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The safest countries in the world for tourists in 2016

Are you wondering if your first-of-its-kind international trip would be safe enough for your family? Are the on-and-off swindles across the world making you change your decision to plan a vacation abroad? Keep your worries aside. Enjoy a stress-free holiday at any of these ‘low crime, very safe, tourist-friendly’ countries that Skyscanner has shortlisted for you.

1. South Korea

Want a week’s break from your routine life? Plan a trip to the land that presents to you its cultural heritage and old world charm, along with a vibrant urban life flooded with technological marvel. Street crime being uncommon, you can travel the length and breadth of the country without worrying about muggings or random skirmishes. First, guns are illegal in South Korea, so violence is at a minimum. Petty crimes such as theft and robbery are almost non-existent. It’s safe for women travelling alone as well. The possibility of you getting mugged in a street or in a public transport is generally unheard of. So let’s focus on what all you can do in South Korea.



Latest from MS Dhoni: Pythagoras in Gloves



No keeper understands the geometry of the cricket field better than MS Dhoni. Bharat Sundaresan joins the dots on how the world’s best stumper has now cut an angle behind the stumps with the outrageously awesome 90 degrees spread of his right foot.


“AREY, FLUKE tha Sri. Nothing special!” For two years, R Sridhar has had to deal with the same modesty-ridden rhetoric from MS Dhoni. So when India’s fielding coach heard it again after the India-Australia clash in the World T20 in March, he wasn’t really surprised. If anything he was expecting it. But like every other occasion in the past when Dhoni had given him goosebumps by pulling off the wicket-keeping equivalent of a trick-shot for the umpteenth occasion, Sridhar couldn’t help himself from approaching the Indian captain with childlike excitement and an “how the hell did you do that?” expression writ large on his face—only for Dhoni to play it down with unfathomable nonchalance once more.


You couldn’t blame Sridhar. What Dhoni had produced earlier that night with the gloves while having David Warner stumped off R Ashwin’s bowling was pretty mind-boggling after all. The off-break had pitched outside the advancing Warner’s leg-stump, thus leaving Dhoni unsighted. By the time it turned sharply past the left-hander’s outside-edge and Dhoni saw it was coming his way the ball was en route to striking the outside part of his left glove and bouncing off it. Realizing his predicament, Dhoni loosened his left hand ever so slightly so that the ball bounced back into his grasp rather than out of it, allowing him to whip the bails off—a phrase that probably was retrospectively coined for him—in his usually rapid fashion. But don’t forget Dhoni had less than a fraction of a second to not only gauge the situation but also adjust accordingly to find a way through it. And he managed it with no fuss.


“That is Dhoni’s genius. More than his glove-work, it’s the awareness and intelligence of the sport. He’s always ahead of the eight-ball as a wicket-keeper,” says Sridhar. And he doesn’t mind sounding slightly unctuous while insisting that Dhoni stands nonpareil as a wicket-keeper.


“That’s the Mahi way, and it’s one step ahead of the regular wicket-keeping manual,” he adds.


IT’S this awareness and intelligence that Sridhar credits for Dhoni’s latest eye-catching concoction behind the stumps during the IPL—the one where he looks to illustrate the Pythagoras theorem on the cricket field by raising his right leg at a right angle to stop the ball whenever a right-hander is attempting a fine reverse-sweep or a late dab. In a way, that primordial formula that we all mugged up at some stage of our lives does hold true with this experiment too, especially because he ensures that his gloves remain in their original place. For, by creating the angle that he does with his extended foot, Dhoni does manage to double his reach while having both his hands and legs in perfect positions to stop the ball.


Dhoni’s leg-pulling hasn’t gone unnoticed by others. Dinesh Karthik has even tried aping it with some success, after ironically having been one of the early victims of this unique manoeuvre. “Once he did it to me, I thought that it was an idea that could work. If you can do it consistently, you could even have the short third-man wider and cover more space,” explains Karthik.


IN his dramatic career, Dhoni has proven to be an eponymous hero with the shots he’s played and his captaincy style time and again. While many have at least attempted to wield the willow like him, not many have dared to emulate cricket’s own Pythagoras behind the stumps. And the Mahi way with wicket-keeping gloves in hand has always come with a disclaimer of ‘don’t try this at home, school or work’. Just ask Karthik.


“You need to produce ‘give’ so that you can make your hands soft. But he’s able to create that softness even while his hands are going towards the ball, which is amazing. I’ve tried it. It is very hard. I have not been able to get close to that,” says the seasoned Tamil Nadu gloveman.


