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NCP, BJP lock horns in graduate constituency

first_imgThe NCP has geared up to ensure the defeat of BJP candidate Niranjan Davkhare in the Konkan graduate constituency election to be held on June 25.The NCP will be fielding Najib Mulla, Mumbra MLA and close associate of party MLA Jitendra Awhad. Mr. Awhad said, “Najib will be taking on the BJP candidate Davkhare. We are fighting to win this election. Those who wanted to leave have defected from the party. Now those who have faith in the party will be given an opportunity. We will ensure the BJP loses this election.”Sources in the party said that NCP chief Sharad Pawar had held a meeting of senior party leaders last week and instructed the cadre to ensure Mr. Davkhare’s defeat. A senior NCP leader on condition of anonymity said, “First of all, party leaders are hurt over his decision to join the BJP. Secondly, letting him win the seat would send a wrong message among party activists that anyone who joins the BJP gets the position of power. We cannot let that happen and therefore he has to be defeated.”For the Konkan graduate constituency, which is spread across Raigad, Ratnagiri, Sindhudurg, Palghar and Thane, the NCP have tied up with the Peasants and Workers Party. It is also likely to get support of other regional parties such as the Bahujan Vikas Aghadi. A day after Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray announced that his party would be contesting future elections on its own, the party said that Thane’s former mayor Sanjay More would be its candidate.Graduate and teacher constituencies in Mumbai will also go to the polls on June 25. The graduate constituency is currently being held by Health Minister Deepak Sawant of the Sena. The party is yet to announce its candidate. Kapil Patil , belonging to Sharad Yadav’s Loktantrik Janata Dal, currently holds the teacher constituency and will be contesting the June 25 poll.last_img read more

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Modi visiting Kabir’s mausoleum in Maghar today

first_imgPrime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday scheduled to pay tributes to 15th century mystic poet Kabir at his final resting place in Sant Kabir Nagar on his 500th death anniversary.Mr. Modi will offer floral tributes at the Sant Kabir ‘samadhi’ in Maghar and also offer a ceremonial ‘chadar’ at the mazaar (shrine) built there in the name of the poet who is revered across communities.The Prime Minister will also address a public meeting after participating in a cultural programme.Maghar is located barely 30 km from the major Purvanchal centre of Gorakhpur, which is also the political turf of Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath.Mr. Modi’s itinerary also involves a visit to the “Sadhana” cave of Sant Kabir.Sant Kabir Academy to come upHe will unveil a plaque to mark the laying of the foundation stone for a Sant Kabir Academy, which will highlight his teachings and thoughts, the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) said in a statement.The Uttar Pradesh government has alloted a budget of ₹2.5 crore for the academy.On Wednesday, the State Cabinet approved the memorandum of association required for executing the project under the Society Registration Act 1860.The academy is coming up to provide international-level research, publications and presentations on the life and “darshan” of the poet, the State government said.A Sant Kabir Library will also come up, storing all his creative works, research references and publications related to him.Mr. Adityanath, who himself oversaw the preparations for the event, said the world today should remember the message of “friendship, equality, peace and cordiality,” given by Kabir 500 years ago.Meanwhile, a flutter was created after footage by television channels showed him refusing to wear a ceremonial cap at the shrine of Kabir.According to the district website of Sant Kabir Nagar, named after the poet, he died in Maghar in 1518.“He [Kabir] was loved equally by Muslims and Hindus, and on his death both a mazaar [tomb] and ‘samadhi’ were built by Muslims and Hindus respectively…Kabir chose Maghar above Kashi because as an enlightened soul he wanted to dispel the myth that anyone breathing his last in Maghar is born a donkey in his next life,” said the district website.Annual festivalAn annual festival is held at the site each year on January 14 coinciding with ‘Makar Sankranti’.The official portal of the U.P. Tourism Department says that “it is said that when Saint Kabir died there was a confusion if he should receive a Muslim burial or a Hindu cremation because his religion was not known.”Legend has it that the body of the great saint disappeared leaving behind a heap of flowers which were divided among people from both the communities. Hindus cremated them and built a temple over it and right next to it Muslims buried those flowers and built a Maqbara, the tourism department said.last_img read more

