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Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Michel Temer Sworn in as New Brazil President Wednesday Aug 31,2016

Michel Temer was sworn in as the new president of Brazil after Dilma Rousseff was stripped of the presidency by the Senate in an impeachment trial.

At a special session of Congress on Wednesday Aug 31,2016, after the playing of the national anthem, Temer was sworn in

Michel Temer was surrounded by the president of the Supreme Court, Ricardo Lewandowski, the president of the Senate, Renan Calheiros, and the president of the Chamber of Deputies, Rodrigo Maia.
Temer will serve as president until December 31, 2018.

The new president did not make a speech but has already recorded an address to be broadcast live to the nation.

Michel Temer twitted on his account, saying that "I swear to uphold, defend and fulfill the Constitution, observe its laws, promote the well-being of the Brazilian people, sustain the union, integrity and independence of Brazil."

Brazil's Dilma Rousseff Stripped of Presidency Wednesday Aug 31,2016

Brazil's Senate removed President Dilma Rousseff(68) from office on Wednesday Aug 31,2016 for breaking budgetary laws, in an impeachment process that has polarized the Latin American country and paralyzed its politics for 9 months.

Brazilian Senators voted 61-20 to convict Rousseff for illegally using money from state banks to boost public spending.

Brazil's Dilma Rousseff was stripped of the country's presidency on Wednesday Aug 31,2016 in a Senate impeachment vote ending 13 years of leftist rule in Latin America's biggest economy. 

Dilma Rousseff was convicted by 61 of the 81 senators of illegally manipulating the national budget. The vote, passing the needed two-thirds majority, meant she was immediately removed from office.

Cheers -- and cries of disappointment -- erupted in the blue-carpeted, circular Senate chamber as the verdict flashed up on the electronic voting screen.  

Her conservative former Vice President Michel Temer, who has run the country since her suspension in May, will be sworn to serve out the remainder of her term through 2018.

Dilma Rousseff Not Barred from Public Office Despite Impeachment

Brazil's Senate on Wednesday Aug 31,2016 voted not to bar Dilma Rousseff from holding public office in the future despite stripping her of the presidency at her impeachment trial.

After the vote to impeach her, senators in a second vote fell short of the two-thirds majority required to bar her from office for eight years, with just 42 of the 81 members backing the move.

2016 IFA in Berlin,Germany September 02-07,2016

The annual IFA show, which began as an exhibition on the new medium of radio more than 90 years ago, is today a massive showcase for consumers to touch and feel the latest in technological innovations.

Over six days from Friday Sep 02,2016, tech giants will be seeking to grab consumers' attention with novelties as diverse as the latest in high definition resolution television screens to 3D printers to fitness gadgets.

 Being the last major show before Christmas, it has a large influence over the critical European holiday gift giving season.

Smartphones and tablets have in recent years dominated the headlines at the show, but faced with a maturing market, manufacturers are struggling to find new innovations to persuade consumers to swap their already fancy phone with an even fancier one.

 But virtual reality and augmented reality may be the next cash cow.

Virtual and augmented reality gadgets are expected to hog the limelight at Berlin's mega consumer electronics show IFA this week, as Pokemon Go gave a tantalising preview of the appetite for reality-altering technologies.

VR headsets and cameras will jostle for attention, while analysts expect smartphone makers to also unveil new models compatible with the latest in such technologies

Acer Unveils Thinnest-Ever Notebook Measuring Less Than 1 Centimeter

Ahead of this year's IFA expo in Berlin, which opens officially September 2 and runs through September 7, 2016 computer manufacturer Acer has unveiled a raft of attention-grabbing laptops, from a curved-screen gaming machine to two laptops with 360° hinges.

Among them, the Predator 21 X puts a curved screen and two GTX 1080 graphics cards into a beefy 8kg laptop, as well as an i7 K-series processor, a mechanical keyboard, Tobii eye-tracking, 4 spare RAM slots, and other accoutrements.

At the other end of the scale is the 1.1kg Swift 7, a $999 Windows 10 portable which lays claim to being the first laptop less than 1cm thin -- 9.98cm, to be precise.

The versatile Spin 7's display hinges allow it to rotate through 360°. It has a touch screen and a keyboard that can effectively double as a screen stand or go further and tuck out of the way. It's $1,199 but does run on an i7 in comparison to the Swift 7's i5.

More modestly priced (and specc'd) is the Chromebook R 13, which also totes a touch screen and a 360° hinge, but starts from $399 instead.

2016 Petrol Price Revision Wednesday Aug 31,2016

Petrol Prices Hiked by Rs 3.38/litre, Diesel up by Rs 2.67

Petrol price was Wednesday Aug 31,2016  hiked by a steep Rs 3.38 per litre and diesel by Rs 2.67 a litre, reversing a two-month declining trend.

Petrol will cost Rs 63.47 a litre in Delhi from midnight tonight, up from Rs 60.09 a litre, said Indian Oil Corp, the nation's largest fuel retailer.

