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InFocus M330 review: Lost in the crowd

first_imgUS-based InFocus is very ambitious. You’ve got to give it that. The Indian smartphone market, particularly the budget segment could be very taxing, especially for a new-comer. But InFocus seems all focussed at succeeding.Its first phone, launched recently, wasn’t bad at all. The phone called M2 had potential. But the mind-boggling influx of some really good quality affordable handsets in the Indian market lately means it’s a rough ride ahead for the M2. That said the M2 could still get away with it since InFocus has priced it very aggressively. At Rs 4,999 the M2 is a decent buy for the set of specifications it brings to the table.The same cannot be said about the M330, the company’s latest phone in India. InFocus’s second device in the Indian market has been priced higher at Rs 9,999: a segment that is full of some good phones from the likes of Xiaomi, Micromax’s Yu and Lenovo.Unlike the M2, the M3330 fails to excite: one due to its price point, and two due to lack of any compelling feature. We take a closer look…Design and build The InFocus M330 is a fairly decent looking handset at its price point. It’s no design marvel, but it’s certainly better looking than the Xiaomi Redmi Note 4G even though it falls slightly short of the Micromax Yu Yureka in this department.It’s nice to see InFocus trying to maintain its individuality with this one to some extent. While the front would remind you of the Redmi Note to some extent, the back is a different story.advertisementIt’s still a candy bar design that you get, but the back panel is certainly a breath of fresh air in this price bracket. The back panel consists of removable plastic that has a slight matte finish to it — less than the Yu Yureka, but certainly way better than the Redmi Note’s glossy plastic – making it easy to hold and grip handset.The edges curve gently to improve your grip and end in a strip of brushed metal that extends all through the device. The metal finish gives the M330 a bit of premium feel over counterparts in this price range.The square camera on the rear with an LED flash, both enclosed within a black rectangular space, give the M330 some hint of sophistication. The speaker vent is located on the lower end of the back, which is not the best of placements but we can live with that.The back houses a removable battery, two regular SIM card slots and a micro-SD card slot.The front panel houses three backlit capacitive touchscreen buttons on the lower end that offer decent tactile feedback. Meanwhile, the left edge has the volume rocker and the right edge contains the power buttons, both of which seem firmly etched but are easy to press.On the downside, the M330 is huge and chunky. At 153.4mmx78.1mmx9.3mm and 170g, it is way heavier than counterparts in this price bracket. We don’t expect a 5.5-inch handset to be paper thin, but we’ve seen Lenovo achieving a 140g with the A7000. Single handed operability will be a problem for many with this one, especially for those having smaller hands.Display The InFocus M330 features a 5.5-inch HD IPS LCD capacitive touchscreen display with a 1280×720 pixels resolution. These are pretty standard specifications in this price range. All the ‘good’ devices in this price range (Yureka, Redmi Note, Honor 4X, A7000) have the exact specs.Keeping numbers aside, we were pretty impressed with the display output of the M330. The display was bright with really crisp viewing angles, at this price point. Colours looked sharp and neutral on most counts, and icons and animations did their job of popping out pretty well.But again, there’s not much difference from what you can already get in the Yureka or Xiaomi’s offering, although the display seemed better than the one on the Honor 4X. We see the Lenovo A7000 having an upper hand in this one.On the plus side, the display is not much of a fingerprint/smudge magnet unless you have very greasy fingers. Outdoor visibility is therefore pretty nice on this one.Software The InFocus M330 runs Android 4.4.2 KitKat out-of-the-box with the company’s InLife UI on top, the exact OS that runs the company’s ultra-affordable M2.As explained in our review of the M2, the InLife UI follows the same pattern that many Chinese UIs that have mushroomed up lately, use. The skinning is on the heavier side, with majority of apps and icons having a distinct look and functioning. The stock camera app would give you the KitKat feel to some extent, but overall the UI seems like any other Chinese UI.advertisementIt still looks like a work in progress though, and is miles away from being a certain MIUI, but it gets the job done. Folks back at InFocus haven’t touched the UI much, and have simply resized the apps and icons to fit the larger phablet form factor. Again, the InLife UI is not as polished as Xiaomi’s MIUI. It is also devoid of the many customization options we get on the Yureka, courtesy CyanogenMod.The one plus side is that the InLife UI is low on the eye-popping icons and glossy animations, so if you like it plain and simple, then the M330 could work well for you.Performance The InFocus M330 is powered by a 1.7GHz octa-core MediaTek MT6592 CPU with Mali-450 GPU and 2GB RAM (1,968MB available).We have always maintained that the Yureka is the most sought after handset in terms of performance in the under Rs 10,000 price bracket. And the arrival of the M330 doesn’t change much of that.The M330 is certainly an upgrade over the M2 spec wise, but it’s still not much of an upgrade when you look at counterparts in this price range.Still, the processor on-board the M330 is a fairly capable one for its price, unless you’re pushing it. It can handle your everyday basic tasks well, and the 