To understand the ‘give’ or the softening effect that Karthik talks about and how that distinguishes Dhoni as being one of a kind, think about catching any hard object thrown towards you with your hands. Be it for a normal person or a professional sportsman who’s not Dhoni, the natural tendency is to push your hands back upon catching it so as to cushion the blow and absorb the force while ensuring that the object doesn’t pop out. It’s physics 101.

Where Dhoni is extremely different is his ability to, as Sridhar puts it, ‘use force to absorb force’, by pushing his hands towards the ball even if it might seem like the most unnatural or counter-intuitive motion for any other wicket-keeper.


“While others use their hands to produce that give, he uses his wrists. While his hands are going towards the stumps, there’s a slight flick of the wrists in the backward direction. In my opinion, it’s not safe hands but strong hands that allow him to do that. That’s also the reason you will rarely see him collecting the ball to his side like other keepers,” explains Sridhar.

It’s like when you are getting off a train and the nearest exit on the platform is behind you. While all others would step out in the direction in which the train’s moving, stop their momentum and then turn around, Dhoni you imagine wouldn’t have to worry about the tiny detour. He could just as well jump straight out against the momentum of the train, and look as unperturbed as ever while doing so.

IT’S this quiddity with his hands that also makes him arguably the swiftest and most prolific stumper the world’s ever seen — he has pulled off more stumpings than anyone else in history — or as Michael Slater once coined it, ‘the fastest gloves in the west’. Because he doesn’t arch his hands back, precious time is saved by his unique movement forward. To the extent that, according to Sridhar, “It often looks like Dhoni can stop time while executing a stumping.”


“Every wicket-keeper would want to get at least 50-60 per cent of the speed at which he pulls off stumpings. He’s made an art out of it. He is the standard bearer. We are all trying to get there,” says Karthik.

It’s not only while keeping to spinners that Dhoni has reeled off some of the most breath-taking stumpings of his generation, one of his best-ever came off Irfan Pathan’s bowling in 2007 at Chandigarh when Ricky Ponting’s back heel barely moved out of the crease.

According to Sridhar, Dhoni is at least three frames quicker — keeping in mind the 100-odd high-end cameras in use these days — than any wicket-keeper in the world, and the unsuspecting batsman needs to be just one frame short of his crease to be sent on his way by Dhoni.


“He uses his peripheral vision more than anybody else. While he’s looking at the ball, his corner of the eye has already gauged where the stumps are and where the batsman’s foot is. Take that stumping off Sabbir Rahman in the World T20 match against Bangladesh. Not only was he quick in collecting the ball down leg and bringing it back but he timed it perfectly just when Rahman’s leg rose from the crease,” explains Sridhar.

No wonder then that when you see Dhoni appeal for a run-out or a stumping, it’s inevitable that he’s right. You almost imagine the third-umpire’s job being at risk if Dhoni ever became an on-field umpire, especially when it comes to adjudicating this form of dismissals for it’s unlikely he will ever refer an appeal upstairs.

It’s not like his glovework has always slipped under the radar, but more like it’s been taken for granted, at times even by his own dressing-room. In his two years as the team’s fielding coach, Sridhar has witnessed Dhoni practice his wicket-keeping drills on three occasions, that’s it.


“Those sessions lasted for 5-6 minutes. It was only when he wanted to feel the ball in his gloves or catch a few nicks just to get that feeling going. Nothing flashy,” Sridhar reveals.

While it’s with his hands and now even his legs that he tantalizes, it’s his presence of mind and ability to deceive batsmen that dictates the unmatched bravura of Dhoni’s glovework. And it’s not only with the Warner stumping or that unforgettable run-out of Mustafizur Rahman to complete India’s remarkable cricketing escape from Alcatraz against Bangladesh that he’s left Sridhar and the rest of the world in a tizzy.

Of late, Dhoni has also rewritten the coaching manual in terms of positioning himself near the stumps for run-outs and being a menace for batsmen approaching his end. Sridhar recalls the time he got David Miller napping last year during the 2015 World Cup at the MCG. After sweeping Ashwin towards Umesh Yadav at deep square leg, the South African left-hander was coming back for a second run, when Yadav flung in a throw that was slightly wide of the stumps. Yet again Dhoni was on hand to realize that his gloves wouldn’t reach the stumps in time to catch Miller short. Instead, he just flicked the ball on to the stumps. In the dug-out, Sridhar and the rest of the support staff were rubbing off goose-bumps.


“It’s magic almost at times, and we just wonder how when 100 things must be going through his head, he can come up with such a game-changing play,” says Sridhar.