Similarly, a litre of diesel will cost Rs 52.94 a litre as against Rs 50.27.

The hike in fuel price, necessitated by a 13 per cent rise in international oil rates in the last fortnight, comes on the back of four reductions.

Rates were last cut by Rs 1 per litre in case of petrol and Rs 2 in diesel on August 16. The four reductions in last two months had led to the price of petrol in Delhi coming down by Rs 5.56 a litre and Rs 4.92 per litre in case of diesel.

"During the current fortnight, crude oil prices in the international market have witnessed a steep increase by 13 per cent (over USD 5 per barrel) compared to previous fortnight, with a corresponding increase in the international prices of petroleum products.

"The current level of international prices warrant an increase in prices of petrol and diesel, the impact of which is being passed on to the consumers," IOC said in a statement.

IOC and other state-owned fuel retailers, HindustanPetroleum Corp Ltd (HPCL) and Bharat Petroleum Corp Ltd (BPCL) revise petrol and diesel price on 1st and 16th of every month based on international oil rate and foreign exchange ratio in the preceding fortnight.

"The movement of prices in the international oil market and Rupee-US Dollar exchange rate shall continue to be monitored closely and developing trends of the market will be reflected in future price changes," IOC added.


2016-17 Barclays Premier League - Chelsea Signs Fiorentina's former Bolton left-back Marcos Alonso ona 5-year deal Wednesday Aug 31,2016

Chelsea completed their surprise swoop for Fiorentina's former Bolton left-back Marcos Alonso for a reported £23 million ($30 million, 27 million euros) on Wednesday Aug 31,2016

Marcos Alonso agreed a 5-year contract with the Premier League club as Chelsea manager Antonio Conte turned to the Spaniard after missing out on several other defensive targets.

The 25-year-old is Conte's fourth signing since taking charge at Stamford Bridge, following the arrivals of France midfielder N'Golo Kante, Belgium striker Michy Batshuayi and Portuguese goalkeeper Eduardo.

"I'm very happy. It's a step up in my career and I think this is the perfect place for me to continue developing," Alonso told Chelsea's website.

"It's time for me to win some titles. It was an easy decision for me to make when I heard the club were interested in signing me.

"My family and close friends know Chelsea is the club I have dreamt about playing for so I'm really excited about the challenge and I'm looking forward to working with my new team-mates."

First US-Cuba Scheduled Passenger Flight Takes Off Wednesday Aug 31,2016

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The first regularly scheduled commercial flight between the United States and Cuba in more than half a century departed on Wednesday Aug 31,2016, opening another chapter in the Obama administration's efforts to open trade and travel with the former Cold War foe.
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The first of several U.S. carriers to begin serving Cuba in the coming months, JetBlue Airways Corp took off from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, en route to Santa Clara, a central city known for its monument to revolutionary leader Ernesto "Che" Guevara.

U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx, JetBlue Chief Executive Officer Robin Hayes, other officials and journalists were aboard the 150-seat Airbus A320.

Regular travelers, including some of Cuban descent, occupied nearly half the seats on a route that may be a commercial challenge, at least initially.

Lázaro Chavez, a 49-year-old pharmacist who lives in Miami and returns frequently to his homeland, said before boarding the plane he was taking the flight for two reasons. "One, I am going to see my family. Two, I want to be on this historic flight."


Cuba and the United States began normalizing relations in December 2014 after 18 months of secret talks and have since restored full diplomatic ties.

The countries had been hostile for more than five decades, since Fidel Castro ousted U.S.-backed dictator Fulgencio Batista in a 1959 revolution that steered the island on a communist course and made it a close ally of the Soviet Union.

Inaugural commercial flight from US lands in Cuba

The first regular commercial flight in more than 50 years from the US landed in  Cuba on Wednesday Aug 31,2016 , as the two nations took the latest step in their efforts to boost ties.

JetBlue Flight 387 landed in the central Cuban city of Santa Clara a little before 11:00 am (1500 GMT), about an hour after leaving Fort Lauderdale in southeastern Florida with 150 passengers on board.

The plane was greeted with a water cannon salute, an aviation tradition in which aircraft pass under arcs of water before flying to their destinations for the first time. Its departure from Florida was celebrated the same way.

The first two passengers off the plane carried US and Cuban flags as they descended the stairs onto the tarmac, where they symbolically exchanged the banners in a sign of friendship

The flight was the first of 110 expected daily trips connecting US cities to airports in the Communist-run island, many of them in or near tourism hotspots

The Batti Project Lights Up North-East India, One Home At A Time

For many living in the cities, electric light is such an essential part of our lives that we cannot imagine life without it even for a day.

But there are people in many villages across the country who are deprived of these basic facilities.

 The Batti Project Lights Up North-East India, One Home At A Time

The Batti Project is an initiative that aims at providing basic lighting to people living in far-flung areas in north-east India.

