Newly-crowned Indonesia Open champion Kidambi Srikanth and title-holder Saina Nehwal will lead the Indian challenge at the Australia Super Series starting in Sydney tomorrow. Srikanth, who is in sizzling form, will start starts his campaign against a qualifier on Wednesday.
H S Prannoy will face Kazumasa Sakai of Japan in the qualifiers tomorrow. Among others, Syed Modi Grand Prix Gold winner Sameer Verma and Ajay Jayaram will also eye the title. All eyes will also be on B Sai Praneeth, who had clinched his maiden Super Series title at the Singapore Open in April. The 24-year-old, who bowed out in the opening round at Indonesia, will face Indonesian Tommy Sugiarto in first round.
For London bronze-medallist Saina and Rio silver-winner P V Sindhu, a tough challenge awaits the duo as they lock horns with the finalists of Indonesia Open — Runners-up Korean Sung Ji Hyun and Winner Sayaka Sato in their opening round.
In men’s doubles, Manu Attri and B Sumeeth Reddy and in women’s doubles, Ashwini Ponnappa and N Sikki Reddy will vow for the title.
NUGGETS’ BEASLEY, NETS’ NICHOLSON, KINGS’ TEMPLE HEADLINE ASIA PACIFIC TEAM CAMP IN HANGZHOU, CHINA
– Fourth Asia Pacific Team Camp Presented by Nike Will Bring Together Top High School Age Boys and Girls from Australia, China, India, Korea and New Zealand –
– 12 Boys from NBA Academy India to be a Part of the Elite Camp –
BEIJING, June 15, 2017 – The National Basketball Association (NBA) today announced the 73 boys and girls from Australia, China, India, Korea and New Zealand who will travel to Hangzhou, China for the fourth Asia Pacific Team Camp Presented by Nike. The camp for elite young basketball talent in the region will be held June 18-21 at Zhejiang Provincial Sports Vocational Technical Institute.
Current NBA players Malik Beasley (Denver Nuggets), Andrew Nicholson (Brooklyn Nets) and Garrett Temple (Sacramento Kings) will join former WNBA player Zheng Haixia (the first Chinese WNBA player); NBA assistant coaches Ryan Bowen (Denver Nuggets), Charles Klask (Detroit Pistons), Bob Thornton (Sacramento Kings); and FIBA coach Ronald Cass to coach the 17 and 18-year old campers, who were selected by their respective basketball federations.
“We are grateful for the continued support of the Chinese Basketball Association (CBA), Zhejiang Provincial Sports Vocational Technical Institute and Nike to provide these elite young players with the opportunity to learn from some of the world’s best players and coaches,” said NBA China CEO David Shoemaker. “We are once again looking forward to a great camp that will help these young players and reach their full potential and positively impact the local community.”
“The Asia Pacific Team Camp presented by Nike will provide the top young talent from Australia, China, India, Korea and New Zealand with the training and competition to take their game to the next level,” said Nike Asia Pacific Category Sports Marketing Director Goro Nakajima. “Furthermore, the players will learn leadership, character development and life skills that will serve them well for future success.”
“We are very excited to partner with the NBA and Nike to provide this incredible opportunity for the top young talents to learn on and off the court from some of the best coaches, including China basketball legend Zheng Haixia,” said Zhejiang Provincial Sports Vocational Technical Institute President Zhang Yadong. “We appreciate the NBA’s efforts to bring the camp to Hangzhou and to inspire our players in Zhejiang.”
Players and coaches will lead the campers through a variety of activities on and off the court, including movement efficiency, positional skill development, shooting and skills competitions, 5-on-5 games, and daily life skills seminars focusing on health, leadership and communication. One boy and one girl will be named Asia Pacific Team Camp MVPs at the conclusion of the camp.
The camp will also include a variety of NBA Cares community outreach efforts with youth in Hangzhou in partnership with local community organizations. These programs will highlight the power of sport to promote cultural understanding while teaching the importance of a healthy, active lifestyle and the values of the game, including teamwork, integrity and respect.
Nike, the Presenting Partner of the Asia Pacific Team Camp since 2011, will outfit the campers and coaches with Nike apparel and footwear.
2017 marks the fourth edition of the Asia Pacific Team Camp presented by Nike. The camp has previously been held in Melbourne, Australia (2011) and Nanjing, China (2013 and 2015).
The following is a complete list of players participating in the fourth
President Donald Trump’s administration appears ready to harden its approach toward Pakistan to crack down on Pakistan-based militants launching attacks in neighbouring Afghanistan, US officials tell Reuters.