But it’s not always magic from Dhoni. At times, he can turn illusionist too, and mislead the unsuspecting batsman into believing that he’s in no danger. Mitchell Marsh was left hoodwinked recently in an ODI at the MCG again this year. He was running back for a second and as his back was turned, he had no idea which end the throw from mid-off was coming to. His only hint was through looking at Dhoni’s reaction. The Indian captain though simply stood still as if he wasn’t even expecting the throw at his end. But before Marsh could even realize what had happened, Dhoni had collected the throw and knocked the stumps out, leaving the Aussie all-rounder looking like someone whose pocket had been nicked without him even realizing it.


“That’s cricket intelligence. If he would have gotten into position earlier, Mitch Marsh would have run faster,” recalls Sridhar, the awe in his voice very evident.

But Dhoni the wicket-keeper hasn’t been without his flaws, especially when keeping to seam away from home, England in particular. Not only did he often struggle with the late swing in those conditions, he was also guilty of not going for catches that came between him and first-slip, very often not even making an effort to go close to the ball. His bizarre penchant to stand still and see these kind of chances at times apathetically will always stand out as a sore thumb in his otherwise special wicket-keeping career. Sridhar reveals that even in England—and at times when Ishant Sharma was jagging the ball around—Dhoni did try his own unique methods to tackle the late movement.


“Dhoni never stops improving or adding new facets to his game. I have seen him take some diving catches off seamers in this IPL, and he did that in last year’s World Cup too,” says Sridhar.

But with his Test career well behind him, Dhoni no longer has to worry about the red-ball, Ishant or even a slip-cordon on most occasions. He can now focus purely on leaving many more hapless opposition batsmen and his own dressing-room shaking their heads in disbelief as he continues to defy physics behind the stumps–even as Sridhar and the world try in vain to decipher the science behind Dhoni’s ‘fluky’ experiments.



Cunning, street-smart

* In shorter formats, while batsmen are putting pressure on his outfielders, Dhoni is messing with their heads, by not giving away any hints of which end the throw is coming to and banking on his speed of getting the ball to the stumps.

* Dhoni’s positioning for run-out opportunities is based on one principle alone—the position he is best placed to get the ball to the stumps in the quickest time. At times though when he believes that the batsman might get in, he changes his mind in the last frame and drops the ball on the stumps to catch him short.

* Dhoni has mastered the ability to loosen his hands as per the need of the hour, especially when there’s a lot of turn. Like with David Warner’s dismissal during the World T20, when the ball isn’t heading into the centre of his gloves, he loosens the necessary hand so that the ball bounces back in rather than out.

* Dhoni seems to know when a batsman will lift his foot from the crease. If like Sabbir Rahman in the World T20, he does still take chance, Dhoni’s speedy hands does the trick.



Delhi cabbie beaten up by African nationals for refusing extra passengers 


A cab driver was allegedly assaulted overnight by a group of African nationals in Delhi, police said on Monday, potentially escalating a row over a string of racist attacks that left a Congolese teacher dead in the national capital.
The 51-year-old cab driver, identified only by his first name Nuruddin, was allegedly thrashed by six people including two women following an altercation in the wee hours of Monday near Mehrauli, police said.

Police said the victim with multiple cuts and bruises on his face was taken to AIIMS where he received six stitches.

“Since six people, four men and two women of African origin, wanted to board the car, the cab driver objected, citing restrictions on carrying more than four passengers. The group then allegedly thrashed him,” a senior Delhi Police officer told Hindustan Times.
One of the attackers, a woman from Rwanda, was left behind though the others managed to escape after the incident.
“We have registered a case and are interrogating the Rwandan woman to identify the others who were with her at the time of crime,” said Ishwar Singh, deputy commissioner of police, south. Police said they were scanning CCTV footage from the area to ascertain the sequence of events.

Spate of racist attacks 

The incident comes in the backdrop of a series of attacks in Delhi on people from separate African countries, leading to a diplomatic row.
On Sunday, police said they arrested five people accused of assaulting Africans, after African diplomats urged the Indian government to ensure the safety of their nationals living in the country. The arrests came after a Congolese was bludgeoned to death one week ago allegedly by three men after an argument over hiring an auto-rickshaw.
In a rare statement issued after the attack, a group of African ambassadors said African nationals were living in a “pervading climate of fear and insecurity” in Delhi.

The diplomats also warned that they may recommend to their governments not to send students to India until safety conditions improve, following a string of what they said were unpunished racial attacks. Police have arrested two of the three suspected of the killing.

While external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj promised swift action against those involved in the incidents as well as a “sensitisation campaign”, Union minister VK Singh accused the media of overreacting to “minor” incidents.
Thousands of people from African countries study and work in India but several incidents have raised concerns of racist violence and discrimination.
In 2013, a Nigerian national was killed by a mob in the tourist state of Goa, with a state minister later calling Nigerians a “cancer”. Delhi’s former law minister Somnath Bharti was accused in 2014 of harassing African women after he led a vigilante mob through an area of the capital, accusing them of being prostitutes.

