Hotelier Accused of $179 Million Fraud in U.S. Wanted to Buy Diamonds After Fleeing to Ecuador: Report

first_imgIndian American hotelier Nik Patel, who pleaded guilty to $179 million fraud and tried to flee the United States earlier this year, wanted to buy diamonds using $35 million in “dirty money,” according to the Federal Bureau of Investigation.Patel wanted to buy one of the rarest diamonds to launder the money through bank accounts in Dubai, according to a new FBI report. He was indicted in 2015 for the fraud and had been helping investigators recover the money since then. According to a report in Orlando Sentinel, Patel used the cooperation with the investigators as a shield to launder $35 million he had stolen.He reportedly also wanted to seek help from lawyers and consultants from around the world. The FBI caught Patel with a blueprint of this plan that also said that buying diamonds was the easiest way to launder money, the publication added.The documents also listed luxury cars valued at $500,000 in Ecuador, a bag of some kind of white powder seized at the airport, luxury watches, $20,000 in cash, and eight cellphones at his home.“This is the cleanest way to do the transaction, kill any trace, and cover everyone,” said the outline that the investigators attribute to Patel. “Legit stones are being bought, and the ‘trace’ ends there. Francesca did nothing wrong by buying the stone for the ‘client’ and neither did the person selling the stone.”Patel was arrested on Jan. 6 from Kissimmee Gateway Airport in Kissimmee, Florida. He was going to board a flight to Ecuador with an Indian passport. He had also made plans for his wife, Trisha, to flee the country a day after he did.Patel said that he was at the airport with Orlando businessman Kevin Timirchand and that both of them were planning to start a business in Ecuador. Timirchand allegedly hired the chartered plane that was going to take them to Ecuador. An American Ecuadoran attorney Estaban River is said to have helped Patel get asylum paperwork done.Patel’s company, First Farmers Financial LLC, had sold 26 fake loans to a Milwaukee financial firm, Pennant Management, totaling about $179 million. He had falsely said that the loans were guaranteed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.He had been out on bonded release since his initial arrest. He will be getting a sentence for the original fraud and attempt to flee on March 5.  Related ItemsFraudIndian AmericanUnited Stateslast_img read more

‘26 candidates with criminal cases won in Odisha’

first_imgAn analysis by Association of Democratic Reforms and Odisha Election Watch has found that 26 out of 67 candidates with declared criminal cases won the last election to the Odisha Legislative Assembly against runners-up with a clean background.Among the 146 seats analysed in the report, there were 38 winners with a clean background who defeated a candidate with declared criminal cases. Of these 38 winners, six won with more than 25% margin of votes.As many as 45 candidates won with 50% and above of the total votes polled in their constituencies, while 101 candidates won with less than 50% of the total votes polled.According to the report, out of 112 winners of the Biju Janata Dal, 68 won with less than 50% of total votes polled.A total of 37 out of 95 crorepati candidates won against non-crorepati runners-up. Three of these 37 candidates won with more than 20% margin of votes. There were 22 non-crorepati winners who defeated crorepati runners-up. Two of them won with more than 25% of vote share. Of the 13 women winners, Latika Pradhan of the BJD won from the Kabisuryanagar seat with the highest vote share of 62.87% and 33.38% margin of victory.last_img read more


first_img“DSK International Campus is truly a centre of”DSK International Campus is truly a centre of excellence,” said Rajiv Pratap Rudy [ ], Union Minister of State Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, Govt of India. He spent good 3 hours touring the campus and interacting with the students during his visit this month. After observing the students works, the minister called upon them to design a jet-ski, citing an accident he recently witnessed. “When I witnessed a jet-ski lose control and capsize, I realized that we could come up with a design that not only protects the rider, but with self-propulsion brings itself back, upright and ready to go. If the students of DSK International Campus can design such a watercraft, I would be immensely happy and will come back to see it,” he said. Watch what Rajiv Pratap Rudy, Union Minister of State Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, Govt of India has to say about DSK International Campus – Royal Academician and Renowned Architect, Prof. Sir Peter Cook, who will render his services as a consultant for the Sports Complex at the ongoing DSK Dream City, also had a brief interaction with the students. DSK International Campus is a part of the mammoth DSK Dream City Project in Pune.The students were absolutely excited with Sir Peter Cooks presentation that captured 50 years of his exceptional work in designing spaces and furniture. Relating to the students, he spoke about his observations, stories, experiences, cultures and people that have inspired his work. Advising the students, he stated, “One has to be honest about what influences his work. It is not always possible to be totally original. But imagine creating something that has awed you so much that you carry it with you in your memory or your back pocket, and if youre lucky you get to do it.” The institute has also engaged itself in spreading awareness about design education and the gamut of career options it holds today. In line to this, DSK International Campus continuously organizes events bringing the best in the creative world together, like the Animation Conclave and the Design Conclave.advertisementHollywood Honchos, Tim McGovern – Oscar award-winner and VFX expert along with Dan Enstrom – VFX Expert of Star Wars, Avengers and Pirates of the Caribbean fame where a part of the Animation Conclave. The conclave was thronged by students from other schools and colleges and industry experts around the country. Such visits are a great opportunity for the students to engage and get first-hand answers to their queries from personalities who represent a respective industry, department and country. It is such repertoire of novel insights and experiences that DSK International Campus aims to share not only with its students but also with design aspirants and the design community by large. While Vinod Tawade, Education Minister for the State of Maharashtra and Pradyumna Vyas, Director of National Institute of Design and Member Secretary of India Design Council, conferred the 2016 graduates of DSK International Campus, they also had a lot to share with the aspirants in their respective capacities. (MORE) PRNewswire JSRlast_img read more