Potential Trump administration responses being discussed include expanding US drone strikes, redirecting or withholding some aid to Pakistan and perhaps eventually downgrading Pakistan’s status as a major non-NATO ally, the officials said, speaking on condition of anonymity.
Some US officials, however, are skeptical of the prospects for success, arguing that years of previous US efforts to curb Pakistan’s support for militant groups have failed, and that already strengthening US ties to India, Pakistan’s arch-enemy, undermine chances of a breakthrough with Islamabad.
US officials say they seek greater cooperation with Pakistan, not a rupture in ties, once the administration finishes a regional review of the strategy guiding the 16-year-old war in Afghanistan.
Precise actions have yet to be decided.
Pakistan as per their media reports has received more than $33 billion in US assistance since 2002, including more than $14 billion in so-called Coalition Support Funds (CSF), a US Defense Department programme to reimburse allies that have incurred costs in supporting counter-insurgency operations.
It is an important form of foreign currency for the nuclear-armed country and one that is getting particularly close scrutiny during the Trump administration review.
Last year, the Pentagon decided not to pay Pakistan $300 million in CSF funding after then-US Secretary of Defense Ash Carter declined to sign authorisation that Pakistan was taking adequate action against the Haqqani network.
US officials said the Trump administration was discussing withholding at least some assistance to Pakistan.
Curtis’ report also singled out the aid as a target.
But US aid cuts could cede even more influence to China, which already has committed nearly $60 billion in investments in Pakistan.
Another option under review is broadening a drone campaign to penetrate deeper into Pakistan to target Haqqani fighters and other militants blamed for attacks in Afghanistan, US officials and a Pakistan expert said.
“Now the Americans (will be) saying, you aren’t taking out our enemies, so therefore we are taking them out ourselves,” the Pakistan expert, who declined to be identified, said.
Pakistan’s Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Bajwa last week criticised “unilateral actions” such as drone strikes as “counterproductive and against (the) spirit of ongoing cooperation and intelligence sharing being diligently undertaken by Pakistan”.
Regarding Pakistan as an ally of US the experts has their opinions :
Nuclear-armed Pakistan won the status as a major non-NATO ally in 2004 from the George Bush administration, in what was at the time seen in part as recognition of its importance in the US battle against al Qaeda and Taliban insurgents.
The status is mainly symbolic, allowing limited benefits such as giving Pakistan faster access to surplus US military hardware.
Some US officials and experts on the region scoff at the title.
“Pakistan is not an ally. It’s not North Korea or Iran. But it’s not an ally,” said Bruce Riedel, a Pakistan expert at the Brookings Institution.
But yanking the title would be seen by Pakistan as a major blow.
“The Pakistanis would take that very seriously because it would be a slap at their honour,” said a former US official, speaking on condition of anonymity.
Lisa Curtis, senior director for South and Central Asia at the National Security Council, co-authored a report with Husain Haqqani, Pakistan’s former ambassador to Washington, in which they recommended the Trump administration warn Pakistan the status could be revoked in six months.
“Thinking of Pakistan as an ally will continue to create problems for the next administration as it did for the last one,” said the February report.
It was unclear how seriously the Trump administration was considering the proposal.
The growing danger to Afghanistan from suspected Pakistan-based militants was underscored by a devastating May 31 truck bomb that killed more than 80 people and wounded 460 in Afghanistan’s capital, Kabul.
Afghanistan’s main intelligence agency said the attack – one of the deadliest in memory in Kabul – had been carried out by the Haqqani network with assistance from Pakistan, a charge Islamabad denies.
Washington believes the strikes appeared to be the work of the Haqqani network, US officials told Reuters.
US frustration over the Haqqani’s presence in Pakistan has been building for years. The United States designated the Haqqani network as a terrorist organisation in 2012. US Navy Admiral Mike Mullen, then the top US military officer, told Congress in 2011 that the Haqqani network was a “veritable arm” of the ISI.
The potential US pivot to a more assertive approach would be sharply different than the approach taken at the start of the Obama administration, when US officials sought to court Pakistani leaders, including then army chief General Ashfaq Kayani.
Team India cricket team coach Anil Kumble has reportedly stepped down after losing to arch rivals Pakistan in Champions Trophy 2017 final by 180 runs margin.
Kumble is also a part of ICC’s cricket committee, has reportedly sent his resignation to BCCI CEO.
Virat Kohli named in ICC Team of Champions Trophy 2017
Three Indians, including skipper Virat Kohli, were today named in the ICC Team of the Champions Trophy 2017. Pakistan’s Sarfraz Ahmed named its captain. The side includes seven players from the two finalists – India and Pakistan.