2GB RAM ensures multi-tasking is not much of a problem on this one.The processor upgrade means the M330 is significantly better than the M2 in terms of performance. Unlike in the M2, closing and opening of apps is not much of a problem in the M330. There was minor lag observed when we had too many apps opened (to the tune of 15) but that’s like way too many intended for the purpose of testing. We are sure most users won’t have that many apps opened at the same time and if you do, you now know the outcome.The device can run graphics-intensive games like Asphalt 8: Airborne and Modern Combat 5: Blackout lag-free at lower graphics settings but the lag is a problem when you select higher graphics settings.Basic games like Candy Crush Saga and Temple Run, however, run lag-free on this one.The InFocus M330 comes with 16GB of internal storage of which about 12.6GB is available for use which is pretty standard. The device supports expandable storage of up to 64GB via micro-SD card.The speaker vent on the M330 is located on the back lower end. Output wise, we were pretty pleased with the M330’s speaker. It was pretty loud and clear, although the bass could have been better, but it is still a decent speaker device at it price.There is an Audio Effect feature that lets you play around with your bass and treble settings, although the effect of these is only minute on sound quality and is barely noticeable.advertisementAlso, sound quality may suffer depending upon the kind of surface you place the phone.Phone calls made with the InFocus M330 are of acceptable quality and we did not see any major call drops with our review device. The device supports 3G on both SIMs, however, at this price range we are getting 4G handsets, so the M330 is not doing anything out of the ordinary, to say the least.Camera The cameras on-board the M2 really surprised us, therefore, that was the first thing we started testing when we received the M330 for review. After all, we were sure InFocus wouldn’t screw up, at least in this department. And boy, were we wrong!While InFocus has managed to (up)grade almost every department in the M330, the camera seems to have had a (down)grade. We feel it’s an opportunity lost for InFocus since this could be one parameter that could have helped propel the company to newer heights.We are not saying the M330 is a bad camera phone, it’s just that the M2 was so good at it price on this front that we expected heck of a lot more from the M330.The M330 sports a 13-megapixel rear camera with autofocus and LED flash along with an 8MP front-facing snapper.Images clicked in outdoor ambient lighting conditions have decent amount of detail on most counts; however, we found metering issues with many of these images. Most of the images clicked in such situations were under-exposed so even though there was detail, the images looked paler than they actually were.Although the images were true to their colours on most counts, they did not seem all that bright and punchy.The level of detail in case of indoor well-lit conditions was fairly decent depending upon our accuracy and hand stillness. Surprisingly, we liked the images clicked in such situations better than the output in outdoor environment. There’s a very capable HDR mode on-board.The level of noise increases as the intensity of light decreased, which is fairly common for a camera phone in this price range.Overall,  we feel the phone has a decent camera but it has some metering issues in well-lit conditions. While it’s still not as good as the M2, we still feel that InFocus as a company is the one to look out for in future as far as decent budget camera phones are concerned.The front camera chalks out a decent selfie experience (with little noise even in well lit conditions), with standard properties like photo enhancer and smile auto selfie. Still there’s nothing we haven’t already seen before.Both cameras can shoot full-HD videos at 30fps.Check the following image samples to get an idea of InFocus M330 Camera performance: Sample 1 , Sample 2 , Sample 3 , Sample 4 , Sample 5 , Sample 6 , Sample 7 , Sample 8 , Sample 9 , Sample 10 . Battery The InFocus M330 uses a removable battery with a capacity of 3,100mAh, which is rated to deliver up to 550 minutes of 3G talk time and 30 hours on stand-by.We subjected the device to some real extremes and the result was not very encouraging even though the M330 has a sizeable battery (same as the Redmi Note).In our battery benchmark, we subjected the device to almost an hour of gaming (graphics intensive), three hours of 1080p video playback, web browsing (desktop mode), music on speakers (max volume) and phone calls every now and then (to the tune of an hour) and we got close to five and a half hours with the device.Toning down a bit will ensure you reach 12-13 hours. The power saver mode does help in churning out an hour or so out of the device.There’s another downside to the M330: it heats up very quickly. Mere 15-20 minutes of graphics intensive gaming heated up the device significantly, which is not a good sign.Should you buy it? While the M2 held its head high in the crowded budget smartphone market, sadly the M330 somehow doesn’t fit it.It’s still a very decent smartphone, with a big and bright display; decent cameras and lag-free multi-tasking experience. The problem is competition and in the current scenario, there’s abundance of it. The M330 seems to be a little out of place in such a situation.Companies like Xiaomi, Lenovo, Micromax and Huawei have really stepped up their game in the recent times, and companies like InFocus have to do the same. While the M2 may still get away with its aggressive pricing, unfortunately the M330 gets lost in the crowd.Also Read: Our full review of the InFocus M2last_img read more

