Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Winners : 69th Cannes Film Festival

Actor Willem Dafoe(R) poses on the red carpet as he arrives at the closing ceremony of the 69th Cannes Film Festival in Cannes, France, May 22, 2016
Actor Willem Dafoe on Right.
The complete list of the winners of the 69th Cannes Film Festival’s main competition on Sunday:
The Palme d’Or Award: I, Daniel Blake, directed by Ken Loach
The Grand Prize Award: Juste La Fin Du Monde, directed by Xavier Dolan
The Best Director Award: Olivier Assayas for Personal Shopper, and Cristian Mungiu for Baccalaureat
The Best Screenplay Award: Asghar Farhadi for Forushande
The Best Actress Award: Jaclyn Jose for Ma’Rosa
The Best Actor Award: Shahab Hosseini for Forushande
The Jury Prize Award: Andrea Arnold for American Honey
The Camera d’Or Award: Houda Benyamina for Divines
The Palme d’Or for Short Film Award: Juanjo Gimenez for Timecode
The Honorary Palme d’Or: Jean-Pierre Leaud

World humanitarian summit

World leaders have joined calls by UN chief Ban Ki-moon for improving the global humanitarian situation through conflict prevention and resolution in the ongoing world humanitarian summit held here on May 23-24.
The calls also urge better financing, improvement of the conditions of the vulnerable and reduction of the need for humanitarian assistance.
During the first day of the world humanitarian summit which opened here Monday, world leaders discussed conflict prevention, humanitarian financing, assistance to the vulnerable and ways to reduce the need for aid, at four round-table meetings.
The UN-backed summit, the first of its kind in the world body’s history, brought together some 5,200 participants, including 65 heads of state and government and representatives from the public and private sectors.
It aimed at initiating a complete revamp of the current global humanitarian system, which has been in place for decades and is struggling to meet the needs of around 125 million people worldwide.
“We are here to shape a different future,” Ban told a grand opening ceremony at Istanbul Congress Center. “Today, we declare: We are one humanity with a shared responsibility.”
At the ensuing roundtable discussion, the UN chief pressed world leaders to show political will of a scale and scope not seen in recent years in order to save succeeding generations from “the scourge of war.”
“Preventing and peacefully resolving conflict is the biggest difference the international community could make to reduce the overwhelming humanitarian need,” he said.
“Violent conflict was the overriding reason why such requests had increased 600 per cent in the last 11 years to more than 20 billion U.S. dollars today,” he noted.
For its part, he said, the United Nations would improve its analysis of risk factors by reviewing the capacities of its agencies, funds and programmes to enable an integrated approach to the root causes of conflict.
Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said the debate on conflict prevention was the most important on the first day’s agenda of the summit, as conflict prevention was both the founding reason for the United Nations and also its biggest failure, caused mainly by veto use in the UN Security Council.
He called for a reform of the powerful Security Council, stressing that the fate of humanity could not be left to only five countries — the permanent members of the council.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel said that early warning, prevention, stabilization and peace consolidation must be part of a tool box of measures to prevent crises, with burdens shared fairly at the international level.
During the roundtable discussion on assisting the vulnerable, Gaylee Smith, Administrator of the United States Agency for International Development, said that her country would host a leaders summit on refugees from a belief that, without systemic changes at scale, states would be unable to meet today’s challenges.
The United States would look for funding to be increased by 30 percent and a doubling of global refugees afforded third-country settlement, she said.
While discussing humanitarian financing, Ban said that narrowing the growing gap between aid and people’s needs was possible, particularly since estimates had put the total sum requested for humanitarian assistance at about 1 per cent of global military spending.
Later in the day, Ban launched an ambitious scheme aiming to significantly improve the efficiency of humanitarian aid, as part of the efforts to bridge the funding gap.
The UN chief revealed that the Grand Bargain scheme has so far gained endorsement from 18 countries, including such major donors as Japan and the United States, and 16 major aid organizations, including the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent.
The Grand Bargain contains 10 categories of commitments, including greater transparency, more use of cash-based programming, reduction of duplication and management costs and less redtape.
Kristalina Georgieva, European commissioner for budget and human resources, who is a key designer of the scheme, predicted at the ceremony that the program could save at least 1 billion dollars in overheads over the next five years by shifting resources away from draining backroom activities to frontline delivery.
The two-day event is a culmination of a four-year-long preparatory process, including an extensive global consultation with 23,000 stakeholders in 153 countries to identify the key humanitarian challenges facing the world.
It will focus Tuesday on the need to respect the rules of war, enhance preparedness for natural disasters and climate change, and pay more attention to women and children in humanitarian actions.
The summit consists of plenary sessions, roundtable discussions, side events, and an exhibition featuring the humanitarian theme.
At the end of the gathering, a chair’s summary will be issued to reflect its outcomes, and some time later a report containing commitments to action will be submitted to the UN General Assembly for follow-up.

