Monday, December 31, 2012

Merkel:EU harder time next year

Merkel warned Germans that the economy, Europe's biggest, would experience a harder time next year than in 2012 and cautioned too that the eurozone debt crisis was far from
In her annual New Year address published Monday, Merkel said: "In fact, the economic environment next year will not be easier, but more difficult", adding: "The crisis is a long way from being beaten."
Although top exporter Germany has managed to hold up to the crisis fairly well, growth has slowed here as well since the beginning of the year.
After expanding by 0.5 percent in the first quarter of 2012, gross domestic product (GDP) grew by just 0.3 percent in the second quarter and a mere 0.2 percent in the third quarter.
And in October, the government slashed its forecast for economic output next year to 1.0 percent, compared to 1.6 percent previously anticipated.
The country's gloomy central bank has said Germany may even flirt briefly with recession early next year.
The Bundesbank also forecast that Germany would only grow by a meagre 0.4 percent next year.
Nevertheless, "it has been possible this year to have the lowest unemployment and the highest level of employment since the reunification" in 1990, Merkel recalled.
And a slowdown next year "should not leave us discouraged but should spur us on", said the chancellor, according to the text of her speech released in advance by her office.
Turning to the eurozone's efforts to tackle its three-year debt crisis, she judged that "the reforms that we have decided are beginning to work".
"However, we still need more patience. The crisis is a long way from being overcome."

Former Israeli foreign minister indicted

Israel on Sunday announced the indictment of former Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman. Lieberman Who  is accused of trying to promote a diplomat who relayed to him information about a criminal investigation into his political funding,notified of the pending charges, Lieberman resigned his cabinet post on December 18th saying he would prove his innocence.

Lieberman is a leader of a far-right coalition bloc that's a partner with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's Likud Party.He's running in parliamentary elections on January 22nd, on a joint proportional representation list of the two parties.

Netanyahu called a snap election, hoping to benefit from the strong support of the Israeli people. But the latest poll shows that some supporters have shifted to another far-right party.
 Ekal Silver Jubilee Year on 13th, January, 2013.

Ekal Abhiyaan through its support organization Bharat Lok Shiksha Parisad recipient of Sita Ram Jindal Award for exceptional achievement in the field of “Peace, Social Harmony & Social Development" is organizing an event on 13th of January, 2013 at Talkatora Stadium, New Delhi.

The program is conceptualized to mark the beginning of 25th year of Ekal Abhiyaan rendering selfless service through Ekal Vidyalayas based on five tier education for the holistic development of Tribal & Rural Bharat and to celebrate the 150th birth anniversary of Swami Vivekananda. 

The program is only the beginning of year long celebrations throughout Ekal Movement from Delhi to remotest tribal village. The details of the program are as follows:

RUN with Ekal
A run of 5.5 KM with 2000 – 3000 youth from Delhi and also from Ekal Villages

9.00 AM

11.30 AM
Launch Ceremony
to mark the beginning of Silver Jubilee year 

3.00 PM

6.00 PM

We would kindly like to request you to grace the occasion with your gracious presence.

We would be grateful for your consent to grace the occasion.

Thanking You,

With Warm Regards
For Ekal Sansthan

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Girl victim of a gang-rape,then murdered triggered an outpouring of grief and anger across country is cremated at a private ceremony at  wee hours on Sunday as it emerged she was planning to get married in February.The girl, a physiotherapy student, was gangraped and brutally assaulted allegedly by six men in a moving bus in south Delhi on December 16 night.She died on Saturday at around 2:15 a.m.

