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Thursday, October 29, 2015

new Polish Parliament has no ' left' ~ no Communist elected

People power comes to the fore in every election ~ and this death-knell to Communism is like never before !
Lech Wałęsa is a Polish politician and  trade-union activist.  He co-founded Solidarity, the Soviet bloc's first independent trade union, won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1983, and served as President of Poland from 1990 to 1995.  Poland is in Central Europe,  bordered by Germany, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Ukraine, Belarus, Baltic Sea, Kaliningrad Oblast (a Russian exclave) and Lithuania.  The total area of Poland is 312,679 square kilometres making it the 71st  largest country in the world and the 9th largest in Europe.  The establishment of a Polish state  dates back to 966.  Its territory was partitioned among Prussia, the Russian Empire, and Austria. Poland regained its independence (as the Second Polish Republic) at the end of World War I, in 1918.
Communism in Poland can trace its origins to early 20th century. During the interwar period in the Second Polish Republic, some Polish communists formed a party, the Communist Party of Poland; however, most of its original  members and leaders perished during Joseph Stalin's Great Purge. In 1943, Stalin made efforts to rebuild the Polish communist party, creating the  Union of Polish Patriots, to become an agent to aid the legitimization of a puppet state he planned to set up in war-ridden Poland.  In recent years, Communism has really waned. 

The parliament of Poland consists of an upper house – the Senate – and a lower house, the Sejm. The parliament  is without an official name; Poland's constitution refers only to the Sejm and the Senate. Members of both houses are elected by popular elections, usually held every four years.  Parliamentary elections to both the Sejm and Senate were held in Poland on 25 October 2015. It was the first European election since the Norwegian parliamentary election, 1993 in which the two largest parties fielded a female candidate as leader.  Official results, announced on 27 October, gave the conservative Law and Justice Party a thin majority, with 235 of 460 seats (51 percent).

Now Daily Mail and other media reports that ‘ the new Polish parliament has no left wing’ !!!

It is reported that the weekend election won by Poland's right-wing and anti-migrant Law and Justice party has also created Europe's most right-wing parliament — one without a single party that is left of centre on social issues. Gone are all of the former communists for the first time since communism fell 26 years ago, as well as a younger generation of politicians focused on women's rights, gay rights and the environment.

The 2011 election brought in a transsexual lawmaker, Anna Grodzka, who seemed a striking symbol of how the country was growing more open and progressive. Grodzka will be absent from the new parliament while some far-right nationalists will be among the newcomers. In many ways, Poland has long been deeply conservative: abortion laws are strict, the country resists green energy and refugees are largely unwelcome. Still, there has been a growing acceptance among some for gay rights as Poland comes under greater Western influence.

The expulsion of the left results from several factors: a deeper social shift and the unpopularity of some of the left's leaders, including Leszek Miller, a former communist. Left-wing parties took a combined 11 percent of the vote, split between two electoral groups which each fell short of a threshold for getting into the lower house of parliament, the Sejm.

Many commentators, even some sympathetic to left-wing causes, said ex PM Miller and another left-wing leader, Janusz Palikot, deserved to be defeated for infighting and other failures. "Haughtiness, mutual elimination through propaganda, a lack of ideology patched up with cynicism, Miller's playing on nostalgia for communist Poland, and Palikot's playing on his own ego, all this has washed away a conviction in Poles that the left wing is useful," columnist Marek Beylin wrote in Wednesday's Gazeta Wyborcza daily.

Younger Poles on the left not tied to the communists are also upset by the setback. Despite its moral conservatism, Law and Justice is left-wing on economic causes, promising to help the disadvantaged and use the state to even out economic inequalities. The party promises to lower the retirement age, give cash bonuses for children and free medication to people over 75. It says it will fund these social programs with higher taxes on banks and big supermarkets, most of which are foreign-owned. Modern, a new party led by economist Ryszard Petru, also supports civic partnerships for gay and straight couples, though it is mainly focused on economic issues. It got 28 seats.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar

29th Oct 2015

George's secret key to Universe ~ now application for trademark of self !!!!

In the Rajnikanth starrer ‘Enthiran’ – the Robot is named ‘chitti’ – ‘Speed 1 terahertz, memory 1 zigabyte…..’ – Cochin Haniffa would ask him about his address; no address, only IP; parents – no; did they make you ? – yes; nackala [are you making fun of me ?] – no nickel [body parts are made of nickel!].. His current configuration : Lenovo ThinkPad X220 Tablet (2 copies); Intel® Core™ i7-2620M CPU @ 2.7GHz; Intel® 150Gb Solid-State Drive 520 Series - Windows 7.  Speech Synthesizers (3 copies): Manufacturer - Speech Plus (Incorporated 1988, Mountain View, CA) Model - CallText 5010 – ‘Guess what ?’ ….

A trademark is a recognizable sign, design or expression which identifies products or services of a particular source from those of others.  A trademark may be located on a package, a label, a voucher or on the product itself. Intellectual property (IP) is a legal term that refers to creations of the mind. Examples of intellectual property include music, literature, and other artistic works; discoveries and inventions; and words, phrases, symbols, and designs. Under intellectual property laws, owners of intellectual property are granted certain exclusive rights.