Superstar Cristiano Ronaldo Holidaying in Greece

first_imgKALAMATA, Greece – As the world waits for the official announcement of Cristiano Ronaldo’s rumoured transfer to Juventus, the Portuguese striker has been kicking back after Portugal was knocked out from the World Cup, enjoying some quality rest and relaxation with his family at Messinia in Greece.Soon after Portugal was knocked out of the running, Ronaldo and his girlfriend Georgina Rodriguez, along with the football star’s son and the couple’s daughter, arrived at Kalamata Airport in the Peloponnese in a private jet and then boarded a helicopter that flew them straight to Pylos, a coastal resort in Messinia.It is the second year that Ronaldo is holidaying in the area, where he also spent some days in June last year. His partner Georgina is keeping fans up to date about his Greek holiday through Instagram, while the star striker has also spoken to his fans via a live video from Messinia, also on Instagram.TweetPinShare88 Shareslast_img read more

Hernandez Scores Winner for Leeds in Injury Time (Video)

first_imgSYDNEY — Attacking midfielder Pablo Hernandez scored in the fifth minute of injury time on Saturday to give Leeds a 2-1 win over the A-League’s Western Sydney Wanderers.The 34-year-old Spaniard cut in from the right side of the goal, fought off several challenges and drilled the ball into the corner of the Wanderers net. The Wanderers, managed by former German international Markus Babbel, leveled the score at 1-1 in the 48th minute when midfielder Kwame Yeboah converted a perfect through ball from Keanu Baccus.Teen midfielder Mateusz Bogusz scored from the edge of the box in the ninth minute to give Leeds the early lead. The 17-year-old took a pass from winger Jack Harrison and launched the ball into the top left corner of the net.Leeds United’s Mateusz Bogusz, center, is congratulated by teammates after scoring against Western Sydney Wanderers during their friendly soccer match in Sydney, Australia, Saturday, July 20, 2019. (AP Photo/Rick Rycroft)Bogusz limped off in the 82nd and later had strapping placed on his left leg.Leeds, which plays in English soccer’s second-tier Championship, lost 4-0 to Manchester United on Wednesday in Perth.TweetPinShare0 Shareslast_img read more

Wish the World Cup started tomorrow: Eoin Morgan gives proof of England’s confidence

first_imgConfidence levels are soaring so high in the England team that captain Eoin Morgan wishes the World Cup was starting tomorrow.England named their 15-man squad on Tuesday in the wake of a 4-0 hammering of Pakistan that underlined their place as favourites for the tournament which starts on home soil next Thursday when they take on South Africa.”We’d like to start playing tomorrow,” Morgan said at an event in east London to unveil England’s new light blue kit.”We’ve had some really good prep against Pakistan, I don’t think it could have gone better.”I’ve got absolutely no regrets. We’re positioned in the best possible place at the moment.”England racked up three totals of 350 plus against Pakistan, playing the kind of attacking cricket that was unimaginable when they limped out of the 2015 World Cup at the group stage.Morgan, who was drafted in as skipper just before the start of their ill-fated tournament four years ago, said a home World Cup was a massive chance for the players to write their names into English cricket folklore.”The crowd will definitely be our 12th man. It’s a huge opportunity, we’re looking to go out and express ourselves and continue to play as we have in the last four years,” he said.”We want to inspire the next generation of cricketers to come into the game and hopefully come out of the tournament worshipping one of the guys in our team.”One of those could be Barbados-born fast bowler Jofra Archer who was named in the 15-man squad earlier on Tuesday despite having only made his one-day international debut this month.advertisement”Jofra has come in and done exactly what he’s been doing for Sussex and other franchise teams around the world,” Morgan said of the 24-year-old whose pace England batsman Jos Buttler describes as “scary”.”I think he’s come on in the games he’s played. He’s very young with a lot of cricket ahead and if he continues to improve throughout his career he’s a very exciting prospect.”Archer’s inclusion was bad news for the unlucky David Willey but Morgan said hard decisions had to be made. Left-arm spinner Liam Dawson was also preferred ahead of Joe Denly as England made two voluntary changes from their provisional squad.”They were extremely tough decisions,” Morgan said. “Joe and Dave missing out is extremely unfortunate.”I spoke to Dave and Joe last night and obviously said the longer term, with the length of the tournament we are likely to get injuries – they are next in line, no doubt about that.”I still see them playing a part in our journey.”England’s rise from flops four years ago to the world’s best one-day side has even surprised Morgan under whose leadership England have twice smashed the ODI world record.They scored 444-3 versus Pakistan in 2016 and topped that with 481-6 against Australia last year.”Our exceptional days are better than we could have imagined,” he said. “I could never have seen those at the start of 2015. That expectation has shifted with the level of performance. But it’s also brought our worst performances up.”Also Read | World Cup 2019: England name Jofra Archer in final squad of 15Also Read | MS Dhoni will be a big player in World Cup 2019: Ravi Shastrilast_img read more

