Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Modi most popular world leader on Facebook

Trump may rule the roost on Twitter, but he lags far behind Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Facebook, according to a study published Wednesday.
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Modi is by far the most followed world leader on the gargantuan social networking platform, counting 43.2 million followers.
That is nearly twice the 23.1 million who follow Trump, according to a study by communications firm Burson-Martsteller.
Of course, Facebook tends to be more widely used in Asia than Twitter which may also account for the large number of followers for Asian leaders.
Cambodia´s prime minister Hun Sen shot into fifth position after his following swelled nearly 50 percent to 9.6 million people, the study found.
He therefore counts “more Facebook fans than Cambodia has Facebook users (7.1 million), but still (fewer) than the 14.4 million Khmer speakers on Facebook,” it pointed out.
The study, which analysed the activity of 650 personal and institutional Facebook pages of heads of state and government and foreign ministers since January 1, 2017, meanwhile showed that Trump easily counted most interactions on the platform.
The US president counted a total of 204.9 million comments, likes and shares over the past 14 months — nearly twice as many as Modi, who counted 113.6 million, the study said.
It also found that Trump on average posts five times a day on Facebook, which is more than double the number of posts from the Indian premier.
In terms of followers, the study put Queen Rania of Jordan in third place, with 16 million followers.
Wednesday´s study also highlighted the handful of world leaders who actually manage their Facebook pages themselves, instead of handing them off to social media teams.
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is particularly active and is one of few who regularly broadcasts live on the platform, from her home and even from her car.
The seven-month-pregnant politician has become the “most loved” world leader on Facebook, the study found, pointing out that 14 percent of her interactions on the platform are love hearts sent by her followers.

Pollution colouring the Taj Mahal.

Supreme Court order the government to seek foreign help to fix what it described as a worrying change in colour at the Taj Mahal.
Supreme Court on Tuesday sharply criticised the government for failing to protect the Taj Mahal, the centuries-old monument to love which has been changing colour because of pollution.
The brilliant marble of the Taj Mahal, a UNESCO world heritage site, has acquired a yellow tinge over the years. The colour of the marble “was first becoming yellow. Now it seems to be green and black,” a Supreme Court bench said after reviewing recent photos of the monument.
“It appears that you do not have expertise or you have (it) but do not want to utilise it, or you do not care about (the Taj Mahal),” the court said. “You all appear helpless. Money should not be the consideration…. We need to save it,”  court justices said.
The court said the famous tomb, built in the 17th Century from white marble and other materials, had turned yellow and was now turning brown and green.
Pollution, construction and insect dung are said to be among the causes.
Supreme Court justices MB Lokur and Deepak Gupta gave  Modi´s government and the government of Uttar Pradesh state a week to respond.
This is not the first time the Supreme Court has criticized  authorities on the issue. In February, it warned that the state government’s “ad hoc” approach was jeopardizing the monument.
Justices Madan Lokur and Deepak Gupta examined photographs of the palace submitted by environmentalists and ordered the government to seek expertise from inside India and abroad.


Preliminary Earthquake Report
  • 2 May 2018 04:41:15 UTC
  • 2 May 2018 14:41:15 near epicenter
  • 2 May 2018 08:41:15 standard time in your timezone
Location16.529N 144.817E
Depth156 km
  • 176 km (110 miles) NNW (327 degrees) of SAIPAN, Northern Mariana Islands
  • 205 km (127 miles) SSW (210 degrees) of Pagan, Northern Mariana Islands
  • 341 km (212 miles) N (1 degrees) of HAGATNA, Guam
  • 2071 km (1287 miles) ESE (118 degrees) of Naha, Okinawa, Japan

GST collection surge

 Goods and Services Tax (GST) collection in entire 2017-18 stood Rs 7.41 lakh crore, in March the figure was Rs 89,264 crore. “The total gross GST revenue collected in April 2018 is Rs 1,03,458 crore of which CGST is Rs 18,652 crore, SGST is Rs 25,704 crore, IGST is Rs 50,548 crore (including Rs 21,246 crore collected on imports) and Cess is Rs 8,554 crore – including Rs 702 crore collected on imports,” Finance Ministry said in a statement.
The buoyancy in the tax revenue of GST reflects the upswing in the economy and better compliance, it said. However, it is usually noticed that in the last month of financial year, people also try to pay arrears of some of the previous months also and, therefore, April 2018 revenue cannot be taken as trend for the future, it added.
The total revenue earned by Central Government and State Governments after settlement in April, 2018 is Rs 32,493 crore for Central GST and Rs 40,257 crore for State GST, it said.
As far as total number of GSTR 3B returns for March up to April 30 was concerned, nearly 69.5 per cent filed returns. As many as 60.47 lakh as against 87.12 lakh, who are eligible to file returns for March, did the needful, it said.
April was also the month for filing of quarterly returns for composition dealers, it said. Out of 19.31 lakh composition dealers, 11.47 lakh have filed their quarterly return (GSTR 4) and have paid total tax of Rs 579 crore, which is included in Rs 1.03 lakh crore of total GST collection, it added.