Biographer Kristine Larsen writes about how this man faced isolation and unhappiness during his first year or so at Oxford. Yet he joined the rowing team. Even before being diagnosed with a physically disabling illness, this person  didn't have what one would call a large or athletic build. However, row teams recruited smaller men to be coxswains -- a position that does not row, but rather controls steering and stroke rate. Because rowing was so important and competitive at Oxford, his  role on the team made him very popular.  As a graduate student, he gradually started showing symptoms of tripping and general clumsiness. His family became concerned when he was home during his Christmas break from school and they insisted he see a doctor.  He turned 21 a week later, and shortly after he entered the hospital for two weeks of tests to discover what was wrong with him. He was then diagnosed with  Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig's disease and Charcot disease, is a specific disorder that involves the death of neurons.  

The problems worsened, and his speech became slightly slurred;  the diagnosis of motor neurone disease came when he  was 21, in 1963; at that  time, doctors gave him a life expectancy of two years.  In the late 1960s,  his  physical abilities declined: he began to use crutches and ceased lecturing regularly.  As he slowly lost the ability to write, he developed compensatory visual methods, including seeing equations in terms of geometry.  His increased manifold sufferings make a very sad reading. 

The man of the post is British physicist Stephen Hawking’ – since 1997, his computer-based communication system is sponsored and provided by Intel® Corporation. A tablet computer mounted on the arm of wheelchair is powered by wheelchair batteries, although the tablets internal battery will keep the computer running if necessary.  His interface to the computer is through a program called EZ Keys, written by Words Plus Inc. This provides a software keyboard on the screen. A cursor automatically scans across this keyboard by row or by column. He selects a character by moving  his cheek to stop the cursor.  His cheek movement is detected by an infrared switch that is mounted on spectacles. This switch is his  only interface with the computer.  Through EZ Keys he also controls the mouse in Windows.  He checks his my email using the Eudora email client, surf the internet using Firefox and writes lectures using Notepad.  His  latest computer from Intel, based on an Intel® Core™ i7 Processor and Intel® Solid-State Drive 520 Series, also contains a webcam which  with  Skype  keeps him  in touch with web world.

The news is “Professor Hawking, 73, has applied to the Intellectual Property Office to have his name formally registered”…. His  primary aim is to prevent others from exploiting his name with inappropriate products.  He is not the first though,  celebrities like J.K. Rowling and David Beckham, have had  their names turned into brands.  “It’s a personal matter for Stephen Hawking; it is not a university issue, but he has taken measures to protect his name and the success it has brought,” said a spokesman for Cambridge University, where he is Director of Research at the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics. He has also applied to get his name trademarked for charitable purposes, giving him the option of setting up a foundation, such as one to promote physics or for research into motor neurone disease, which has left him paralysed, The Sunday Times reported. His trademark would cover computer games, powered wheelchairs, greetings cards and health care.

Chris McLeod, president of the Institute of Trademark Attorneys, said the move could be worth millions of pounds. “It depends on how successfully his advisers can license and market products and services. If he were to die, then the trademarks could be transferred to his foundation or offspring — they could be a never-ending monopoly,” he said.

There is a wide range of Professor Hawking memorabilia available on the internet, including a thong with his quote 'while there may be primitive life in our region of the galaxy, there don't seem to be any advanced intelligent beings', inked on the front. There is also a pair of boxer shorts, available for £8, with a cartoon sketch of the scientist on and T shirts featuring a zombie Professor Hawking above the words 'Hawking Dead'.

Another famous British scientist Brian Cox had also filed for trademarking his name as fully fledged brand,  Brian Edward Cox, 47,  is an English physicist, and professor of particle physics in the School of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Manchester in the UK. He is best known to the public as the presenter of science programmes. Before his academic career, Cox was a keyboard player for the bands D:Ream and Dare.

‘George's Secret Key to the Universe’ is a children’s book written by Lucy and Stephen Hawking  in 2007.  The main characters in the book are George, Eric, Annie, Dr. Reeper, and Cosmos, the world's most powerful computer.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar

30th Mar 2015.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

refugee athletes with no Nation allowed to participate in Rio Olympics 2016

The Olympic Games need no introduction… the game held once in four years attracts thousands of athletes.  There are the Summer and Winter Olympics – the 22nd Winter Olympics,   was  held in Sochi, Russia.  In 2016, will be the Summer Olympics.

Russian star pole vaulter Yelena Isinbayeva said that she plans to retire after the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, where she has her sights sets on a third Olympic gold. "If everything goes as planned, I will be in a new role next year," Isinbayeva told journalists at a meeting of the world's Olympic associations in Moscow. "I won't say in which role for the time being."  The 33-year-old Olympian had announced her retirement after winning the 2013 IAAF world championships in Moscow to give birth to her daughter. But the three-time Olympic medallist later announced she would come out of retirement if she had a chance at winning gold in Rio.

The 2016 Summer Olympics  officially -  Games of the XXXI Olympiad, are the thirty-first Summer Olympic Games, the world's largest international multi-sport event that is held every four years.  It will be held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.  The selection of the host was announced at the 121st  IOC Session held in Copenhagen, Denmark, in  2009. Rio will become the first South American city to host the Summer Olympics, the second city in Latin America to host the event after Mexico City in 1968, and the first since 2000 to be held in the Southern Hemisphere.

The games will take place in  August 2016 and more than 10,500 athletes from 206 National Olympic Committees (NOCs) will take part in this sporting event. The games will feature 28 sports — including rugby sevens and golf, which were added by the International Olympic Committee in 2009.  These sporting events will take place across 33 venues spread across 4 regions of the city namely – Barra, Copacabana, Deodoro, and Maracanã.

