12 PSU banks almost right for India says Finance Secretary

first_imgNew Delhi: The amalgamation of 10 public sector banks into four has nearly ended the consolidation process and created almost the right number of banks to cater to the needs of the aspirational and new India, Finance Secretary Rajiv Kumar said This exercise will create six global size banks and will bring down the number of nationalised public sector banks to 12 from 27 in 2017. “This is almost the right number of the banks which the country needs,” he said. Also Read – Thermal coal import may surpass 200 MT this fiscalThe government on August 30 announced consolidation of 10 large public sector banks into four. He described the government’s decision as a building block for achieving $5 trillion economy target. “To support next level of growth, the country needed big banks. The mega merger announced on August 30 aims to achieve that objective. We will now have six mega banks with enhanced capital base, size, scale and efficiency to support high growth that the country requires to break into the club of middle income nations,” he said. Also Read – Food grain output seen at 140.57 mt in current fiscal on monsoon boostThe consolidation will help create strong and globally competitive banks with economies of scale and enable realisation of wide-ranging synergies, he said adding that now they would have wider reach, stronger lending capacity and better products and technology to serve customers of new India. Kumar, who spearheaded the exercise of cleaning up the banking sector, has several firsts to his credit. These include highest ever capital infusion in the banking history and successful completion of the first three-way merger with Bank of Baroda as the anchor bank. As a result of various initiatives taken by the finance ministry, the banking sector witnessed a reversal in the deteriorating bad loan situation with reduction of NPA by Rs 1.06 lakh crore and record loan recovery of Rs 1.21 lakh crore in the last fiscal. The cleaning up exercise undertaken by him has now started showing result with 14 out of 18 public sector banks posting profit in the first quarter of the current fiscal. Earlier this year, Bank of Baroda merged Vijaya Bank and Dena Bank with itself to become the second largest public sector lender. State Bank of India had merged five of its associate banks – State Bank of Patiala, State Bank of Bikaner and Jaipur, State Bank of Mysore, State Bank of Travancore and State Bank of Hyderabad and also Bhartiya Mahila effective April 2017.last_img read more

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Pakistans FIA seeks cancellation of 2611 mastermind Zakiur Rehman Lakhvis bail

first_imgIslamabad: Pakistan’s top investigative agency has approached the Islamabad High Court (IHC) to seek the cancellation of the bail of LeT operations commander Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi, the mastermind of the 2008 Mumbai terror attack. The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) has filed an appeal in the IHC seeking cancellation of the post-arrest bail of Lakhvi. Hearing the appeal, a division bench of the IHC on Tuesday asked authorities to provide the record of the Mumbai attack case in two weeks. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince ‘snubbed’ Pak PM, recalled jet from USThe record of the case is currently with an Islamabad-based Anti-Terrorism Court (ATC) which was holding trial of Lakhavi and other accused arrested in the case. Seven LeT suspects – Lakhvi, Abdul Wajid, Mazhar Iqbal, Hamad Amin Sadiq, Shahid Jamil Riaz, Jamil Ahmed and Younis Anjum – are facing charges of abetment to murder, attempted murder, planning and executing the Mumbai attack since 2009. The ATC on December 18, 2014, granted the post-arrest bail to Lakhvi and set him free. Lakhvi has been living in an undisclosed location since then. Also Read – Record number of 35 candidates in fray for SL Presidential pollsThe FIA in its appeal argued that it has enough evidence against Lakhavi and his post-arrest bail should be cancelled so that he can be re-arrested and probed. “In the present case, the learned trial judge (of ATC) after the terrorist attack in Islamabad courts (of March 2013) refused to visit Adiala Jail for a long time due to security reasons,” the FIA said in its appeal against the ATC judge’s order, Dawn reported. “Even the prosecutors of this case have been receiving threats through cell phones during the proceedings which were duly conveyed to the concerned authorities. The witnesses are also not secured, and reluctant to depose against the accused persons in the given situation,” it added. The court after hearing the argument from the FIA and Lakhvi’s lawyer ordered to provide the record of the case in two weeks. Some 166 people were killed in the attack carried out by 10 LeT men. Nine of the attackers were killed by police while lone survivor Ajmal Kasab was caught and hanged after handed down death sentence by an Indian court.last_img read more

