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Thursday, September 1, 2016

Twitter troll ~ Viru Sehwag blasts Piers Morgan ~ and what a six !!

In Oct 2015 : His retirement message reads :  To paraphrase Mark Twain, the report of my retirement yesterday was exaggerated! However I have always done what I have felt was right and not what conformists thought to be right. God has been kind and I have done what I wanted to do - on the field and in my life and I had decided sometime back that I will retire on my 37th birthday. His dashing ability were often associated with audacity, and lack of footwork – but if one could score the way, he did, footwork became meaningless.  In a Test at Lahore, he ended up the day unbeaten on 96 – of which there were 20 boundaries – 15 on the off - upper-cuts to third man, glides and square-drives through backward point, and crunching drives through cover. He had a big partnership threatening the best for Indian openers but was out at 410 having made 254 off 247 balls with 47 fours and 1 six. 

~ no prize for guessing – it is the swashbuckler Virender Sehwag.**

In Internet slang, a troll is a person who sows discord on the Internet by starting arguments or upsetting people, by posting inflammatory  messages in an online community ~ and many a times British display their audacity, imagining that the Sun still never sets on their empire !  Piers Morgan, is a British journalist and television personality currently working as the US editor-at-large for Mail Online. He was earlier hosting Live show on CNN.

Yesterday at Trent Bridge, Nottingham, England created history against Pakistan in ODI no. 3773 – it was not the margin of win 169 runs but the total 444.  The previous high was 443 by Sri Lanka against Netherlands in Amstelveen in 2006. Alex Hales who played so well also set a new England record scoring 171 beating the earlier 167* by Robin Smith against Australia at Edgbaston in 1993.

England had reasons to celebrate ~ but not overdo as Piers Morgan did. The British journalist found himself on the wrong end of a social media trend (again) last week after he tried to troll Indian sports fans, asking them about the country's woeful performance at the Olympic Games.  He quickly discovered the ire of the scorned Indian sports fan, and several thousands of them took to Twitter to blast Morgan. Among them was novelist Chetan Bhagat and former cricketer Virender Sehwag.

Morgan tweeted : Country with 1.2 billion people wildly celebrates 2 losing medals. How embarrassing is that? … 

@virendersehwag responded : We cherish every small happiness', But Eng who invented Cricket,& yet2win a WC, still continue to play WC. Embarrassing?

A lesser man would have let it be. But Morgan is no lesser man. Showing incredible persistence, he returned to the topic after a week – as England scored a record-breaking 444 against Pakistan – this time throwing Sehwag a challenge:

This time it was too irritating remark which read :  Hi @virendersehwag, I bet you 1 million rupees to charity that England wins a ODI World Cup before India wins an Olympic Gold. Accept?

Within seconds of him having clicked on the "send" button, Indian Twitterati exploded once again, this time furiously informing Morgan of India's stellar Olympic record — including the nine gold medals its athletes have already secured. The barrage forced Morgan to delete the older tweet and send in a reworded version:

Swashbuckler Viru responded in typical fashion :  @piersmorgan   India already has 9 #Gold medals, England has zero WC.  As far as charity is concerned, you already Owe us Kohinoor ……………

Interesting !!  In ODI – England has scored over 400 twice, India has done 5 times.  England highest individual total is this 171 ! ~ Sachin Tendulkar breached 200 in 2010 and there have been 5 more instances of 200+ .. the list is Rohit Sharma (264 & 209); Martin Guptill 237; Virender Sehwag 219; Chris Gayle 215.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar

31st Aug 2016.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Supreme Court on Burglary in Insurance Policies ~ 'contra proferenterm' rule !

Insurance is  a contract and every contract  should be interpreted strictly !

Underwriters evaluate the risk and the premium is based on exposure, the probable chance of occurrence, frequency and severity.  Burglary insurance provides indemnity for loss or damage to property insured from the premises insured directly resultant from acts of burglary. From an Insurance angle, it is not the value of the goods that alone that matters.  Goods that can be sold easily in retail and grey markets [eg. Cigarette packs / batteries] are bad risks as compared to those which cannot be sold easily [eg. Special medicines].  Smaller items with high value [eg.,diamond rings] are worser risk than bulky items like machinery. Again those who have ready market in retail [eg mobile phones] are  bad risks as compared to those which cannot be sold so easily [say precision machinery].  In contrast, exhibition items / objects with antique value are higher risks unless proper security arrangements are in place. 

Often the terms are used interchangeably and interpreted loosely.  People tend to claim all losses as genuine, without looking into the terms of coverage.  In a peril defined policy, occurrence being genuine alone would not warrant consideration – loss or damage should be attributable to an insured peril. 