Gattuso: Stop matches after racism

first_imgAC Milan boss Gennaro Gattuso joined Napoli counterpart Carlo Ancelotti in calling on referees to suspend matches marred by racism.Senegal international Kalidou Koulibaly was allegedly the subject of racist chants during Napoli’s loss to Inter at San Siro on Boxing Day.Ancelotti claimed the visitors asked three times for the game to be called off and suggested the Partenopei would “stop play ourselves” the next time an incident occurred. Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Gattuso echoed his former coach’s demands for a zero-tolerance stance.”I could not agree more with what Ancelotti said,” Gattuso told Milan TV.”Certainly we’re not the only nation where these things happen. Just look at England, which has a great sporting culture.”I think it’s time for football to stop, for the games to be interrupted. We have to improve, it’s almost 2019. Too often there are four idiots starting these chants.”I don’t think Italy is a racist country, because there are so many immigrants. It’s right that games are halted.”Players including Cristiano Ronaldo and Inter captain Mauro Icardi have publicly condemned racism in the aftermath of the ugly episode.Liverpool star Mohamed Salah also shared a message of support for Koulibaly, posting a picture of himself in action against the defender on Twitter and writing: “There’s no place for racism in football. There’s no place for racism anywhere at all.”There’s no place for racism in football. There’s no place for racism anywhere at all.— Mohamed Salah (@MoSalah) December 27, 2018All eyes will be on Serie A this weekend as the last round of fixtures takes place before the Italian winter break takes effect, bringing the 2018 calendar to a close.AC Milan host SPAL on Saturday evening, while Napoli are also in action against Bologna on the same day.last_img read more

More than $100 Million in Assistance for Farmers

first_imgThe Government will be providing more than $100 million in material and services to assist with the restoration of farming in the worse-affected parishes. Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Portia Simpson Miller, made the announcement on Tuesday (Nov. 6) in the House of Representatives, where she gave an update on the Government’s assistance to the various sectors in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. Like Us Facebook for More News and Information She informed that 6,000 farmers will be provided with vegetable seeds valued at $13.2 million; while another 400 will receive day-old chicks and animal feed at a cost of $4 million. Also to be provided is 18,666 bags of fertilizer valued at $30.3 million and tractor services will be made available through the Rural Agricultural Development Authority (RADA) to assist 750 farmers with land preparation. Tools for pruning will be provided to affected cocoa farmers including chain saws, guide bars, cutlass files and cutlasses valued at $500,000. Cocoa farmers will also receive some 9,006 bags of fertilizer valued at $14.5 million. [RELATED: Gov’t Negotiates $100 Million Loan Package for Banana Farmers] In addition, more than 22, 222 bags of fertilizer of different blends, valued at $40 million, will be distributed to affected coffee farmers, while some $20 million in grants will be made available for the provision of critical equipment to marine fishers and affected persons in the aquaculture industry. “We are doing all that we can to restore our agricultural sector to full production as soon as possible, utilising available resources,” Mrs. Simpson Miller said. She also noted that repairs to the irrigation system are being made through the re-allocation of the National Irrigation Commission’s budgetary resources. Some 37,000 farmers were affected by the passage of Hurricane Sandy with banana, plantain, root and tubers, vegetables, condiments and fruits being the worst affected areas. The cost of the damage to the sector is $1.43 billion, which is $700,000 less than the $1.5 billion preliminary estimate. A total of 3,600 farmers reported damage to livestock totalling $95 million, while the aquaculture industry sustained damage estimated at $91 million, and the irrigation infrastructure was also significantly impacted at a cost of $62 million. The most recent assessment puts the crop loss sustained by the cocoa industry at 24,500 boxes, up from the previously reported 21,500 boxes. Approximately 20 per cent of the un-reaped Blue Mountain Coffee berries have been loss, which is estimated at 31,600 boxes with a value of $101 million. Twelve per cent of the remaining crop of High Mountain Coffee has also been lost, which is an estimated 4,522 boxes valued at $9 million.last_img read more