 It is an effort by three selfless and extremely civic conscious people to provide light to the most remote areas of the north-east.

They provide light to these homes by harnessing renewable energy sources and connecting those in need with those willing to help. In the words of one of the members of the initiative, Merwyn Coutinho, "We strive for change that is sustainable."

The core team consists primarily of three members, and whenever the team takes up the task of lighting a home a set of volunteers chip in during the installation process. The core members take care of field work, fundraising, research and procurement.

 batti project

Until now the Batti Project has lighted 254 homes in 23 villages across 2 districts in eastern Arunachal Pradesh and impacted over 1200 people.

batti project

Why north-east particularly?
North-east is the most neglected region of the country. Much of it has never seen roads or electricity and has little to no connection with the outside world. It is a mass of highly dynamic landscapes and cultures, posing many hurdles to the outsider. These challenges almost guarantee that electricity through the conventional grid system will never reach here. And that’s where Batti comes in.
Who funds the project?
So far, we have been receiving funds primarily from social media and direct donations.
We try and keep the fundraising process interesting and immersive, for e.g we organise a charity cycle ride, where we take the participants to ride into the eastern Himalayas to experience the culture, tribes and landscape of the region they help light.
We have also started to collect electronic waste from the cities (currently only in Bengaluru) and through the process of recycling/upcycling generate funds.
Recently we have also earned for ourselves 80G certification. Hence we also will invite CSR programs to take part in this journey

2016 US Open Men's Singles Second Round - Novak Djokovic Into US Open Third Round on Walkover Wednesday Aug 31,2016

World number one and defending champion Novak Djokovic reached the third round of the US Open without swinging his racquet on Wednesday  Aug 31,2016 when scheduled opponent Jiri Vesely pulled out injured.

Serbia's Novak Djokovic won by walkover when left forearm inflammation prompted Czech Vesely -- who inflicted a rare defeat on Djokovic on the claycourts at Monte Carlo in April -- to withdraw prior to the afternoon second round clash scheduled for the Arthur Ashe stadium court.

Novak Djokovic will face either Guido Pella of Argentina or Mikhail Youzhny of Russia for a place in the fourth round.

45 Child Artists Created This Cover Of Michael Jackson's Heal The World And It's Brilliant

 Image result for Remembering Michael Jackson(August 29, 1958 - June 25, 2009)  on his birthday

Hollywood on August 29,2016  celebrated the birthday of King of Pop Michael Jackson and remembered the iconic pop star for his contributions to world of music.

While celebs and socialites took to Twitter and other social media platforms to pay respects to the legend, what stood out was a contribution by a group of children who recreated Jackson's Heal The World to pay a beautiful tribute to him.

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Around 45 child artists children between the ages of 5 and 13 from India, South Africa, Russia, Canada, Japan and the United States, came together to pay a unique tribute to their idol by releasing a cover of the song.

Mumbai-based folk music duo Maati Baani came up with the idea of bringing child prodigies from across the globe Heal The World!

Through the music video the duo give out a message - heal the world and make it a better place

2016-17 Barclays Premier League - Samir Nasri Joins Sevilla on Loan From Manchester City Wednesday Aug 31,2016

Samir Nasri(29) has left Manchester City for Sevilla on a season-long loan, the Premier League club announced on Wednesday Aug 31,2016

Like goalkeeper Joe Hart, who joined Torino on loan earlier, the former French international midfielder does not feature in new manager Pep Guardiola's plans.

Samir Nasri joined City from Arsenal in 2011 and helped them win two Premier League titles.

Badly affected by injuries last season, he started only four league games, but came on during Sunday's 3-1 win over West Ham United for his 176th appearance

Pay Rs 500 and spend a day at Sangareddy Jail in Telangana,India

Tourists visiting a colonial-era jail in Medak district of Telangana can now get a first-hand experience of prison life by paying a fee of Rs 500 for a day’s stay.

The 220-year-old District Central Jail at Sangareddy, which has now been converted into a museum, offers a 24-hour confinement under an innovative initiative called “Feel the Jail” launched by the Prisons department for people who want to spend time behind the bars and experience the feeling of being under detention.

During the stay, the inmates will be provided with a prison uniform made of khadi, a steel meal plate and glass, a mug besides washing soap, bathing soap, bedding and other facilities as per state prison manual, in addition to a fan.

According to Laxmi Narasimha, Deputy Superintendent of the Jail, no tourist has so far availed this offer.

Also a prior intimation is essential to avail this offer so that jail authorities can make necessary arrangements for the visiting inmates, he said.

The ‘prisoners’ will be provided all the meals along with tea and refreshments as per the jail menu. While tea is prepared at the old jail, the meals include chapati, rice, rasam, pigeon pea, red gram dal, curry and curd, which is supplied from the new district jail near Kandi village on the outskirts of Sangareddy town.

There is no work schedule for visiting ‘prisoners’ but they have to clean their barracks and are free to plant saplings during their stay, the official said.