All in all, it includes players from five of the eight participating sides. The side includes four Pakistanis, three Indians, three Englishmen and one Bangladeshi, with Kane Williamson of New Zealand as 12th man.
West Indies annouces 13-member squad
West Indies have named an unchanged 13-member squad, which played against Afghanistan recently, for the first two ODIs of the upcoming five-match series against India.
The hosts will be without their premier fast bowler Shannon Gabriel as he is still rehabilitating from an injury. The team will be led by paceman Jason Holder.
It is an important series for the ninth-ranked West Indies as only top eight teams in the ICC rankings will get direct entry into the 2019 World Cup.
If they do not perform well and get points, they will have to go through the qualifiers to make it to the World Cup.
India are the world number three side in ODIs and they come into this series after a runner-up finish at the Champions Trophy.
The first ODI will be played on Friday in Trinidad and Tobago. The 5-match ODI series will be followed by a Twenty-20 match.
Scrap the Minority Commission or else form a Majority Commission: Dr. Surendra Jain
Minority commission spreading Separatism
New Delhi June 20, 2017. The Chairman of the National Commission for Minorities, Syed Ghayorul Hasan Rizvi by implementing the agenda of the separatists, is strengthening the feelings of separatism in the Muslim community, says Vishwa Hindu Parishad(VHP). While informing about the decision to start a helpline number for Muslims, he said that Muslims could give a call on this number in case any atrocity is being committed against them. Reacting to this statement, the international joint General secretary of VHP Dr. Surendra Jain today said that this makes one feel that the atrocities against the Muslim community has reached such proportions that the extreme step of opening a helpline for the Muslims had to be taken up.
Dr. Jain said that Pakistan and the separatists have been using this exact analogy to justify their anti-India activities. Now they got one more man to advocate their cause. The events unfolding in the entire world proves the point that the amount of rights that the Muslims in Bharat enjoying cannot be matched by even the Muslims of the Islamic states. Despite this, the jihadi elements foment enmity by creating dissatisfaction among the Muslims. The Minority Commission too is only fomenting the same feelings of dissatisfaction by its work thereby strengthening minoritism and separatism, he added.
The Hon. Supreme Court in a ruling had expected that the Minority Commission would put an end to this anti-national practice of minoritism. Instead, while opening a helpline number, it has encouraged the feelings of disintegration among the community. He asked that the nation wants to know from the Minority Commission if the Muslim community is the one against whom atrocities have been committed or is it the other way round, is the Muslim community the perpetrator of atrocities? The Minority Commission must issue an elaborate statement on this. He challenged the Minority Commission for an open debate on the issue.
It is important to note that while the Chairman of the Minority Commission was busy announcing the decision to open a helpline, about the same time, Muslim goons were busy molesting and harassing Hindu girls in Muslim-dominated district of Bijnor in Uttar Pradesh. When they were stopped, their gang attacked the Hindus. Such incidents are commonplace in Muslim-dominated areas. When India lost to Pakistan in the finals of the Champions Trophy in cricket, Pakistani flags were waved all over the Kashmir valley, Bengal and other places dominating Muslims, and Hindus were attacked. The Minority Commission by portraying the perpetrators of atrocities as victims is encouraging the Mughal-mindset and tendency of the Muslims. This happens only in Pakistan where the Muslims who kill Hindus are rewarded. Is Minority Commission moving towards turning India into Pakistan? , he asked.
Dr. Jain also asked that as the very genesis of a Minority Commission is an encouragement to separatism, isn’t the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) more than enough to safeguard the rights of all the citizens of the nation? He demanded that the NHRC should be empowered and the Minority Commission should be scrapped. If this is not possible then a National Majority Commission should also be established to protect the rights of the majority, whose rights are being abused. The Minority Commission made unnecessary comments on cow-slaughter but remained silent on beef parties. This has certainly hurts Hindu sentiments.
Ruchi Soya announces first-of-its-kind corporate initiative to make Yoga a part of ‘Working Day’on International Yoga Day
Ruchi ‘Saral Yoga’ Abhiyaan to integrate daily yoga sessions for employees into corporate routine
June 20, 2017, New Delhi / National: On the occasion of International Yoga Day, Ruchi Soya Industries Ltd. will launch a pioneering initiative, the Ruchi ‘Saral Yoga’ Abhiyaan to integrate yoga in the corporate routine through daily yoga sessions for all employees. Ruchi ‘Saral Yoga’ Abhiyaan will be rolled out in over 15 locations covering around 4000 employees across the country. Under this initiative, employees will be trained and encouraged to practice ‘saral’ or simple yoga techniques, thereby playing a positive role in their health, fitness and overall well-being.