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Muzaffarnagar riots: U.P. govt. to withdraw 18 cases

first_imgThe Uttar Pradesh government has decided to withdraw 18 cases related to the Muzaffarnagar riots and asked the district authorities to approach the court, sources said on Sunday. U.P.’s Special Secretary of Law J.J. Singh has directed Muzaffarnagar District Magistrate Rajeev Sharma to withdraw the cases, they said.Court permissionOn the directive from Lucknow, the district authorities have started preparing to approach the court for permission to withdraw the cases. The cases were filed under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code including 147 (rioting), 148 (rioting, armed with deadly weapon) and 397 (attempt to cause death), the sources said.Details sought The directive came after the State government sought details of 125 cases filed in relation to the Muzaffarnagar riots of 2013. Additional District Magistrate Amit Kumar said that the State government had sought the details to review the possibility of withdrawing the 125 cases pending in courts. Several leaders of the ruling BJP, including MPs Sanjeev Balyan and Bharatendra Singh, MLAs Sangeet Som and Umesh Malik, have been named in these 125 cases. Sadhvi Prachi Minister in the State government Suresh Rana and Hindutva leader Sadhvi Prachi are also accused in cases related to the Muzaffarnagar riots. However, the cases asked to be withdrawn do not include the names of these BJP leaders. Communal clashes in Muzaffarnagar and adjoining areas in August and September 2013 had claimed 60 lives and displaced over 40,000 people.last_img read more

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Shelter home case: CBI appoints 2 SPPs

first_imgThe CBI informed a Delhi court on Wednesday that it has appointed two Special Public Prosecutors in the Muzaffarpur shelter home sexual assault case, after which both sides were directed to “positively commence” arguments on framing of charges from March 2. Additional Sessions Judge Saurabh Kulshreshtha told the CBI that if the agency wanted to file a supplementary charge sheet in the matter, it has to be done within 15 days. The court was informed that advocates Amit Jindal and R.N. Sinha have been appointed as SPPs by the agency.Mr. Jindal told the court that he received the notification for his appointment from the CBI on Tuesday night and sought time to prepare arguments. The court then said, “Both the parties are directed to positively commence arguments on March 2.” The CBI would advance the arguments first on Saturday, the next date of hearing. On Monday, the court had rapped the CBI for the delay in notifying the SPP in the case and warned it that any laxity to comply with the order will amount to contempt and action would be taken against the agency. “Do not expect the court to wait for one week for the notification to come. You are as much bound by the Supreme Court order as I am. Do not take me to that stage that I should write to the SC that the CBI is in contempt of the order initiated by the court. Already once you have suffered contempt,” the judge had said. The apex court had on February 7 ordered that the case be transferred to a Protection of Children from Sexual Offences court at Saket district court complex here, which would conclude the trial within six months by preferably holding a “day-to-day” trial. Several girls were allegedly raped and sexually abused at an NGO-run shelter home in Muzaffarpur in Bihar. The issue had come to light following a report by the Tata Institute of Social Sciences.last_img read more

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24 suffer eye infection after ‘botched’ surgeries

first_imgAt least 24 patients, including some women, suffered severe eye infection allegedly due to botched cataract surgeries at the Lok Nayak Jai Prakash Narayan Civil Hospital here. The Kurukshetra district health authorities have suspended eye surgeries at the hospital till Friday. The patients who were operated upon at the hospital over the past three weeks have been referred to the Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education & Research (PGIMER) in Chandigarh. The PGIMER confirmed that its Advanced Eye Centre (AEC) received 24 patients of post cataract surgery endophthalmitis, an inflammation of the interior of the eye, in last couple of weeks.‘Vision improving’ “At AEC, PGIMER, till now 19 patients have been operated… All the patients are doing well on topical and systemic antibiotics. Their vision is gradually improving. None of the patient has complete loss of vision. Eleven patients have been discharged and advised regular follow up,” it said in a statement. “Thirteen patients are still admitted in AEC and monitored on daily basis,” it added. On Wednesday, a team of doctors led by Director Health Services, Haryana, Dr. Arshudeen visited the hospital to investigate the cases. Civil Surgeon Dr. Sukhbir Singh said an investigation was on to ascertain the cause of the infection and fix responsibility. A senior eye surgeon had performed around 100 cataract surgeries between February 27 and March 11, he said. Mr. Singh said as many as 24 patients reported back with complaints of irritation.Samples taken Samples of tools, chemicals, medicines, roof and floor of the operation theatre have been taken to ascertain the cause of the infection, he said.last_img read more