The latest sports update is that top refugee athletes with no home country to represent will be allowed to compete at the 2016 Rio Games, the International Olympic Committee president, Thomas Bach, said on Monday at the United Nations General Assembly.  A resolution, which was supported by 180 out of the 193 UN member states, calls for the Olympic Truce to be respected from seven days before the start of the 5-21 August Olympic Games until seven days after the 7-18 September Paralympic Games.

“The Olympic Games are the time when the values of tolerance, solidarity and peace are brought to life,” Bach said. “This is the time when the international community comes together for peaceful competition. “In the Olympic Village we see tolerance and solidarity in their purest form. Athletes from all 206 National Olympic Committees live together in harmony and without any kind of discrimination. “At present none of these athletes would have the chance to participate in the Olympic Games even if qualified from the sports point of view because, with their refugee status, they are left without a home country and National Olympic Committee to represent.

“Having no national team to belong to, having no flag to march behind, having no national anthem to be played, these refugee athletes will be welcomed to the Olympic Games with the Olympic flag and with the Olympic anthem. “They will have a home together with all the other 11,000 athletes from 206 National Olympic Committees in the Olympic Village.”

As one could recall, around 10,700 athletes from 205 National Olympic Committees (NOCs) took part in the London Olympics.  Three athletes from the Netherlands Antilles Olympic Committee, which the IOC Executive Committee had ceased to recognise at the IOC session of July 2011, and one athlete from South Sudan, which has no recognized NOC, participated independently under the Olympic flag.

Sadly at Sochi Winter Olympics, Hamara Bharat had the  ignominy of three of its athletes marching  without the national flag during the opening ceremony.   With the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) suspended by the International Olympic Committee(IOC) due to ethical and administrative reasons,  the 3 athletes participating from India walked behind the IOC flag, as we hung our heads in shame.  The IOA was suspended by the IOC in December, 2012 due to its failure to comply with the Olympic charter and that resulted in Indian athletes, including boxers, participating in events under the flag of world body.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar

27th Oct 2015.

Monday, October 26, 2015

folly of people crossing Railway tracks - despite so many fatal accidents

I have been posting regularly on MRTS aka Parakkum rail events.  There exist North, South and Western lines……….the Southern line runs along GST Road – originates from Chennai Beach to Tambaram – extending to Chengalpattu / Kanchipuram and Tirumalpur.  It is electric trains – commonly Chennai Suburban Railways, just as there exists  MRTS and the brand new Chennai Metro. 

Chennai has a complex railway network. The system uses electrical multiple units (EMUs) operating on alternating current (AC) drawn from over-head cables through the catenary system.  Trains on  Beach–Tambaram section operate at a high frequency, yet are over-crowded.  Web searches indicate that in 1920s, the British government felt the necessity of connecting the northern part of the city, which was mainly commercial, with the chiefly residential south-western parts.  In early 1930, the Govt  decided to electrify the lines, including the mainline starting from Egmore. 

In Dec 1930,  the first consignment of 25 electric carriages from England was received by the railway.  The  first electrically operated rail service in Madras began on 2 April 1931 between Madras Beach and Tambaram, which became the earliest metre gauge to be electrified in the country.  In those days,  Madras suburban service had  3-car EMUs which were notable in having coupled bogies across cars, thereby making the entire 3-car formation a rigid unit.

This line has transformed the way people of Madras commute and land prices nearer the track has sky-rocketed over the years.  It is not only about development but also safety. Sadly, many accidents get reported on this line – though there are manned level-crossings and many overbridges and foot-bridges having come up over the years. 

Today’s Times of India, Chennai edition carries a grim reminder of the tragic situation.  A day after suburban trains ran over two pedestrians in the city , and three days after four people died due to train-hits, on Sunday people continued to risk death by crossing the tracks instead of using the foot overbridge (FOB) at Chromepet railway station.

Railways officials are at their wit's end over the continuing deaths on the tracks due to people crossing the tracks, often while distracted by speaking on their cellphones or after muting out all sound with music on headphones. Though there is a foot over-bridge connecting both sides of the station, pedestrians prefer to cross the tracks rather than take the effort to climb the bridge.

Alex, a school student, said he doesn't like to walk all the way to the foot overbridge and then climb up its steps. “I'd rather just take the short cut,“ he said. “I try to be careful while crossing the tracks.  Vasuki, who is new to Chromepet, says she noticed the over-bridge at the railway station. “But I don't want to walk all the way just to cross over,” she said. Other people who cross the tracks say they do not have much of a choice because the subway that connects GST Road and Radha Nagar has not yet opened. The corporation, which is building the subway in place of two level crossings near the station, has faced opposition to the project from residents and shopkeepers who say it will damage their houses and shops.

Another railway crossing near the station, which connects GST Road with roads on the other side of the station, is the route that students of Vaishnav College usually take. Chromepet station gateman J Manoharan said he blows a whistle every time a train is going to pass by to alert the pedestrians. “But most college students don't pay attention as they are using their phones,“ he said. “Several people don't even look both ways to see is a train is approaching,“ he said. A lack of railway police squads to monitor safety and prevent people from crossing the tracks makes the situation worse, he said.

There are compound walls around Chromepet railway station to prevent pedestrians from crossing at points other than the railway crossings. “Six months ago, we distributed a notice to pedestrians, giving them instructions to cross the railway tracks in a safe manner but they do not pay heed,” a railways official said.  The railway police have conducted several awareness campaigns at Chromepet and other suburban railway stations but without much success.