Greek Shippers Must Keep Close Tabs on Syriza

first_imgzoom It is too soon to say whether the Syriza party’s victory in Greece could, as some fear, have a damaging effect on the country’s shipping industry, but Greek shipping interests will need to monitor how the change of government might affect them on both a business and personal level before reviewing any long-term plans, international accountant and shipping adviser Moore Stephens says.Last year, the ruling government introduced a number of changes to Greece’s tax laws, including some specific to the shipping industry, such as repealing the law imposing mandatory triple tonnage tax on Greek-flag ships and foreign-flag vessels managed out of Greece, replacing it with the voluntary contribution of double tonnage tax payments for the next four years.Moore Stephens London partner Michael Kotsapas said: ”Any change of government, in any part of the world, is likely to have implications for the national shipping industry. This is particularly true of Greece, where shipping is a significant contributor to the country’s overall GDP and a major source of employment.”Another measure with a potential impact on the shipping community included the introduction, for the first time in Greece, of Controlled Foreign Companies Rules covering the concept of effective management and criteria for determining same.”Before the election, the anti-austerity Syriza party called for a new agreement which would involve the shipping community making a greater contribution to the national economy than it already does. It remains to be seen whether that will be the case. Shipping is a key industry in Greece, and it would be surprising and disappointing if the new government’s policy, when announced, did not reflect that. In the meantime, the shipping community will be watching developments with keen interest,’‘ Kotsapas said.Earlier this week, Syriza member Thodoris Dritsas, believed to be the next minister for shipping, announced the left-wing party’s plans to stop the sale of a majority stake in the Port of Piraeus, the project hailed by the Prime Minister of Greece Antonis Samaras as the most important investment in Greece in the last decade.Source: Moore Stephens; Image: Syrizalast_img read more

HK Chief Executive postpones controversial bill

first_imgHong Kong: Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam announced on Saturday the “suspension” of her controversial proposed extradition law, which has generated massive opposition in the streets. Lam told a press conference that the project, which could allow China to extradite fugitives from Hong Kong, is temporarily “suspended” to defuse the crisis it has unleashed, Efe news reported. She added that the goal of the law was to avoid Hong Kong becoming a “safe haven for criminals”. The decision comes after meeting with members of her Executive Council and calls from several supporters of the regulation on Friday for the suspension of the project. Opponents of the bill have planned another demonstration on Sunday.last_img

PSU banks complete first round of ideation exercise

first_imgNew Delhi: State Bank of India and other public sector lenders on Sunday completed the first round of bottom-up ideation exercise for further streamlining the banking sector to help the nation become a USD 5-trillion economy in five years. Banks embarked on a month-long campaign beginning Saturday on the direction of Department of Financial Services, Ministry of Finance with the aim to generate suggestions and ideas from the branch level for preparing a road map for the future growth of the banking sector. Also Read – Thermal coal import may surpass 200 MT this fiscal The move by the Finance Ministry is aimed at re-invigorating sagging economy in which banking sector has important role to play especially in boosting consumption through higher credit flow to the productive sectors. SBI conducted meetings at 502 regional Business Offices spread across 17 circles in which over 15,000 officers participated over the past two days, the bank’s managing director P K Gupta said here. “Lots of suggestions have come. Some of them relate to improving processes, introduction of new products and making the bank more customer friendly among others,” he said. Also Read – Food grain output seen at 140.57 mt in current fiscal on monsoon boost Some suggestion were with regard to government and regulators which will be taken up at later stage of the exercise, he said, adding, all these suggestions will be collated over the next week and will be placed at the state-level meeting. Gupta further said, the primary objective of this meeting was to identify and finalise ways and means to increase credit to various sectors of the economy, enhance the use of technology to bring about innovation. Speaking at the occasion, Chief General Manager of SBI Delhi circle Vijuy Ronjan said, the presence of top management during the consultative process has resulted in a renewed sense of involvement and purpose down to the branch level and the bank is geared towards implementing the road map for the future. Many ideas were made on making branches more responsive to customers and enhancing digital access. “I strongly believe that this bottom-up consultative process will provide a platform for field personnel to represent and bring forward the grass-root level challenges in their respective areas. This campaign is unique in a way that it will make them drivers of the policy making/reforms to address the involvement and motivation among field functionaries” Union Bank of India MD Rajkiran Rai G said. All other leading state-owned lenders including Punjab National Bank, Bank of Baroda, Canara Bank, Andhra Bank, Syndicate Bank and Indian Overseas Bank held the meeting across the country. Many suggestions have come with regard to making banking citizen-centric as well as more responsive to the needs and aspirations of Senior citizens, farmers, small industries, entrepreneurs, youth, students and women, Indian Overseas Bank said in a statement. According to Andhra Bank, theme of the campaign was also focussed on raising credit offtake for supporting economic growth, credit support to infrastructure and role of the banking sector in doubling farmers’ income and water conservation. Besides, supporting green economy, improving education loan and other sectors such as micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) and exports were also part of discussion. In addition, there was focus on pushing digital economy and financial inclusion. The campaign comes at a time when the economy is facing headwind and has slowed to a 5-year low of 6.8 per cent during the last fiscal. There are ominous signs showing that slowdown may be deep. The automobile sector is facing its worst crisis in two decades and reports suggest thousands of job losses in the auto and ancillary industry. In the real estate sector, the number of unsold homes has increased, while fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) companies have reported a decline in volume growth in the first quarter.last_img read more