Section 378 of IPC defines theft and section 379 talks of the punishment for theft. Sec445 is House breaking.—A person is said to commit “house-breaking” who commits house-trespass if he effects his entrance into the house or any part of it in any of the six ways described; or if, being in the house or any part of it for the purpose of committing an offence, or, having committed an offence therein, he quits the house or any part of it in any of such six ways !! .. .. however, Insurance Policies define ‘Burglary’.  The policy interprets ‘burglary’ as to mean actual theft or an attempt thereat:
a)  accompanied by an actual forcible and violent entry into or exit from any building at the premises or
b)  following assault or violence to any person  or threat thereof.

Here is a recent deliverance of the Supreme Court of India, that should bring cheers to Insurers. [Civil Appeal no. 1130 of 2007] :  M/s. Industrial Promotion & Investment Corporation of Orissa Ltd. Vs. New India Assurance Company Ltd. & ANR.

The appeal was made by Industrial Promotion & Investment Corpn of Orissa, a wholly owned Public Sector Undertaking of the Government of Orissa.  They had extended a term loan of Rs. 40,74,000/- to M/s. Josna Casting Centre Orissa Pvt. Ltd.  As the party defaulted, the Industrial Corpn.  took over the assets in 1992.  They insured the assets against Fire and Burglary policies. At the time of auctioning the seized assets in 1997 it was observed that some parts of the plant and machinery were missing from the factory premises. FIR was filed at Balasore and Insurance claim lodged for a value of 34.40 lakhs under Burglary policy  - the claim was repudiated by Insurers stating loss was not within the purview of Policy.  The Appellant filed application before MRTP Commission, which too was rejected.  They preferred appeal in the Apex Court. 

The Counsel for appellant contended that policy covers burglary and applying the rule of contra proferentem ’ the words 'theft following an actual forcible and violent entry/or exit from the premises' are with reference only to house breaking and not burglary. He contended that forcible and violent entry is not necessary for making a valid claim under the policy and that it would be sufficient if  there is theft of certain goods from the factory premises, which fact has been proved by the Appellant. Mr. Mehta stated that clauses in the case  in United India Assurance Co. Ltd. v. Harchand Rai Chandan Lal and urged  that the Commission committed an error in relying upon the said judgment to reject the Claim Application for the Appellant.

Advocate representing the Insurer submitted that there is no difference and urged that an insurance policy is akin to a commercial contract and has to be construed strictly. He  submitted that a forcible entry and/or exit is compulsory for maintainability of a claim under the policy.

The Hon’ble Court held that there is no error committed by the MRTP Commission in rejecting the Claim of the Appellant. It is clear from the facts of the present case that the Appellant has made out a case of theft without a forcible entry. The case of the Appellant is that forcible entry is not required for a claim to be made under the policy. Following the well-accepted principle that a contract of insurance which is like any other commercial contract should be interpreted strictly, we are of the opinion that the policy covers loss or damage by burglary or house breaking which have been explained as theft following an actual, forcible and violent entry from the premises. A plain reading of the policy would show that a forcible entry should precede the theft, and unless they are proved, the claim cannot be accepted.

The Court added that a comparison of the terms as defined in the policy in the case of United India Insurance Co. Ltd. v. Harchand Rai Chandan Lal (supra) and the scope of cover in the proposal form in the instant case are similar.  In the earlier case it was held that  "The policy is a contract between the parties and both parties are bound by the terms of contract.

As per the definition of the word "burglary", followed with violence, makes it clear that if any theft is committed it should necessarily be preceded with violence i.e. entry into the premises for committing theft should involve force or violence or threat to insurer or to his employees or to the members of his family. Therefore, the element of force and violence is a condition precedent for burglary and housebreaking. The term 'burglary' as defined in the English Dictionary means an illegal entry into the building with an intent to commit crime such as theft. But in absence of violence or force the insurer cannot claim indemnification against the insurance company.

The terms of the policy have to be construed as it is and we cannot add or subtract something. Howsoever liberally we may construe the policy but we cannot take liberalism to the extent of substituting the words which are not intended. It is true that in common parlance the term "burglary" would mean theft but it has to be preceded with force or violence. If the element of force and violence is not present then the insurer cannot claim compensation against theft from the insurance company.

The policy may be so framed as to apply only to violent entry from the outside; or the violent entry into a room within the insured premises may be sufficient. In any case, the violence must be connected with the act of entry; if the entry is obtained without violence, the subsequent use of violence to effect the theft, as for instance where a show-case is broken open, does not bring the loss within the policy.

The Court further dealt  with the submission made by counsel for the Appellant regarding the rule of contra proferentem. The Common Law rule of construction "verba chartarum fortius accipiuntur contra proferentem" means that ambiguity in the wording of the policy is to be resolved against the party who prepared it. MacGillivray on Insurance Law deals with the rule of contra proferentem as follows:
"The contra proferentem rule of construction arises only where there is a wording employed by those drafting the clause which leaves the court unable to decide by ordinary principles of interpretation which of two meanings is the right one. "One must not use the rule to create the ambiguity - one must find the ambiguity first." The words should receive their ordinary and natural meaning unless that is displaced by a real ambiguity either appearing on the face of the policy or, possibly, by extrinsic evidence of surrounding circumstances."