The initiative will kick off from the Corporate Office in Mumbai with around 200 employees taking part in a special yoga session, along with Mr. Dinesh Shahra, Founder and Managing Director, Ruchi Soya Industries Limited and Yogacharya Mahavir Sainik, the mentor and guide for this programme.
In a message to employees about the Ruchi ‘Saral Yoga’ Abhiyaanendeavor, Mr. Dinesh Shahra elaborated “The Ministry of AYUSH has been asking corporates to introduce a yoga programme for employees to combat work related stress and resulting ailments. I have been practicing yoga for 25 years and it has helped me immensely. I have always wanted to share this with my extended Ruchi Soya family.Today, we are glad to be the first corporate to undertake the Ruchi ‘Saral Yoga’ Abhiyaan as part of our endeavour to ensure a mentally, spiritually and physically healthy workforce. The ancient science of yoga is practiced worldwide in a variety of settings and helps in maintaining overall health. It is beneficial in reducing fatigue, depression, anxiety and mental tension. This will help the employees perform better and benefit both the individual as well as the organisation. With Ruchi Soya’s products focusing on health and wellness, this effort will help imbibe the essence of our products into our employees’ daily lives.”
Mentor and guide for this yoga initiative, Yogacharya Mahavir Sainik has been teaching Yoga since 1973 after initiation into the practice at the Yoga Institute in Santa Cruz, Mumbai, one of the oldest yoga institutions in the country. The author of two books ‘Yoga Amrut’ and ‘Saral Yog Prayog’, his prime objective has always been to help people channelize the power of yoga for better decision making, reducing stress and promoting a disciplined routine and lifestyle. Yogacharya said, “Yoga in the workplace has mutliple benefits. Besides contributing to the overall health of the employees, practicing yoga together acts as a bond helping employees work better together. It helps employees cope with pressure at work and improves their on-job performance. The yoga sessions will be designed for the workplace and in tune with the age, fitness and health profiles of the employees.”
All the offices where the Ruchi ‘Saral Yoga’ Abhiyaan is being implemented will be equipped with dedicated yoga rooms with yoga mats and other amenities to enable the employees to practice yoga. In-house yoga experts would be identified and trained in various aspects of traditional yoga including basic asanas, pranayama, concentration and meditation techniques. Periodic yoga workshops would also be held to guide employees on specific yoga techniques for conditions like high blood pressure, rheumatism, backache, etc. Going forward, the Ruchi ‘Saral Yoga’ Abhiyaan will be extended to benefit families of the employees.
Chief Minister of Punjab Captain Amarinder Singh on 19th June, 2017 announced total waiver of entire crop loans for small and marginal farmers in Punjab . The loan waiver will be for up to Rs 2 lakh for small and marginal farmers (up to 5 acres) and a flat Rs 2 lakh relief for all the other marginal farmers, irrespective of their loan amount, thus paving the way for eventual total waiver of agricultural debts.
This move would benefit a total of 10.25 lakh farmers of the state’s 18.5 lakh farming families, including 8.75 lakh farmers having land up to 5 acres. The initiative would provide double the relief announced by the states of Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra . The decision is based on the interim report of an expert group, headed by eminent economist Dr. T Haque, which was tasked with suggesting ways and means to help the state’s distressed farming community.
The government stood by its commitment to waive off the crop loans of the farmers, Hon’ble Chief Minister also said that his government had additionally decided to take over the outstanding crop loan from institutional sources of all the families of farmers who committed suicide in the state.
It has also decided to raise the ex-gratia for families of farmers committing suicide to Rs 5 lakh from the existing Rs 3 lakh. For debt relief to farmers for loans raised from non-institutional resources, the government has decided to review the ‘Punjab Settlement of Agriculture Indebtedness Act’ to provide the desired relief to the farmers through mutually acceptable debt reconciliation and settlement, which shall be statutorily binding on both the parties, the lender and the borrower. The government has already constituted a Cabinet Sub-Committee to review this Act.
The Hon’ble Chief Minister also proposed that the Speaker may constitute a 5-member committee of the Vidhan Sabha to visit families of the suicide victims, ascertain the reasons for suicides and suggest further steps to be taken to check the menace. He also mentioned that his government had already decided to repeal Section 67 A of the Punjab Cooperative Societies Act, 1961, which provides for auction (kurki) of the farmers’ land.