Rishabh in, Dhawan, Bhuvneshwar out, in BCCI central contract list

first_imgWicket-keeper batsman Rishabh Pant was rewarded with an entry into the A category. File Photo   –  The Hindu Published on × cricket COMMENT Wicket-keeper batsman Rishabh Pant was rewarded with an entry into the A category. File Photo   –  The Hindu SHARE SHARE EMAIL SHARE BCCI hands retainership to 25 players in four groups Acknowledging Rishabh Pant’s consistent performance, the BCCI has rewarded the young wicketkeeper-batsman with a grade A retainership while demoting senior opener Shikhar Dhawan from the elite A plus category in the latest list of Central Contracts.The Indian cricket Board announced the annual contracts late on Thursday night, handing retainership to 25 cricketers in four groups of A plus (Rs 7 crore), A (Rs 5 crore), B (Rs 3 crore) and C (Rs 1 crore). Last year 26 players were handed contracts.Not only Dhawan but pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar has also been dropped from the highest-paying category and now only three players – skipper Virat Kohli, limited overs deputy Rohit Sharma and premier pacer in all formats speedster Jasprit Bumrah – figure in the elite category.While left arm pacer Khaleel Ahmed and batsman Hanuma Vihari are new entrants in the C group. Mayank Agarwal, Prithvi Shaw and Vijay Shankar, who have made impression in Tests and limited overs respectively, have not been included in the list since they do not meet the criteria of having played either three Tests or eight ODIs.It seems to be curtains for veterans Murali Vijay and Suresh Raina, who have been dropped from the list after being in A and C group in last year’s list. They are no longer in reckoning for national team.The biggest gainer is 21-year-old Pant, who wasn’t a part of the last year’s list but directly made it to the A group with 10 others. Pant is expected to be a first choice in all formats once MS Dhoni retires. He was rewarded for being the first Indian keeper to score Test hundred in England and Australia.The notable loser was Dhawan, who has had dip in form in last six months in ODIs. He was also dropped from the Test squad before the Australia series. Bhuvneshwar also lost out on A plus category as he is no longer an all- format certainty. The same logic was applied to Cheteshwar Pujara as he was retained in A category contract.“Pujara did well in Australia but A plus category is only for those who are excelling in at least two if not three formats. Pujara is only playing one format. Similarly Ishant Sharma plays one format and is in A category,” a BCCI official told PTI on condition of anonymity.Ajinkya Rahane remains in A category while Kuldeep Yadav is also part of second best group. Hardik Pandya and KL Rahul, the two players embroiled in recent chat show controversy, remain in B group along with Umesh Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal.Wriddhiman Saha, who missed out on entire last season due to a shoulder surgery, has been demoted from B to C category. Jayant Yadav, Karun Nair, Parthiv Patel and Axar Patel are also out of central contracts as they have fallen off the radar.List of contracted playersA PLUS: Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah A: MS Dhoni, Cheteshwar Pujara, Rishabh Pant, R Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Ishant Sharma, Mohammed Shami, Kuldeep Yadav, Shikhar Dhawan, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Ajinkya Rahane B: KL Rahul, Hardik Pandya, Umesh Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal.C: Kedar Jadhav, Dinesh Karthik, Ambati Rayudu, Manish Pandey, Hanuma Vihari, Khaleel Ahmed, Wriddhiman Saha. BCCI March 08, 2019 COMMENTSlast_img read more

Bhaker, all of 16, claims gold; silver for Heena

first_img(Eds: Updating with more details) Brisbane, Apr 8 (PTI) Indias teen shooting sensation Manu Bhaker grabbed the womens 10m air pistol gold medal by shattering the games record while Heena Sidhu staged a stirring comeback to bag silver at the 21st Commonwealth Games here today. The 16-year-old Bhakers calm demeanour belied her age as she shot a record 240.9 to finish well ahead of her senior teammate Sidhu, who aggregated 234 at the Belmont Shooting Centre. A dominant Bhaker led throughout the two stages in her maiden Commonwealth Games outing, living up to the billing. The bronze medal went to Australias Elena Galiabovitch who ended with 214.9. Bhaker was the overwhelming favourite to win the event, having bagged multiple gold medals at the 2018 ISSF World Cup in Guadalajara, Mexico and the subsequent Junior World Cup in Sydney. The event in Mexico was also a maiden appearance for the young girl from the Jhajjar district in Haryana. Sidhu too did well to win silver after she was on the verge of elimination at one stage. She had also won a silver at the Delhi Games in 2010. Such was Indias dominance in the air pistol event that Bhaker and Sidhu were the only two shooters left in fray for the top honours. On expected lines, Bhaker produced some excellent shooting and notched up 10 and above scores on 14 occasions in the eight-women finals, ending with a 10.4 to finish way ahead of pack. Entering the Games after being embroiled in a controversy over the Sports Ministrys initial decision to refuse accreditation to her husband-cum-coach Ronak Pandit, Sidhu was off to a poor start and was staring at elimination at one stage, only to pull off a fine fightback and prove her detractors wrong.advertisement After a series of scores of 9s, Sidhu found her bearings and shot 10-plus scores nine times to not just widen the gap but finish well ahead of the eventual bronze medallist. There was no doubt about Bhaker — she was miles ahead and certain to emerge champion when Sidhu and Galiabovitch were tied with 195 points with four more shots left in the finals. Bhaker had tallied 201.7 points by then. After struggling to get going, Sidhu was back in medal contention with 175.3 points, courtesy a few 10-plus scores, even as Bhaker led with 180.2 points with six shots left. Bhaker led with 141.5 points in Stage 2 Elimination, while Sidhu was placed sixth with 134.9 points. Bhaker set the tempo when she recorded 101.5 at the end of first stage, leaving the others to play catch up for the rest of the finals. Her concentration was unwavering and she held her nerve all through to continue her golden run. Shooting happened to her by chance after a brush with contact sports and for someone who took to the sport just a little over two years ago, winning with such consistency would easily qualify as some achievement. PTI AH AHlast_img read more