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SP, BSP ask workers to stand guard outside rooms storing EVMs

first_imgFor fear of any foul play before counting day on May 23, the SP and BSP have instructed their workers to maintain a tight vigil outside the strong rooms storing the EVMs in each constituency in Uttar Pradesh.In an advisory issued to party candidates and counting agents, the BSP asked its workers to stand guard outside strong rooms and ensure that the green paper seal and the special tags are verified before the EVMs are allowed to be open for counting.The SP also asked its workers to stand guard outside strong rooms in shifts of eight hours. In a note issued by Naresh Uttam Patel, SP UP president, the workers are also asked to recruit experienced counting agents, including sharp-minded lawyers, to be present on the counting spot on May 23.Party president Akhilesh Yadav also issued a detailed note for his colleagues on how the counting process takes place.last_img read more

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ScienceShot: Native Americans Were a Mix of Asian and European

first_imgWhere did the first Americans come from? Most researchers think Native American roots lie in Asia, although exactly where is not clear; but a few have suggested Europe, a decidedly minority view because today’s Native Americans have clear Asian ancestry. It turns out that both may be right, according to the latest ancient DNA evidence. A team based in Europe and the United States sequenced the entire genome from the skeleton of a boy who lived in Siberia 24,000 years ago (see photo), the oldest complete genome of a modern human to date. Surprisingly, the boy is closely related both to Eurasians and to Native Americans, but not to East Asians. So the researchers think that Native American ancestors with Eurasian roots might have interbred with East Asians sometime before making the journey over the Bering land bridge to the New World. The work, first reported by Science from a meeting in Santa Fe last month, is published today in Nature.See more ScienceShots.Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)last_img read more

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Bad luck and cancer: A science reporter’s reflections on a controversial story