AFN national chief urges action on gross human rights violation

first_imgOTTAWA — Assembly of First Nations National Chief Perry Bellegarde is calling the forced sterilization of Indigenous women a “gross human-rights violation” that must immediately end.Bellegarde says the scope of the problem must be examined across Canada, and the practice is reprehensible.He also points to a resolution passed by First Nations chiefs this summer at the AFN annual general assembly calling for increased awareness about the issue, efforts to stop it and support for survivors seeking redress.Bellegarde’s comments come as Maurice Law, a Canadian law firm, and Amnesty International Canada look to raise the issue at the United Nations Committee Against Torture this month.In its submission to the UN committee, the firm says it is seeking to advance legal reforms on the “modern-day forced sterilization of Indigenous women in publicly funded and administered hospitals in Canada.”The firm is leading a proposed class action against all health regions across Saskatchewan, the federal and Saskatchewan governments and individual medical professionals.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Always ticking Canadas population clock shows demographic changes in real time

first_imgA Quebecer moves to the Northwest Territories, a family in Newfoundland and Labrador welcomes a new arrival, another in British Columbia mourns a loss, an immigrant settles somewhere in Ontario.Within the span of just a few minutes, an online tool from Statistics Canada offers an evocative snapshot of the country’s ever-shifting population through a series of statistically modelled demographic events.The so-called “population clock” — which went live shortly after Canada Day last year — uses StatCan data to present a real-time visualization of the country’s major demographic trends, including births, deaths, immigration and emigration.Watching it is somewhat akin to playing a real-life, nationwide version of the city-building video game SimCity: coloured bars representing births, deaths and various migrations slowly fill up or deplete, leading to animations on a map showing each occurrence playing out across the country.It’s not quite true to life, of course — the federal government doesn’t claim to be tracking every individual in the country in real-time — but one of the page’s main designers says it’s pretty close.Patrick Charbonneau, a senior analyst with StatCan’s demography division, says the model is based on the agency’s latest population estimates, which are updated every three months.“The counts that are shown in the population clock are strictly for visualization purposes, to give Canadians a sense of how fast the population is changing. It’s more of a learning tool than a decision-making tool,” said Charbonneau.“But those numbers are still obtained through really robust methodology nevertheless.”Charbonneau said the agency launched the clock in an effort to increase “statistical literacy” in the general population — particularly among young Canadians — and to give people a sense of how the population is changing.“I think it’s something that everyone should be able to know — how fast the population is changing … What is the rhythm? What is the pace?” said Charbonneau.He said the clock has proven popular in its first year, becoming one of the most-visited pages on StatCan’s website. He said he’s also heard accounts from teachers who have shown it in their classrooms to introduce students to population studies.Howard Ramos, a professor of sociology at Dalhousie University, said it’s important for Canadians to maintain a life-long interest in the demographic trends that continue to shape the country.“I think that a lot of Canadians would even be surprised by the overall population — we’re now at 37 and a half million people. I think a lot of people’s notion of how big we are or how populated we are is often frozen by what they got in high school social studies,” he said.“It would offer a lot of insight on the importance of immigration in Canada. I think that certainly you see that in the bigger cities like Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal. But in the rest of the country, this tool really shows the impact and the importance of immigration to maintaining our population, not to mention growing it.”Ramos urged Canadians to check out the tool for themselves, and if they find it interesting, to “dig into” the vast amount of data available on Statistics Canada’s website.“This is a great way for us to get to know who we are,” he said.“If you live only in Toronto, Vancouver or Montreal, you might not know what it’s like to live in the Yukon, or in Cape Breton, or in the Prairies. And these kinds of tools allow us to begin to see what those places look like, and begin to imagine them.”___Online: Burns, The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Ahead Of World AIDS Day 2017 RED Announces 500 Million Raised For