The District Central jail was constructed during the Prime Ministership of Salar Jung-I in 1796 during Nizam rule in the princely state of Hyderabad.

The heritage jail is spread over three acres of land of which the building occupies more than one acre. There are nine barracks in the male wing and one in the female wing.

After using this ancient facility for over 216 years, a new jail was constructed near here and the inmates were shifted to the premises in 2012.

The old jail was later converted into a museum and thrown open to public in June this year. The museum is furnished with history of prominent persons who were lodged here and exhibits several antiques, artifacts and equipments showing the history of jails during Nizam rule.

As of now, 15-20 persons visit the jail museum daily. To increase footfalls, the Prisons department is planning to include the jail museum visit in the Telangana state tourism department’s itinerary

Odisha Sand artist Sudarsan Pattnaik wins Russian award for art on ‘world peace’

Renowned sand artist Sudarsan Pattnaik has won people’s choice award for his sand sculpture made during an international championship in Russia.

The art -- ‘Mahatma Gandhi sculpture for non-violence and peace’ -- was created in the contest in Moscow in April this year. After the competition, an exhibition is being held there since then.

Pattnaik’s sculpture has got 60,000 votes out of the total 80,000 votes from the visitors to the exhibition, according to a letter by the event’s organiser Pavel Minilkov.

“It is a really a pride moment for me that my sculpture is liked by so many people,” Pattnaik told

The week-long competition had started on April 21 at Kolomenskoye, Moscow, where 20 top sculptors from across the world had displayed their craft, he said.

Pattnaik has participated in more than 50 international sand sculpture championships across the world and won many awards for the country.

He was honoured with the country’s fourth highest civilian award Padma Shri in 2014.

Pattnaik runs a sand art school at Puri beach in Odisha.

India and the US Sign the LEMOA Pact Monday Aug 29,2016

LEMOA stands for Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement (LEMOA), a tweaked India-specific version of the Logistics Support Agreement (LSA), which the U.S. has with several countries it has close military to military cooperation. It is also one of the three foundational agreements — as referred to by the U.S.
What are the foundational agreements?
The three agreements — Logistics Support Agreement (LSA), Communications Interoperability and Security Memorandum of Agreement (CISMOA) and Basic Exchange and Cooperation Agreement for Geo-spatial Cooperation (BECA) are referred to as the foundational agreements which the U.S. signs with countries with which it has close military ties.
What are the foundational agreements for?
They are meant to build basic ground work and promote interoperability between militaries by creating common standards and systems. They also guide sale and transfer of high-end technologies.
What does signing LEMOA mean?
LEMOA gives access, to both countries, to designated military facilities on either side for the purpose of refuelling and replenishment. India and the U.S. already hold large number of joint exercises during which payments are done each time, which is a long and tedious process.
Under the new agreement, a mechanism will be instituted for book-keeping and payments and officials, who will act as nodal points of contact, will be designated on both sides.
What areas does the agreement cover?
The agreement will primarily cover four areas — port calls, joint exercises, training and Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief. Any other requirement has to be agreed upon by both sides on a case-by-case basis.
Will this mean stationing of U.S. troops in India?
No, this is not a basing agreement. There will be no basing of the U.S. troops or assets on Indian soil. This is purely a logistical agreement. India can access the string of U.S. facilities across the globe for logistical support and the U.S., which operates in a big way in Asia-Pacific, will benefit from Indian facilities.

Sikkim Assembly Approves GST Bill Tuesday Aug 30,2016

Sikkim on Tuesday Aug 30,2016 ratified the Constitution Amendment Bill on Goods and Services Tax (GST).

13 states – Assam, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Delhi, Gujarat, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Nagaland, Telangana and Mizoram have already ratified the Bill.

In a special sitting of the Sikkim Assembly, the resolution on ratification of the GST bill was moved by R B Subba, state Minister for Law, Legislative and Parliamentary Affairs and passed by the House.

Chief Minister Pawan Kumar Chamling thanked the Speaker and all the members of the Sikkim Assembly for conducting the special session and for passing the resolution. The session concluded with a vote of thanks by the Assembly Speaker K N Rai.

The Constitution (122nd Amendment) Bill, 2014 on GST was passed by Parliament recently and it needs to be ratified by at least 15 state legislatures before the President can notify the GST Council which will decide the new tax rate and other issues.

The government has set April 1, 2017 as target for rolling out GST, considered as the biggest tax reform.

National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI)launches Bharat Bill Payment System pilot project Wednesday Aug 31,2016

National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI)on Wednesday Aug 31,2016 said it has launched the pilot project for Bharat Bill Payment System (BBPS) with 26 Bharat Bill Payment Operating Units. BBPS is the Reserve Bank mandated system which will provide interoperable bill payment services to customers.

In the first phase, BBPS will cover repetitive payments for everyday utility services such as electricity, water, gas, telephone and direct-to-home (DTH), NPCI said in a statement. “BBPS, in due course of time, would link all major billers in the country with all their consumers which will simplify bill payments electronically,” NPCI Managing Director and CEO A P Hota said.