first_imgWe reporters—or this one, at any rate—often fail to anticipate which stories will grip readers and which will quickly fade into oblivion. Given that, perhaps I shouldn’t have been surprised that a story I saw off to the printing press in the lull between Christmas and New Year’s engendered more comments than any other I’ve written.The piece, which appeared online with the headline “The simple math that explains why you may (or may not) get cancer” (and in the magazine’s News section with the headline “The bad luck of cancer”), described a paper published in the 2 January issue of Science. As I and many other journalists explained, the study suggested that simple “bad luck”—random mutations accumulating in healthy stem cells—could explain about two-thirds of cancers, exceeding the risk conferred by environmental and genetic factors combined. One message was that some cancers could not be prevented and that detecting them early was key to combating them.Readers wasted little time in skewering the authors, mathematician Cristian Tomasetti and cancer geneticist Bert Vogelstein of Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland. Their statistics were faulty, some argued; they included many rare cancers and left out several common ones. Earlier today, the International Agency for Research on Cancer, the cancer arm of the World Health Organization, put out an unusual press release stating it “strongly disagrees” with the report. The agency said that “nearly half of all cancer cases worldwide can be prevented.” It charged that the authors’ push for early detection “if misinterpreted … could have serious negative consequences from both cancer research and public health perspectives.”Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)Reporters, if anything, fared worse. “Please, journalists, get a clue before you write about science,” pleaded an irate column in The Guardian, co-authored by an evolutionary biologist who goes by the Twitter handle @GrrlScientist and statistician Bob O’Hara at the Biodiversity and Climate Research Centre in Frankfurt, Germany.Given the furor, I wondered: Had I gotten it wrong? Had the authors? Answering these apparently straightforward questions proved surprisingly difficult, exposing the challenges that come with communicating science, and the desire by scientist-authors and reporters to streamline the story they’re trying to tell.I began with my own story, working backward to the science that spawned it. I’d written that the theory of random mutations in stem cells “explained two-thirds of all cancers.” Immediately, I knew that I had written part of that sloppily, to put it generously: The study didn’t include all cancers. In fact, it didn’t include two of the most common, prostate and breast, because the authors weren’t able to pin down the size of the stem cell compartment or the frequency of stem cell divisions in those tissues. Although my piece subsequently noted the number of cancer types in the study, I should have stressed the omissions early on.Still, was “two-thirds” referring to the number of cases of cancers the study did include, as I and other journalists had suggested—or to something else? Journalists like numbers that abridge a study down to a bullet point. I’d wondered immediately if this two-thirds finding might be one such nugget. Tomasetti had explained to me in a lengthy interview that “if you go to the American Cancer Society website and you check what are the causes of cancer, you will find a list of either inherited or environmental things. We are saying two-thirds is neither of them.” I’d run the text of my “two-thirds” sentence by him prior to publication and he had had no objections (he had other clarifications).Last week, we spoke again. Tomasetti had received more than 200 e-mails. Parents of children who had died of cancer were grateful that it might have occurred entirely by chance, suggesting that there was nothing they could have done. Biologists and statisticians were disputing his conclusions or simply surprised that so much of cancer might be random.“We did not claim that two-thirds of cancer cases are due to bad luck,” Tomasetti told me gently. What the study argued, he explained, was that two-thirds of the variation in cancer rates in different tissues could be explained by random bad luck (a point made by others). What exactly did that mean, I wondered? Tomasetti, chatting by phone, had me draw some graphs to help me understand. By the end of the hour, I still wasn’t sure I grasped the essence.Tomasetti was sympathetic. “There are lots of scientists that need clarification” on this paper, he said, along with some statisticians. He was busy preparing a technical report with additional details, and Johns Hopkins had just put out a press release explainer. “I honestly feel—and that’s what I told the BBC, and you can definitely quote me on this—overall, the reporters who interacted with us made a very honest and sincere effort to be as accurate as possible.”It was only after more hours spent on interviews that I finally understood the two-thirds figure. Some tissues are overtaken by cancer more readily than others, and mutations accumulating in stem cells explained two-thirds of that variability, Tomasetti and Vogelstein had concluded. It was my “aha” moment, and it came too late—after my original deadline.I contacted some of the critics. “I just reread your article, and I don’t think it falls into the bad category (at worst, it skirts around the lip without dropping in),” wrote O’Hara, an author of the Guardian piece, in an e-mail—confusing me further, for hadn’t I goofed up? By phone, he explained that one of his quibbles was the word “luck”—present in the paper’s abstract, emphasized by the authors, and highlighted in nearly every news story. It sounded sexy, but O’Hara considered it inaccurate, because virtually all cancer is a product of luck in some sense.“It’s too easy to blame the media,” said David Spiegelhalter, a biostatistician at the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom, who had blogged about the story. (“Your article was fine,” he assured me.) In this case, he felt, “the gist of the coverage is very reasonable—most cases of cancer are due to chance.”That said, errors were made along the way, a fact that didn’t surprise him. “This is incredibly difficult stuff,” Spiegelhalter continued. “I do feel for you. It’s one of those things that’s so superficially simple, and yet the superficial simplicity is not correct.”The paper’s authors, many felt, were also guilty of trying too hard to craft a simple message. The paper included a visually arresting diagram splitting cancers into green and blue categories. The green were cancers “mainly due” to random mutations—suggesting, the authors wrote, that they were less likely to be prevented by changes in behavior or diet. However, that category included esophageal cancer and melanoma, both of which are thought to have strong links to environmental drivers such as heavy alcohol consumption and sun exposure, respectively.Melanoma sat just slightly inside the green border—but still, it was green, which left many readers exercised. “They’ve ignored some of the fundamental lifestyle factors,” said Graham Colditz, a cancer prevention specialist at Washington University in St. Louis. “Obviously, they had good intentions,” said Anne McTiernan, a physician and epidemiologist at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle, Washington. But, she continued, the authors assumed that a correlation between the number of stem cell divisions and cancer risk meant one was causing the other, something their data couldn’t prove. Tomasetti agreed that this is correct—but he notes that “all the biology we have on this topic supports” the idea that a buildup of random mutations in healthy cells can initiate cancer. Some scientists argued that the graph carried a missive for prevention, with huge risk gaps between a cancer driven by the environment or genetics—such as lung cancer in smokers or head and neck cancer linked to human papillomavirus—and cancer at the same site without a clear cause.The nuances were many. Even if they quibble on the details, most would agree that random mutations play a real role in cancer – but so do many other things. Despite the furor, this common ground is shared by both the paper’s authors and its critics. “This is a really fascinating pattern that they’ve observed, but it is a small message,” says Timothy Rebbeck, a cancer prevention specialist at the University of Pennsylvania. “It doesn’t exclude the ability to prevent and treat cancer. It doesn’t exclude our need to better understand the causes of cancer.” The paper’s bottom line wasn’t simple, but the message for me was: Science is complicated, and people care deeply about the biology of diseases that affect their loved ones and themselves. Distilling the story—with space constraints, with a desire for clear writing that will hold readers’ attention and help them understand—carries risks for scientists and for journalists. They are ones I hope never to forget—even if I err now and again.Revised, 2:53pm, 1/14/15: This story has been revised to remove references to unpublished letters to Science.last_img read more