The mortal remains were flown to the capital in a Special Aircraft of Air India and after landing at IGI airport. Family members accompanied the body.The cremation took place under a dense cover of fog. A Special aircraft of Air India carrying the mortal remains of the victim, who died in Mount Elizebeth hospital, landed at IGI airport in New Delhi at around 3.30 am.  The funeral pyre was lit after traumatized relatives and friends said their final prayers at a ceremony in southwestern Delhi..The  23-year-old, the focus of nationwide protests since she was brutally attacked on a bus in New Delhi two weeks ago, was cremated away from the public glare only hours after her body was repatriated from Singapore.
Reports according to mourners who revealed she had been due to wed a boyfriend who was injured in the same attack "They had made all the wedding preparations and had planned a wedding party in Delhi" for February, said Meena Rai, who was a close friend and neighbour."I really loved this girl. She was the brightest of all."
 Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Sonia Gandhi, the leader of the main ruling Congress party, were at Delhi airport to console her parents as they arrived home on a chartered plane with their daughter's body at around 4:00 am (2230 GMT).
After initial treatment in a Delhi hospital following the attack, she was flown to Singapore on Wednesday night. But doctors were unable to prevent a multiple organ failure and she was pronounced dead in the early hours of Saturday.
Her death has prompted government promises of better protection for women, and deep soul-searching in a nation where gang-rapes are a daily occurrence and sexual harassment is routinely dismissed as "Eve-teasing".
Waves of protests have erupted across nation since the attack on the night of December 16 when the woman was not only repeatedly raped but also sexually assaulted with an iron bar, leaving her with terrible intestinal injuries.
Thousands took part in late-night candlelit vigils Saturday after Singh led appeals for calm to prevent a repeat of the sometimes violent protests.As police said the six accused of murdering the unnamed woman could face the death penalty, there was a widespread determination that the killing would serve as a tipping point for how the nation deals with violence against women.

The city has been dubbed the "rape capital" of India. According to police and prosecutors, the murder victim's ordeal began when six men lured her and her male companion onto a bus that they thought would take them home.Group of joyriders, who had been drinking heavily, launched a savage attack lasting some 40 minutes that only ended when the victims were thrown off the bus.The attack has prompted intense debate among Indians who had grown almost inured to an epidemic of violence against women.
Gang-rapes are so common that they rarely get a mention in the newspapers. Victims are often deterred even from reporting them for fear of shaming their families or receiving a brush-off from police.

FII inflow in stocks surpasses Rs 24,000-cr mark in December

Dec 30,  1:19 PM
Overseas institutional investors have pumped in more than 24,000 crore rupees in Indian stock market in December, the highest in ten months. Foreign Institutional Investors (FIIs) were gross buyers of shares worth 71,595 crore rupees, while they sold equities amounting to 47,412 crore rupees.
Market regulator SEBI report indicates a net inflow of 24,183 crore rupees to Indian stocks market this month only. This is the highest net inflow in this month by FIIs since their entry into Indian capital markets in 1992. In February this year, FIIs had infused infused 25,212 crore rupees.
Market experts predict that in absence of growth in the global economy, the Indian market continue to look attractive and hopes of a rate cut by the Reserve Bank of India early next month.

National Judicial Appointments Bill to be tabled in Cabinet next month: Law Minister

Law and Justice Minister Dr. Ashwani Kumar has said that the National Judicial Appointments Commission Bill will be tabled in Cabinet next month and on getting approval, it will be tabled in the next session of Parliament as well.
He said this in an exclusive interview given to DD News correspondent Manoj Tibrewal Aakash.
In what is perceived to be a step towards legal reforms, the upcoming budget session of Parliament is likely to be a significant one.
Dr Ashwini Kumar said that National Judicial Appointments Commission bill and Judicial Accountability bill will be tabled in cabinet next month and on getting the approval, the bill will be tabled in Parliament as well.
The bill is significant in view of improving the current procedure for appointments of judges. Strict punishment for the heinous crimes against women The Law Minister expressed hope that a committee headed by Justice J S Varma on suggesting provisions related to strict punishment for the heinous crimes against women, will submit its report within the fixed time limit.
He also said that the report will be tabled in cabinet and efforts will be made to reach consensus among political parties if necessary amendments are required.
Following this, the report will be tabled in both the houses of Parliament.
On Lokpal bill, the minister said that it will be tabled during the budget session after cabinet approval.
He also said that village courts will be set up at the block level across the country under the Village Court Bill to ensure justice at the grass root.

AIASA Constituted Anti-Corruption Cell(ACC)

