati explained that Viking Cruises is in dialogue with Statoil in order to find a solution based on a Norwegian refinery. It also emerged that the shipping company wants to use Norwegian suppliers for the project, as far as possible. Several tender ships to carry the fuel to the cruise ship are also part of the project, according to the Norwegian Maritime Authority.last_img read more

PM resorted to old evading tactics to hoodwink common people Congress

first_imgNew Delhi: The Congress on Tuesday panned Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s reply to the Motion of Thanks to the President’s address, alleging that he resorted to “old evading tactics” to hoodwink the common people as if he was still in election mode and failed to address the real issues.Congress leader in the Lok Sabha Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury claimed that his party scored a “great victory” as the Prime Minister, who was previously “reluctant” to quote any Congress leader, was “compelled” to repeat Jawaharlal Nehru’s words at the fag end of his speech. “Prime Minister in his own reply has disappointed the people of our country by not taking up issues concerning the people, right from agriculture to industry to unemployment and last but not the least Bihar’s encephalitis situation where hundreds of children have lost their lives,” Chowdhury told reporters. “He resorted to old evading tactics to hoodwink the common people, as if he was still in election mode. We expected that he would rise above partisan issues and would be conciliatory in taking all along,” he said. This is the first session of the 17th Lok Sabha and the Prime Minister could have been statesman-like so that it sets the tone for a constructive and fruitful atmosphere in Parliament in coming days, but that was absent, he said. “We also noted that Prime Minister was drawn into our incisive argument, and had to quote Jawahar Lal Nehru ji at the fag end of his speech. I think, that is a great victory for us!” Chowdhury said. Taking a swipe at the Congress, Prime Minister Narendra Modi Tuesday said the party never recognised efforts of anyone but only the members from the Gandhi-Nehru family. Replying to the Motion of Thanks to the President’s address in Lok Sabha, Modi said the Congress never spoke about the good work of former prime ministers Atal Bihari Vajpayee and PV Narasimha Rao. “There are some people who feel only a few names contributed to the national progress. They only want to hear those few names and ignore the others…,” Modi said.last_img read more

Mary Robinson Appointed United Nations Special Envoy For Climate Change

first_imgUnited Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has appointed former Irish President Mary Robinson as his Special Envoy for Climate Change to mobilize political will and action ahead of the climate summit that the United Nations chief will convene in September.Mrs. Robinson, who will continue to serve as President of the Mary Robinson Foundation-Climate Justice, will work closely with Special Envoys John Kufuor and Michael Bloomberg in her new role.“Building on her work on climate justice she will engage Heads of State and Government around the world in order to mobilize political will and action, and raise ambition in advance of the 2014 Climate Summit that the Secretary-General is hosting in New York on 23 September 2014,” said the announcement from Ban Ki-moon’s office.“The Summit will be an important milestone to mobilize political commitment for the conclusion of a global agreement by 2015, as well as to spur enhanced action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and build climate resilient communities.”In asking Mrs. Robinson to take on this mandate, the Secretary-General commended her for her work as Special Envoy for the Great Lakes Region of Africa, in particular for her efforts in bringing cohesion and international awareness to the challenges in the region.He particularly noted her ability to galvanize the international community to support the efforts of the Great Lakes region in conflict resolution, socio-economic development and mainstreaming of marginalized groups, including women.Mrs. Robinson also served as UN High Commissioner for Human Rights from 1997 to 2002.last_img read more

Where are all the jobs promised for the Muskrat Falls project

first_imgAPTN National NewsWhen the Muskrat Falls Project announced it was declared Aboriginal peoples would be a priority in terms of hiring, followed by other Labradorians and then Newfoundlanders.However, many Labradorians say this is not the case.MP Yvonne Jones says she’s been fielding endless calls from workers looking for work.APTN’s Ossie Michelin has the story.last_img