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SecretaryGeneral welcomes deal on nonnuclear Korean peninsula

“The Secretary-General is encouraged that this constructive effort by the international community can eventually result in strengthening the global non-proliferation regime, as well as in contributing to durable peace, security and prosperity in the region,” a spokesperson for Mr. Ban said, referring to the deal aimed at implementing the 2005 Joint Statement on denuclearizing the peninsula.“This agreement represents the first practical stage towards a non-nuclear Peninsula,” Marie Okabe added in a statement. “The Secretary-General also welcomes the commitment by all participants to move expeditiously towards the next stage of this process.”Toward that end, the planned establishment of five working groups “should allow the participants to address the wide ranges of issues relating to the region in a comprehensive way.”The statement urged the participants to “make every effort to sustain the current positive momentum and ensure that this accord is implemented as agreed.”The six-party talks involve the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), China, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Russia and the United States and have been going on sporadically in Beijing for several years, but have so far failed to end nuclear weapons on the peninsula. The DPRK carried out its first proclaimed nuclear test in October, after which the Security Council imposed sanctions on the country. 13 February 2007United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today strongly welcomed the nuclear agreement reached at six-party talks in Beijing, describing it as the first step towards a non-nuclear Korean Peninsula and urging all sides to “sustain the current positive momentum” and ensure the accord is implemented. read more

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Higher interest rates cool rise in Ontario farmland prices

Ontario farmland prices rose again last year, continuing a decade of growing value, although well below the double-digit annual percentage increases for land of a few years ago.A Farm Credit Canada report released Monday said prices in Ontario rose by 3.6 per cent on average in 2018, well below the national average of 6.6 per cent.In Southwestern Ontario, the increase last year was even smaller, with the price of farmland rising by an average of 2.4 per cent to $12,435 an acre.One of the key factors limiting the rise in land prices has been increases in the cost of borrowing, Farm Credit Canada said. J.P. Gervais, Farm Credit’s chief economist, said there have been five Bank of Canada interest rate increases since 2017.Gervais downplayed the shrinking rate of increase for farmland in Ontario, noting the increase in value of Ontario land outpaced the national average in 2017 and land values in Ontario remain among the highest in the country.“I wouldn’t make too much of a point (of Ontario) being somewhat on the lower end of the range of estimates that we find,” he said.“At the end of the day, it is still a sizeable increase when you convert some of the smaller percentages in terms of dollars per acre.”Despite increases in the cost of borrowing, the growth in Ontario farmland value is mainly the result of demand exceeding the available supply, Gervais said.With supply expected to remain limited, Gervais said Farm Credit Canada expects to see farmland prices rise again this year.Nationally, average farmland values rose in all provinces except Nova Scotia.The highest average increase was in Quebec, where farmland values rose by 8.3 per cent.BY THE NUMBERSAverage annual change in farmland values in 2018 (2017)Canada: 6.6 per cent (8.4)Ontario: 3.6 per cent (9.4)Southwestern Ontario: 2.4 (4.2)AVERAGE ONTARIO INCREASES2012: 30.1 per cent2013: 15.9 per cent2014: 12.4 per cent2015: 6.6 per cent2016: 4.4 per cent2017: 9.4 per cent2018: 3.6 per centjjuha@postmedia.comTwitter.com/JuhaatLFPress read more

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World Food Programme accesses Yemeni frontline district for first time since conflict