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No Respite: Foreign Educational Institutes Wait 8 Years For An India Campus Nod

first_imgEight years ago, foreign educational institutions anticipated the biggest change in the education policy in the country. The Foreign Educational (Regulations of Entry and Operations) Bill 2010 proposed to allow international institutes to enter India and set up campuses in the country. However, it has been a long wait since then because the law makers could not come to a consensus on the model.Read it at Money Control Related Itemslast_img

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Cool Treats

first_imgBet this sultry summer, you wish you didn’t have to turn on the cooking range or grill to cook. So here goes, our mouth watering recipes that will keep you cool and your friends and family smacking their lips on a full three course meal, complete with snacks, main course and dessert.Snacks Paneer Squares1 lbs tofu cut into neat squares1 each big tomato, cucumber and beetroot shreddedSalt to tasteChutney1 tbsp green chili paste1 tbsp garlic paste1 tbsp mint leaves paste3 oz coriander leavesSalt to tasteFrosting4 oz cream cheese4 oz each of grated cheese and creamGrind together all the chutney ingredients to a paste. Beat cream cheese till fluffy, add grated cheese and cream and make into a spreading consistency. Cut paneer lengthwise into two pieces, then into small squares. Sandwich the tofu pieces with chutney on a plate. Spread frosting on top decorate with shredded veggies and serve cold. Mixed Fruit Chaat2 oz each of peaches, strawberries and seedless grapes1 apple1 banana4 tbsps pineapple juice2 oz castor sugar1 tsp ginger juice2 tbsps lime juice1 tsp of chat masalaBlack saltSalt and chili powder to tasteCut all fruits into small pieces, mix in pineapple, lime and ginger juice, add spices and serve with toothpicks. Sprouted Green Gram Bhel½ lbs. moong (green gram) sprouts2 tbsps each of finely chopped tomatoesand raw mangoes2 tbsps chopped onion1 green chili minced2 tbsps chopped coriander leaves1 tbsp dry mango powder½ tsp each of black salt and chat masalaChili garlic and sweet chutneyMix green grams with veggies, spices and chutney. Serve decorated with finely chopped coriander leaves.Sweet Chutney1 oz thick tamarind2 tablespoons grated jaggery6 dates pitted and sliced thinly½ teaspoon black salt½ teaspoon roasted and ground cumin seedsMix ingredients in grinder at high speed and serve.Garlic Chili Chutney6 red chilies deseeded and chopped finely12 cloves garlic2 tablespoons vinegarSalt to tasteMix ingredients in grinder at high speed and serve.Sandwiches  Spicy Veggie Sandwich10 slices of bread2 large tomatoes onions and cucumbers sliced3 oz. grated cheese1 teaspoon mustardSalt and pepper to tasteMix salt and pepper with cheese, spread on bread slices, sandwich with veggies in between. Cut into triangles and serve with ketchup and potato chips.Cream Cheese Sandwich10 slices of bread2 tbsp butter6 thin cheese slices1 teaspoon mustard3 oz. cream cheese1 oz. grated cheeseSalt and pepper to tasteMix all the above ingredients and spread on the bread slices. Roll. Secure with toothpicks and serve with potato chips and salad.Green Chutney and Tofu Sandwich3 oz. tofu grated1 oz. green chutney1 tomato1 cucumber1 onionSalt and pepper to tasteMix tofu with chutney salt and pepper. Butter slices of bread. Spread chutney and sandwich with tomato onion cucumber. Cut into neat triangles.DipsTill Seed Dip2 oz sesame seeds2 oz grated coconut4 green chilies2 tbsps coriander leaves1 tbsps tamarind pulpSalt to tasteMix all the above ingredients in grinder at a high speed and serve.Tomato Dip3 oz tomatoes, chopped finely2 red chilies1 oz grated coconut1 oz powdered cashew nuts2 tbsps chopped