Angola Security Council condemns fighting urges release of abducted children

The Security Council particularly condemned a UNITA attack that occurred today and another that took place in Caxito on 5 May, and called for the release of the children abducted in the Caxito fighting, Ambassador James Cunningham of the United States, the Council’s current President, told the press at UN Headquarters.Council members welcomed the reaffirmation by the Government of Angola of its willingness to engage in dialogue with UNITA and urged the parties to become involved in the search for a peaceful settlement. They also expressed their intent to maintain sanctions on UNITA, and emphasized the importance of the Lusaka Protocol, the Council President said.On the humanitarian front, the Council expressed concern at the “declining” situation and urged for unimpeded access of humanitarian assistance to all internally displaced people and civilians in need, especially children. The Council President’s press statement followed consultations during which members heard from Secretary-General Kofi Annan’s Adviser for Special Assignments in Africa, Ibrahim Gambari, on his recent mission to Angola. Speaking to the press after his briefing to the Council, Mr. Gambari said civil society in Angola – led by the Catholic church and local non-governmental organizations – has been putting tremendous pressure on all sides to bring the war to an end. Noting the effort by President Jose Eduardo Dos Santos on 2 May, when he challenged UNITA leader Jonas Savimbi “to come out and say when this war will end and how he intends to enter the political process,” Mr. Gambari said the “the answer Savimbi apparently gave was the attack on Caxito and the abduction of the children.” “I believe the Security Council will send a clear message that Savimbi needs to give an unambiguous clear response to this call to end the fighting and embrace dialogue,” Mr. Gambari added. “If you judge by the pressure from the civil society, the changes are much better than ever before, but we’re still waiting to hear from Mr. Savimbi.” read more

UN expert welcomes Italian veto of bill seen as infringing judicial independence

The Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers of the UN Commission on Human Rights, Leandro Despouy, expressed his satisfaction at Mr. Ciampi’s decision to send the bill back to the lawmakers.Mr. Despouy had earlier written Mr. Ciampi a letter detailing his concerns. “The reforms represent a worrying limitation to the guarantees of independence that, for over a decade now, have been considered to be key features of the Italian judiciary and have conferred upon Italy an enviable international prestige and moral authority, and served as a model to other countries,” he declared.Among his concerns were the role of the Justice Ministry in nominating a chief prosecutor, paving the way for possible Government interference; the weakening of the powers of the Higher Judicial Council, the independent body in charge of controlling the judiciary; and powers attributed to the Executive over the Judiciary that are in conflict with the independence of the judiciary and are likely to result in undue Executive interference in the disciplinary process and decisions affecting judges. read more

NSERCfunded student exploring connection between gut health and bone strength

A substantial scholarship from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council will allow Brock PhD student Kirsten Bott to delve deep into the relationship between gut flora and overall musculoskeletal health.The Applied Health Sciences student will continue her research with the help of a prestigious Alexander Graham Bell Canada Graduate Scholarship worth $70,000 over the next two years.Bott is one of nine Brock graduate students who received scholarships in NSERC’s latest funding round. They, along with 18 faculty researchers at Brock University, received a total of $3.2 million in NSERC funding this year.“Over the past 20 years, there has been a lot of research done on the trillions of microorganisms living in our guts called microbiota,” says Bott. “We know that they play a large role in our overall health.  Everything from the brain to the cardiovascular system is affected by gut microbiota. I am interested in expanding the research on how gut microbiota specifically affects bone and muscle structure and metabolism.”It is already known that an unhealthy gut produces higher levels of toxins that cause low-grade inflammation in the body, Bott explains.“The inflammation has a negative effect on bone and muscle function,” she says. “I am hoping to show that exercise can favourably alter gut microbiota and therefore reduce the low-grade inflammation in the body.”Wendy Ward, one of Bott’s co-supervisors, emphasizes the importance of Bott’s work.“Low-grade inflammation is a threat to the musculoskeletal system and can contribute to a weakening of the skeleton, making an individual more prone to fracture. Lifestyle factors including a poor diet and sedentary behaviour may contribute to low-grade inflammation and are also known to impact both gut microbiota and the skeleton,” Ward says. “Kirsten’s research will provide novel insights into these associations and also consider how changes in lifestyle, specifically exercise, can be used as a potential solution to prevent or attenuate the negative impact of inflammation.”Bott was honoured to receive the prestigious scholarship.“To have my work recognized at this level is an honour and motivates me to continue my research in this field,” she says.Bott has been studying at Brock for several years, having completed both her undergraduate and master’s degrees at the University. She credits the amazing researchers at Brock, specifically supervisors Ward and Sandra Peters, for helping her find her passion in research.“The combination of my supervisors, who have always been very supportive and allowed me to follow my own research interests, and access to equipment has largely contributed to my research success,” she says.“Kirsten demonstrated an early interest in research when she was an undergraduate in Kinesiology,” says Peters. “I am so pleased to see that her passion and hard work has brought her this great success.”This year’s Brock NSERC recipients:NSERC Alexander Graham Bell Canada Graduate Scholarship – Master’sRachel Clemens, Mathematics and Statistics — “On High Quantile Regression Methods.”Emily Davis, Psychology — “The neural mechanisms underlying “hyper-binding” associative memories in aging.”Grant Hayward, Applied Health Sciences — “Investigating the role of estrogen on insulin signalling and amyloid-B production in the brain.”Michael Tolentino, Biological Sciences — “Retinoic acid signalling and glial cell responses in regenerating axolotl spinal cord.”NSERC Alexander Graham Bell Canada Graduate Scholarship – DoctoralNico Bonanno, Chemistry — “Rational Design of Redox-Active Ligands for the Assembly of Novel Paramagnetic Clusters.”Kirsten Bott, Applied Health Sciences — “Effects of exercise and low-grade inflammation on bone structure and metabolism.”Christine Kempthorne, Biotechnology — “Biochemical diversity in Vincetoxicum rossicum, a highly invasive plant in Canada.”Michael Yousef, Applied Health Sciences — “Effects of Rosemary Polyphenolic Components on FceRI Mast-Cell Signalling.”NSERC Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship DoctoralClaire Matthews, Psychology — “Cognitive mechanisms underlying face learning: The role of perceptual experience.” read more