Bullet train to travel under the sea near Thane creek

Passengers will get the thrill of riding under the sea while travelling between Mumbai and Ahmedabad in the first bullet train of the country.

The 508 km long Mumbai-Ahmedabad high speed rail corridor will have a 21 km long tunnel under the sea, said a senior Railway Ministry official involved with the public transporter's ambitious bullet train project.

While most part of the corridor is proposed to be on the elevated track, there will be a stretch after Thane creek towards Virar which will go under the sea as per the detailed project report by JICA.

Estimated to cost about Rs 97,636 crore, 81 per cent of the funding for the project will come by way of a loan from Japan. The project cost includes possible cost escalation, interest during construction and import duties.

It is a soft loan for 50 years at 0.1 per cent annual interest with 15 years moratorium, said the official.

Rolling stock and other equipment like signalling and power system will be imported from Japan as per the loan agreement.

The official said the loan agreement with Japan is slated to be signed by the end of the year and construction work is likely to begin by the end of 2018.

According top priority to the first of its kind project, railways has formed National High Speed Rail Corporation Limited (NHSRCL), a special purpose vehicle (SPV), with a paid-up capital of Rs 500 crore.

A search committee comprising senior government officials including Cabinet Secretary, Chairman Railway Board and Secretary DOPT among others is on the job currently to select the Managing Director and five directors for the NHSRCL.

Railways has already allotted Rs 200 crore for the SPV. Maharashtra and Gujarat will have equity of 25 per cent each, while the Railways will have 50 per cent in the SPV.

The bullet train is expected to cover 508 km between Mumbai and Ahmedabad in about two hours, running at a maximum speed of 350 kmph and operating speed of 320 kmph.

At present, Duronto Express takes about seven hours to cover the distance between the two financial centres.

For timely completion of the project, a joint committee has been formed under the vice-chairman of NITI Aayog with the secretaries of the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP), Departments of Economic Affairs and Foreign Ministry as its members along with the Railway Board Chairman.

12-Year-Old Went to Fetch Water For Family, Dies of Heat Stroke


A class 5 student in drought-hit are of Beed, Maharashtra died due to heat stoke on Tuesday afternoon.

The victim, the resident of a Sablkhed village in Beed was dehydrated after she repeatedly made attempts to fill water from the nearest hand pump.

The class 5 student identified as Yogita Ashok Desai was walking to and from a hand pump near her school when she fell sick and collapsed.

This happened on the day when the Centre told Supreme Court that 25% of the country's population is hit by drought. 

The government has said that 33 crore people in 2.5 lakh villages are facing water shortage. 

Ishwar, uncle of deceased said, "Schools were closed so she went to fetch water in order to help us as we are facing extreme water scarcity. She fell unconscious on her way to hand pump, was taken to hospital where she was declared dead".

Kirpal Singh's Body Brought Back From Pak, Heart, Stomach Missing

Attari (Amritsar): The heart and stomach of Indian prisoner Kirpal Singh, who died under mysterious circumstances in a Pakistani jail, were found missing after his body was handed over to Indian authorities.

"During the postmortem examination, it was found that his heart as well as stomach were missing. However, no internal and external injury was found on his body. Samples of these two organs would be sent outside Amritsar for laboratory tests to bring out more facts with regard to his death," Principal of Government Medical College Amritsar, Dr BS Bal said.

Meanwhile, Kirpal's family has alleged that he was tortured to death and that he did not die of cardiac arrest as has been told by Pakistan. 


Kirpal's family members, including his sister Jagir Kaur, Punjab Cabinet Minister Gulzar Singh Ranike and Amritsar Deputy Commissioner Varun Roojam, besides other senior officials, were present at the Joint check post at the Wagah border to receive the body on Tuesday.

Dalbir Kaur, sister of another Indian Sarabjit Singh, who too had died in a Pakistani jail in May 2013, was also present. She said, "even if he died from a heart attack, there must be some reason behind it. His body should be sent for examination, the matter should be investigated. I don't believe it's a natural death."

Kirpal Singh had allegedly crossed Wagah border into Pakistan in 1992 and was arrested. He was subsequently sentenced to death in a serial bomb blasts case in Pakistan's Punjab province.

Kirpal was found dead in his cell last Monday at Kot Lakhpat Jail in Lahore.

Kirpal, from Gurdaspur, had reportedly been acquitted in the case by the Lahore High Court but his death sentence could not be commuted because of unspecified reasons.