During the four years of violence, many districts have remained inaccessible for humanitarians, causing conditions facing civilians wracked by hunger, cholera, and bombardment, to “significantly deteriorate”, according to the World Food Programme (WFP).  “Yemen is a graveyard for the living.War destroyed my hope and broke all my dreams. Every day, I come down to this muddy hole that looks like hell to me and try to find anything to make a fire and cook.”7 women share their stories of #Ramadan in #Yemen https://t.co/irn5jcuZ0V— World Food Programme (@WFP) May 31, 2019 WFP Spokesperson Herve Verhoosel, told journalists in Geneva that on Thursday the agency had succeeded in distributing food and aid to more than 5,000 people from “896 households living next to the frontlines of Nihm district in Sana’a governorate.” He highlighted that this was “the first time WFP and a cooperating partner, Islamic Relief, (have) reached people living inside the militarized zone of Nihm.”According to WFP, a one-off distribution providing rations for two months, was conducted in two food distribution points, marking an important breakthrough as the district has been a frontline conflict area, which is very difficult to access, for a prolonged period. The area close to the Saudi border, north east of the Houthi-held capital Sana’a – has been in the hands of the movement, officially known as Ansar Allah, since 2014.First aid in a year reaches Dhuraimi CityMr. Verhoosel also reported that the agency has gained access to “the besieged area of Dhuraimi city in Hudaydah governorate, which has seen intense conflict and insecurity for a prolonged period.” The city of Dhuraimi is also on a frontline between the warring parties, and WFP noted that both sides had helped with access.Mr Verhoosel told journalists that “WFP provided two-month general food assistance rations, water, hygiene kits and dignity kits from UNICEF and UNFPA, and other food assistance.” He reiterated that “this is the first humanitarian assistance to reach civilians in the city for a year.”While WFP’s reach has been increasing since December, Mr. Verhoosel acknowledged that there is still more work to do. “WFP was reaching 7 to 8 million people a month. Since January, February, we are reaching 10 million people a month,” he stressed, adding they hoped to extend that to 12 million.“We are not there yet for the moment because of those distribution issues that we have.” Even in Sana’a, reports by NGOs working in Nihm, indicate that although access to some areas was possible, some communities where fighting is on-going, remain out of reach.WFP together with Islamic Relief has been working to open up access to these vulnerable populations by establishing two food distribution points and coordinating closely with other agencies.WFP is committed to “working with both sides” of the conflict, said Mr. Verhoosel,“to try to facilitate as much as possible not only the security situation but also of course the access.”Future of key Hudaydah grain silo supplies still not clearIn an update from the key port city of Hudaydah, WFP also said that grain supplies held in a silo close to the former front lines of conflict, are still being fumigated, but it was still not possible to say how much of it was fit to eat.The Red Sea Mills contained enough grain to feed 3.7 million for a month, but “the total quantity of wheat that will be fit for human consumption is still not determined at this stage”, said Mr. Verhoosel.Each of the 11 silos contain an estimated 3,500-4,000 metric tonnes of grain and 40 local workers from the area have been hired to finalize cleaning, and WFP is looking to bring in additional equipment.“WFP appreciates the cooperation from all parties on the ground that has made this progress possible”, added the WFP Spokesperson. read more

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Lizzie Kelly first female jockey to ride in the Gold Cup for

