Whiteside comes up big for Heat in 83-75 win over Celtics
BOSTON: Hassan Whiteside was hardly shocked when Miami coach Erik Spoelstra designed a play for him late in the third quarter of a tight game.
He was surprised when Spoelstra kept doing it, though.
Whiteside scored half of his 20 points during a dominant stretch spanning the third and fourth quarters and Miami Heat held off the Boston Celtics 83-73 on Sunday to snap a two-game slide.
Whiteside also had nine rebounds and blocked three shots, while Chris Bosh added 18 points and Tyler Johnson had 13, helping overcome the absences of Dwyane Wade and Luol Deng.
Wade missed his second game in a row with a strained right hamstring, while Deng sat out his third straight with a strained calf. Wade, who injured himself in Tuesday’s loss to Milwaukee, is averaging 21.4 points and 5.4 assists per game.
Whiteside is more than making up for their absence, though, and Spoelstra isn’t his only supporter.
The 25-year-old has most of Miami in a frenzy following a wild week that included a triple-double and franchise-record 12 blocks last Sunday, and 24 rebounds on Friday.
It’s quite the story for the former castoff who signed with the Heat in November after playing in both Lebanon and China last year.
Avery Bradley and Tyler Zeller led the Celtics with 17 points apiece, and Brandon Bass had 15. It was Boston’s third straight loss and fourth in its last five.
Both teams were coming off their worst shooting performances of the season. Miami was held to a season-low 33.0 percent in a loss to Dallas, while Boston shot 35.6 percent in a setback to Houston.
Neither fared much better Sunday, with Boston shooting 37 percent and Miami 41.6, but Whiteside’s 10-for-17 performance fueled the Heat’s third win in their last seven games.
The suddenly surging 7-foot sensation was relatively quiet for the first two-and-a-half quarters before he began resembling the center who came in averaging 15.3 points and 17.7 rebounds over his previous three games, including a triple-double line of 14 points, 13 rebounds and a franchise-record 12 blocks last Sunday.
After Boston erased a 12-point halftime deficit, tying it at 55 with less than three minutes to play in the third, Whiteside had his way with the young Celtics.
He scored Miami’s final four points of the third and opened the fourth by scoring six straight points, including a pair of long jumpers that restored the Heat’s eight-point cushion.
Anthony scores 31 points as Knicks rout Lakers 92-80
NEW YORK: Carmelo Anthony hears those voices saying he’s getting old, that he can’t jump like he once did.
Hard not to, since some of them are coming from right in his locker room.
Anthony answered in his own way Sunday, scoring 18 of his 31 points in the third quarter as the New York Knicks beat the Los Angeles Lakers 92-80.
He stared back toward his own bench in the second quarter after rising high to slam down a lob pass from Jason Smith, revealing that his teammates were teasing the 30-year-old forward recently after seeing him dunk.
With Kobe Bryant out for the season and both teams among the worst in the NBA, it was anything but a Super Sunday in New York, where the national TV audience that was originally scheduled to see it missed the Lakers shooting 35.5 percent from the field.
Anthony stood out above the ugliness, turning mostly to his jumper in the third quarter to help New York pull away. He shot 13 of 25 and grabbed eight rebounds.
Langston Galloway added 13 points for the Knicks, who have won five of seven and did it easily, building their first 20-point lead since they were up 21 in a victory over Philadelphia on Nov. 22.
Boozer had 19 points and 10 rebounds for the Lakers, who lost for the 10th time in 11 games. Jordan Clarkson also scored 19 points.
The Lakers had snapped their nine-game losing streak with a double-overtime victory over Chicago on Thursday but they remain lost on the road, where they fell for the seventh straight time.
The Knicks are 10-38, slightly worse than the Lakers’ 13-35 mark. Missing half its star power with Bryant sidelined after shoulder surgery, the game was yanked from ESPN – the Knicks’ fourth consecutive game that was dropped from the NBA’s national TV schedule.
It was Derek Fisher’s first time coaching against the team he helped win five championships, and now Phil Jackson, the coach of those teams, will have to figure out how to build the Knicks into contenders.
Fisher said that doesn’t require landing another star like the Lakers did when they got Shaquille O’Neal or Pau Gasol, but acknowledged they may not be able to build gradually as teams such as Oklahoma City and Portland have.
The Knicks led 32-19 after one and pulled away in the third, when Anthony scored 12 straight Knicks points.
Results:
Miami Heat- 83 beat Boston Celtics- 75, New York Knicks- 94 beat Los Angeles Lakers- 80

Paes-Hingis won Australian Open mixed-doubles title

1 02 2015

Martina Hingis of Switzerland and Leander Paes of India celebrate

Paes has won 15th Grand Slam title. Paes and Swiss ace Martina Hingis Martina Hingis won the Australian Open mixed-doubles title, in Melbourne on Sunday.The seventh seed Indo-Swiss pair turned back the clock to serve past third seeds Daniel Nestor and Kristina Mladenovic 6-4, 6-3 in the one hour and 2 minutes battle at the Rod Laver Arena.Paes clinched his seventh mixed doubles crown, Hingis, who came out of retirement for the second time a couple of years back, collected her 11th doubles Slam apart from her five singles titles.

Ravinder Tavel wins PGTI Qualifying School 2015

24 01 2015

Ravinder Tavel wins PGTI Qualifying School 2015 after playoff victory over Trishul Chinappa

 

Thirty-eight players earn full cards for 2015 season

 

Eagleton – The Golf Resort, Bangalore, January 23, 2015: Ravinder Tavel (69-72-69-70) of Chandimandir, Haryana, prevailed in a playoff against Bangalore’s Trishul Chinappa (75-69-69-67) to win the PGTI’s Final Qualifying Stage for the 2015 season being held at Eagleton – The Golf Resort near Bangalore. Tavel defeated Chinappa on the second playoff hole after the two golfers ended the regulation 72 holes with matching totals of eight-under-280.