first_imgAhead of World AIDS Day 2017, (RED) – the AIDS organization founded by Bono and Bobby Shriver – announces it has delivered a total of $500 million to The Global Fund, to fund HIV/AIDS programs in sub-Saharan Africa.Since (RED)’s founding in 2006, the money raised through special events and campaigns led by more than 100 private sector partners, supporters and creative collaborators has benefited the lives of 110 million people through treatment, prevention, testing, counseling and care services.Bono, co-founder, (RED), said; “Half a billion dollars to prevent and treat AIDS – now that’s a reason to punch the sky. When Bobby Shriver and I started (RED) just over a decade ago we had big goals, but even our big heads couldn’t have dreamed up a number like that. This achievement belongs to the (RED) companies and consumers who have supported (RED) and raised a load of money and a load of awareness about AIDS – which is more the point because our experience is if there isn’t heat and excitement around an issue, big government budgets get cut and people die.”(RED) is fortunate to have had the transformational support of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, which has generously provided matching funds for key campaigns to multiply the impact of individual and corporate donations. For the third year in a row, the Gates Foundation will be matching every dollar raised for (RED)’s SHOPATHON, up to $15 million.U2, Charlize Theron, Reese Witherspoon & TAEYEON among stars offering winnable experiences on OmazeBringing further heat to the AIDS fight, (RED) is once again teaming-up with fundraising platform Omaze, to offer fans chances to win extraordinary experiences with their favorite stars, for as little as a $10 donation. Winnable (SHOPATHON)RED experiences on include: • Swing into action and play mini golf with U2’s Bono, The Edge, Adam and Larry • Get you’re a** kicked by Charlize Theron at a workout session • Hit the red carpet with Reese Witherspoon at the premiere of ‘A Wrinkle In Time’ • Head to Seoul with K-Pop sensation, TAEYEON, for the ultimate music, food & fun experienceBuy gifts that keep giving with more than 150 spectacular (RED) products on and Amazon have teamed-up for special holiday shopping offering brilliant (RED) products that raise money for the Global Fund to fight AIDS. Shoppers can choose from more than 150 (RED) products including fashion, cosmetics, kitchen goods, tech and more at or via the Amazon App.Sharing smart ways to shop and give back, stars including Neil Patrick Harris, Tyra Banks, DJ Khaled, Ricardo Kaka, Allison Williams, Javier Muñoz, Jay Ellis, and Yvonne Orji highlight their favorite (RED) products to give – and get – on the Official Payment Provider of (SHOPATHON)RED, long-standing (RED) partner Bank of America is making every dollar spent go even further. For every dollar spent on from November 20 until December 31, Bank of America will donate 30 cents – the daily cost of life-saving HIV/AIDS medication in sub-Saharan Africa – up to $1.5 million.last_img read more

It will split the nation Tiwari on Cong manifesto

first_imgNew Delhi: Delhi BJP President Manoj Tiwari issued a strong statement on Tuesday criticizing the Indian National Congress’ Lok Sabha manifesto for the upcoming polls. Congress released its manifesto, titled “Hum Nibhayenge” (“we will deliver”) on Tuesday afternoon, promising a host of things, including a minimum wage scheme for poor families and amendments to the AFSPA, to which BJP members have shown great disdain.In his strongly worded criticism of the Congress and its new manifesto, Tiwari said, “the only historic thing about this manifesto is how it will be responsible for Congress’ historical loss this election.” Accusing the party of deliberately trying to split the nation, the MP from North-East Delhi said that the Congress manifesto is a recipe created to specifically attack the armed forces of India. Tiwari said, “The election manifesto of Congress party also says that it will abolish the provision of sedition and special powers under AFPSA will be reviewed. It proves that Congress is with the enemies of the country. Congress should be ashamed on the fact that the Kashmir is with India only due to the sacrifice of our armed forces and it is very disappointing that the Congress wants to take away the powers of the armed forces and talk to the separatists,” he added. In the statement, Tiwari goes on to praise the current government’s work during the last term and adds that this work will be the reason for their landslide victory in 2019. The statement further read, “Our popular Prime Minister has honestly worked hard for the welfare of the last man in the society during his five-year-term and due to this the trust of the people in our Government has strengthened.”last_img read more

Puerto Rico population to drop 14 after hurricane

A municipal employee (R) teaches a group a people at the shelter how to prepare the military Meals Ready to Eat that the government is providing in Barranquitas, Puerto Rico October 31, 2017. (Photo: AFP)MIAMI, United States (AFP) — Puerto Rico’s population is set to decrease by 14 per cent to 2.9 million inhabitants by 2019 due to an exodus of residents fleeing the devastation caused by Hurricane Maria in September, a study has found.The Center for Puerto Rican Studies at Hunter College in New York estimated in a report released last month that about 114,000 to 213,000 Puerto Rican residents will leave the island annually “as a result of Hurricane Maria.”Between 2017 and 2019, the US territory stands to lose 470,335 residents, it added.“In the decade prior to Hurricane Maria, net migration from Puerto Rico to the United States amounted to approximately half a million, which represented a loss of ten per cent of the island’s population,” said report authors Edwin Melendez and Jennifer Hinojosa.“In other words, Puerto Rico will lose the same population in a span of a couple of years after Hurricane Maria as the island lost during a prior decade of economic stagnation.”Tens of thousands of Puerto Ricans have fled to the mainland since Maria struck on September 20, devastating the island, just two weeks after Hurricane Irma tore through the Caribbean.The vast majority went to Florida and New York, which already had around one million Puerto Ricans each. Around 700,000 Puerto Ricans live in New York City.Overall, there are five million Puerto Ricans on the US mainland, compared to 3.4 million on the island.Melendez and Hinojosa estimate that between 40,000 and 82,000 people will migrate to Florida each year from Puerto Rico.That figured has already been topped, with a Florida emergency management official telling AFP that more than 134,000 Puerto Ricans have arrived in Florida since October 3 through the international airports of Tampa, Orlando and Miami.But it’s unclear how many are moving to Florida permanently compared to how many are simply visiting temporarily.The move is one of the biggest obstacles to recovery for the island, which has been beset by financial hardship.“The population decrease in Puerto Rico… has multiple economic repercussions for the island,” Jorge Duany, an anthropologist at Florida International University who specialises in Puerto Rican migration, said in an interview.As of Monday, only 42 per cent of Puerto Rican customers had electricity on the island, which went dark after Maria.At least 51 people died because of the storm, according to official figures, while the local press speaks of dozens of people who have disappeared.Some 2,600 people still live in shelters. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedPuerto Rico mostly in the dark one month after hurricaneOctober 19, 2017In “World”Hurricane Maria killed 4,500 in Puerto Rico, 70 times official toll — studyMay 29, 2018In “World”Hurricane Maria pummels Puerto RicoSeptember 20, 2017In “World” read more