The All India Agricultural Students Association(AIASA)  in its Annual General Meeting(AGM) held on 29.12.2012   at New Delhi has constituted 15 members Anti Corruption Cell(ACC) headed by Mr.Jitendra Singh Shekhawat, former President, Central Students Union, S.K.Rajasthan Agricultural University-Bikaner. The ACC will work independently in close cooperation and coordination with All India Federation of Agricultural Associations(AIFAA) and other Agricultural Organizations  for bringing transparency in the agriculture sector in the country. The other members in the ACC represent from Himachal Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Manipur, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, New Delhi, Haryana.
Recently the Students of  55 Agricultural, Horticultural, Veterinary, Fisheries Universities and in other 100s colleges in the Traditional  Universities  have come under one umbrella for the welfare of the primary sector and its various stakeholders such as students,  farmers, officers, teachers, various professional personnel. On this backdrop, a registered Society under the name  of All India Agricultural Students Association (AIASA) has been constituted in December, 2011. The association is having two kinds of membership i.e. current membership and associate membership. About 2 lakhs students pursuing their courses in agriculture and its various allied subjects are members under current membership and the professional such as teachers, scientists, farmers and other stake holders are associate members.
The Association has  conducted election for constitution of its 75  Students Cabinet members for the year 2013. Dr.Mahesh Yadav, returning officer of AIASA has declared the election result on 29.12.2012. Mr.Manjit Lad, IARI, New Delhi  has been declared elected as National President, Mr.Rohan Kelawala, Navsari Agricultural University, Navsari(Gujarat) as Senior Vice President, Mr.Babu Lal, President, Rajasthan Agricultural University, Jobner(Raj) as General Secretary, Miss Hina Rasool Mir as National Treasurer and Mr.Harish Makhija as Chief Coordinator.

The out going National President Mr.Biswajit Mondal has stated that the AIASA has recently initiated membership drive in the Country and it will have crores of members on its roll and the Association will work for betterment of agriculture community and will be in a position to influence the decision making process in the government  in the interest of agriculture community particularly agriculture students. The newly elected National President Mr.Manjit Lad has advocated that immediate steps will be taken up  to impress upon the government to  create all India Cadre of Indian Agriculture Service, State Agriculture Services, Agriculture education Commission and to   fill up 50,000 vacant Group A posts in Central and State Departments of Agriculture, Horticulture, Animal Husbandry and  Agriculture Universities.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Abe, Putin agree to speed up peace-treaty talks

Japan’s new Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Russian President Vladimir Putin have agreed to spur their foreign ministries towards signing a peace treaty.
Putin asked for a phone conversation with Abe, and the 2 leaders spoke for about 20 minutes on Friday.
Abe said developing his nation’s ties with Russia is a top priority. He said the relationship had the potential to become one of Japan’s richest.
The Japanese leader also said he welcomes Putin’s statement that Russia will hold a constructive dialogue with Japan on their territorial dispute.
Abe called the dispute the biggest pending issue. He said he would like to make efforts to find a mutually acceptable solution.
Putin said both countries’ foreign ministries should be instructed to work more actively towards a peace treaty.
Japan claims sovereignty over a group of 4 northern Pacific islands seized by Soviet forces shortly after Japan’s surrender in World War 2.
The territorial dispute means Japan and Russia have yet to sign a peace treaty more than 67 years after the war.Media agencies

Japan objects to China’s continental shelf claim

Japan has filed an objection at the United Nations over China’s application to extend its continental shelf to areas including the Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea.
The Japanese government on Friday submitted a document to the UN Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf, asking it not to screen China’s application.
The Japanese document says Japan and China first need to set boundaries over the continental shelf in the East China Sea according to the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea.
It says screening of applications to extend a continental shelf requires agreement by all coastal countries according to international law.
The Chinese government submitted its application to the UN commission on December 14th.
The document argues that the continental shelf in the East China Sea extends from the Chinese mainland to the Okinawa Trough, where the Senkaku Island chain is located.
The Senkakus are controlled by Japan but are claimed by China and Taiwan.
Based on this extension, China sets part of the outer limit of its continental shelf.

Damini succumbs to injuries at multi-organ transplant Mount Elizabeth Hospital in Singapore the body to be flown back tonight.Back home "Damini" the brave soul awakens the nation.
An Air India aircraft has been chartered by the government and sent to Singapore to bring back the body of the gangrape victim and her family members to New Delhi.

The chartered plane, an Airbus A-319, left the IGI Airport at 0800 hours for Singapore and expected to return around 2000 hours tonight after taking off from there around 1700 hours local time, Air India officials told a news agency.
The aircraft is carrying some senior government officials, including those from the Union Home Ministry.

E Media is  reporting  each moment of people voice and raise Q of accountability, stringent laws, fast-track courts  to take up the rape cases on priority which happen every hr across the nation, need goverance action and attention to liberate the women from the clutches parochial society. Damini  23-year-old victim of the brutal gang rape and assault in Delhi that had triggered an outrage across India died early Saturday morning in Singapore after putting up a brave battle for life for nearly a fortnight.