first_imgThe first female jockey to ride in the Gold Cup for 33 years has revealed how she overcame chauvinism to make history.At 23, Lizzie Kelly will be the first woman since Linda Sheedy in 1984 to take part in the sport’s most prestigious race.But while Sheedy’s performance was very much as an outsider, riding a horse with 500-1 odds, Kelly has her sight set on a top spot. Aubusson and Lizzie Kelly jump the last to win the Douglas Family Novices’ Chase at Uttoxeter in 2015Credit:Rex With her step father as her trainer and her mother part-owner of the horse she is riding, it is very much a family enterprise. Lizzie Kelly in action at CheltenhamCredit:Getty Images Europe Lizzie KellyCredit:Jay Williams  Lizzie Kelly Two years ago, she even beat champion jockey AP McCoy as a student amateur at Cheltenham on New Year’s Day.Kelly has been vocal about the difficulties the sport holds for women, who are more likely to struggle to feel accepted. But, she said, she has made good friends in the weighing room.  Lizzie Kelly rode Agrapart in the Sun Bets Stayers' Hurdle Race at Cheltenham Speaking to the Telegraph ahead of today’s race, Kelly said was aware of the significance of Friday’s race. “I do feel that I get a lot of attention that perhaps isn’t warranted, just purely based on the fact that I’m a girl,” she said.“No woman’s ridden it since I’ve been watching it. So, I knew it was definitely going to make a story. But, at the same time, again, it’s not something I really think about.“It would be very easy for me to go into [the Gold Cup] thinking, ‘Oh, I’ve got all this media attention; I’m going to win; that’s why people are interested’. Lizzie Kelly rode Agrapart in the Sun Bets Stayers’ Hurdle Race at CheltenhamCredit:Eddie Mulholland for The Telegraph “She was associated with a horse; she didn’t pick it up as a spare ride. “At this point, it would make no sense for them to drop me off Tea for Two and put someone else on it, because I know him inside out.“Whether he was trained by my parents or not, it wouldn’t make any sense.“If Jack Kennedy, for example, has ridden a horse for the last three seasons, won a Grade One on him, won the Lanzarote on him, and had him taken off and put Paul Moloney on, you’d be, like, ‘That’s random. Why have they done that?’” Lizzie Kelly in action at Cheltenhamcenter_img “I’d prefer doing media stuff when I’d won something rather than going into it.” Lizzie Kelly insists her place in the Gold Cup is down to her own talentCredit:Eddie Mulholland for The Telegraph Lizzie Kelly But Kelly, who lives and works with her family in North Devon, insisted her place in the Gold Cup is down to her own talent. “I’m lucky in the fact that I’m associated with a horse who has the ability to line up for it and that’s why I’m here – in the same way that [Sheedy] did 33 years ago,” she said. “It’s exciting for me to have a ride in the Gold Cup and a privilege,” she said. “Tea For Two is not a 500-1 outsider – we’re not going for the free lunch.”Kelly has already broken a record by becoming the first female jockey to win a Grade One jump race in 2015 on Tea for Two, the horse she will be racing on Friday. Lizzie Kelly Lizzie Kelly will become the first woman to ride in the Cheltenham Gold Cup for more than 30 yearsCredit:Eddie Mulholland for The Telegraph Discussing the position of women in the sport, and her own ambitions, she said: “We’re trying to be equal. I’ve basically trained my whole life to be as good as any male jockey.“I’ve worked hard and I think that you come into the sport knowing that you’re at a disadvantage being a girl, if that’s your opinion.“No-one’s put a gun to my head and said, ‘You have to be a jockey’. I could have gone and worked in a race course or trained horses or done whatever the f— I wanted.” Aubusson and Lizzie Kelly jump the last to win the Douglas Family Novices' Chase at Uttoxeter in 2015 Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.last_img read more

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Thirtytwo parties to contest Greek elections

first_img Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram A total of 32 parties, coalitions and individual candidates will contest the May 6 general election, following their approval by the Supreme Court (Areios Pagos) on Thursday.The court banned four parties from taking part: National Hope, PAME in GESEEP [Π.Α.Μ.Ε. στο Γ.Ε.Σ.Ε.ΕΠ.], the Friends of Man, and Citizens Assembly-(Direct) Democracy in Practice.It is understood that National Hope was prohibited under the electoral law from participating as it is a monarchist party. The court also banned the one-man party Tyrannicides from contesting the election under that name, on the grounds that the title “demonstrated criminal intent”. The party’s only candidate, Athanasios Daskalopoulos, may run, however. The parties and their leaders that will contest the election are:Panhellenic Socialist Movement (Pasok), Evangelos Venizelos New Democracy (ND), Antonis Samaras Communist Party of Greece (KKE), Aleka Papariga Radical Left Coalition-Unitary Social Movement (Syriza), Alexis Tspiras Popular Orthodox Rally (Laos), Yiorgos Karatzaferis Democratic Alliance, Dora Bakoyannis Social Pact, Louka Katseli Independent Greeks, Panos Kammenos Democratic Left, Fotis Kouvelis Drasi [Action]-Liberal Alliance, Stefanos Manos and Grigoris Vallianatos Ecologists-Greens (Ecogreens), six-member committee Union of Centrists, Vassilis Leventis Liberal Party, K. Kaligiannis Popular Union-Golden Dawn (Chrysi Avyi), Nikolaos Michaloliakos Dimosthenis Vergis-Greek Ecologists, Dimosthenis Vergis Ochi [Democratic Revival and United Popular Front (Epam)], Stelios Papathemelis and 3-member ctte “Can’t Pay, Won’t Pay” Movement, Vasilis Papadopoulos National Resistance Movement (KEAN), Ippokratis Savvouras Communist Party of Greece (Marxist-Leninist)-Marxist-Leninist Communist Party of Greece (KKE (m-l)-ML KKE), four-member ctte Anticapitalist Left Cooperation for the Overthrow (Antarsya), 21-member ctte Organisation of Communist Internationalists of Greece (OKDE), 3-member ctte Workers Revolutionary Party (EEK Trokskyists), Sabetai Matsas Organisation for the Reconstruction of the Communist Party of Greece (OAKKE), 3-member ctte National Unity Association (SEE), N. Alikakos Koinonia [Society: Political Party of the Successors of Kapodistria], Michail Iliadis Pirate Party of Greece, I. Papagoupous Recreate Greece, Glavkos Tzimeros Panathinaikos Movement (Panki), Yiorgos Betsikas Axioprepeia [Dignity] (alliance of independent candidates), Panayiotis Theodoropoulos Renewing Independent Left, Renewing Right, Renewing Pasok, Renewing New Democracy, No to War, Party of Action I Give Away Land, I Give Away Debts, Save Lives, Panagrarian Labour Movement of Greece (Paeke) Miltiadis Tzalazidis Regional Urban Development (PAA), Nikos Kolitsis (sole candidate) Athanasios Daskalopoulos (Independent)Source: Athens Newslast_img read more