Kirpal's family members, including his sister Jagir Kaur, Punjab Cabinet Minister Gulzar Singh Ranike and Amritsar Deputy Commissioner Varun Roojam, besides other senior officials, were present at the Joint check post at the Wagah border to receive the body on Tuesday.

Dalbir Kaur, sister of another Indian Sarabjit Singh, who too had died in a Pakistani jail in May 2013, was also present. She said, "even if he died from a heart attack, there must be some reason behind it. His body should be sent for examination, the matter should be investigated. I don't believe it's a natural death."

Kirpal Singh had allegedly crossed Wagah border into Pakistan in 1992 and was arrested. He was subsequently sentenced to death in a serial bomb blasts case in Pakistan's Punjab province.

Kirpal was found dead in his cell last Monday at Kot Lakhpat Jail in Lahore.

Kirpal, from Gurdaspur, had reportedly been acquitted in the case by the Lahore High Court but his death sentence could not be commuted because of unspecified reasons.

Arvind Kejriwal to Babus: 'Don't Mess With Us, We Are Here For 10-15 Years


Arvind Kejriwal's message to bureaucrats in Delhi came with this warning - 'we are here for another 10-15 years'.

At an event to mark Civil Services Day on Tuesday, the Chief Minister cautioned bureaucrats against playing politics with elected representatives, saying it "downgrades" the government's credibility.

"We can tolerate anything but we will not tolerate politics. If you are interested in politics, then resign, contest elections and confront us," he said.

His own government, Mr Kejriwal stressed, was here to stay.

"My government is fulfilling the aspirations of the people of Delhi. People are happy and if the government continues this way we aren't going anywhere for 10-15 years. You may like it or not, but we are here for 10-15 years. Those officers who are above 45 have no choice," he remarked.


Since Mr Kejriwal's Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) returned to power last year with a massive mandate, its working relationship with bureaucrats has been less than warm. Much of the friction has been caused by AAP's tussle with the Centre over the control of key departments in Delhi.

In December last year, many officers went on a day's mass leave in solidarity with two DANICS or Delhi Andaman and Nicobar Civil Service officers, who were suspended for "insubordination".

Referring to that strike just before the start of the odd-even trial on January 1, the Chief Minister said: "Nobody approached the government and our party knows about strikes and protests. This is usually the last resort after all talks have failed. In this case, there were no talks. The strike was political."


Mr Kejriwal said civil servants should become part of his "honest and transparent" government and serve the people of Delhi.

"This government may be anything, but dishonest. This government is working for the poorest of the poor. There may be many with ideas and dreams, this is the time for you to do something. Last year, I asked all of you to give me ideas. I have not received a single one," he said.


How to craft a winning business plan

Startups are born from ideas, but it is thebusiness plan  that provides form and structure to them. The document, which entrepreneurs share with potential investors, spells out the methods an entrepreneur will employ to grow a new business. Often a mixture of art and science, a business plan usually contains a definition of the product or service on offer, details of current and future earnings, team profile as well as snapshots of competitors and investors. 

While a fledgling venture can have a one page executive summary, mature companies can have business plans that run into a dozen pages. Although it is not legally binding, a good plan, like a good CV, can mean the difference between success and failure. 

What it must contain 

Introduction: Spells out the idea of the company, how it began and the way it expects to grow. 

Team: The composition of the management, the board, advisors and mentors. 

Opportunity: The specific problem that the startup aims to solve, the size of the market, and the expected growth. 

Solution: Details of the method that the startup will employ to reach stated goals. 

Competition: An evaluation of the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats to the startup, its existing competitors and the investors behind them. 

Business Model: The way in which the company will earn revenue and profits. 

Expectations: The money required from an investor at a specific value, and non-monetary support such as mentoring and operational inputs. 

What shouldn't be there in a B-plan 

Too much detail too early: Typically startups don't have all the information that can constitute a proper plan, so keep it crisp. Some accelerators expect only a one page note with 10 points for early-stage companies. 

Exaggerate the opportunity: Hype may downgrade your startup in the eyes of investors. Such plans, even when presented to multiple investors, do not draw a response. 

Set over-ambitious goals: Entrepreneurs have a tendency to make their projections too optimistic. Do not put long-term milestones—18-month to two-year projections are enough. 

Ignore competition: It is vital to be aware of current and potential competitors. List all possible rivals and show how you are better or different. 

Formatting Errors: Business plans must not be too detailed and unwieldy. Do not make errors—in spelling, grammar or in calculations. Jargon and acronyms should be avoided. 


"It helps an entrepreneur understand the assumptions he makes when starting out and communicate them to investors. These projections should be grounded in reality and also be logical." 

"Startups don't have all the information that can constitute a proper plan. Pricing and revenues are farfetched if the product is still under development." 