coriander leaves¼ tsp grated ginger½ tsp toasted and powdered cumin seedsSalt to tasteGrind ingredients in grinder at a high speed and serve.Chili Dip3 oz thick green chilies2 tbsps roasted black sesame seeds1 oz coriander leaves1 tablespoon vinegar1 pinch mono sodium glutamateGrind ingredients in grinder at high speed and serve.VegetablesCreamy Vegetables¼ lbs grated cheese100 oz capsicums and tomatoes cut into thin strips4 oz cream2 tbsps chopped coriander leaves2 green chilies, mincedSalt and pepper to tasteMix together the vegetables add salt, cream and pepper put in a serving dish decorate with coriander leaves and serve chilled with brown bread.Mayonnaise with Vegetables¼ lbs each of grated carrot and cabbage1 oz each of cucumber, capsicum and tomato cut into strips¼ lbs mayonnaise2 oz cream2 oz pineapple pieces1 oz cherry piecesSalt and pepper to taste Mix mayonnaise with cream, blend into vegetables. Put in a serving dish and decorate with cherries and pineapple and serve with brown bread.Crunchy Cabbage½ lbs cabbage cut into two inch pieces2 red chilies2 tbsps honey4 tbsps olive oil2 oz mix toasted sesame seeds, almonds, walnuts and raisinsSalt and vinegar to tastePound the chilies coarsely, mix with cabbage along with oil, vinegar, salt and pepper. Set in refrigerator for 1 hour. Decorate with nuts and raisins and serve with brown bread.DessertsFruit Surprise15 plain sweet cookies2 oz cream1 oz powdered sugar1 teaspoon lime juice2 cups chilled milk2 tbsps cocoa powder1 cup chocolate sauce½ lbs finely chopped mixed fresh fruits12 roasted cashew nutsMix cream with sugar and lime juice, blend together cocoa and milk dip the biscuits one by one in milk and place in a serving dish , make layers of biscuits, fruits and chocolate sauce, start and finish with a layer of biscuits, cover with cream and decorate with cashew nuts.Chocolate Paan Banarsi paan leavesAnise or fennel seedsGulkandChocolate pasteChocolate sauceChunks of dark chocolatePowder of almonds, pistachio and cashew nutsCrystallized cherries, chopped finelySpecial sweet supari (betel nuts)Cardamom powderCoconut powderGrated coconutApply chocolate paste on the paan. Mix nuts, spices, sweet betel nut, coconut and chunks of chocolate and stuff mixture into the leaf, make into a paan and stick a clove in the center so it does not open, dip in chocolate sauce and serve at once.Ambrosia1 small brick vanilla ice cream4 tinned peach halves2 oz cream1 oz chopped walnuts2 oz chopped candied cherriesTake 4 plates and divide ice cream equally on them. On each ice cream in the middle place a peach half hollowed side up. Fill centre of the peach with 1 tblsp.cream. On top of each cream-filled peach sprinkle one tablespoon of cherries and walnuts.Cashew Nut Chocolate Rolls3 oz. ground cashew nuts3 oz. ground cream cheese1 oz. grated chocolate½ lbs. sugar½ teaspoon cardamom seedsDry coconut powder.Mix together all the above ingredients with the exception of coconut and form into small rolls. Roll in dry coconut and serve.Mocktails Peach and Ice Cream Shake1 oz peach puree½ liter milk1 oz vanilla ice cream2 drops almond essenceMix together all ingredients in blender for a minute and serve in tall glasses.Rose Shake¼ liter chilled water¼ liter chilled milk2 oz sugar2 oz rose syrupPinch of cardamom powderRose petals2 oz strawberry ice creamMix together all the above ingredients in a blender. When the ice cream is half melted, put in a tall glass containing cracked ice. Decorate with rose petals.Pomegranate Cooler¼ liter pomegranate juice2 tablespoons pineapple squash1 oz castor sugar2 bottles chilled soda1 bottle chilled lemonade3 oz creamMix together pomegranate juice, squash, soda and lemonade. Beat cream with sugar; pour lemonade in glasses over cracked ice. Related Itemslast_img read more