It continues to remain a mystery as to why, people spring forward to meet disasters ~from simple negligence to utter disregard for lives. Sad to read the continuing stories of people losing their lives on railway tracks.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar

26th Oct 2015.

Circar Express - extending it to run from Puducherry to Yanam

This place lies in the delta of Godavari River; where the river meets its tributary Koringa River (Coringa River), 9 kilometres from the Bay of Bengal, on the Coromandel coast.

Train journey is most enjoyable as one can spend time leisurely eating the choicest delicacies and look through the window the different culture, fields, people and everything as the train chughs past different areas.  Interestingly, Indian Trains have Names besides the Numbers. As you would know, Trains now have 5 digit numbers – earlier they were 4 digits.  I have travelled so many times in this particular train no. 7043 [Chennai Central to Kakinada] – now it is 17643 [Chennai Egmore to Kakinada] 

Anything on this train enthuses me – as I read that Circar Express has been  augmented with one AC III Tier Class Coach from 28th June 2015.  This train takes more than the regular time for the 700 km that it traverses.  It is scheduled to depart daily from Egmore at 17.20 hrs and reaches destination – Kakinada Port at 10.10 am the next day.  Interestingly, the Kakinada Port has shifted a couple of kilometres from its earlier position in 1990s.  Also on a recent visit a couple of years ago, saw a new station at Sarpavaram though Circar did not stop there. 
Circar Exp at Kakinada Port Station

The stations from Chennai Egmore on Circar route are : Gummidipundi, Sullurupeta, Nayadupeta, Gudur Junction, Nellore, Bitragunta, Kavali, Singarayakonda, Ongole, Chinnaganjam, Vetapalem, Chirala, Bapatla, Nidubrolu, Tenali Junction, New Guntur, Mangalagiri, Vijayawada Junction, Gudivada Junction,Kaikaluru, Akividu, Bhimavaram Town, Attili, Tanuku, Nidadavolu Junction, Kovvur, Godavari, Rajahmundry, Dwarapudi, Anaparti, Samalkot Junction, Kakinada Town Junction and destinates at Kakinada Port.

Most trains are named after Gods, rivers and important places in the origin or destination – but this one is a bit different  - it is known as Circar Express !  The word ‘Circar’ – noun would mean a District or part of a Province. This is a common word to old timers as there was the ‘Northern Circar’  - which was a former division of British India's Madras Presidency, which consisted of a narrow slip of territory lying along the western side of the Bay of Bengal in the present-day states of Andhra Pradesh and Orissa.  These Northern Circars were five in number, Chicacole (Srikakulam), Rajahmundry, Ellore (Eluru), Kondapalli and Guntur. After changing hands frequently between the Bahamani Sultans, the Mughals, the Nizams of Hyderabad and the French, the British finally took over.  In 1765 Robert  Clive obtained from the Mughal emperor Shah Alam a grant of the five Circars. Thus over the years the possession of these places and the geographical pattern kept changing.   The Northern Circars were governed as part of Madras Presidency until India's independence in 1947, after which the presidency became India's Madras state.  

Circar Express runs from Madras to Kakinada.    The city of Kakinada is the HQ of East Godavari Dist and is known as Fertilizer city due to the presence of big Fertilizer units of NFCL, GFCL etc.,  It also has names of ‘Pensioner’s paradise’ and old timers were happy in calling it ‘Second Madras’.  Kakinada in fact is a planned, neat peaceful city.  There are several edible oil refineries and the Port has become busy now a days.
Today’s The Hindu reports that Circar Express  would be extended on completion of track doubling work.  With their aspiration for a direct train service between Kakinada in Andhra Pradesh and Puducherry set to become a reality, the Telugu-speaking community in Puducherry celebrating the golden jubilee celebrations of the Andhra Maha Sabha had another reason to rejoice. Lok Sabha Member of Parliament R. Radhakrishnan said that with the completion of the track doubling work in the Chennai to Villupuram section, the route for the Circar Express running from Egmore in Chennai to Kakinada Port Railway Station  will be extended up to Puducherry.

Though it would increase the time of the winding journey – there is some reason – as Puducherry has one of its districts miles away – nearer Kakinada.  It is Yanam.

Yanam forms a 30 km² enclave, has a population of 32,000, most of whom speak Telugu. For 200 years it was a French colony, and, though united with India in 1954,  was called as French Yanam.  After implementation of the Sarda Act in British India in 1929, many Andhraites went to Yanam to conduct child marriages, which remained legal under the French administration.  Elections held on 24 October 1948 and 18 October 1954 are most crucial in the history of French India. In June 1948 the French and Indian Governments came to an agreement as to how the future of the French Settlements should be determined.  Those days, Yanam had an extremely dominant pro-French atmosphere prevailing in its people and its leaders. But in due course of time due to nationalist struggle by some leaders, conditions became intolerable in Yanam after its mayor and other representatives of Yanam adopted the merger resolution.

In 1954,  there was  "Yanaon A Libéré" (Yanam liberated) - coup d'état of Yanam, that had remained under French control till 13 June 1954,  and joined  Republic of India by Indian military action.  After years of  struggle the de facto transfer of the four enclaves of Pondicherry, Yanam, Mahé, and Karikal to the Indian Union was achieved.  Though a treaty was signed in 1956, the de jure transfer was delayed until the end of the Algerian War. The treaty was ratified by the French parliament in May 1962. On 16 August 1962  India and France exchanged the instruments of ratification under which France ceded to India full sovereignty over the territories it held.