Dos What should be there in a B-plan 

Define Customer Need: Investors may be unfamiliar with the market a startup is focusing on, so explain assumptions. Try to use pictorial representations and diagrams. 

Highlight Team Strengths: Communicate how many people you need and state how much they will cost. 

Correlate spending with earning: In the  finance plan, add milestones and projections for a maximum of two years. Founders may make the mistake of projecting revenue of Rs 100 crore when the market is only Rs 200 crore. 

Provide clarity: If you need $10 million, say why, how you will spend it and what returns an investor can expect. 

Pay attention to details: Presentation matters, especially in contests where a team gets only 5-7 minutes to present a plan. Some perform a skit, others begin with startling statistics or show an interesting video. 

Cool Formats for biz plans 

Mind Map: The plan is pictorially shown with branches leading out of a single idea. They depict various categories -customer, market and financial data. 

Mobile App: A plan embedded within a digital app allows viewers to click on topics that they want to explore. 

Comic Strip: Cartoons with thought bubbles can replace 'boring' text in power point presentations. 

NRIs in US with kids: Why it is important to draw a Will

In the past decade, a lot of Indians have migrated to the US and settled down there. For many, they are the first generations from their families to move and most of their immediate family members like parents and siblings are still in India. Now, if you are among them and you also have children, then it's a good time to sit down and think about drawing up a Will. While the reasons for drawing up a Will  apply equally to everyone in the US, it gains more importance for NRI"s in the US if their proposed guardians live in India. Here's why.

What a Will does

In the unlikely event that both of the child's parents would die, a guardian must be appointed if the child is under 18. A Will is needed to document the appointment of a guardian.

"In the absence of a Will or if a guardian for your children has not been nominated, someone would need to apply as guardian," explainsJanrt Brewer  , a California based attorney. That person would need to explain why s/he is better suited to raise the child than having the child be placed in foster care in the US. "If the proposed guardian is not a US resident and would like to take the child to his home country, then he needs to show why it is in the 'best interests of the child' to be taken from the US," Brewer adds. Further, it would take time for the proposed guardian to reach the US and he/she must be prepared to stay in the US for at least 30-45 days until all legal matters are put in place.

Since this entire process can be tedious, naming a guardian in the Will ensures that the parents decide who their kids should be cared by.

State decides guardianship rules Laws relating to appointment of guardians vary from state to state. "Some states do not permit a non-US citizen or non-US resident to serve as a guardian. That makes the parents' choice of a guardian much more difficult, since their first choice might be their own parents or a sibling who resides outside of the US," says Brewer.

In such cases, parents must check the state laws and appoint the guardian accordingly.

How to draw up a Will

Making a Will by itself may not be a difficult process. You can do it yourself using online Will preparation kits. You can also get readymade forms at stores. However, as we mentioned earlier, it is important to understand guardianship laws , especially if you would like to appoint an overseas guardian. It would be best to contact an attorney to prepare your Will.

UK-India business centre gets kick-start in Gurgaon

The UK government's decision to create a pan-India network of business centres got a major boost with the appointment of a managing director to head the ambitious project in the country.

The UK Ihdia Business Council (UKIBC), tasked with realising British Prime Minister David Cameron's announcement of these centres during his high-profile visit to India in February, named Richard McCallum, co-founder and director of Flying Fox - India's first zipline tour company - as MD of UKIBC India Private Limited.


"I am delighted that  Richard Mc Callum has agreed to join us to lead this effort in India. Together with our Group CEO, Richard Heald, he will lead a step-change in the support available to British businesses wanting to enter or expand in India," said UKIBC chair Patricia Hewitt.

McCallum will take charge of rolling out a series of business centres and services across India from August, with the first such centre to be launched in the industrial hub of Gurgaon in September 2013.

The UKIBC also announced the names of two new members to the India board - Kalyan Bose, president of theBritish Business Group  (BBG) in Delhi, and Vandana Poria, chair of the BBG Pune.

"We intend to create something very relevant and very special in India. McCallum brings a rare combination of practical experience of running an SME (small and medium-sized enterprises) for seven years in India together with proven success of working within a large international company.

"We are looking forward to him deploying this expertise in recruiting and leading a team with strong Indian sectoral and commercial experience," UKIBC Group CEO Richard Heald said.

The Business Centre in Gurgaon will not only be the first of six business centres to be rolled out across India, but also globally the first such business-led initiative being backed by the British government in 20 priority trade markets.

The Gurgaon centre is located in Infinity Towers, Cyber City, and will act as a "hub" within the important north central economic region in India, while a smaller "spoke" in Connaught Place, in the heart of New Delhi, is also in the pipeline.