Argentine pope consoles Brazil after soccer World Cup exit

first_img\R Vatican City, Jul 8 (AP) Pope Francis is trying to cheer up Brazilian soccer fans after the team’s quarterfinal exit from the World Cup.The pope, an Argentine and an avid soccer fan, noted a preponderance of Brazilian flags on display in St. Peter’s Square during his traditional Sunday blessing.He told the crowd: “I see a lot of Brazilian flags: Have courage! There’ll be a next time.” The five-time world champions left the World Cup empty handed after losing to Belgium in the quarterfinals, leaving only European teams contending for the title in Russia.Francis often meets with visiting national soccer teams, has a collection of gifted jerseys and frequently promotes the value of sports particularly for young people. Argentina was eliminated from World Cup contention in the first of the knockout rounds. (AP) APA APAAPAlast_img read more

KXIP star KL Rahul hits maiden Indian Premier League hundred

first_img Scorecard Match Ended Mumbai Super Over view more view less Mumbai MUM 197/4 Punjab PNJ 198/7 (20.0) Toss: MUM elected to field – advertisement vs Match Ended (20.0) Mumbai beat Punjab by 3 wickets center_img Punjab KXIP star KL Rahul hits maiden Indian Premier League hundredIPL 2019: KL Rahul hit his 3rd successive fifty-plus score and his maiden IPL hundred as Kings XI Punjab posted 197 for 4 off 20 overs vs Mumbai Indians at the Wankhede Stadium on Wednesday. Indian Premier League, 2019 Time: (GMT) | 20:00 (Local Time) (20.0) Series Status: Player Of The Match: Kieron Pollard Indian Premier League, 2019 197/4 Referee: Manu Nayyar (IND) Umpires: Yeshwant Barde (IND), S Ravi (IND) and CK Nandan (IND) No data available! commentary graphs (20.0) Indian Premier League, 2019, Match 24 198/7 Rajarshi Gupta MumbaiApril 10, 2019UPDATED: April 11, 2019 00:27 IST IPL 2019: KXIP star KL Rahul hits maiden Indian Premier League hundred. ( Courtesy by BCCI)HIGHLIGHTSKL Rahul hit his maiden IPL hundred off 63 ball during the KXIP-MI match at the Wankhede on WednesdayKL Rahul has scored 1 hundred and 3  fifties in the 2019 Indian Premier League for KXIPKL Rahul and Chris Gayle (63) were involved in a 116-run stand for the 1st wicket vs Mumbai IndiansKL Rahul hit his 3rd successive fifty-plus score and his maiden IPL hundred as Kings XI Punjab dominated Mumbai Indians in match 24 of the 2019 Indian Premier League at the Wankhede Stadium on Wednesday. KL Rahul now has 1 hundred and 3 fifties in 7 matches for KXIP this season.KL Rahul was watchful for most part of the innings but he exploded in the penultimate over of the innings when he blasted Hardik Pandya for 3 sixes and a 4 to move into the 90s.He then Jasprit Bumrah for a six to move to 98 and on the fourth ball of the final over, ran two to bring up his first ever IPL hundred off 63 balls.Take a bow, @klrahul11 What an innings by the @lionsdenkxip opener as he brings up his maiden #VIVOIPL #KXIP 197/4 after 20 overs IndianPremierLeague (@IPL) April 10, 2019Last year, KL Rahul made 95 not out which was his career-best score in the IPL before tonight.KL Rahul had a poor start to the IPL this year. He scored 4 against Rajasthan Royals and got out for 1 against Kolkata Knight Riders.In an interview with India Today, Rahul had said he wanted to be more disciplined with the World Cup in mind. He then hit an unbeaten 71 against Mumbai Indians, was dismissed for 15 against Delhi Capitals before the straight fifty-plus scores.Rahul’s streak of fifties started against Chennai Super Kings when he made 55. Against Sunrisers Hyderabad, KL Rahul saw his team through to victory with an ubeaten 71 before hitting another fifty against Mumbai Indians at the Wankhede.advertisementKL Rahul holds the record for the joint most fifties in Test cricket along with Chris Rogers, Kumar Sangakkara, Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Andy Flower and Everton Weeks.From March 2017 to August 2017, KL Rahul made 7 successive fifties against Australia and Sri Lanka. His sequence of scores read: 90, 51, 57, 60, 51 not out, 57 and 85.On Wednesday, KL Rahul was the more subdued in a 116-run stand for the first wicket with Chris Gayle who blasted a 36-ball 63. Once Gayle was dismissed, the scoring rate fell and KXIP lost David Miller and Karun Nair in quick succession.KL Rahul finished with 100 not out off 64 balls and said the plan for him to bat as deep as possible.”Lost for breath a little bit. Honestly thought the way Chris and I started, we would get over 200 but lost our way in the middle. But it was not easy and I am happy with the way we finished. For the first 6 overs, the plan was simple: both of us look to play cricketing shots,” Rahul told the broadcasters after KXIP’s innings.”After the first six overs, whoever looks good, looks to take off. If Chris plays for 12 overs, it’s deadly for the opposition After Chris got out, we lost some more quick wickets,” he said.Asked to recall his six-hitting spree against Hardik Pandya in the 19th over, Rahul said he was focussed on the ball and not the bowler: “I am focussing on the ball, now the bowler. Does not matter who runs in, I am looking to hit the ball for a six,” Rahul said.The other bright spark for KXIP was Chris Gayle’s fiery form Wednesday night. Chris Gayle had hit 79 against Rajasthan Royals in KXIP’s season opener on March 25.Between that 79 vs the Royals and the hundred vs KXIP, Chris Gayle made 20, 40, 5 and 16. On Wednesday, Gayle bounced back to form after a sedate start. With KL Rahul, Chris Gayle brought up a century opening stand after Mumbai Indians skipper Kieron Pollard won the toss and decided to bowl.Chris Gayle was in fine form for KXIP in the 2018 IPL. He had scored a hundred against Sunrisers Hyderabad besides 3 fifties. In 11 matches last year, Gayle had scored 368 runs.During the 2019 IPL, Chris Gayle became the fastest to 4000 IPL runs. He is also the only man to hit 300 sixes in the Indian Premier League.Also Read | IPL 2019: Enjoying my batting, says KL Rahul after consistent performances for Kings XIAlso Read | IPL 2019: KL Rahul shines as Kings XI pip Sunrisers and vault into top 4For sports news, updates, live scores and cricket fixtures, log on to Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for Sports news, scores and updates.Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Posted bykarishma Tags :Follow IPL 2019Follow KL RahulFollow Kings XI PunjabFollow Mumbai IndiansFollow maiden IPL centurylast_img read more