Currently, the volume of bills being paid by cash is so large that even if 25 per cent of the bills get paid electronically, the impact would be visibly enormous, he said.

 Some of the banking entities which are participating in the pilot project include — AP Mahesh Co operative Urban Bank, Axis Bank, Gopinath Patil Parsik Janata Sahakari Bank, HDFC Bank, ICICI Bank and IDBI Bank.

Besides, there are Indian Bank, IndusInd Bank, Kotak Mahindra Bank, Punjab & Maharashtra Co operative Bank, Punjab National Bank, RBL Bank and State Bank of India.

Avenues India, Common Service Centre, Euronet Services,, ITZ Cash Card Ltd, One97 Communications Ltd (Paytm), Oxigen Services India Pvt. Ltd, PayU Payments Pvt. Ltd, Spice Digital Ltd and TechProcess Payment Services Ltd are the non-banking entities which are part of the pilot project.

BBPS is an integrated platform connecting banks and non-bank entities in bill aggregation business like billers, payment service providers and retail bill outlets.

 As on date, 62 entities have received in-principle approval from RBI to function as Operating Units (OU), out of which 52 are banking and 10 are non-banking entities.

NPCI functions as the authorised Bharat Bill Payment Central Unit (BBPCU) which will undertake clearing and settlement activities related to transactions routed through BBPS.

Goa Assembly Approves GST Bill Wednesday Aug 31,2016

Goa on Wednesday Aug 31,2016 became the 15th state to ratify the Goods and Services Tax (GST) Constitution Amendment Bill, paving the way for the legislation to be notified by the President to the GST Council. During a day-long session of the assembly convened today, all the members of the House unanimously passed the resolution ratifying the GST with Opposition MLAs cautioning the state government over implication of the new tax regime in Goa.

Ruling out any negative impact on the new tax regime, Goa Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar said it would instead help sectors like service and tourism, bringing in more revenue to the state. He said the Centre has already assured to compensate for five years, if there is any loss in revenue during implementation of GST.

Parsekar termed the GST Bill as “historical, revolutionary and far sighted”. “Many thought that NDA with no majority in the Rajya Sabha would not be able to pass the Bill in the Upper House. But Prime Minister Narendra Modi managed to overcome this barrier,” he said.

Ministry of Urban Development Sign Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Amar Chitra Katha to promote awareness on sanitation Wednesday Aug 31,2016

The nation’s children can be catalysts of change. 

The NDA Government seems to have taken this cue, and will now bring out a comic book to promote awareness on sanitation in order to realise the Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s dream of a Swachh Bharat. 

The Ministry of Urban Development on Wednesday Aug 31,2016 signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Amar Chitra Katha to publish and distribute a special edition of the comic book. 

“The 32-page comic book will carry messages pertaining to sanitation and solid waste components of Swachh Bharat Mission,” the statement from the Ministry said. It will comprise a series of inspirational stories from the mission, cleanliness rankings of cities, the public figures and ambassadors, environmental impact, and stories of individuals and organisations. 

“Youth and students are one of the biggest change agents for any social transformation and the comic book would aim to engage with them in an innovative manner and spread the message of cleanliness,” Union Urban Development Minister M Venkaiah Naidu said. 

Amar Chitra Katha will develop and create the comic book in English and translate it into Hindi. The Ministry will distribute them through national school boards such as CBSE, Kendriya Vidyalaya and Navodaya Vidyalaya. 

The comic book will also have an interactive workbook of tips for children to clean their own areas, organise community cleanliness drives etc.

P V Sindhu’s final match at 2016 Rio Olympics grabbed 66.5 m eyeballs in India


Shuttler PV Sindhu’s badminton final match against Spain's Carolina Marin at the 2016Rio Olympics had garnered 66.5 million viewers in India.


This is the highest viewership in the country for a single match this Olympics, outdoing the viewership of even popular weekend Hindi GEC shows like The Kapil Sharma Show which sees an average of 50 million viewers an episode

Goa signs an MoU with Google India to promote digital literacy Tuesday Aug 30,2016

Extending the Prime Minister's Digital India vision, the Government of Goa on Tuesday Aug 30,2016 signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Google India to promote Digital Literacy and drive digital transformation across the State.

Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar ​and Vice President, Google South East Asia and India ​Rajan Anandan, ​ signed the MoU.

As a first step to realize this vision, the Goa State Government will launch 'Internet Safety Education’ ​for students in Goa in association with Google India. The State government has given a nod to include internet safety education as part of the school curriculum of classes IX and XII in government schools across the State.

Google has created a curriculum in consultation with experts, developed and shared modules for integration in curriculum. As part of the program, Google India has initiated teacher trainings and will soon expand to cover 460 schools, teaching over 80,000 students on how to stay safe online, said Mr. Rajan Anandan.

Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar said that this step will be a turning point in the field of IT in Goa and will be known as one of the milestones.

“Internet today is an essential part of the learning experience for students and it’s important that they understand on how to use the medium responsibly and stay safe online,” said Mr. Parsekar.

Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar further said that the scope of this association would be expanded to launch digital literacy drive amongst women in Goa and also introduce programs to help small and medium businesses and a mobile app development skilling program for Start ups to take advantage of the growing digital economy.

2016 US Open Women's Singles First Round - Canada's Eugenie Bouchard beaten by Czech Katerina Siniakova 6-3 3-6 6-2 Tuesday Aug 30,2016

Canada's Eugenie Bouchard crashed out in the US Open first round but insisted she has not been distracted by her ongoing lawsuit against the tournament.

Eugenie Bouchard is suing the grand slam and the United States Tennis Association after slipping on a wet changing room floor last year and having to withdraw from the competition.

The Canadian's misery at Flushing Meadows continued on Tuesday Aug 30,2016 as she was beaten 6-3 3-6 6-2 by world No 72 Czech Katerina Siniakova

Meet Strictly Come Dancing's new crop of professionals

While the 2016 series of Strictly Come Dancing welcomes 15 nervous celebs, the dance floor is also playing host to six brand new pros.

Oksana Platero, Gorka Marquez, Chloe Hewett, AJ Pritchard, Katya Jones and Neil Jones made their debut on Tuesday night at the red carpet launch of the BBC favourite.

Dazzling in matching sequins, the six-strong squad is made up of champs from around the world as well as another married couple to give veterans Karen and Kevin Clifton a run for their money.

The professionals: Oksana Platero, Gorka Marquez, Chloe Hewett, AJ Pritchard, Katya Jones and Neil Jones dazzled on the red carpet at the 2016 Strictly launch on Tuesday night Aug 30,2016

European Union(EU)Orders Apple to pay up to 13B euros in back taxes Tuesday Aug 30,2016

The European Commission's three-year investigation into Apple's sweetheart deal with Ireland has found it amounted to illegal state aid.

Its damning report published on Tuesday Aug 30,2016 says the tech giant paid as little as 0.005 % tax by funnelling its non-US profits through its Irish headquarters with no staff or premises then on to its $178billion (£120bn) offshore fund.

The Commission's landmark report says that between 2003 and 2014 Apple paid a rock bottom Irish tax rate on most of its profits outside the US before sending it to a tax haven where it paid no tax at all. It has more than £120billion stashed in offshore accounts. 

EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said: 'Member states cannot give tax benefits to selected companies-this is illegal under EU state aid rules.' 

 The Commission said in a statement: 'Ireland must now recover the unpaid taxes in Ireland from Apple for the years 2003 to 2014 of up to 13 billion euros ($14.5 billion), plus interest.' 

The giant tax bill, which could reach £16billion ($21 billion) because of interest, will not be difficult for the company to pay because it made $53.4billion (£35billion) last year - the biggest profit in corporate history.

But Apple will appeal saying the Commission's figures are 'completely made-up' and its CEO Tim Cook, who previously called the probe 'political c**p', is threatening EU job losses if they don't back down.

The US Treasury has also warned Brussels not to pursue American companies over tax avoidance - but McDonald's, Google and Amazon could be next.

Ireland has said it doesn't want Apple’s money even though it is equivalent to £2,400 for each of its 4.5million residents and would cover the costs of its national health service for a year.

Data Tariff is Not Cheap in India, Scope For 75% Cut: Study

If you thought data tariff in India offered by telecom service providers was cheap, a top global consulting firm focused on digital media not only says it is pretty steep even by developed nations' standards but also calls for a 75-per cent cut to push usage.

"India's current data tariff (based on current average revenue per GB of Rs 228) is significantly higher than that of relevant developed and developing countries when adjusted for the per-capita incomes to normalise for affordability levels," says Analysys Mason.

"India's data tariffs (price of 1GB pack) as percentage of GNI (gross national income) per capita is currently 2.6 % -- whereas, on an average, the developed economies' data tariff, as a percentage of GNI per capita, currently stands at 0.4-0.5 %," it adds.

In other words, an average user of data in India spends 2.6 % of her/his annual income to consume 1GB of data per month -- which is way higher than the average of 0.2-0.4 percent of the annual income that is spent by their counterparts in developed markets.

"Our analysis concludes that a 75 % cut in data tariffs (average revenue per GB of Rs 57) alone could increase the user base to 645-667 million SIMs, and the level of monthly data usage to around 4.2-4.3 GB per SIM in 2019-20," the Analysys Mason study says, in the given scenario.

Interestingly, the study says that telecom companies won't actually lose out by lowering tariffs.
It underscores that in terms of affordability, an average monthly increase in data usage to 10.2 GB at a discounted tariff of Rs 57 per GB, with 10 per cent contribution from voice, translates into a total increase in monthly average revenue per user of Rs 645.