"The UK and Indian Prime Ministers remain committed to doubling trade and investment between India and the UK by 2015. We are on track to achieve this, but there is no room for complacency.

"This new network of UK-India business centres will prove the perfect complement to the work of our own UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) team across India," said Sir James Bevan, British High Commissioner in India.

Cabinet clears real estate bill; Repeat offences may land developers in jail

The Cabinet on Tuesday cleared the Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Bill that provides for the creation of a regulator for the sector and tighter norms for selling housing projects.

The Bill seeks to provide a uniform regulatory environment  to the real estate sector in the country. Builders will have to now register all projects on plots measuring 4,000 sq metres or more with a regulatory authority.

They can launch projects only after acquiring all the statutory clearances from relevant authorities. The bill also has provisions to deter builders from putting misleading advertisements related to the projects. Failure to comply with these provisions for the first time would attract a penalty, which may be up to 10% of the project cost, and a repeat offence could land the developer in jail.

Lakhs of unorganised property agents have also been brought under the purview of the authority. They will have to mandatorily register with the real estate regulator authority.

The bill also makes it mandatory for a developer to maintain a separate bank account for every project to ensure that the money raised for a particular task is not diverted to other projects. The bill provides a clear definition of carpet area and would prohibit private developers from selling houses or flats on the basis of the ambiguous term 'super area'. To help consumers settle disputes, the bill also provides for establishment of fast-track dispute resolution  mechanisms through adjudicating officers, to be appointed by the regulatory authority.

Developers, however, are opposed to the bill in its current form.

"We are not against a regulator in principle, but any such bill should not be anti-development and retrograde in nature. It may be misused by people in the power to unnecessarily delay real estate projects," said Geetamber Anand, managing director of ATS Infrastructure and president elect, Confederation of Real Estate Developers Association of India.

Anshuman Magazine, chairman and managing director of property advisory firm CBRE South Asia, said: "The real estate regulator bill should have been more balanced, taking into account challenges faced by developers and consumer grievances. While consumers need protection, administrative reforms are required urgently for real estate development to happen more efficiently and in a transparent manner."

5 soldiers killed in attack by Pak troops; Parliament Outraged

5 soldiers killed in attack by Pak troops; Parliament outraged

Jammu, Aug 6: In an audacious and provocative attack, Pakistani troops entered Indian territory along the Line of Control in the Poonch sector in Jammu and Kashmir late last night and ambushed a patrol killing five Indian soldiers.  

The issue rocked Parliament today with members in both Houses demanding a strong response from the Government. Both the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha were adjourned till noon.  

Defence sources said the Pakistani soldiers, numbering about 20, intruded into the Indian territory past midnight and ambushed the patrol party at the Sarla post on the Indian side of the LoC.

A Subedar and four jawans of the 21 Bihar Unit were killed in the attack which took place at around 2 AM, the sources said.

The attack took place 450 metres from the LoC on the Indian side, they said.

Chief Minister Omar Abdullah tweeted, “(I) was briefed early this morning about the news that five of our soldiers had been killed on the LoC. My heartfelt condolences to their next of kin.

“These incidents don’t help efforts to normalise or even improve relations with Pak and call in to question the Pak Govt’s recent overtures,” he said.

Army Chief Gen Bikram Singh is taking stock of the situation, Army sources said in Delhi.  

The incident could cast a shadow on the resumption of the Indo-Pak dialogue process. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif are slated to meet in New York next month on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly session.

The dialogue process was put on hold following the beheading of an Indian soldier and another soldier’s body found mutilated following the January 8 attack by Pakistani troops in the Poonch sector.

Union Minister Farooq Abdullah said the incident will affect the process of normalisation between India and Pakistan.

“The hand of friendship cannot be extended from one side only. Pakistan has to stop the killings of Indian soldiers.  The dialogue process cannot resume if such a situation continues,” he said.

The Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha, Arun Jaitley said the incident has serious defence, security and foreign policy implications.

BJP spokesperson Ravi Shankar Prasad said Government should come out with a clear-cut and firm response to the latest Pakistani attack which has become a weekly affair.  

Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi accused the Government of laxity in securing Indian borders.  Gurudas Dasgupta of CPI said Government should take up the issue strongly with Pakistan.

Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Rajiv Shukla said Defence Minister A K Antony will make a statement in Parliament on the issue.

Former Army Chief Shankar Roy Choudhary said India should be wary of any peace overtures of Pakistan.  “This is a serious situation and requires a strong response from the Government,” said former Foreign Secretary Lalit Mansingh.

The incident comes hours after a BSF jawan was injured in firing from across Indo-Pak border in Samba district of J-K.  On July 27, another BSF jawan was injured when Pakistani troops violated ceasefire twice in the space of 10 hours by targeting Indian posts along the Indo-Pak border in Poonch and Kathua districts.