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2 Indian Students Acquitted of Drug Trafficking Charges in Kenya

first_imgTwo engineering students who were allegedly caught with Sh 1.3 billion worth of heroin in Kenya were acquitted by the chief magistrate of Mombasa of drug trafficking charges on Nov. 23.The magistrate, Julius Nang’ea, ruled that Prabhakara Nair Praveen and Vikas Balwan were only interns on the ship, MV Bushehr, and were not aware of the cargo that the ship contained or whether it was part of drug trafficking, The Star reported.The Director of Public of Prosecutions (DPP), however, said that the state wanted the two students held for 14 days as it wants to lodge an appeal.The two students, along with seven other crew members, were found on the ship that carried 33.2 kg of heroin off the Lamu coast. While six of the crew members were Pakistani nationals, one was from Iran. All nine of them, along with three Kenyans, faced two charges for narcotics trafficking. The magistrate ruled that the two Indian students were innocent but the others still need to prove themselves to the court.On July 23, 2014, the nine crew members were captured from the ship carrying heroin and handed over to the Kenyan navy before their trial. The captain of the ship passed away before he was put on trial.The magistrate ruled that the other crew members — Yousuf Yaqoob, Yakoob Ibrahim, Saleem Muhammad, Bhatti Abdul Ghafour, Baksh Moula, Pak Abdolghaffer, Muhammed Saleh, and Kenyans Khalid Agil Mohamed, Mohamed Osman Ahmed and Maur Abdalla Bwanamaka — were still answerable regarding the case.A letter from the Indian embassy confirmed that the two students from the country were interns who had no part to play in the ship. The letter also showed that Praveen and Balwan were students of Alpha Marine Service College in New Delhi and were interning at Park Mansion Ship Management Ltd in India. Related ItemsKenyaMombasaNarcoticslast_img read more

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Sidhu’s meet with Rahul sends ‘wrong’ signals