The girl, who was admitted to the well-known multi-organ transplant facility Mount Elizabeth Hospital here on Thursday morning in an extremely critical condition, breathed her last at 4:45 AM (2:15 AM India time).
She was earlier treated at the Safdarjung Hospital in Delhi.
Meanwhile, an Air India aircraft has been chartered by the government and sent to Singapore to bring back the body of the gangrape victim and her family members to New Delhi.
The chartered plane, an Airbus A-319, left the IGI Airport at 0800 hours for Singapore and expected to return around 2000 hours tonight after taking off from there around 1700 hours local time, Air India officials said.
"We are very sad to report that the patient passed away peacefully at 4.45am on 29 Dec 2012 (Singapore time)," the hospital's Chief Executive Officer Dr Kelvin Loh said in a statement.
"Her family and officials from the High Commission of India were by her side. The Mount Elizabeth Hospital team of doctors, nurses and staff join her family in mourning her loss," the statement said.
The body has been moved to the mortuary in the Singapore General Hospital and will be flown back to India by a chartered plane.
Accompanied by her family, the body is expected to arrive in Delhi in the night.
President Pranab Mukherjee, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and a host of political leaders condoled the death of the girl and paid rich tributes to the victim of the sexual assault for her brave fight.
"Damini" was raped and brutally assaulted in a moving bus by six men in Delhi on 16th December and thrown out along with her companion.
Indian High Commissioner T C A Raghavan told reporters that the family was yet to decide on the plans for the last rites back home.
He said the "Damini" fought a brave battle till the end. She was brought to Singapore for being provided good medical treatment.
The envoy "The family is shattered by this development. At the same time, they realised that best possible medical attention was given. And in the end it was the scale of injuries that proved too much for the medical attention provided to her".
He said the final few hours was a trying time for the girl's family and they bore the entire process with a great deal of fortitude and courage.
Raghavan said he has passed on the condolence message of the Prime Minister to the family in which he had spoken of the desire to make India a demonstrably better and safe place for women to live in.
Raghavan said the High Commission has received numerous messages from various quarters including the Singapore government deeply mourning the death.
He appreciated the help extended by the Singapore Foreign Ministry, the government and the Mount Elizabeth Hospital for all their support in the last two days.
Replying to questions on the shifting of the girl from Delhi to Singapore, he said consultations were held between doctors of Safdarjung hospital and Mount Elizabeth Hospital and they must have given full thought to it before taking it.
Asked whether doctors felt that she could have died to her shift from Delhi to Singapore, Raghavan said "no such sentiments was expressed to me.
Both the doctors (P K Verma of Safdarjung and Yatin Mehta of Medanta Medicity) said she was very badly injured in the assault of December 16 night".
He said the best possible treatment was given to the girl in Delhi and in Singapore and the cause of her death was "the injuries she sustained".
"All possible medical efforts were made to treat the injuries. The efforts were not successful in helping her to overcome the injuries," he said. Declining to go into the details of the family, he said they had requested that the privacy of their identity be protected.
Meanwhile, the hospital added: "We are humbled by the privilege of being tasked to care for her in her final struggle. We acknowledge the faith the Indian Government and the patient's family have placed with us to ensure the best care possible was indeed provided to her at Mount Elizabeth Hospital".
"We share their huge sadness at her passing and will work with the High Commission of India to provide the family support in this time of grief," said Dr Loh.
Late last night, the hospital said the condition of the rape victim had taken a "turn for the worse". "As of 9 pm (6:30 PM IST), the patient's condition has taken a turn for the worse. Her vital signs are deteriorating with signs of severe organ failure," Loh had said in a statement.
"This is despite doctors fighting for her life including putting her on maximum artificial ventilation support, optimal antibiotic doses as well as stimulants which maximise her body's capability to fight infections," the CEO had said.
During her treatment in Safdarjung Hospital, the girl's condition had recorded several ups and downs. Three days after the attack, her gangrenous intestine was removed.
The beastial attack on the girl and her male friend in the bus had sparked off protests by students and women activists which took a violent turn in the capital last Saturday and Sunday.
Death for rapists was one of the demands of the protesters and the victim's demise could trigger fresh display of emotions on the streets.
A series of peaceful marches and protests were on Saturday held in the capital, including one at Jantar Mantar, to mourn the death of the 23-year-old gangrape victim even as India Gate and Raisina Hill were kept out of bounds for people.