Opera Mini surges in 2012 as mobile users scramble to conserve data

first_imgOpera Mini once ruled the mobile browsing world. Though relative newcomers like Safari and the Android browser have taken over the lead, Opera is still a dominant force. As it turns out, 2012 was another strong year for the Norwegian software developer.Opera’s page compression technology has a lot to do with this success. In emerging markets where network connections aren’t always the speediest, Opera’s back-end wizardry can be a huge benefit. Areas like Latin America and Africa showed particularly strong growth, but Opera Mini is growing in places like the U.S, too, and compression could very well be the key.Not everyone wants to to be locked in to a huge data plan, after all. For users on more cost-conscious contracts, Opera Mini offers a way to get a solid mobile web experience without slurping down bits by the bucketload. As device resolutions continue to climb higher, the size of the average web page keeps on growing. Right now the average page weighs in at around 1.2MB. At that size, it doesn’t take long to chew through a gig of mobile data — and that’s where Opera Mini’s compression can be a real boon. It does a good job of helping users stretch those valuable data contract dollars.Clearly its users are taking advantage of the savings. In December 2012, Opera says it processed about 12 petabytes of uncompressed data on the Mini servers alone (Opera and Opera Mobile use different servers for their turbo modes).Although 2012 was a strong year for Opera Mini, there were bumps along the way. Slight drops in the user base were reported in both April and September, but they were ultimately just blips on the radar. By December, Opera Mini had crossed the 200 million user threshold and another 20 million-plus users were running its more full-featured companion, Opera Mobile. While the number of Opera Mobile users has mostly held steady for the past 24 months, Opera Mini is still growing by leaps and bounds.More reading: Opera Ice is a ‘futuristic’ gesture-friendly mobile browserlast_img read more