The study has come against the backdrop of a price war among telecom operators on data, even as a new player - Reliance Jio - that has pumped $21 billion into its new telecom venture, is now gearing up for the commercial launch in the near future.

The study does not name any Indian telecom operator but says while 3G capacity in India has been improving rapidly, that in the case of 4G has actually exceeded demand for the first time, thanks to the new entrant's (read Reliance Jio's) extensive network roll-out.

Sony Pictures Networks India (SPN)Inks Deal to Acquire Ten Sports Network for USD 385-million Wednesday Aug 31,2016

Sony Pictures Networks India (SPN) on Wednesday Aug 31,2016 said it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Ten Sports Network from Zee Entertainment Enterprises for USD 385 million.

"SPN and its affiliates have entered into definitive agreements to acquire TEN Sports Network from Zee Entertainment Enterprises Limited (ZEE) and its subsidiaries for USD 385 million," the company said in a statement.

The acquisition is subject to regulatory approval. The Ten Sports Network acquisition will add South Asia's leading sports network to SPN s existing portfolio of channels, it added.

"The acquisition of TEN Sports Network will strengthen SPN s offering for viewers of cricket, football and fight sports, complementing our existing portfolio of international and domestic sporting properties. It also aptly demonstrates SPN s commitment to providing a broad range of sporting entertainment to fans across India and the sub-continent," SPN Chief Executive Officer N P Singh said.

The TEN Sports channels being acquired include TEN 1, TEN 1 HD, TEN 2, TEN 3, TEN Golf HD, TEN Cricket, TEN Sports that operate in several countries including the Indian sub-continent, Maldives, Singapore, Hong Kong, Middle East, Caribbean.

"India has been a strong driver of Sony Pictures' growing networks business for two decades, and sports continue to play a significant role in that growth. The acquisition of Ten Sports, following the launch of Sony ESPN channels, will mean that our Indian networks would reach over 800 million viewers and broadcast many of the most popular and prestigious sporting events in the world," Sony Pictures Television President, Worldwide Networks Andy Kaplan said.

TEN Sports holds broadcast rights to major cricket boards (South Africa, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, West Indies and Zimbabwe).

In addition, Ten Sports holds rights to wrestling (WWE), football (UEFA Champions League, UEFA Europa League, French League, English Football League Cup), tennis (WTA Events, ATP events), golf (European Tour, Asian Tour, Ryder Cup, US PGA Championship, LPGA Tour, Professional Golf Tour of India and Golf Channel Block), athletics (Asian Games, Commonwealth Games), motor sports (Moto GP) and cycling (Tour de France) events

Samsung Opens its Largest Experience Store in n South Extension, New Delhi,India

Samsung India has opened its largest exclusive experience store in the country.

 The store is located in South Extension, New Delhi and is spread across 3,500 sq. ft.

Consumers can experience the all-new 4D Chair that provides a life-like, immersive Gear VR experience.

 The 4D chair uses hydraulics mechanism that makes the chair move physically giving the consumer a life-like experience and mimicking the movements that are shown in the Gear VR.

 This will be the first store in the country to offer such an experience.

 Much like a 4D movie.

The new Samsung Exclusive Store will also have a device unboxing and set-up area, which will offer personalised setup. Mobile devices, including the 2016 flagship Galaxy S7, Galaxy S7 Edge and the recently launched Galaxy Note7, will be made available at the all-new store.

The store will also house the latest Gear VR, Wearables and Accessories, which will augment the device experience.

The move is not that surprising as Apple is also all set to launch Apple Stores in India later this year. Apple is known for having experience stores (Apple Stores) like these where consumers can come and experience the products before buying them.

Chinese companies like Gionee and Le Eco also plan to open up such experience stores in the country soon.

It took Samsung almost a decade to open an experience store like this in India.

Clearly, it is gearing up for a tough competition ahead from new Chinese tech entrants and Apple.

Ericsson Launches World's First Commercial 5G Radio Wednesday Aug 31,2016

Swedish communication technology and services giant Ericsson announced on Wednesday Aug 31,2016  it would launch the worlds first commercial 5G New Radio (NR) incorporating multiple-input and multiple-output (MIMO) technology and multi-user MIMO, with the first deployments coming in 2017.

Together with the Ericsson 5G Plug-Ins announced in June this year and its commercially available Radio System Baseband 5216 -- which currently powers Ericsson's award-winning Radio Test Bed -- the company is first to deliver all components of a 5G access network, it said in a statement.

"We are introducing the new hardware that 5G Plug-Ins will run on so that the first operators can start to deploy 5G infrastructure. We are also launching innovations that improve both the performance and efficiency of today's networks using concepts that will evolve into 5G," informed Arun Bansal, Head of Business Unit Network Products, Ericsson.

The "AIR 6468" 5G radio combines advanced antennas with a large number of steerable ports to enable 5G technologies of beamforming, Massive MIMO and multi-user MIMO.