Torbaaz’ in Bishkek
   While the teaser of Rajkumar Hirani’s upcoming film Sanju with Ranbir Kapoor playing Sanjay Dutt onscreen has taken the social media by storm, and now Dutt is busy shooting a month-long schedule for his next upcoming film ‘Torbaaz’ in Kyrgyzstan.
   Dressed in his usual stylish self, the actor posted his picture on Instagram while sporting a cool scarf to match the outdoors as he started shooting for the film in the capital city of Bishkek yesterday. The actor is essaying the role of an army officer in the film which is directed by award-winning director Girish Malik & produced by ace filmmaker Rahul Mittra. Presented by Raju Chadha, ‘Torbaaz’ will also feature Nargis Fakhri, Rahul Dev & Rahul Mittra in pivotal roles.
  The story revolves around suicide bomber kids in Afghanistan and is already being talked about for its high content & world class cinematic experience. Incidentally, Rahul Mittra & Girish Malik are the first Indian filmmakers to shoot in the picturesque country of Kyrgyzstan.


Swede leader not for multiculturalism

Kasselstrand says Sweden’s ‘multiculture is an impossibility and a total failure’. According to him It is not possible to combine widely different peoples in one country and expect good results.
“The historical experience of multicultural societies points to the opposite. Disagreements and conflicts, not a harmonious social life […] is the result of multiculturalism and mass immigration,” he said.

Introducing Metamorphoses by Prof Yochai Benkler

NITI Aayog, India International Centre and Centre for Policy Research are pleased to invite you to the keynote
Introducing Metamorphoses
by Prof Yochai Benkler
Wednesday, 2 May 2018, 6:30 p.m.
Deshmukh Auditorium, India International Centre
Metamorphoses Website
Professor Yochai Benkler will be delivering the keynote ‘Introducing Metamorphoses’ – a series of nine interactions, which will unfold over a year, covering different aspects of the digital revolution. Metamorphoses is a modest effort to try and bridge the gap between digital technologies, which are transforming our lives, and our understanding of their multiple dimensions. The series is a joint initiative between NITI Aayog (the Government of India’s think tank), Indian International Centre (IIC) and Centre for Policy Research (CPR).
The keynote will set the big picture, where Prof. Benkler will talk about current and future technologies and their likely impact on democracy, development, growth and inequality.
Inaugural remarks: Mr N N Vohra, President IIC
Brief opening remarks by Mr Amitabh Kant, Chief Executive Officer, NITI Aayog; Ambassador Shyam Saran, Life Trustee, IIC and former Foreign Secretary; and Ms Yamini Aiyar, President & Chief Executive, CPR.
Keynote by Prof. Benkler followed by a curated question and answer session with the audience.
Closing remarks by Air Marshall Naresh Verma, Director, IIC
Prof. Yochai Benkler is the Berkman Professor of Entrepreneurial Legal Studies at Harvard Law School, and faculty co-director of the Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University. Since the 1990s he has played a role in characterizing the role of information commons and decentralized collaboration to innovation, information production, and freedom in the networked economy and society. His books include The Wealth of Networks: How social production transforms markets and freedom (Yale University Press 2006), which won academic awards from the American Political Science Association, the American Sociological Association, and the McGannon award for social and ethical relevance in communications. In 2012 he received a lifetime achievement award from Oxford University in recognition of his contribution to the study and public understanding of the Internet and information goods. His work is socially engaged, winning him the Ford Foundation Visionaries Award in 2011, the Electronic Frontier Foundation’s Pioneer Award for 2007, and the Public Knowledge IP3 Award in 2006. It is also anchored in the realities of markets, cited as “perhaps the best work yet about the fast moving, enthusiast-driven Internet” by the Financial Times and named best business book about the future in 2006 by Strategy and Business. Benkler has advised governments and international organizations on innovation policy and telecommunications, and serves on the boards or advisory boards of several nonprofits engaged in working towards an open society. His work can be freely accessed at
The talk will be livestreamed on the IIC website; available on Facebook-live on the Metamorphoses Facebook page; and video recordings will be available on YouTube, as well as disseminated through social media channels hosted on the Metamorphoses website. The promotional video for Metamorphoses can be accessed here.
Sign up for the event at this link. This is necessary given seating requirements.

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