So a day would dawn when the two distant districts Puducherry and Yanam would be connected by Circar Express.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar
26th Oct 2015.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel ~lories parrots ... migrant crisis

In 2012, this photo went viral.  The famous woman in picture, is Angela Merkel, German politician best known as the first female chancellor of Germany and one of the architects of the European Union.

Angela Dorothea Kasner, better known as Angela Merkel, was born in Hamburg, West Germany, in  1954. Trained as a physicist, Merkel entered politics after the 1989 fall of the Berlin Wall. Merkel became Germany's first female chancellor, and one of the leading figures of the European Union, following the 2005 national elections.

As we would remember the German Chancellor visited India recently and her visit saw the formation of the India-Germany Climate and Renewable Energy Alliance to promote renewable energy. Merkel promised €1 billion for India’s Green Energy Corridor and another €1 billion for solar projects. The two countries signed 18 memoranda of understanding on higher education, civil aviation, railways and food safety, among other areas. India agreed to set up a fast-track approval mechanism for German companies.

More news about her is forthcoming as at Brussels,  European leaders lashed out at each other’s handling of the continent’s greatest immigration crisis since the Second World War, even as they came together to seek ways to ease the plight of the tens of thousands marching across the Balkans toward the European Union’s heartland. At a hastily called emergency summit here, 11 European Union and Balkan leaders were especially looking to shore up Greece’s porous border with Turkey and slow the flow of people heading north toward the EU’s heartland.

“Extraordinary times demand extraordinary measures,” German Chancellor Angela Merkel said. Nearly 250,000 migrants have passed through the Balkans since mid-September and the surge is not being deterred by either cold weather or colder waters off Greece. Croatia said 11,500 people crossed into the country Saturday, the highest in a single day since Hungary put up a fence and refugees started coming into Croatia in mid-September. Slovenian Prime Minister Miro Cerar said his tiny Alpine nation was being overwhelmed by the refugees — with 60,000 arriving in the last 10 days — and was not receiving enough help from its EU partners. He put the challenge in simple terms: if no fresh approach is forthcoming “in the next few days and weeks, I do believe that the European Union and Europe as a whole will start to fall apart.” Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic asked a fundamental question that the 28-nation bloc and non-EU nations like Serbia have been unable to answer since the migratory trek across the Mediterranean and through Turkey started last spring: “What we are going to do with hundreds of thousands of these people?”

Half a year later, there is no answer. Sunday’s meeting was hoping to come up with some Band-Aid solutions at best. Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras commented that having a summit on the migrant crisis was of little use if Turkey was not invited. Migration experts, however, say the flood of refugees won’t be halted until the world resolves the war in Syria, which is driving millions out of the country.

Getting back to those birds – they are lories.  Lories and lorikeets (tribe Loriini) are small to medium-sized arboreal parrots characterized by their specialized brush-tipped tongues for feeding on nectar of various blossoms and soft fruits.  They are widely distributed throughout the Australasian region, including south-eastern Asia, Polynesia,Papua New Guinea, Timor Leste and Australia, and the majority have very brightly coloured plumage.

Interesting !

With regards – S. Sampathkumar
26th Oct 2015.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

India loses ~ losses like this hurts Indian fans - does anybody care ????

Do you know – what brackets together – ML Lewis, Bhuvanes Kumar, Martin Snedden, Tim Southee, BV Vitori, Jason Holder, R Vinay Kumar, Dawlar Zadran …

I remember seeing him score runs at Marina, turning out for Mafatlal – Parthasarathi Sharma, a right hander made many runs in domestic and made his debut at Delhi [Gordon Greenidge and Viv Richards were playing their second Test] – scored 54 & 49; in the 3rd test he scored 6 & 9 – and was dropped … on the tour of New Zealand and West Indies, an year later, he was pitch-forked as an Opener and slowly withered away. 

At Lancaster Park, Christchurch in Feb 1976 [ODI 35] – Sharma, Vengsarkar, Kirmani and Jock Edwards made their debut.  Batting first Indians made 154; Gundappa Viswanath top scoring with 56.  Collinge took 5 wickets. NZ chased it rather easily losing a solitary wicket – it was 8 balls per over those days.

Wonder why reading this now ~ the die-hard Indian fan has been following the fortunes of Indian Cricket team and losses are nothing new – though a performance like today badly hurts.  

Indian businesses in Newcastle, Isipingo, oThongathi (Tongaat), KwaDukuza (Stanger), Pietermaritzburg and elsewhere are in the crosshairs of a new radical group that has accused them of a host of “violations”, including physical and sexual abuse of workers – reports - While the iNjeje yamaNguni was set up in May, its head is no stranger to controversy. Phumlani Mfeka’s anti-Indian sentiments, particularly an explosive SMS he sent out on Friday, prompted the KwaZulu-Natal government to seek and obtain an urgent court interdict against him at the weekend, to prevent bloodshed. But the 26-year-old former member of the Mazibuye African Forum, who claims to have a following of like-minded Africans, has vowed to not rest until errant Indian business owners are held to account for their actions. Mfeka said the “struggle” was not targeted at the Indian working class, but rather Indian businessmen.

Back home, India suffered one of its worst defeats in One dayers.  Way back in Oct 2000 – Sri Lanka scored 299 and bowled out India for 54 – the loss margin was 245 runs.  At Sydney in Feb 2004,  Australia made 359  in VB Series finals – India lost that match by 208 runs

Today’s margin of 214  will rank in between those two and is the biggest win for South Africa in an ODI against India (in terms of runs). It's their sixth-largest win in all ODIs, and India's second-largest defeat ever.