Piaggio India inaugurates its third premium retail concept store in India;      

  further strengthens footprint in the South with a Motoplex in Chennai.

  • Motoplex is the one stop lifestyle store for Piaggio Group’s brand portfolio – Vespa, Aprilia and Moto Guzzi
  • India’s first Motoplex was launched in Pune in 2015; Chennai opening follows on the heels of Motoplex recently launched in Hyderabad; both the Motoplex stores help Piaggio strengthen its footprint in the South India.
  • Chennai Motoplex set up by M/S JMB Motors and inaugurated by Mr. Stefano Pelle, Managing Director and CEO, Piaggio India.

Mumbai, 24th May, 2016: With two successful Motoplex launches firmly under its belt, the Piaggio Group is aggressively moving forward with its Motoplex expansion strategy across India. Starting with the first launch in Pune in Nov 2015, followed by the second one in Hyderabad earlier this month, Piaggio Group today added India’s third Motoplex in the city of Chennai. Also known as the ‘Detroit of South Asia’, Chennai becomes the second city in South India to get a Motoplex store.

Inaugurated by Mr. Stefano Pelle, Managing Director and CEO, Piaggio India;  the store is set in a sprawling area of 4,061 sq. ft. at  4th Avenue, Ashok Nagar, Chennai.
In line with the innovative in-store experience, the Piaggio Group is developing this concept in major metropolitan areas around the world. The Chennai Motoplex is a place for patrons to discover the essence of the Piaggio Group and its lineage with brands like Vespa, Aprilia and Moto Guzzi on display. It is a platform for bike enthusiasts to explore all of their favourite Piaggio brands and share their biking experience in one place.

Motoplex multi brand stores have already been set up in Milan, New York City, Shanghai and Singapore where all the Piaggio group brands coexist in one continuous experience.
“It is a proud moment for the Piaggio Group to bring our flagship store to Chennai – our third in India and second in the south of the country. Motoplex as a concept, offers the experience of Italian biking under one roof along with an exciting overview of the two-wheeler world, reflecting the innovative vision of the Piaggio Group. The store not only showcases the long standing history of our brands – Vespa, Aprilia and Moto Guzzi but also highlights their fascinating journey that proudly stands for ‘Made in Italy’,” said Stefano Pelle, Managing Director and CEO of the Piaggio India.
He went on to add, “With the display of various brands from the Piaggio Group, the Motoplex store aims to achieve the same success it has had internationally. Chennai as a two-wheeler market has always been of strategic importance to us and it was a logical move to bring this concept store to this city.”

Mr Satish Mehta – Executive Director, Chennai Motoplex said, “Today, is a moment of fulfilment as we become a part of Piaggio’s new retail experience, the Motoplex. It is indeed our pleasure to be representing Piaggio’s premium brands in Chennai.”

About Piaggio Vehicles Private Limited:
Piaggio Vehicles Private Limited (PVPL) is a 100% subsidiary of Piaggio Group, founded in 1884, leader of the European powered two-wheeler market. The Group manufactures scooters and motorcycles as well as three and four wheeled commercial vehicles with an impressive portfolio of brands including Piaggio, Vespa, Aprilia, Moto Guzzi and Apé.
PVPL commenced its India operations in 1999, with the launch of the Apé, which became India’s favourite three-wheeler brand in a short span of time.
Piaggio invented the Vespa in 1946. Having successfully established itself in the world wide two wheeler segment, Vespa was launched in India in April 2012. The Company has a state-of-the-art plant in Baramati, Maharashtra, India where it manufactures the iconic Vespa alongside its wide range of 3 and 4 wheeled commercial vehicles.
For information on the Piaggio Group please visit www.piaggiogroup.com
Aprilia was born into racing and is the real sporty flagship brand for Piaggio Group.
With 294 Grand Prix races won in Road Racing World Championship, Aprilia holds the record for the most wins of any European manufacturer in the history of maximum motorcycle competitions. These are joined by an impressive 54 world titles: 38 in Road Racing World Championship, 7 in Superbike and 9 in Off Road disciplines.

Moto Guzzi is one of the oldest and most respected brands in motorcycle history, a legendary italian brand beloved the world over for its legendary motorcycles. Established in 1921, and acquired at the end of 2004 by the Piaggio Group, Moto Guzzi has operated continuously for 95 years at the same factory in Mandello del Lario, with its fully stocked museum under the “Eagle brand”. The site is one of the most popular destinations for bikers from all over the world.Emblem of a culture and capability of building unique bikes, the Moto Guzzi models are still assembled by hand in the Mandello del Lario plant.