Google extends free calling through Google Voice for one more year

first_imgIf you use Google Voice in Gmail to make phone calls to anyone in the US and Canada, those calls have been free while Google perfects their call routing and quality. It looks like that tradition will continue on for at least one more year, according to Google.Google Voice offers a lot of really great features, and chief among them is cheap international calling and free domestic calling if you are in the US and Canada. The service is not without flaws, and like any phone service has the occasional hiccup. Earlier this year Google said that in a perfect world they planned to keep their Voice service free, but they also are prepared to charge for the service once it reaches an acceptable quality level. Whether it is because the service is still not quite done or because Google is feeling some of the holiday cheer they have been dishing out this year, the Gmail based Google Voice service will remain free for 2013.Google was also quick to remind everyone that making international calls through Google Voice is still less expensive than nearly any other method on the planet, and as long as you have a good internet connection the call quality is often better than what you get with a mobile phone or landline. While Google has shifted most of their internal communication methods to Hangouts, their Voice service is deployed across their entire company for those increasingly rare times when you need to make a phone call.If you’ve never tried out Google Voice, and you live in the US or Canada, all you need is a Google Account and an area code to get one setup. Once you have a Google Voice account, you can set it up on an Android or iOS smartphone as a second number that will ring on your existing phone very easily.via Gmail Bloglast_img read more

PM extends well wishes to Greek Orthodox Christians

first_img Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram Malcolm Turnbull took the opportunity ahead of Sunday to wish Australia’s 383,000 Greek Orthodox Christians a happy Easter.In an official letter addressed to the community, the prime minister recognised the religious holiday as “the holiest and most spiritually significant of the seasons of the liturgical year – a reminder of the example set by Christ, and His commitment to serve others”.He also highlighted that Easter can be a significant time not only for those of faith, but for all Australians who acknowledge the role and meaning of Christianity in the nation’s social fabric and heritage of belief.“During this time, many of us will gather with family and friends and share traditional food. We will also redouble our commitment to the less well-off, as we are reminded of our shared responsibility to love, serve and forgive one another,” wrote Mr Turnbull.The Liberal leader then turned the attention to multiculturalism, claiming that one of Australia’s great strengths is “the mutual respect of different communities for each other”.“At the core of our success are the values that we share − hope, respect and a deep belief that everyone should have the freedom to express who they are. So to all celebrating Easter this year, my warmest wishes for a safe and enjoyable holiday.”last_img read more

Jill Herzig Named EditorinChief of Dr Oz The Good Life

first_imgThe magazine is set to open with a 450,000 rate base, and will complement Oz’s syndicated television talk show.”He’s convincing America that a healthy lifestyle is the bedrock of happiness,” says Herzig in a statement. “I’m looking forward to working with him to create a rich, imaginative editorial package for that transformative message.” Hearst Corp. president and CEO Steve Swartz and Hearst Magazines president David Carey looked inward in recruiting Redbook editor-in-chief Jill Herzig for the same position at Dr. Oz The Good Life.Her hiring, announced Wednesday, comes after word that the magazine will go to a 10X frequency with the Aug./Sept. 2014 launch after successful test releases in January and April. They were under the editorial direction of Alison Brower, but she is leaving Hearst Magazines to return to California.In terms of magazine seniority, Dr Oz is quite a change for Herzig because Redbook is 111 years old. However, shaking up the norm isn’t something Herzig is shy about doing. She did upgrade the beauty and fashion portion of Redbook content from 30 to 50 percent in April 2013 while ending such former editorial mainstays as parenting and relationships. When she was at Redbook she told min that her role was “a never-ending process of keeping Redbook fresh.”From 2003-2010, Herzig was Glamour executive editor and top lieutenant to editor-in-chief Cindi Leive. Earlier career stops included SELF, New Woman and Cosmopolitan under the late editor-in-chief Helen Gurley Brown.last_img read more