~ ~ the list at the start is : bowlers who have conceded more than 100 runs in One day Cricket.  Bhuvaneshwar Kumar conceded 106, the 2nd highest in ODI after Mick Lewis’s 113.  Mohit Sharma’s economy rate of 12 per over 84 in 7) is the worst by any Indian bowler [with a minium of 7 overs !] … Among the 7 bowlers, Raina had economy rate of 6.33  ~ he bowled 3 overs for 19 with wicket of  Quinton de Kock.

This match has once again exposed Indian vulnerability  -  tomorrow all fans would ask why Bhuvi and Mohit are still playing ….. then after sometime, another opponent – everything will be forgotten and we will again stand in the Queue to buy tickets [at high price] for another match – perhaps the same players will play again !!

Sad fan – S. Sampathkumar.

25th Oct 2015.  

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Gautam Gambhir - Manoj Tiwary ugly fight on ground ~ spars are not new !!

Australians play the game hard way – they call it so – and that they think grants liberty to slang and sledge.

Manoj Tiwary has had more downs than ups – he has so far played 12 ODIs for  India. After a highly successful season, he was sure to make his debut against Bangladesh – but on the eve of the match, he injured his shoulder………..then he flew down to Brisbane and played in ODI 2670 in Feb 2008 – looked all at sea – Brett Lee bowled him for 2.  That match produced no result.    He had to wait for 3 long years for his next match – was pushed to open – then in Dec 2011 at Chepauk against West Indies played a good innings scoring his maiden century and winning the Man of the Match. 

This year, he played 3 matches against Zimbabwe, did not score much – has a total of 287 including that unbeaten 104.  At Chepauk, Tiwary had walked out to face the fourth delivery of the match, with Roach on a hat-trick after a lack of bounce did for Rahane and Patel.  Kieron   Pollard  smashed ten sixes, and farmed the strike adeptly after Russell departed, and  was last man out trying for an eleventh.

In IPL 2014  - in a match between Mumbai Indians and Royal Challengers,  Starc bowled a bouncer at Pollard, who was beaten as he attempted a hook. Starc went up to the batsman and spoke a few words; Pollard's reaction waved him off. As Starc ran in to bowl the next ball, Pollard pulled out of the delivery by backing away outside leg stump just as the bowler was approaching his jump. Starc did not abort the delivery,  instead -  followed the batsman and bowled the ball in anger close to Pollard's legs. Pollard responded by swinging his bat hard - appearing to threaten to throw it at the bowler - and it slipped out of his hand and fell on the leg side. Both players were visibly angry and continued to exchange words.

Today there is news that - Gautam Gambhir and Manoj Tiwary, captains of the Delhi and Bengal teams, were involved in a prolonged heated exchange during the third day's play of the Ranji Trophy match at Feroz Shah Kotla in Delhi. The umpire, K Srinath, had to intervene, and the match referee, Valmik Buch, has called for a hearing. In a statement issued after the hearing, Gambhir said Buch conceded he had seen video evidence of Tiwary pushing Delhi seamer Pradeep Sangwan.

The incident happened in the seventh over of Bengal's second innings, when Tiwary came out to bat at the fall of the second wicket, that of Parthasarathi Bhattacharjee to the left-arm spin of Manan Sharma. Delhi had fallen behind by 108 runs in the first innings, and were looking to bowl Bengal out a second time around for a shot at an outright win.  Tiwary came out wearing a cap, but even before he faced a delivery - probably realising a pace bowler was bowling from the other end - he called for a helmet. Delhi probably saw this as an act of wasting time by Bengal to hold on to their three first-innings lead points. There were words exchanged, which soon gave way to aggressive gestures between Gambhir, fielding at first slip, and Tiwary.

Srinath had to separate the two. Buch called in the two team managers, Manoj Kapoor of Delhi and Sameer Dasgupta of Bengal, and the two captains. Some reports suggest that in an ugly gesture, Gambhir even pushed umpire Srinath, who was trying to get him out of the way to hit Tiwary. Touching umpire is a grave offence, which could invite a ban.

Gambhir has been involved in some ugly spars ~ and it is time, a player of his experience conducts himself on field.  Ugly spats are not restricted to ‘street cricket’ …… Ambati Rayudu while playing for Hyderabad years ago, was attacked by Arjun Yadav, son of famed Shivlal Yadav.  Worser still was the left arm pacer from Baroda Rashid Patel chasing Raman Lamba with a stick in hand.  It was Jan 1991, Duleep Trophy final between West Zone and North zone.  Lamba made 180 and NZ piled up 729/9 when declaration came.  In the 2nd innings  Lamba was taunting them again…… Kiran More was the Captain who reportedly shouted something to Rashid Patel, who kept bouncing  to Lamba.  Reportedly Patel overstepped far too long and hurled one short with a big ‘no-ball’, injuring Lamba.  The incident was widely reported in all newspapers.  There were exchange of words, incensed Lamba reportedly waved his bat – Rashid Patel plucked the stump, chased him around the ground and probably hit him too.  Following an enquiry Lamba was debarred for 10 months and Rashid Patel – 13 months.
In 1992, there was an International event – at Perth when the mighty Dennis Lillee and dogged Javed Mianded were involved in an altercation.  Lillee was not having a great day and Miandad reportedly teased him with some snide remarks… when Miandad played down to fineleg and set off for a single, Lillee deliberately crossed his path and collided. Miandad’s bat hit Lillee’s back, Lillee kicked him on his knee - resembling a boxer ~ Miandad advanced with bat held high in a threatening gesture …. Aussie Capt Greg Chappel entirely blamed Miandad, though Lillee got a warning a $ 200 fine…

Recently in 2013 occurred  an off-field brawl at around 2 am in a bar in Birmingham city Aussies were celebrating their win over England at Edgbaston; a small contingent of English players had also come to be bar.  David Warner reportedly threw a punch at England player Joe Root in an altercation and promptly received a ban….  In Aug 2013, a picture tweeted by England's wicket keeper Matt Prior showed the squad celebrated,  sat on the Oval after dark surrounded by beer and champagne.