Vespa has been a synonym with two-wheel individual mobility since 1946 when it made its debut; with more than 18 million vehicles produced since then, the Vespa is an incredibly long-lived market success as well as one of the best known icons of Italian style and technology in the world.

An air ambulance crash-lands New Delhi

An air ambulance with 7 people on board crash landed in a field in Najafgarh area of South West Delhi on Tuesday. Fortunately, no one sustained any major injury.
The air ambulance had taken off from Patna and was enroute to Delhi when it crash landed.
The six-seater Beech King Air C-90A aircraft crash landed at around 2.40pm on a field in Kair village in Najafgarh about 10 km from the Indira Gandhi international Airport, police officials said.
The 27-year old plane belonging to Chandigarh-based private operator Alchemist Airways had to force land after both its engines failed, airport officials said. NDTV news

Kuwait to hire 20,000 Bangladeshi domestic workers
Prothom Alo | 23rd May
Nearly 20,000 work permits have been issued for Bangladeshis to work as domestic workers for Kuwaiti families following the announcement made by ministry of interior to allow recruitment of Bangladeshi nationals, reports daily Al-Shahed. The General Department for Residency Affairs earlier issued a decision to grant authorisation to the directors of immigration departments in the six governorates to issue work permits for Bangladeshi domestic labourers.
Commerce Minister Tofail asks Saudi investors to invest more in BD
The Financial Express | 23rd May
Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed Sunday urged the Saudi investors to seek benefits out of investment-friendly settings provided by the present government of Bangladesh. “Bangladesh government is providing special benefits to the investors. The foreign investors can make hundred per cent investments and also can withdraw their capital and profit in whole. If Saudi investors make investment in Bangladesh, they will get more benefit and both Bangladesh and Saudi Arabia will also enjoy the fruits of it,” he said.
Lyonchoen apprised of delayed payment issue
Kuensel| 23rd May
The issue of delayed labour payment was the highlight of the discussion during Prime Minister Tshering Tobgay’s visit to Serthi and Lauri in Jomotsangkha on May 16. Villagers claimed that they had contributed labour by carrying electric poles, wires and other raw materials. However, even upon completion of the rural electrification project, most villagers are yet to be paid by the contractor.

Maldivian government provides monetary aid to Lanka in symbolic gesture
Sun Online | 23d May
Maldivian government has provided monetary aid to people of Sri Lanka suffering from floods and mudslides in the country on behalf of the people of Maldives in a symbolic gesture. Maldivian High Commission in Sri Lanka released a press statement, saying that the money was handed over to Minister of Disaster Management of Sri Lanka, Anura Priyadarshana Yapa by Maldivian Economic Minister Mohamed Saeed in a ceremony held at Ministry of Disaster Management.
Government: If Nasheed was given asylum, actions of UK government is saddening
Sun Online | 23rd May
Maldivian Government has said that if the former President Mohamed Nasheed was in fact granted political refugee status in the UK, the Maldives is concerned by the actions of the UK government. Ex-President Mohamed Nasheed went to the UK for medical treatment, while serving a 13-year prison sentence, in January. After repeated extensions on his medical leave, Nasheed’s lawyer, Hassan Latheef said that the former President has been granted political refugee status by the UK.

India-Myanmar conclave upbeat on bilateral business prospects
Mizzima| 20th May
A 25-member business delegation from India attended the conclave led by Ms Nirmala Smanthiara Minister of State for Commerce & Industry under the theme: “Forging partnerships: How Myanmar – India business relations can contribute to the development of Myanmar.” More than 40 CEOs from Myanmar attended the event at the Park Royal Hotel in Yangon. The conclave contained specialized discussions about several business areas such as agriculture, energy and health.

Govt fails to implement key proposal of 9-pt deal
The Himalayan Times | 23rd May
The government failed to implement a key provision of the nine-point agreement reached between the CPN-Maoist Centre and the CPN-UML on May 5. Point 3 of the agreement states that the process of amending laws to complete the works of the peace process in the spirit of the comprehensive peace accord will be initiated within 15 days.
PM Oli calls all-party meeting
The Himalayan Times | 24th May
Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli called a meeting of political parties, including the ruling parties, the main opposition Nepali Congress party and the constituents of the United Democratic Madhesi Front. UDMF leader Upendra Yadav, however, said the agitating forces would not attend the meeting. Minister’s Press Adviser Pramod Dahal and Political Adviser Bishnu Rimal said the PM called the all-party meeting to find a negotiated settlement of all the contemporary, as well as constitutional issues.