first_imgNavjot Singh Sidhu’s visit to New Delhi to meet Congress president Rahul Gandhi even as the former cricketer remains a minister without portfolio after having been divested of his originally assigned ministries, and given that he is yet to take charge of the newly allotted responsibility, has sparked speculation that he has sought the “high command’s” intervention in his tussle with Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh. As part of a post-poll cabinet reshuffle last week, Capt. Amarinder had divested Mr. Sidhu of the key Local Government portfolio and allocated him Power and New and Renewable Energy Sources.Mr. Sidhu, who met Mr. Gandhi, general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra and veteran leader Ahmed Patel on Monday, is learnt to have apprised the “high command” about being singled out “unfairly” in the cabinet rejig on the pretext of party’s “poor performance” in the urban areas of the State in the general elections.That Mr. Gandhi, who had avoided meeting most senior party leaders including Chief Ministers of Congress-ruled States since the poll debacle and the Congress Working Committee meeting last month, agreed to meet Mr. Sidhu has drawn criticism from political analysts. “Cabinet reshuffle is prerogative of the Chief Minister and after the reshuffle has been done, if now the old portfolio of Mr. Sidhu is reinstated it would be a bad move for the party,” said Ashutosh Kumar, professor of Political Science at Panjab University. “Mr. Sidhu’s audience with the high command also hints that Congress’s culture of keeping alive dissidence at the State level against the State leadership is not dead,” he remarked.“Capt. Amarinder is a mass leader who has in the past threatened the high command to break the party in case he was not declared as chief ministerial candidate in 2017,” Prof. Kumar observed. “Capt. Amarinder, after the Assembly polls and Lok Sabha polls, has emerged as a strong leader and on the other hand Congress’s high command looks weak after its performance in the Lok Sabha polls,” he asserted.Any effort to push for the reinstatement of Mr. Sidhu as the Local Government minister in an attempt to resolve the ongoing tussle in the State unit risked undermining the Chief Minister’s authority and further worsening the rift within the party in Punjab, Mr. Kumar opined. The party, however, downplayed the significance of Mr. Sidhu’s meeting, with Asha Kumari, the AICC incharge of Punjab affairs, asserting that every Congressman was ‘entitled’ to meet the Congress president. “As far as his [Mr. Sidhu’s] taking charge of the new portfolio is concerned, if Mr. Sidhu does not desire it’s entirely his wish. He [Mr. Sidhu] is a minister of Capt. Amarinder’s cabinet and it’s for the Chief Minister to decide who will hold which portfolio,” Ms. Kumari added.Ronki Ram, Dean at the Department of Social Science at Panjab University, said Mr. Sidhu’s meeting with the party’s central leadership appeared like an attempt at capturing a “power stronghold”. “If the Chief Minister has to take decision on the dictation of party high command, it’s not in good taste,” asserted Prof. Ram. “This shows party is highly centralised,” he added.The two Punjab leaders have been openly at loggerheads in recent months with Mr. Sidhu’s wife Navjot Kaur Sidhu accusing Capt. Amarinder of blocking her Lok Sabha candidacy from Chandigarh. Later, the chief minister had asserted that “Sidhu’s remarks ahead of polling” had affected the party’s performance. He had also blamed Mr. Sidhu’s poor handling of the key local bodies portfolio as another factor for the Congress’s “poor performance” in urban areas. Mr. Sidhu had retorted by asserting that he was being “singled out publicly” even though urban areas had played a critical role in the party’s victory in the Lok Sabha polls. The Congress won 8 of the 13 seats it contested, improving on its 2014 tally of just 3.last_img read more

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Odisha DGP removed

first_imgThe Odisha government late on Wednesday evening removed Director General of Police Bijay Kumar Sharma on charges of non-compliance of instructions.Mr. Sharma, a 1986-batch officer, was replaced by Abhaya, his batch mate.“On recommendation of the UPSC and in the interest of public service, Mr. Abhaya, at present director of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel National Police Academy, Hyderabad, is appointed Director General of Police, Odisha, from the date of taking over charge,” said a government notification.Mr. Sharma has been shifted to the Home Department as an Officer on Special Duty. Director General (Prison) Satyajit Mohanty was transferred as Special DG (Intelligence). Mr. Sharma, who was the Director General of Fire Services, was stripped of charge.Sunil Roy, DG Intelligence, has been posted as DG Fire Service.In a dramatic turn of events, the State government has constituted a three-member committee comprising three top bureaucrats to probe into allegations of inordinate delay in issuance of fire safety certificates.Sources said there were allegations of corruption in the issuance of certificates.“It is reported that there is huge pendency of applications for issuance of fire safety recommendations and certificates in the Directorate of Fire Services. This has caused immense inconvenience not only to the general public but also to business, industry, educational and medical establishments,” says another Home Department notification.It says, “in order to enquire into the matter relating to non-compliance of government instructions by Directorate of Fire Services and circumstances under which applications for fire safety recommendations and certificate have been kept pending for long periods, Government is pleased to constitute a committee comprising Chief Secretary, Development Commissioner and Principal Secretary Homes.”last_img read more