Policemen were deployed in strength in and around India Gate and Raisina Hill as well as other parts of the capital to ensure that the protests remain peaceful besides shutting down of Delhi Metro stations near the war memorial.
Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit requested Home Minister SushilKumar Shinde to lift restrictions on holding peaceful demonstration in memory of the victim in and around India Gate.
In one of the protests, JNU students marched from their campus to Munirka bus stop from where the girl boarded the bus in which she was gangraped and brutally assaulted on December 16 allegedly by six men.
The students announced that they will hold a night vigil at the same spot on New Year Eve demanding strong laws to punish sexual offenders.
Activists of Left parties staged a peace march from Mandi House to Jantar Mantar led by CPI(M) Polit Bureau member Brinda Karat. She said there was a need for fixing accountability.
"Unless we do this, such incidents will repeat," she said. Asked about sexist comments by politicians, she said it shows the mindset of people and that "action should be taken against them in Parliament".
At Jantar Mantar, a number of people sat on a silent protest.
However, later there were sloganeering and demands for immediate punishment of the culprits. The mourners also protested against the security lock down of India Gate and Raisina Hill where violent demonstrations were witnessed last weekend over the rape.
People started gathering at Jantar Mantar in New Delhi at around 10 AM and sat in silence.CM Delhi was not allowed to speak to the protesters.
Aam Aadmi Party leaders Arvind Kejriwal, Manish Sisodia and Kumar Vishwas joined the protest along with some of their supporters with their mouth tied with black cloth.Kejriwal tweeted, "her death is a matter of shame and sorrow for all of us. Let's resolve that we will not let her death go in vain.”
In tweets, activist Kiran Bedi said, "today is a day of reflection and personal audit on the way we as parents and teachers are grooming boys in this country.
"Today is day of mourning on lives we have lost because of failure of our criminal justice system and resolve to not fail it in future. Today is a day to also reflect the way we project our women in media," she said.
Should a diabetic with tight sugar control drive?
New Delhi: Saturday, 29 December 2012: Worldwide, diabetics are required to produce proof of good blood sugar control to keep their driving license. A study by Dr. Donald A. Redelmeier, professor of medicine at the University of Toronto has shown that diabetics, who keep their blood sugar tightly controlled run the risk of having traffic accidents due to low blood sugar, said Padma Shri & Dr. B.C. Roy National Awardee, Dr. KK Aggarwal, President, Heart Care Foundation of India.
The risk was substantial, accounting for almost 50 percent of the accidents. The accidents were mostly related to severe hypoglycemia in association with strict blood sugar control. The findings were published online in PLoS Medicine. For the study, Redelmeier's team collected data on 795 diabetic drivers. They found that one in 14 of the drivers had been involved in car accidents. Those with low blood sugar were more likely to have had an accident than were diabetics whose blood sugar was not as well controlled. Moreover, the risk for having a car accident increased fourfold if the person had a history of hypoglycemia.
Diabetics should not to drive if they feel dizzy or have other symptoms of hypoglycemia. If some one has had a hypoglycemic episode the previous day, he or she should not drive the car next day.
Patients with diabetes should drive only if diabetes is under control and there is no evidence of end organ disease.

About HCFI : The only  National  Not for profit NGO, on whose mega community health education events, Govt. of India has released two National commemorative stamps and one cancellation stamp, and who has conducted one to one training on” Hands only CPR” of 22624 people since 1st  November 2012.

The CPR 10 Mantra is – “within 10 minutes of death, earlier the better; at least for the next 10minutes, longer the better; compress the centre of the chest of the dead person continuously and effectively with a speed of 10x10 i.e. 100 per minute.”

Friday, December 28, 2012

Invites suggestions for safety & security of woman:HC Judge Usha Mehra

 Commission of Inquiry headed by retired Delhi High Court Judge Usha Mehra has invited suggestions and responses from the public to improve safety and security of woman particulary in Delhi and national capital region. It has also requested people to provide information about the shocking rape incident of 23 year old paramedic student in Delhi. The responses may be sent through e-mail at or through fax no-011-23093750 by 10th of next month. The commission was set up to look into the incident of rape and assault on a young woman on 16th of this month in Delhi

Home minister Sushil Kumar Shinde said on Friday that the government will take a decision on the Telangana statehood within one month after an all party meet on the issue. 