And Malcolm Conn wrote in the Herald Sun: 'While the centre of the ground was quite dark, lights were on in the grandstands with dozens of people still cleaning up after a late finish which saw the game go beyond 7.30pm.  'A number of players including Stuart Broad, Kevin Pietersen and Jimmy Anderson took it in turns urinating on the pitch to the cheers of their team mates.

~ these people bring disrespute to the game ..
With regards – S. Sampathkumar

24th Oct 2015.

Friday, October 23, 2015

Chris Cairns perjury case in UK - more names getting spelt out

Perjury is the intentional act of swearing a false oath or of falsifying an affirmation to tell the truth, whether spoken or in writing, concerning matters material to an official proceeding. For example, it is not perjury to lie about one's age except where age is a fact material to influencing the legal result, such as eligibility for old age retirement benefits or whether a person was of an age to have legal capacity. Perjury is considered a serious offense in many jurisdictions.

A half-naked hooker, bundles of cash, diamond deals gone wrong, drugs, cheating, lying, alcohol and scalps – it sounds like the latest Bond movie Spectre, in fact it's the Chris Cairns perjury trial. Showing for free in London's Southwark Crown Court, the opening three weeks in the cricketer's trial have had as many tweaks and turns as a Shane Warne over, with flippers, zooters, googlies and a few wrong'uns being bowled by the lawyers.  In its efforts to prove Cairns lied under oath in his 2012 libel trial when he said he'd "never" cheated at cricket, the evidence has criss-crossed the globe – to India, England, New Zealand, South Africa and Bangladesh.

Years back, in the now defunct ICL, the public reason given for his suspension was under performance due to an ankle injury which put him in breach of his contract. But in the weeks and months that followed, Cairns and others were rumoured to be involved in match-fixing. Then in January 2010, Lalit Modi, chairman of the Indian Premier League, posted a message on Twitter commenting on Chris Cairns who in turn initiated  libel action against Modi in the High Court in the United Kingdom. Chris Cairns was successful and was awarded £90,000 in damages after allegations on Twitter. The case demonstrated that posts on Twitter are taken as seriously, in the eyes of the law, as comments printed in mainstream – though that tweet was in fact read by a small number of people only. 

Now after passage of some years, Cairns is facing charges of perjury.  Remember seeing Dinesh Mongia turning out in a local tournament and smashing all bowlers over the park, scoring a big hundred.  A real utility cricketer, Mongia scored heavily in domestic and scored a 300+ too.  In 2004 he signed for Lancashire as an overseas player when Stuart Law was injured. In 2005 he was signed by Leicestershireon a full-time contract. He would well be remembered as one who kept VVS Laxman out of 2003 WC.  He scored 1230 runs and took 14 wickets with his left arm spin and was a good fielder too.  He made a century against Zimbabwe and got MoM.  Like many other players of yesteryears, he faded in to oblivion, runs a cricket coaching school, dabbled in acting and played a parody of Amitabh Bachchan in the movie Kabab Mein Haddi – now suddenly he is back in news as Lou Vincent named him while giving evidence at the Southwark Crown Court in London in the Chris Cairns perjury case.   The Chandigarh Lions player however has denied any involvement in match-fixing.

Today’s NZ Herald reports that  Daniel Vettori was "shocked and then angry" when his teammate Brendon McCullum told him that Chris Cairns had approached him twice to fix cricket matches. Vettori told Southwark Crown Court in London via video-link that both men were close friends and that Cairns had been his mentor since his debut in 1997.  Vettori told the court that McCullum approached him and Kyle Mills while they were travelling on the New Zealand team bus while on tour in Bangladesh. Vettori could not recall all the details of the conversation but remembered that McCullum alleged Cairns said "all the big boys were doing it".

Asked why he did not report to the International Cricket Council what McCullum had said, Vettori said he did not think he was obligated to because the alleged approach was to someone else. "I'm probably wrong in thinking this, but I didn't think so at the time," he said. McCullum did not report the alleged approaches from Cairns until John Rhodes, an anti-corruption officer from the ICC, told the New Zealand team in February 2011 that players could be banned for failing to report match-fixing approaches without undue delay.

Vettori introduced McCullum to Mr Rhodes and also told the investigator about a promotional tour following the Champions Trophy tournament in 2006. He and Cairns were paid US$15,000 each to promote an Indian toothpaste company. Vettori gave the money to Cairns to purchase a diamond engagement ring of equivalent value. Vettori never received the ring and said Cairns later repaid the equivalent sum in cash, £9000, in £20 notes. He said it was "innocuous" but felt it was wise to tell Mr Rhodes.

Under cross-examination by Orlando Pownall QC, Vettori conceded he made a mistake in the date that McCullum told him about the alleged approaches by Cairns. He was unsure whether it was 2008 or 2010. Mr Pownall suggested it was 2008 but Vettori told Mr Rhodes it was 2010 so he could not be accused of an "undue delay" in reporting the approach. Players can be banned for between one and five years, but Vettori disagreed that he was concerned about that. "I made a mistake but it never crossed my mind that I might be sanctioned. I felt people would understand," he said.