"As we accelerate toward 5G, it's beneficial to have a flexible radio platform that can be deployed not only for LTE, but also versions of future 5G NR standards," said Tom Keathley, Senior Vice President, Wireless Network Architecture and Design, AT&T.

These capabilities improve user experience while enhancing the capacity and coverage of the network and reducing interference. The new radio provides LTE support as well.

"Massive-MIMO, also known as 3D MIMO, is an important milestone in China Mobile's technology roadmap from 4G to 5G. We are happy that Ericsson's new radio product is coming to market soon to meet our needs and enable us to integrate 5G technologies into our existing networks," added Huang Yuhong, Deputy Head, China Mobile Research Institute (CMRI).

To support new network builds, Ericsson has also created the industry's first Industrialised Network Rollout Services solution.

Xiaomi Unveils AmazFit Smartwatch with GPS, Heart Rate Sensor

Adding to the fitness wearables segment, Xiaomi announced its second smartwatch - the Amazfit - that has been built in collaboration with Huami.

The Amazfit smartwatch features a 1.34-inch display with a 320 x 300 resolution and is powered by a 1.2GHz processor with 512MB RAM.

It further comes with 4GB of internal storage and is equipped with a heart rate sensor, IP57 water/dust resistance, and a 280mAh battery which is claim to provide 5 days of life, and up to 30 hours with GPS-enabled.

The smartwatch is GPS enabled and is equipped with a heart rate sensor. Other features include Bluetooth and WiFi connectivity along with support for Alibaba mobile payments - AliPay.

The Amazfit smartwatch is currently available only in China at 799 Yuan ($120). It is unclear if the device will be launched in other markets.

Election Commission of India(ECI)Censures AIADMK on Model Code Violation; Asks DMK to be More Circumspect

The Election Commission of India(ECI) has censured the ruling AIADMK in Tamil Nadu for violating the provisions of the Model Code during the assembly polls, saying its manifesto gave no rationale to meet the financial requirement for fulfilling promises such as free distribution of washing machines.

"... The Commission...censures your party and also advises you and your party to be more circumspect and adhere to the provisions of Model Code of Conduct, particularly Para VIII of the Guidelines relating to Manifestos, in future," the EC order of August 23,2016 addressed to party supremo J Jayalalithaa said.

Though the show cause was issued in May 2016, the order came after three months.

In a separate order, the Commission also asked Opposition DMK to be "more circumspect" and adhere to the provisions of Model Code of Conduct, particularly those relating to manifestos.

On May 14, 2016 the poll watchdog had issued show cause notices to Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa and DMK president M Karunanidhi for violating model code, saying their election manifestos do not "substantially" fulfil its guidelines.

The Commission had said the two parties had not complied to its guidelines on manifestos. It had asked them to reflect the rationale for the promises made in their manifestos and broadly indicate the ways and means to meet the financial requirement for the same.

EC said it went through the reply to AIADMK to the show cause notice and found it "unsatisfactory".
"... It has been observed that no rationale or/and detail on the ways and means to meet the financial requirement for fulfilling such promises has been given in the manifesto for certain promises, like, waiver of all farm loans due to co-operative banks, free distribution of washing machine, steam boiler, idli cooker for Adi-dravidar and tribal welfare hostels, gift coupons of Rs 500 for all ration card holders to purchase handloom textiles from co-optex at a cost of Rs 500 during Pongal festival...," the order said.

In its order on DMK, addressed to Karunanidhi, the poll body said that though the rationale and ways and means to meet the promises have now been given, the same should have been given while issuing the manifesto.

In its show cause notice to the two Tamil Nadu parties, the Commission had referred to the guidelines on election manifesto for political parties and candidates.

It had reminded the two parties of section 3, which says that "in the interest of transparency, level-playing field and credibility of promises, it is expected that the manifesto also reflects the rationale for the promises and broadly indicate the ways and means to meet the financial requirement for it.
"Trust of voters should be sought only on those promises which are possible to be fulfilled."

Parties in Tamil Nadu are known to promise things such as colour TV, mixer grinder, ceiling fans and free rice in their election manifestos.

Joe Hart Joins Torino on Season-Long Loan from Manchester City Wednesday Aug 31,2016

Torino have completed the signing of goalkeeper Joe Hart from Manchester City on a season-long loan, both clubs confirmed on Wednesday Aug 31,2016

The 29-year-old has been unable to secure a first-team place under new manager Pep Guardiola and has fallen down the pecking order behind 17 million pound ($22.33 million) signing Claudio Bravo and Willy Caballero.

The England goalkeeper said his career had reached a turning point. "It was a sign. Torino's offer came in the right moment, with the right manner. I am very excited to compare myself in an important and beautiful league such as Serie A," Hart told the club's website (

Joe Hart, who was also linked with a move to Sunderland, will become the first English goalkeeper to play in Serie A since the league began in 1929.

He has won two league titles with City since joining from lower-division side Shrewsbury Town in 2006.