"The meeting was very cordial. Some representatives said decision should be given as early as possible and some said that it should be taken within a month," Shinde told reporters.
He said that he has full faith that there will be a solution to the problems being faced by people of Andhra Pradesh.
Stating that the Friday meeting was the last time all parties would discuss the Telangana issue, Shinde said, "There will be a good decision."
Representatives from eight major political parties from Andhra Pradesh were likely to have attended the meeting on the four-decade-old demand for Telangana. The demand to carve a new state out of the economically less developed part of Andhra Pradesh gathered momentum after the Congress party-ruled government accepted the demand in-principle.
So far, 33 Congress, Telugu Desam Party (TDP), Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS), Praja Rajyam Party and Independent lawmakers hailing from the Telangana region have resigned from parliament as well as the Andhra Pradesh state assembly.
The demand for the separate state has seen violent protests and political power play, with more than 300 people killed between 1969 and 1972.
Congress MPs from Telangana hopeful of Centre favouring new state. While welcoming the outcome of the all-party meeting on Telangana, Congress MPs from the region have expressed confident that the Centre would take a favourable decision in carving out a separate state in a month's time. The seven MPs, who lobbied strongly with the Congress leadership for the all-party meet, told reporters in New Delhi that Union home minister Sushilkumar Shinde, during the meeting, spoke in favour of the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh. They also claimed that barring the YSR Congress party, all parties spoke in favour of a separate Telangana state. "YSR Congress has shown its true colours," said Madhu Yaskhi Goud, one of the Congress MPs. He called on the people of Telangana not to allow any YSR party leader to take out any yatra in the region. Hailing the decision of the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) to back the demand for carving out the state of Telangana, they asked TDP chief N Chandrababu Naidu not to stall the formation of a new state this time round. While advising Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) chief K Chandrasekhara Rao to withdraw the Telangana shutdown call on Saturday, they said TRS should not give an opportunity to anti-social elements to create trouble.
Promising Indian doubles pairs granted wild cards for Aircel Chennai Open 2013 Vishnu Vardhan & Sanam Singh and N Sriram Balaji & Jeevan Nedunchezhiyan to add strength to Indian contingent Chennai, December 28, 2012: The organisers of the Aircel Chennai Open 2013 today announced that India’s upcoming tennis players Vishnu Vardhan, Sanam Singh, N Sriram Balaji, and Jeevan Nedunchezhiyan have been granted wild card entries into the doubles draw of the $430,000 tennis tournament to be held here from December 31, 2012 to January 6, 2013. The wild card entry into the tournament is a significant recognition of the talent the four players possess. Vishnu Vardhan, who will be joining forces with Sanam Singh, has played singles as well as doubles matches for India against New Zealand in the Davis Cup. He has also played in the London Olympics with Paes and paired up with Sania Mirza for the mixed doubles. 24-year-old Sanam Singh is a Davis Cup player and Gold Medallist in the Asian Games of 2012. His inclusion into the doubles draw comes on the back of 5 International Tennis Federation Futures titles in 2012. Vishnu receives financial support from the Tamil Nadu Tennis Association (TNTA) and together with Sanam the pair could be a strong doubles pair of the future for India. The Tamil Nadu duo of N Sriram Balaji and Jeevan Nedunchezhiyan receive support from TNTA and has improved their rankings substantially in 2012. If they continue to perform well, the pair could break into the top 200 in 2013. They also have the potential to become a top-25 doubles team. The organisers had announced earlier that the country’s top doubles specialist players, Leander Paes, Mahesh Bhupathi, and Rohan Bopanna will be participating in the season-opener. With the inclusion of four more Indian players, the doubles section will see a strong contingent from the country battle for the title. Bhupathi will be teaming up with World No.5 doubles player Canada’s Daniel Nestor, while World No. 12 Bopanna will partner US-based Rajeev Ram, and World No. 3 Paes will take to the court with new partner Edouard Roger Vasselin of France. Mr. Karti P Chidambaram, Chairman – Tournament Organising Committee, Vice President – AITA & TNTA said: “Players such as Vishnu Vardhan, Sanam, Balaji and Nedunchezhiyan represent the future of Indian tennis. There is no doubt that they hold a lot of promise and the wild cards encourage them and recognise that fact. We are hopeful that they will do very well in the Aircel Chennai Open 2013 due to start on Monday” “We are glad that two doubles pairs from India have been granted wild card entries into the