Agony for Australia as Norway Germany reach WC quarters

first_imgParis: Germany cruised through to the quarter-finals of the women’s World Cup on Saturday while Sam Kerr was one of two Australian players to miss from the spot as Norway dumped out the Matildas on penalties. Norway won 4-1 in a shoot-out following a 1-1 draw in Nice in the last 16 late on Saturday, and the 1995 winners go through to a last-eight tie against England or Cameroon. Those sides clash in the first of two matches on Sunday, just before hosts France take on the Brazil of Marta, the World Cup’s all-time leading scorer. Also Read – Djokovic heaps praise on ‘very complete’ MedvedevFrance and England are among the tournament favourites and will both hope to avoid the fate of Australia, who had been eager to go far but could not get the better of a Norway side who have impressed despite being without their biggest star, Ballon d’Or winner Ada Hegerberg. Norway had taken the lead through Isabell Herlovsen in the first half, but Ante Milicic’s team forced extra time when Elise Kellond-Knight scored direct from a corner seven minutes from the end. Also Read – Mary Kom enters quarterfinals, Saweety Boora bows out of World C’shipsThey survived when both Caroline Graham Hansen and Vilde Boe Risa hit the woodwork for the Norwegians, and the Matildas also had defender Alanna Kennedy sent off in the extra half-hour. However, Kerr blazed over from Australia’s first penalty in the shoot-out before Emily Gielnik’s attempt was saved while Norway converted all of their efforts from 12 yards, with Ingrid Engen scoring the decisive one. “I don’t know if there are any words to describe how I’m feeling but, more importantly, how the girls are feeling,” said dejected Australia coach Milicic. Earlier, Germany captain Alexandra Popp hailed a “perfect day” for her and her team after the 2003 and 2007 World Cup winners eased to a 3-0 victory over Nigeria in Grenoble. Popp, 28, marked her 100th cap by heading in a 20th-minute opener for Martina Voss-Tecklenburg’s team. Moments later, Lina Magull was caught on the knee inside the box by Nigerian left-back Evelyn Nwabuoku, and a penalty was given after a VAR review. Sara Daebritz made no mistake from 12 yards, before Lea Schueller sealed the victory late on. “It was a perfect day today. We put a lot of pressure on the Nigerians and the early goal gave us stability,” Popp told broadcaster ZDF. Germany will face either Sweden or Canada, who play on Monday, in the quarter-finals next weekend. Meanwhile, England coach Phil Neville warned of the threat posed by Cameroon as the teams prepare to clash in Valenciennes in Sunday’s first last-16 tie at 1530 GMT. After emerging from their group with three wins out of three, England are heavy favourites to beat a Cameroon side ranked 46th in the world. The Indomitable Lionesses made it through to the knockout phase with just three points by virtue of a 95th-minute goal to beat New Zealand and go into the tie with the pressure off. “They’ve got dangerous players in the attacking third and they are a team that will go for the victory and that is not something we have really experienced so far at this World Cup,” said Neville, describing Cameroon as a team who “will take risks and gamble.”last_img read more

SP bond rating agency hands BC highest mark confirming healthy economy

first_imgVICTORIA – British Columbia’s finance minister is pointing to what she says is another confirmation of the province’s healthy economy.Bond rating agency Standard and Poor’s has confirmed B.C.’s triple-A long-term credit rating.James says in a release that the rating reflects the province’s superior financial management practices, strong economy and robust liquidity.B.C. has been rated triple-A with Standard and Poor’s since May 2007, when the province was upgraded from a double-A plus rating.The release from the Finance Ministry says B.C. is the only province rated triple-A with all three international credit rating agencies, which include Standard and Poor’s, Moody’s and Fitch.James says the latest rating report verifies that B.C.’s path forward is a fiscally prudent one.“Our government will continue to take action to make life more affordable, improve the services that British Columbians count on, and ensure strong economic growth that benefits the entire province,” James says in the release.The Standard and Poor’s report says one of B.C.’s greatest credit strengths is its diversified and healthy economy.“Large resource endowments, high-ranking livability and close proximity to Asian markets underpin its affluent tax base,” it says.The report says that when the total of all B.C.’s goods and services is divided by its population, the estimate per person is more than US$42,800, based on a three-year average.The findings also forecast continued strong performance, in part because the bond rating agency says the province has protected itself from the uncertainties of United States fiscal and trade policies by expanding trade with other partners, particularly in Asia.“We believe that the province’s near-term economic prospects are healthier than those of most other Canadian provinces because of B.C.’s relatively diversified economic base, which provides revenue diversification and resiliency,” the report says.last_img read more