Mullah Mansour’s death message for Taliban, says Obama
DAWN | 24th May
US President Barack Obama said that the drone strike that killed Taliban leader Mullah Akhtar Mansour was also “a clear signal to the Taliban and others” that the United States would not allow such people to operate freely. “It has been confirmed that he is dead,” said Mr Obama, quashing speculations that the Taliban leader might have survived the Saturday morning attack on his vehicle. He said the attack was also a clear message to the Taliban and to those who supported them to discontinue their activities.
Massive tax exemptions for Gwadar port operators
The Express Tribune | 24th May
Pakistan approved sweeping tax concessions for Chinese operators at the deep-sea Gwadar port and businesses that will operate in the Gwadar Free Zone for up to 40 years to make the Arabian Sea port an important node in Beijing’s ‘One-Belt, One-Road’ strategic initiative. The Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet took the decision on a day when Iran, India and Afghanistan signed a trilateral transit agreement to counter the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).
South Korea to sign deal with Sri Lanka on megapolis development
Colombo Page | 24th May
The government of South Korea plans to sign an initial deal with Sri Lanka on the development of the Sri Lankan capital of Colombo and adjacent areas in the Western Province under the megapolis development plan, Yonhap News Agency reported.
President declares disaster affected areas as high security zones
Colombo Gazette | 23rd May
President Maithripala Sirisena has declared all disaster affected areas as high security zones. Accordingly people displaced by the landslides and serious flooding will not be allowed to resettle in the high security zones.

Three rail connectivity projects awarded under Sagarmala

Three rail connectivity projects awarded under Sagarmala
Three rail connectivity projects under the Ministry of Shipping’s flagship programe ‘Sagarmala’, worth Rs 38.71 crores have been awarded by Indian Port Rail Company Limited (IPRCL). These projects will help to increase connectivity and efficiency of ports. The port wise details of the connectivity projects are:
1) Visakhapatanam Port Trust: IPRCL has sanctioned a project for providing direct connectivity between OEC and Western Sector joining at NAD curve from Eastern Coast Railways. The estimated cost of this project is 16.75 crores. The work for this project has been awarded and is likely to be completed by December 2016.
2) Visakhapatanam Port Trust: Another project which has been sanctioned by IPRCL is for connecting the dead end line at North of R&D yard to Eastern Grid (third line) from Eastern Coast Railways at a cost of 9.28 crores. The work for this project has been awarded and is expected to be completed by January 2017.
3) Chennai Port Trust: The third connectivity project that has been approved by IPRCL is the laying of new railway track at west of western yard 1 and providing paving block platform in between new track and western yard 1. The overall cost of this project is 12.68 crores and the work is expected to be completed by April, 2017.
IPCRL is also working towards executing 18 more port connectivity projects. All these projects will help in better port connectivity and quick evacuation of cargo

Who is Planning Urban India and How? by Sanjeev Vidyarthi,

Dear All,
As part of our Urban Workshop Series, the Centre for Policy Research (CPR) and Centre de Sciences Humaines (CSH), Delhi, are delighted to invite you to a Workshop on From the Local to Regional: Who is Planning Urban India and How? bySanjeev Vidyarthi, Associate Professor of Urban Planning and Policy at the University of Illinois, Chicago
Date:               Tuesday, 31rst May 2016
Time:               3.45 p.m.
Venue:             Conference Hall, Centre for Policy Research, Dharma Marg, Chanakyapuri, New Delhi 110 021
Who is making the plans shaping fast-growing Indian cities and their metropolitan regions? The presentation, which shares preliminary findings of this research, is organized in two parts. The first part describes the changing perception of spatial plans within the planning discipline. Plans, for example, are no longer seen as precise and predictive in character but incremental and provisional by nature. There is a growing recognition that a diverse range of actors (homeowners, squatters, developers, politicians etc.) make different kinds of plans (informal, tacit, spontaneous, incremental and more) as they anticipate and prepare for an uncertain future in an increasingly urbanized world. The second part of presentation will then illustrate the wide variety of existing and emergent urban actors and their plans that are beginning to shape Indian urban regions in unprecedented ways.
Sanjeev Vidyarthi is an Associate Professor of Urban Planning and Policy at the University of Illinois, Chicago. Trained as an architect, urban designer and spatial planner, Sanjeev studies ideas and actions in the domain of human settlements focusing upon the meanings and purposes of planning for places. His research interests span the fields of planning theory and history and globalization and development studies, and his current research explores who does (and should do) the planning work. Exploring planning efforts in a wide variety of urban settings, Sanjeev has lived, worked and studied in the Middle East, Western Europe, and the United States over the past couple decades, while maintaining a strong research agenda around the spatial planning and development of post-independence India>

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