tournament. This will definitely be a huge opportunity for these youngsters and knowing that they hold promise we will not be surprised if they perform very well and even upset some of the veterans,” said tournament director Tom Annear. The field has an impressive line-up of 4 players from the top 20. Apart from the Czech Republic’s Berdych (No.6) who played a lead role in the recent Davis Cup final win, the grid includes Janko Tipsarevic (No.9), twice winner Marin Cilic (No.15) and Stanislas Wawrinka (No.17). ABOUT AIRCEL CHENNAI OPEN 2013 The USD 430,000 Aircel Chennai Open, owned by IMG and operated and organized by IMG Reliance, is India and South Asia’s only ATP World Tour event. Started in 1996, by IMG, a global leader in sports management and marketing, the tournament has completed sixteen successful years of existence, branding Chennai and India on the global tennis map thus creating a legacy of sorts of promoting international tennis in India. Winner of the prestigious ATP's Player Services Award of Excellence (2006) for its outstanding organization and wonderful hospitality towards the participants and ATP's Best Marketing Award (2008), the event has acquired the status of a much sought-after tennis event for both players and fans alike in the International tennis circuit. The 18th edition of the tournament will be held from December 31, 2012 to January 6, 2013 at the SDAT Tennis stadium in Nungambakkam, Chennai. The tournament is conducted in Chennai under the aegis of the All India Tennis Association (AITA) and is organized with the active collaboration of the Sports Development Authority of Tamil Nadu (SDAT) and Tamil Nadu Tennis Association (TNTA). ABOUT IMG TENNIS For nearly four decades, IMG Tennis has led the industry in the areas of player representation, tournament management, tour marketing, television-related initiatives, and teaching academies. The company’s rich heritage in tennis dates back to 1968 with the signing of its first tennis client, Rod Laver, by Mark H. McCormack. IMG Tennis anticipates the trends, nurtures the talent, and maximizes the opportunities for players, organizations, corporate marketers, and fans of tennis. IMG represents many top players on both the WTA and ATP Tours, along with a bevy of future stars poised to make their mark on the professional game. IMG also prides itself on representing many of the legends of the game. IMG's roster of tennis clients includes Novak Djokovic, Bjorn Borg, Lindsay Davenport, Chris Evert, Mary Joe Fernandez, John McEnroe, Rafael Nadal, Monica Seles, Maria Sharapova, and Venus Williams. ABOUT IMG RELIANCE In 2010 Reliance Industries Limited (RIL), India's largest and most recognized private sector company, and IMG Worldwide (IMG), the world’s leading sports marketing and management company, announced the formation of an equal joint venture to develop, market and manage sports and entertainment in India. The joint venture company, IMG Reliance Pvt. Ltd., will create and operate major sports and entertainment assets in the country. In its first initiative, IMG Reliance entered into an agreement with the Basketball Federation of India (BFI) to create a new professional basketball league and manage all aspects of the commercial rights to the game in India. IMG Reliance signed a 15-year agreement with the AIFF, to improve, popularize and promote the game of football throughout India, from the grassroots to the professional level. IMG Reliance has also created a scholarship program to identify and train talented young Indians from sports including - basketball, soccer and tennis–at IMG’s world-class sports training facilities at IMG Academies in Bradenton, Florida. # # # For more information please contact ZZEBRA PUBLIC RELATIONS

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Dear Naresh,

Today, in an op-ed for The Wall Street Journal entitled "Hungering for a Solution to Food Losses(see below or click HERE), Anna Lappe and I discuss the enormous amount of food wasted worldwide. In the United States alone, we waste about five million tons of food just between Thanksgiving and New Year's— that's enough to fill 125,000 18-wheelers, which would stretch from Chicago to Seattle.

Fortunately, there are a lot of amazing groups and individuals working on preventing waste throughout the world. The Barilla Center for Food & Nutrition in Italy, for example, recently published a report on the importance of identifying better ways to measure food loss and food waste. And Dana Gunders (Natural Resources Defense Council), Selina Juul (Stop Wasting Food), and Tristram Stuart (Feeding the 5000) are all doing work to create awareness, educate consumers, and identify solutions for preventing waste all along the food chain. In addition, Jonathan Bloom, author ofAmerican Wasteland, offered these 10 waste-saving tips for holiday gatherings in The Huffington Post.

In just 15 days, Ellen Gustafson and I will be launching Food Tank: The Food Think Tank! Please connect with us on Facebook and Twitter!

Happy new year!

Danielle Nierenberg
Co-Founder, Food Tank

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