NIRF ranks: CU, JU among top ten varsities in India

first_imgKolkata: The Calcutta University (CU) and Jadavpur University (JU) have made it to the list of the top ten universities across the country in the National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) ranking that was launched by the Ministry of Human Resource Development on Monday.CU has bagged the fifth spot while JU featured in the sixth spot. In the overall ranking of institutions across the country CU has bagged the 12th spot while JU has come 13th. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari PujaCU Vice-Chancellor Sonali Chakravarti Banerjee is elated with the performance of the university that had jumped to the fifth spot from 14 last year. “It is a result of our teamwork and our constant effort in upgradation of our academics and research. “We have already started developing the infrastructure of having an integrated system linking all our campus,” Banerjee said. A senior university official said that they have been able to compile several research works undertaken in various campuses of the varsity under a single umbrella which contributed to the jump in ranking of the university. ” Our aim is to figure at the top spot and for this we are taking new decisions to raise the academic and research standard of the varsity,” Banerjee added. Also Read – Bengal civic volunteer dies in road mishap on national highwayJU had ranked fifth among the universities in 2017 and slipped to sixth in 2018. It remained in the sixth spot this year too. Jadavpur University Vice-Chancellor Suranjan Das said it is great news for Bengal with two of its universities figuring in top 10. “I feel very happy because I was also associated with CU for many years,” Das said. Academicians, however, feel that several instances of student movements in JU in has contributed to its remaining in the same spot. In fact, in the span of one month in February-March students’ movement had led to the gherao of senior officials of the university at least four times. “NIRF rankings give an academic recognition to a university and help the institution to have an edge in getting foreign funds,” a senior JU professor said. Two colleges in Bengal have also figured in the top ten colleges across the country. Ramkrishna Mission Vivekananda Centenary College in Rahara, North 24 Parganas has bagged the eighth spot while St. Xavier’s College in Kolkata has ranked 10th. IIT Kharagpur has bagged the 5th position in the overall ranking of institutions and has come 4th in the list of engineering institutes. Indian Institute of Management in Kolkata has bagged the third position in the category of management institutes.last_img read more

At least 7 killed in China’s latest industrial accident

BEIJING — Authorities say at least seven people were killed and five injured when a container containing scrap metal exploded in the latest in a series of industrial accidents in eastern China.Sunday morning’s blast in the city of Kunshan in Jiangsu province caused a fire that spread to a nearby workshop. The Kunshan city government said on its microblog that the cause of the explosion is under investigation.In March, 78 people were killed in a blast at a chemical plan in the Jiangsu province city of Yancheng that had numerous safety violations. In November, at least 22 people were killed and scores of vehicles destroyed in an explosion outside a chemical plant in the northeastern city of Zhangjiakou, which will host competitions in the 2022 Winter Olympics.The Associated Press