Uber launches JUMP dockless electric bikes in San Diego with free rides

first_img SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – Uber launched a fleet of JUMP e-bikes Monday in San Diego, making it the 12th city in the U.S. and fifth in California to have the service.Uber plans to disperse 300 bikes around a 28-square-mile service area from Pacific Beach to Crim Avenue downtown. The company hopes to expand to 95 square miles by the end of the year.The bikes are dockless, electric and can accelerate up to 20 mph. Theyo feature “lock-to” technology and a GPS system to coax riders to lock them in places outside of pedestrian walkways. Shared bikes and scooters have received push-back from San Diego residents in part due to concerns over riders locking them in areas where they block foot traffic.JUMP launched as a bikeshare company in 2017 and expanded to multiple metro areas around the U.S. Uber acquired JUMP in May as part of the ride- hailing company’s effort to increase its footprint in the public transit market. Uber launched in Los Angeles last Wednesday after receiving an operating permit from the city.“We see a world where people in San Diego can easily live without a car by taking advantage of a wide variety of transportation options, from ebikes to rideshare and beyond, requested right from the Uber app,” said Mike Egziabher, general manager of JUMP’s Southern California branch. “Today’s launch gets us closer to that vision by giving people in San Diego an affordable, environmentally friendly way to get from point A to point B.”Uber will offer five free 30-minute bike rides per day to each San Diego customer through Dec. 9 to celebrate the launch. The bikes can be located and unlocked with the Uber app and the JUMP app. At launch, a ride on one of the bikes in San Diego will cost $1 to unlock and 10 cents per each subsequent minute.Uber’s full press release can be read below: Posted: November 19, 2018 Updated: 2:59 PM November 19, 2018 Today, Uber announced the launch of dockless electric bikeshare service JUMP in San Diego. JUMP bikes are electric and provide a boost with every pedal (up to 20 mph), making it easier for riders to get around their city without breaking a sweat. The bikes have integrated “lock to” technology and feature GPS intelligence, to encourage riders to lock their bikes in responsible locations outside of the pedestrian pathway.“We see a world where people in San Diego can easily live without a car by taking advantage of a wide variety of transportation options, from ebikes to rideshare and beyond, requested right from the Uber app” said Mike Egziabher, General Manager, Southern California, JUMP. “Today’s launch gets us closer to that vision by giving people in San Diego an affordable, environmentally friendly way to get from point A to point B.“While pricing varies by city, in San Diego at launch, ebikes will cost $1 to unlock and then just 10 cents per minute to ride. As part of a launch promotion, riders get five free trips up to 30 minutes long each day through December 9. JUMP will start with 300 bikes available across a 28 square mile radius, from Pacific Beach all the way downtown to Crim avenue; and from the northmost point at Chalcedony St. to the southmost point at National Ave.In 2017, JUMP bikes launched the first ever dockless electric bike share system in the United States. Dockless bike share expands transportation options for residents by making it easier to rent and park a bike anywhere within the service area, instead of at designated stations. In May, Uber acquired JUMP as part of its mission to expand the menu of affordable, reliable transportation options that can be requested using  the Uber app, and make it even easier for residents to get across town without relying on their own personal vehicle.JUMP’s pedal assist bikes are available in Austin, Chicago, Denver, New York City, Providence, Sacramento, Santa Cruz, San Francisco, Santa Monica, Los Angeles, and Washington, D.C. They also have scooters available in Austin, Santa Monica and LA.In California, JUMP is already bringing multimodal transportation to users across the state. In October, JUMP started expanding its fleet of bikes San Francisco, from 250 to 500 bikes after data showed that over 38,000 unique riders took more than 326,000 total trips during the pilot. Around Sacramento, JUMP recently expanded its service area by more than 50 percent to meet demand of more residents. And last week, it announced that it started deploying 3,000 ebikes and scooters across LA.How it Works:With both the Uber and JUMP mobile apps, users can find and unlock JUMP pedal-assist ebikes. It’s simple to use.Via Uber:Tap the “mode switch” on the homescreen of the Uber app, and select bikeYou’ll see the available JUMP bikes around you, and can select one to reserve.The app will give you a pin number so you can unlock your bike.Via JUMP:Download the JUMP Bikes app to create an account.Use the in-app map to find and reserve bikes – or simply walk up to a bike and enter your account number and four-digit pin. KUSI Newsroom, Uber launches JUMP dockless electric bikes in San Diego with free rides KUSI Newsroom Categories: Local San Diego News FacebookTwitterlast_img read more

Voters Defeat Controversial School Finance Measure HISD Prop 1

first_img X Laura IsenseeThere was a strong campaign against Proposition 1 in HISD, which would send tax dollars from the district to the state, under the so-called “Robin Hood” program. 00:00 /01:39 Listen center_img To embed this piece of audio in your site, please use this code: Share Voters defeated a controversial school finance measure on the ballot for the Houston Independent School District, known as Proposition 1, sending the state’s largest school district into uncharted waters.The measure asked HISD taxpayers if they would send a check to the state to help fund education, to the tune of $162 million next spring and in the form of “attendance tax credits.”Houston Public Media’s Coverage of Election 2016With more than half of ballots counted, more than 60 percent of voters rejected the measure while just under 40 percent were in favor.A powerful coalition lined up against the measure, including Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner, several HISD trustees and the Houston Federation of Teachers. A political action committee, Houstonians for Stronger Schools, waged an ad campaign and spent over $100,000.“I am so proud of the people of Houston who voted against this measure with the understanding that this is just the first step in our fight for justice for the many students and families that depend on us,” Turner said in a statement. “We need a realistic and effective public school education finance model that protects our local dollars and more importantly provides the resources necessary to enhance the opportunities for the students of the Houston Independent School District.”The defeat triggers an unprecedented situation.Technically, state law still requires HISD to share some of its money – just another way. It allows the state’s Education Commissioner to detach valuable commercial property from HISD’s tax base and let another, property-poor district tax it instead. No other school district in the state has rejected this kind of school finance measure before.Opponents, like Turner, argued that the payment to the state would take money away from needy children in Houston and a “no” vote could force the Texas Legislature to reform the state’s complicated school finance system.“Today is a win for our schools, students and the community, but the fight is not over,” said HISD Trustee Jolanda Jones in a statement. “We must now lobby the Texas Legislature to ensure that HISD has the appropriate level of funding to create opportunities for all of our students.”It’s not clear, however, if state lawmakers will take up school finance reform. Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, a Houston-area Republican who also leads the state senate, has mentioned lawmakers need a special session to address school finance, because there’s not enough time in the 140-day regular session. Gov. Greg Abbott, also a Republican, publicly rejected that idea, saying a special session on education isn’t needed.The HISD board of trustees put the proposition on the ballot because the state’s largest school district now qualifies as a property-wealthy district, even if the majority of its students come from low-income households. It has to share some of its property tax revenue under the state’s Robin Hood plan, also known as recapture. It’s meant to equalize wealth among rich and poor school districts, who largely depend on property-tax revenue to pay for schools.last_img read more