Under questioning from Mr Pownall, Vettori said McCullum never mentioned the names of Lou Vincent and Daryl Tuffey - a former New Zealand bowler who played with both Vincent and Cairns in the Indian Cricket League - in connection to Cairns' alleged matchfixing. However, he revealed the New Zealand management heard rumours about the trio match fixing in the Indian Cricket League and discussed whether Tuffey should be selected. But he confirmed he never confronted Tuffey about the rumours.

With more names getting spilled, it is only getting murkier !

With regards – S. Sampathkumar
23rd Oct 2015.

Sources : Indian Express and 

Amaravati ~the new State Capital is born !

From ancient times, civilizations have developed and thrived nearer major rivers.

River Krishna,  is the fourth longest river which flows entirely in India, after the Ganges, Godavari and Narmada. One for sure would not miss the long bridge on this river nearer Bejawada [Vijayawada station].  On 2nd June 2014 was born a new State – Telengana, making the no. to 29.  Though a new entrant, it is 12th largest in terms of size and initially shared the capital at Hyderabad with Andhra Pradesh.   Now Andhra Pradesh is to have a brand new State Capital – literally built brick by bricks – it is ‘Amaravati’. While many would have clamoured for an existing city, Mr Chandrababu Naidu has other ideas.

Indian Express reports that Amaravati is one of the few places in the country where a river flows north instead of south or east. This is considered auspicious and well over 2,000 years ago, the Satavahanas chose the site to build their capital at Dharanikota, two kilometres away from Amaravati town. It’s located close to two well developed cities: it is 32 kilometres away from Guntur and 39 kilometres away from Vijayawada. When the Andhra Pradesh government decided to name the proposed new capital city ‘Amaravati’ it was not just to resurrect the name of an ancient political, cultural and Buddhist capital that was ahead of its time even then, but also with the hope that the new capital would acquire the name, fame, glory and grandeur associated with it — retaining its historical significance yet reflecting modernity.

News reports suggest that around five lakh people attended the function at Uddandarayunipalem village on the banks of river Krishna. After performing the 'shila nyas' for the capital city — about 40 kms from Vijayawada, the commercial capital of Andhra Pradesh, Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed the gathering.  Union minister M Venkaiah Naidu providied a Telugu translation.  Among the dignitaries in attendance were Andhra Pradesh Governor ESL Narasimhan, Tamil Nadu Governor K Rosaiah, Assam and Nagaland Governor Padmanabha Acharya, Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao —Central ministers Ms Nirmala Sitaraman, YS Chowdary and Bandaru Dattatreya. Ministers and delegations from Singapore and Japan also attended the event.

The new Amaravati will rise on the banks of the Krishna river between Vijayawada and Guntur. Given that the new capital requires large tracts of land for development, the AP government took a major decision to procure 33,000 acres for the capital through land pooling instead of land acquisition. So far, 30,000 acres have been procured. The capital region comprising 30 villages between Vijayawada and Guntur was chosen because it is centrally located and easily accessible from north and south, coastal districts and the Rayalaseema region. The region was chosen because of its scenic beauty with blue hills overlooking the river Krishna.

Chief minister Naidu has promised that it will be a world-class and 'people's capital'. The city will be spread over 54,000 acres and in 10 years will have the state secretariat, high court and legislative assembly, among other things. Singapore government agencies have prepared the master plans for the three-layered capital -- seed capital, capital city and capital region. While the Centre would provide funds for construction of legislature buildings as per the Andhra Pradesh Re-organisation Act, the state government has plans to set up hubs of sports, entertainment and in other fields to promote economic activity, an official release said earlier. According to IANS, Telugu Association of North America (TANA), the oldest and the largest association of Telugu people outside the Telugu states, is also raising funds for the development of the city through a 'My Brick - My Amaravati' campaign. It will accept donations from all non-resident Telugus who are interested in contributing. It is stated that interested public can sponsor 'bricks' with each brick at Rs. 10/-

From now on web searches for Amaravati will lead to the new State Capital of AP – earlier it referred to the village in the Guntur district,  located on the banks of Krishna River.  Though now it is a village administration, it was an important historic town that  served as the capital of the Satavahana kingdom in ancient days.  Sri Amaralingeswara Swamy temple is located here and it is also a historic Buddhist site,  with a  stupa dating back to 2nd  century BCE. The Sātavāhana Empire was based in  Dharanikota and Amaravati as well as Junnar (Pune) and Prathisthan (Paithan) in Maharashtra.  The Satavahanas are credited for establishing peace in the country, resisting the onslaught of foreigners after the decline of the Mauryan Empire.  They are known for their patronage of Hinduism. The Sātavāhanas were early issuers of Indian state coinage struck with images of their rulers.

Other than the new State Capital, Andhra deserves appreciation for the steps taken in interlinking rivers.  Taking the first step to interlink the mighty Godavari and Krishna rivers, water from the Godavari was released into a newly built canal,  flowing  eventually to meet the river Krishna at Prakasam Barrage at Vijayawada after flowing for 174 kms. After flowing for 124 kms, the Godavari water reached the Krishna delta region where it was welcomed by thousands of farmers and villagers who offered flowers and prayers.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar
23rd Oct 2015.

NEWS source acknowledgement :; photo :