SecretaryGeneral calls for worlds assistance to bring stability to Somalia

The country has been wracked by deadly clashes in recent weeks, and according to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), 340,000 people – roughly one-third of the city’s population – have fled the violence in the capital Mogadishu since the start of February, while at least 1,000 have sustained injuries.“The international community should fully cooperate and give some concerted efforts to restore peace and security in that country,” Mr. Ban told reporters in New York.Since the Transitional Federal Government (TFG), backed by Ethiopian forces, dislodged the Union of Islamic Courts (UIC) from the capital and much of the country last December, there has been an upsurge in violence. Clan-based militias have also been involved in the clashes.“I am also very much troubled by the fact that the Transitional Federal Government is [not] able to sustain the momentum thus created politically,” Mr. Ban noted.He also urged for plans to convene a National Reconciliation Congress, which have been postponed until next month, to continue. Recognizing that such a Congress will have logistical and financial difficulties, he appealed to the international community for assistance.“We have seen in the last 10 days or so some of the worst fighting in Mogadishu that the city has seen in the last 15 or 16 years,” John Holmes, Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, said at a press briefing in Geneva today.He stressed that “the rules of international humanitarian law are being flouted by all sides in Mogadishu,” which has witnessed the largest displacement of people in the world this year. He added that civilians have been caught in the crossfire, there is indiscriminate shelling and missiles have been seen hitting hospitals.Mr. Holmes argued that the dire humanitarian situation is not entirely a question of adequate resources, but rather of access and security. Aid workers endeavouring to assist those in need have been thwarted by the unstable security situation as well as by the TFG.“Getting aid to [those who have fled Mogadishu] is proving very difficult” due to both the insecurity and the blockage of roads by the military. He also mentioned a distribution by the UN World Food Programme (WFP) “which was halted because the Government said they had not inspected the food themselves, which seems inappropriate in an emergency situation.”Although the TFG agreed during a meeting with the UN’s Somalia Country Team this week to allow humanitarian workers access to Mogadishu’s airports, he said that OCHA is “waiting to see whether that agreement in principle is translated into practice.”Another major public health concern is the outbreak of acute watery diarrhoea, which OCHA reports has affected 17,000 people and killed 600 in south-central Somalia, which includes Mogadishu and surrounding areas.“A particular concern is that the rainy season is approaching, which will obviously exacerbate these health problems very considerably,” Mr. Holmes said.Meanwhile, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and its partners on the ground have distributed urgently needed supplies to over 35,000 people who have fled the capital and are currently residing in the small town of Afgooye, 30 kilometres west of Mogadishu.Despite the influx of aid, the town, sheltering more than 41,000 displaced, is overwhelmed by the constant stream of desperate people who are seeking help and safety.“People living in Afgooye are scared because the fighting might spread along the road from Mogadishu,” a UNHCR staff member said of the increasingly chaotic situation in the town. “They also fear the increasing theft and burglary and the gangs that roam the town, which used to be safe.”Many residents have already taken in family members and friends who have escaped the capital, and the town has run out of shelter space. Many families are living under plastic sheeting supplied by UNHCR to protect them from the weather, and prices have surged in local shops due to the increased demand. Local landowners are even charging rent to people seeking sanctuary under their trees.“People in Afgooye are extremely poor, most of them live on less than a dollar a day, and now they can no longer afford the prices which rise day after day,” the UNHCR staffer said. “Some shopowners and landowners make a lot of money by demanding unaffordable prices.”Explosions and military activity on the road linking the town to Mogadishu have forced it to close, and the closure of a bridge on the town’s end has blocked trucks carrying UNHCR supplies.Despite the obstacles, the agency plans to distribute a second round of relief items – including plastic sheeting, mattresses and kitchen utensils, all of which have been airlifted from Dubai – this week for an additional 13,500 people. 26 April 2007United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today voiced his grave concern about the intensified violence in Somalia, and called on the world to step up its assistance to the war-torn East African nation. read more

Halal logo withdrawn following tensions

The Venaerable Bellanwila Wimala Rathana thero, addressing the joint media briefing today, said that as monks they were glad the issue was brought to light.He said that he was also glad that in the end the issue was resolved amicably in a manner which did not affect the co-existence of the communities.He said that the Mahanayaka theros in Kandy will be informed of the decision taken on the Halal certification. (Colombo Gazette) Meanwhile the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce said it did not expect the withdrawing of the logo for products sold locally to have an impact on businesses.Susantha Ratnayake, Chairman of the Chamber said that the Halal logo will be imprinted on products sent to some countries like in the Middle East and the Maldives where it is compulsory for the logo to be on food products.The issue over the Halal certification arose after the Bodu Bala Sena campaigned against it and demanded its complete withdrawal. ACJU President Rizvi Mufthi said that the Halal certification was issued as a service to the Muslims and was not compulsory. He said that the money obtained to issue the certificate was used to cover the overhead costs.“But this led to a situation which affected the co-existence of the communities so we decided to do away with the logo,” he said. The All Ceylon Jamiyyathul Ulama (ACJU) says it has decided to withdraw the Halal logo from local food products as a result of the tensions which arose in the country recently.Addressing a joint media briefing today between the ACJU, Ceylon Chamber of Commerce and a group of senior Buddhist monks, the ACJU said that the Halal logo will not be issued in future for products sold locally. Report by Easwaran Rutnam The monks questioned the need for the ACJU to be paid for the Halal certification. However the logo will be made available as an option for products to be exported  to some countries, the ACJU said. read more

Syria UN chief stresses urgency of achieving political solution to end ongoing

“We all need to inject urgency towards reaching a political solution while there is still time to prevent Syria’s complete destruction,” said a statement issued by Mr. Ban’s spokesperson.“The end goal is clear to all – there must be an end to violence, a clean break with the past and a transition to a new Syria in which the rights of all communities are protected and the legitimate aspirations of all Syrians for freedom, dignity and justice, are met,” it added.“The sooner a military solution is abandoned the better. There is no need for more people to die, flee or grieve in Syria.”Well over 70,000 people have been killed since the uprising against President Bashar al-Assad began in March 2011. The country is facing a humanitarian crisis, with over three million people displaced from their homes, including one million seeking safety in neighbouring countries. “Two years ago, Syrians stood up in peaceful popular protests to appeal for their universal rights and freedoms,” noted the statement. “This appeal was answered with brutal force by the Syrian authorities. Today, the world is watching the consequences with horror.” Mr. Ban called on the region and the international community, in particular the Security Council, to find unity and lend its full support to the efforts of the Joint Special Representative of the United Nations and the League of Arab States, Lakhdar Brahimi, to help the Syrian people reach a political solution to the conflict. read more