The Pakistani troops had used mortars, RPGs and heavy machine guns leading to heavy firing exchanges.

On July 3, Pakistan violated ceasefire when it fired on cops, who had gone to LoC in Sabzian, Poonch to collect the body of a Pakistani intruder killed in an IED blast on July 1. 

Pakistani troops fired on troops trying to evacuate injured porters after two were killed in IED attack by Pakistani militants along LoC in Poonch on July 8.  

On July 12, Pakistani Rangers fired on Indian forward posts in Pindi belt along International Border (IB) in Jammu district.

Pakistani troops opened small arms firing on Indian posts in forward area along LoC in Poonch district on the night of July 22.

Priest has freedom to rape?

Supporters of religious preacher Ghulzar Ahmad Bhat, who was arrested on charges of rape protested in Srinagar on Thursday morning.



Dozens of his supporters came to Press Colony Srinagar and started demanding his release. Police arrested many of his followers.

Kolkata's Presidency College offers 'Love' as a subject




The Sociology department of Presidency University would be offering a subject called 'Love' for students of other department to study. This is part of a new initiative launched by the University to offer interdisciplinary courses to its students.

Come July, science students can get a taste of liberal arts and those delving into humanities can take up a science subject at Presidency University, a varsity professor said on Friday.

"This is the first such initiative in the country. In the traditional Indian university education system, honours students are required to take up two pass subjects... We have replaced the pass subjects," professor Somak Raychaudhury, head of Presidency University's physics department said.

Raychaudhury said the decision to juxtapose the two branches was taken as students do not take pass subjects seriously.

So, instead of forcing pass subjects on students, we decided to break them up and have a list of 10 papers. All the honours students are required to take up 10 papers. While the science students are needed to take at least two arts papers, it is vice versa for students of humanities," the professor added.

For example, the physics department is introducing a course, 'Physics of Everyday Life', under which students, irrespective of the stream they are majoring in, will be taught how things like camera work.

The course is open to everybody. An English literature student can take it up. Similarly, sociology department is offering a subject called 'Love' that students from other department can study," the professor said.

CCTV footage from Delhi Metro Stations land on porn websites

CCTV footage from Delhi metro stations land on porn websites: reports

The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation has said it will investigate reports that about 250 video clips of couples in intimate situations caught on CCTV cameras installed in its trains have been leaked to pornographic websites.
"The DMRC is conducting a thorough inquiry into the reports of circulation of objectionable video clips. The Delhi Metro management has taken serious cognisance of these reports and has already reported the issue to the Cyber Crime cell of the police," a senior official, Anuj Dayal, said.
The Delhi Police has registered a case under the IT Act.

It is yet to be established whether the many clips purportedly recorded on metros and posted on adult sites are indeed from the CCTV cameras, but a blame game has begun.

DMRC officials allege that personnel of the Central Industrial Security Force or CISF, which has charge of Delhi metro security, have access to the CCTV footage and could be responsible for the leak. But the CISF, which too has initiated an internal inquiry, denies that its personnel - four or five of whom man control rooms at metro stations - could be involved in the alleged leak and say the DMRC has more access to CCTV footage, which it owns.

A senior CISF official also said that some of the clips have audio on them and CCTV cameras do not record sound. Also, he has pointed out, CCTV cameras are placed at fixed angles and will not have the flexibility to focus on specific people, the way the camera seems to do in some of the clips posted on the Internet.    
The police will investigate if someone could have got access to the CCTV footage in metro station control rooms and recorded off them using a mobile phone.

Chinese troops enter Ladakh again: Reports

Chinese troops enter Ladakh again: reports

On June 17, Chinese troops patrolling disputed territory in the Chumar sector of southern Ladakh, reportedly took away a non-functioning solar CCTV camera placed about 6 km ahead of an Indian post.
Two days later, India brought up the issue of the missing camera at a routine meeting of border personnel and China returned it on July 3 this year.
Government sources said India is not treating the incident as an "incursion" by the Chinese as this is territory that both countries claim is theirs. The Indian Army and the People's Liberation Army or PLA both routinely patrol this region.


In April this year, a Chinese platoon had entered and set up camp about 19 km into Indian territory in the Depsang Valley and had refused to budge for about three weeks despite repeated requests from India.
After a 21-day face-off during which there were intense negotiations amid increasing tension, China agreed to withdraw its platoon. In return, India agreed to dismantle seven bunkers that it was building in the Chumar sector, the major trigger for China's April incursion.
As part of that agreement, cameras place by India in the region were also dismantled. This was one such camera, with solar panels removed, that the Chinese patrol had found…

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