Court in a classical deliverance said – the  assured cannot put his own meaning upon a policy, but, where it is ambiguous, it is to be construed in the sense in which he might reasonably have understood it. If the insurers wish to escape liability under given circumstances, they must use words admitting of no possible doubt, expressed by the parties and it is not for the Court to make a new contract, however reasonable.

The Court referring to another case : United India Vs  Orient Treasures (P) Ltd. held that there is no ambiguity in the insurance policy and so the rule of contra proferentem was not applicable.  The Court upheld the  order of the MRTP Commission and dismissed the Appeal with no order as to costs.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar
30th Aug 2016.
Photo credit : Independent.co.uk

The judgement of the Apex Court is largely reproduced  

Monday, August 29, 2016

it is not entirely rain ! ~ but live relay snap that denied a win for Indians

We have seen the propensity of MSD to take it to the last ball to finish ~ it was looking another good one – a couple of huge sixers by Dhoni evaporating into the stand and one followed by KL Rahul… a gettable last over ~ 2 off the last – Dhoni getting out – anti-climax, immediate reaction by some on twitter, FB and other social media !

The start of the second Twenty20 International of the two-match series between West Indies and India was  delayed by nearly an hour, officials  announced. The match was scheduled to start 10:00 am Eastern Caribbean time at the Central Broward Regional Park Stadium but the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI)  reported a delay because of “technical reasons”. A 30 minute delay was first announced followed by an extra ten minutes – eventually, the delay becoming an hour.

Some confusion – before we read, there was the time difference, as we comfortably sat to see the matches in late evening.  A time zone is a region of the globe that observes a uniform standard time for legal, commercial, and social purposes. Time zones tend to follow the boundaries of countries and their subdivisions because it is convenient for areas in close commercial or other communication to keep the same time.  Remember that couple of years back, then Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi  announced his decision to reset the clock in the State an hour ahead of IST to save energy and increase productivity. Daylight saving time (DST) or summer time is the practice of advancing clocks during summer months by one hour so that evening daylight lasts an hour longer, while sacrificing normal sunrise times. A dual time zone in India, if Assam were to turn its clock forward by an hour, would  not only create “unimaginable chaos” in a country of India’s demographic size, but also barely meet its intended goal of saving energy.

Remember the match was played in Florida.  Time in the United States, by law, is divided into nine standard time zones covering the states and its possessions, with most of the United States observing daylight saving time (DST) for approximately the spring, summer, and fall months. Official and highly precise timekeeping services (clocks) are provided by two federal agencies: the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) (an agency of the Department of Commerce); and its military counterpart, the United States Naval Observatory (USNO). The clocks run by these services are kept synchronized with each other as well as with those of other international timekeeping organizations. It is the combination of the time zone and daylight saving rules, along with the timekeeping services, which determines the legal civil time for any U.S. location at any moment.

India’s chances of levelling the series after a heartbreaking one-run loss in the thrilling first Paytm T20I against West Indies were dashed when the second and the final match was called off due to wet patches on the outfield following rain.  Indians clearly looked in control unlike the earlier match having bowled out the mighty West Indies  for just 143 runs in 19.4 overs at Central Broward Regional Park Stadium Turf Ground, Lauderhill.

When India’s chase began, openers Rohit Sharma and Ajinjya Rahane were batting on 10 and four respectively, when the play was halted with India 15/0 after two overs, needing another 129 runs from 18 overs. With the outfield developing wet patches, even three more overs of play, which would have ensured a result was not possible.  When it started raining, by DLS – India without losing a wicket had to score 27 in 5 overs (the minimum required for a result !)

So when play was finally called-off, Indians felt robbed of an easy victory. Earlier, captain MS Dhoni once again won the toss and elected to bowl first. The Indian bowlers were sharp and made brilliant use of their variations. Leg spinner Amit Mishra, who replaced Stuart Binny was in the thick of the action and on many occasions, the West Indies batsmen failed to read him. Mishra removed the dangerous Johnson Charles (43 off 24) on the first ball he bowled in the final Powerplay over and bowled Dwayne Bravo with a googly and captain Carlos Brathwaite with a flighted delivery.  Amit perhaps would not have been there, if Indians had time to have a T20 line-up – as in the earlier T20 squad Pawan Negi and Harbhajan Singh had edged him out.

The rain and also the technical delay – most probably due to live feed from satellite not being available denied the victory.  In the world of Commercials, it is the bizarre case of not starting the match, simply because it could not go live on air !!! ~ the weather was perfect, everything else was in place – but technology, the relaying back to the cricket crazy nation denied a chance.