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Espace détection dune galaxie géante dans lunivers lointain

first_imgEspace : détection d’une galaxie géante dans l’univers lointainUne équipe internationale d’astronomes dirigée par des chercheurs du CEA a détecté, pour la première fois dans l’univers lointain, une galaxie elliptique géante, très semblable à ses cousines de notre univers local. Située à 10,1 milliards d’années-lumière de la Terre, cette galaxie est observée au moment où l’univers n’avait que 3,6 milliards d’années. Cette découverte révèle que certaines galaxies elliptiques peuvent atteindre leur “taille adulte” tôt dans l’évolution de l’univers. Elles coexistent avec d’autres galaxies elliptiques, beaucoup plus petites, qui augmentent de volume au cours du temps. À lire aussiUn rover détecte un étrange gel sur la face cachée de la LunePour éclaircir les mystères du passé lointain de notre univers, les chercheurs analysent la lumière de galaxies très éloignées de la Terre. Parmi les galaxies étudiées, les elliptiques intéressent tout particulièrement les astronomes. Ces régions suscitent beaucoup d’interrogations : en effet, les galaxies elliptiques n’étant pas le siège de formation importante d’étoiles, elles devraient avoir une évolution relativement restreinte au cours du temps. Pourtant, il y a quelques années, des images de l’univers lointain prises par le télescope spatial Hubble suggéraient que les galaxies elliptiques lointaines pouvaient être deux à cinq fois plus petites que leurs consœurs de même masse dans l’univers proche. Pour atteindre leur taille maximale, les galaxies elliptiques seraient obligées d’augmenter leur volume, ce qui contredit la théorie.”Nous voulions trouver d’éventuelles galaxies elliptiques géantes dans l’univers lointain”, indique Masato Onodera, chercheur au CEA. “Pour ‘peser’ les galaxies lointaines, nous avons utilisé la technique de dispersion des vitesses des étoiles. Plus la taille d’une galaxie de masse donnée est petite, plus les étoiles la constituant doivent tourner rapidement autour du centre de la galaxie pour compenser l’attraction gravitationnelle”, ajoute-t-il.Pour avoir accès à ces précieuses données, les chercheurs se sont tournés vers l’un des plus grands relevés de l’univers lointain, le projet “Cosmos”. Ils ont cherché des objets dotés d’une signature spectrale particulière dans le visible et le proche infrarouge, et ont ensuite pu utiliser le télescope Subaru qui, équipé d’un spectrographe et d’une caméra infrarouge multi-objets, a permis d’obtenir les spectres infrarouges des galaxies lointaines étudiées. L’analyse des élargissements des raies spectrales permet ensuite de remonter à la masse et à la taille des galaxies étudiées.Les chercheurs ont ainsi pu détecter une galaxie elliptique géante, située à 10,1 milliards d’années-lumière de la Terre et observée au moment où l’univers n’avait que 3,6 milliards d’années. Ce résultat apporte la preuve que des galaxies géantes, parvenues à leur stade adulte, coexistent avec d’autres, plus compactes, dans l’univers primordial. Par ailleurs, cette découverte apporte une pièce supplémentaire au puzzle de la compréhension de l’évolution des galaxies elliptiques. Les chercheurs s’attèlent désormais à quantifier la proportion relative de ces deux types extrêmes de galaxies elliptiques, en fonction du temps cosmique.Ces résultats sont publiés dans la revue Astrophysical Journal Letters. Le 29 mai 2010 à 09:16 • Emmanuel Perrinlast_img read more