UN General Assembly spotlights need to boost regional digital connectivity

Vuk Jeremic said that information and communication technologies (ICT) can contribute to the eight anti-poverty targets known as the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and a sustainable development agenda to follow after 2015.As such, he urged Governments to continue working in public-private partnership to expand broadband infrastructure in the developing world, and stimulate efforts to provide local content and develop regionally-appropriate software applications.“One-fifth of all households in developing countries are now hooked up to the internet – up from 13 per cent just three years ago,” Mr. Jeremic told a panel entitled ‘Improving connectivity in Eurasia,’ organized by Azerbaijan.“This is a significant achievement, but much more needs to be done in order to overcome the digital divide with the developed world, where 78 per cent of homes are linked to the internet – many through affordable and reliable broadband networks,” the GA President noted.Ahead of the panel discussion, the Assembly held a plenary meeting where it adopted a resolution by which the world body invites UN Member States to explore ways to support the proposal by Azerbaijan to establish the Eurasian Connectivity Alliance with the International Telecommunication Union (ITU).The aim will be to promote the development of telecommunication transit routes in the region and improving the coordination between the Governments, private sector, civil society and international development institutions.In his remarks to the panel discussion, Mr. Jeremic, said ICTs “can help establish a more level playing field, expediting the integration of developing countries into the global economy – especially the LDCs [least developed countries], nations with few natural resources, and post-conflict countries.” He added that ICTs can also increase opportunities for education and professional training, contribute to delivery of healthcare and other essential services and assist with business and technical fields. “Technology has never been an end in itself, but a means—an opportunity—to improve the human condition, when put to good use,” the Assembly President said. The UN is currently amidst 1,000 days of accelerated action to reach the targets set by the MDGs, including making more widely available the benefits of new technologies, especially ICTs.Later this month, the General Assembly will host a high-level special event to follow up on those efforts. In today’s meeting, the 193-member GA is expected to act on resolution on support for establishing a Eurasian Connectivity Alliance with the UN International Telecommunication Union (ITU) for improving the development of “regional telecommunications transit routes.” read more

First IHF Global Coaching Clinic in Bahrain and Qatar

IHF coaching clinic Starting in Bahrain and Qatar, the International Handball Federation will organize special courses for top coaches from all over the world – so called Global Coaching Clinics (GCC) – in all continents. All national federations can nominate their applicants for those Clinics. The first one is addressed to all coaches from Asia and all Arabic speaking countries.This GCC is divided into two parts, starting 19 – 26 March in Bahrain, followed by the second and final part on the fringes of the IHF Super Globe in Qatar (the exact date will be announced soon).An IHF working group has worked on the concept of those GCCs which promote coaches to a top level and finish with the coaching licence level A (the top IHF licence). Besides there are two more levels (B and C) to be reached. The GCCs had been created especially for countries that don’t have their own licensing system for coaches – and IHF is trying to recruit international top coaches as lecturers of the GCCs. Only national federations can nominate the participants (a maximum of three people per federation) – and the candidates must be active coaches on advanced level and English speaking. Further objectives of the GCC are to teach the coaches to be multipliers, to develop handball in their regions and to be a potential continental lecturer.The GCC will be led by CCM members in small teaching groups, and every participant will have a personal mentor during and after the course. Topics of the GCCs are all kinds of individual and group tactical training methods (part I) and strategic and long-term coaching including sports medicine.For further information about the Global Coaching Clinics, please contact the IHF Head Office in Basle.Source: ← Previous Story Team Bosnia & Herzegovina: The return of Tahirovic, “enough” with Doborac, Toromanovic and Terzic Next Story → Tatran Presov won Slovak Cup read more

SENSATION IN SLOVENIA Krka beat Celje PL to win Super Cup

It sounds completely amazing, but RK Celje Pivovarna Lasko lost first trophy in the season! Absolut outsiders MRK Krka Novo Mesto made the biggest sucess in the club history by beating the Slovenian handball powerhouse 23:22 (11:12) at the final of Super Cup.MRK Krka Novo mesto – RK Celje Pivovarna Laško 23:22 (11:12)MRK Krka Novo mesto: Tomić 14 saves, Pavlin; Leon Rašo 1, Bevec, Didovič 4, Okleščen 2, Pršina 3, Irman, Jakše 5, Klemenčič, Dino Rašo, Batagelj, Papež 8, Kukman, Windischer, Matko.RK Celje Pivovarna Laško: Ferlin 4 saves, Panjtar; Vujović 1, Jurečič 4, Malus 1, Razgor 3, Marguč 1, Šarac 4, Grošelj 1, Nenadić, Kodrin 3, Horžen, Makuc 1, Anić 2, Dujšebaev, Bećiri 1. ← Previous Story LNH 18/19: Rampant PSG beat local rival Ivry Next Story → Rampant RNL smash MT Melsungen MRK KrkaRK Celje Pivovarna Lasko read more

Arrest Made In Car BreakIn Police Have Man In Custody

first_img Royal Turks and Caicos Islands Police Force’s mission to combat abusive images of children online Update: Women robbed while exercising (21 year old Arrested) Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp Police get wanted man; Magistrate Court back open Recommended for you Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppProvidenciales, 06 Sept 2015 – One man is behind bars in connection to a string of car break-ins that have plagued the island of Providenciales for the past two weeks.No word on if or when police will lay formal charges against the man as they investigate more than a dozen cases of car break -ins from the Bight, Grace Bay, Five Cays and Kew Town.The alleged nabber or nabbers have managed to vandalize vehicles, making off with small amounts of cash and electronics.Police remind residents to keep their vehicles locked and remove valuables from plain sight. Related Items:car break-in, policelast_img read more