This two-match series in Florida, which West Indies won 1-0, was supposed to be an exercise to take the game into a new market, a market where fans are used to being treated better than cricket tends to treat fans in India. The broadcasters had paid massive sums for the rights and deserved some consideration, but there was rain expected later in the afternoon.  It is further reported that at around 12.40pm, with India looking to be on their way to a win having restricted West Indies, it rained for around 20 minutes. The ground didn't have a Super Sopper, and wasn't covered fully. The business area was promptly ready for play and the deep parts of the outfield drained well too, but the top of the bowlers' run-ups, around the area where the painted advertisements are, didn't dry up. The captains were seen looking at that particular area with concern minutes before the game was called off at 2pm.

The official presentation was carried out in gloomy circumstances with the official interviewer steering clear of even mentioning the delayed start, without which the crowd would have had a result. The studio shows and the official interviewer only spoke of how humans are helpless against "mother nature" and "weather". Without being prompted, the West Indies captain Carlos Brathwaite said he hoped the drainage and equipment would improve at the ground, which he said was a wonderful venue otherwise.

The World knows the truth, yet would not speak !!!

With regards – S. Sampathkumar
29th Aug 2016.


Photo credit : bcci.tv and news source espncricinfo.

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Evin Lewis and KL Rahul make fast centuries ~ West Indies laughs at Florida


This left-hander replaced Chris Gayle and perhaps outsmarted him… .. .. Do you what brackets : Wayne Parnell, Izatullah Dawlatzai and Stuart Binny together ? Today, everyone knows – Stuart Broad stands at top having conceded 36 runs in a single over in T20 and after him these three : Stuart Binny joining the list having been mauled by E Lewis at Lauderhill, Florida.

In the end whose ton was better ?

Cricket attracts crowds ~ that is what this experimentation in Florida is all about. Making Cricket famous in US with large Indian crowds turning up there today.  Back home, Chepauk, which was deprived of International matches by many schemes [no World Cup ~ then no IPL too for the past two years !!] bustled with activity.  There were so many walking on roads nearer the stadium, buying tickets. The inaugural India Cements Tamil Nadu Premier League had a grand launch with the  cream of Kollywood participating in the opening ceremony.  It was Kollywood glamour of Shriya Saran,  Dhansika of Kabali with fireworks too added to the festive atmosphere.

Bharata Natyam, Tamil folk art and traditional Kerala dances too were performed by experts and children to mark the landmark event. Singer Karthik  sang  while actor Dhanush unveiled the trophy  with TNCA president N Srinivasan PS Raman, chairman of the league.  Dhoni had earlier been there.  The popular stands were filling with so many people.  The colourful stadium, facilities and the music and dance during breaks made the TNPL resemble IPL. It is good for the young players of the State though BCCI had designed to keep everyone out by rules and also conducting Duleep trophy at the same time.

At Florida today,  big disappointment to the crowd was Chris Gayle missing from the West Indies line-up because of injury. His replacement at the top of the order, Andre Fletcher, also the wicketkeeper, was expected to be in immediate action  - but Charles walked in with Evin Lewis.  Lewis debuted at Vidarbha Cricket Association, Jamtha, Nagpur in T20 no. 552 on 27th Mar 2016 – it was a double disaster.  He scratched for 7 balls without opening his account – out for a duck against Afganistan, who beat West Indies by 6 runs. 

India unveiled a bit of a surprise at the top of the order, with Shikhar Dhawan making way for KL Rahul, MS Dhoni won the toss and put WI in. Fletcher filled the void left by the sacked Denesh Ramdin. Kieron Pollard took Darren Sammy's place. Sunil Narine, back with a cleared action, replaced Sulieman Benn in the XI that West Indies played in their previous T20I. This was Carlos Brathwaite's captaincy debut.  WI made record breaking 245 /6 behind Australia’s 248 and Sri Lankans 260/6 the highest in this format. Evin Lewis made a classic 100 off 49 balls; shared 126 opening partnership with Johnson Charles who made 79 off mere 39 balls.

At break – a chase of 246 seemed improbable – and it went by the wire to the last ball !!

Indian chase was great in that 489 runs match. Debutant KL Rahul was brilliant – making century off 46 –missing the World record by a solitary delivery and remaining unbeaten 110 0ff 51 balls. We have many a times seen Dhoni making that finish.  Today too, he smashed a 108M six of Russel…. .. ..but in the end,  Dwayne Bravo outfoxed MS Dhoni and the centurion Rahul by defending seven runs in the last over. India needed two off the last ball, Bravo made Dhoni wait and wait before bowling a slower ball that was caught at short third man.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar

27th Aug 2016.

photos credit : bcci.tv