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Working in Clark County Dr Katherine Manning dentist at Grin and Bear

first_imgWhen entering Dr. Katherine Manning’s dental practice — called Grin and Bear It — you’re promptly greeted by a wooden statue of a bear, currently dressed in summer beachwear.Paintings of bears adorn the walls. The front desk and much of the trimming in the room is wood. It almost gives the feel of someone’s well-kept cabin. But, of course, going to the dentist isn’t what most people think of for a getaway.However, keeping patients at ease is a high priority for Manning, who has owned the practice since 2001.“Yeah, (anxiety is) a big thing. I’ve always been a little needle-phobic myself, so I always treat my patients as if I’m the one sitting in the chair,” she said.Originally from Laguna Hills, Calif., Manning, 66, describes her practice as traditional.“I’m a smaller practice, I’m an older practitioner. We kind of do a variety of things but we’re not like those big, high-gear dental practices,” she said. “They’ll do the implants themselves. I’m just your little basic, mom-and-pop, drill-and-fill kind of practice. But there’s still a need just for that.”However, that doesn’t mean the practice isn’t up to date. She and her employees are in the process of setting up digital radiography, having upgraded their computer system over the last several months. They’ll abandon the old way of using film X-rays.last_img read more

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Proposed public health budget cuts 2 million

first_imgAs Clark County commissioners slog through the process of balancing a two-year budget, they signaled Wednesday that public health will be a priority.During a meeting with John Wiesman, director of Clark County Public Health, commissioners said they would find some way to give Wiesman $1.8 million to help pay for his proposed two-year budget of $24.3 million.Before asking commissioners for help, Wiesman made $2 million in cuts by eliminating or reducing certain outreach services and cutting staff positions. Even if he gets the $1.8 million from the county, it would not cover the $2 million being cut. Under his proposal, eight public health employees will be laid off and seven employees will have their hours cut. Wiesman also won’t replace three people who have recently retired and won’t fill one vacancy.Of the money that commissioners told Wiesman he could have, nearly $1 million will go toward Environmental Public Health, which includes inspections of restaurants and septic systems.Wiesman said the county’s already doing the minimum amount of restaurant inspections, and one potential solution might be increasing fees for restaurant inspections.Wiesman said he created his budget knowing public health will face additional losses from state and federal funding.“We are anticipating four more years of state cuts,” Wiesman said.“Frankly, for me, we’re at the bottom,” he said of the services his department will still provide. “The Public Health Advisory Council would say I’ve gone too far.”last_img read more

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State monitoring spill at Tesoro pipeline facility near Cook Inlet

first_imgThe spill location and photo of the leak on Dec. 18, 2016 in Nikiski, Alaska. (Graphic courtesy Tesoro)Workers at a Tesoro facility on the Kenai Peninsula are cleaning up contaminated soil and snow after more than 120 gallons of oily water spilled out of a pipeline near Cook Inlet. The company notified the state of the spill at its Kenai Pipeline Facility on Dec. 18.Listen NowJade Gamble, who works in spill response with the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation, has been doing site visits ever since.“The spill was contained very quickly,” Gamble said. “They were on-site when it happened, and they were able to deploy some absorbent boom around the spill so that it did not spread any further.”Gamble said the cleanup has been slow.  They’re using hand axes and jackhammers to chip away at the frozen soil. The company will process the contaminated snow and water onsite, while the soil will be burned. Workers also drained and shut down the pipe.Gamble said it isn’t yet clear exactly how the spill happened.“They’ve discovered two holes in the line,” Gamble said. “But we don’t know if there’s any others, like I say because some of it’s subsurface.”The company is cleaning up what has been contaminated and exploring the buried parts of the line to make sure there are no other leaks. In an emailed statement, Tesoro said there have been no injuries or impacts on local wildlife. Gamble said the spill hasn’t reached Cook Inlet.According to DEC data, there have been at least five spills over 50 gallons at that facility in the last 17 years.last_img read more

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