 

At the end of round four, the top 38 players earned their cards for the 2015 PGTI season as five players were tied in 34th place at seven-over-295.

 

Ravinder Tavel, who started the day two shots off the lead in joint second, emerged a major contender for the title after a solid front-nine where he made three birdies and a lone bogey. The 21-year-old from the SEPTA Golf Course in Chandimandir, a town on the outskirts of Chandigarh, then had a mixed back-nine as he made three birdies and an equal number of bogeys. Tavel finally sealed the affair against Trishul Chinappa, who shot the day’s best of 67, on the second playoff hole. Ravinder sank a seven feet par putt to win the event even as Chinappa missed a short par putt.

 

Tavel, who played his first full season on the PGTI in 2014, said, “I had a good start with some long conversions on the front-nine. However, the back-nine wasn’t that great as I missed some short putts to drop bogeys. I was quite confident going into the playoff even though Trishul had shot a much better score than me in regulation play. I held my nerve to hole a tricky par putt on the second playoff hole to seal the win.”

 

He added, “I’m delighted with this effort. It gives me the self-belief to do well in the 2015 PGTI season. Now that I’m in the top 100 of the tour, I will get more playing opportunities and can thus improve my game. I’ve worked really hard to get here. I would like to thank my coach Mr. Rampal for helping me with my game and Maj. Gen. Jagmohan Singh Sidhu and Col. Alok Sood for supporting me when I needed it the most.”

 

Udayan Mane of the Eagleton Golf Resort, Bangalore, finished third at seven-under-281.

 

Chandigarh’s K Raghav Bhandari and Delhi’s Anirudh Goyal shared fourth place at three-under-285.

 

Delhi golfer Siddharth Semwal, who fired a 68 on Friday, claimed sixth place at one-under-287.





Debate on the proposed 6000 MW Mithi Virdi Nuclear Power Plant

24 01 2015

Press Release: We want fair and open discussion on the proposed 6000 MW Mithi Virdi Nuclear Power Plant before taking any decision on the project – Open Letter sent to Narendra Modi & Barack Obama by Sarpanches of affected villages

From: napm india  Sat, 24 Jan ’15 8:54a

To: undisclosed-recipients:;

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Let us have fair and open discussion on the proposed 6000 MW Mithi Virdi Nuclear Power Plant before taking any decision on the project – Open Letter sent to Mr. Narendra Modi, Prime Minister of India & Mr. Barack Obama, President of USA by the Sarpanches of Mithi Virdi, Jaspara, Mandva and Khadarpar.

On 23 January 2015 one day fast observed against Mithi Virdi Nuclear Power Plant by more than 300 villagers.

Fax & Email

Date: 22 January 2015

To,

Mr. Narendra Modi

The Prime Minister of India, Prime Minister’s Office, South Block, New Delhi

Mr. Barack Obama

The President of United State of America

The White House, 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20500

Subject: Need for public discussion and debate on the proposed 6000 MW Mithi Virdi Nuclear Power Plant

Dear Sirs,

We are the villagers of the Mithi Virdi area of District Bhavnagar, Gujarat State, where the Nuclear Power Corporation of India Ltd (NPCIL), a Government of India company, seeks to install six 1000 MW (AP 1000) nuclear reactors with the joint support of the American company, Westinghouse Electric Corporation. We wish to put on record our viewpoint regarding this proposed nuclear power plant.

We are deeply concerned that NPCIL has nominated an environmental consulting firm (Engineers India Limited) lacking necessary accreditation to conduct the environmental impact assessment for Nuclear Power Plants. In fact, no agency in India is accredited to assess nuclear power projects by the National Accreditation Board for Education and Training.

In all, 152 villages with a population of more than 200,000 in 30 km radius of the proposed nuclear power plant will be “adversely affected” by the project. The main occupation of the villagers is agriculture. The rich alluvial soil here supports crops like groundnut, wheat, bajra, and cotton, and fruits like mango, chikoos and coconut. The area also grows and supplies vegetables like onion, brinjal, gourd, tomatoes, and drumsticks on a regular basis to other parts of the state, and the climate and the soil are suitable for cashew nuts. This rich agriculture is threatened by the proposed nuclear plant. Moreover, the site of the project is about 5 km from top lignite mining site, while Asia’s biggest ship-breaking yard Alang is only a stones throw away, posing additional threats to public safety.

Moreover, the governing leadership of the village does not sanction this plant. On 9 March 2013 the gram Panchayats of four most-affected villages – Jaspara, Mithi Virdi, Mandva, and Khadarpar – passed a resolution declaring the entire Mithi Virdi-Jaspara region as nuclear free zone. Yet, a state official (Taluka Development Officer) unconstitutionally ordered the elected village head (Sarpanch) of Jaspara to grant approval for the state government transfer of forest land to the NPCIL in a letter dated July 15, 2013.

The Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF) has asked NPCIL to “revise” and “resubmit” its Environment Impact Assessment report of the project, as it lacks clarity on a large number of issues. The panel, simultaneously, criticized the NPCIL for a three year delay in the proposal for environmental clearance following “site clearance” of the project by the Atomic Energy Regulatory Board, and noted key coastal regulatory clearances to be missing.

Pointing towards major shortcomings in the environment impact report, the Ministry of Environment and Forests noted: the absence of “base-line radioactivity data for milk samples;” the absence of the “impact of two hills near the site on atmospheric dispersion;” only eight water samples were collected and the need to “collect data for three seasons and submit;” the location of the Near Surface Disposal Facilities (NSDF) for radioactive waste was not clear; unclear “impact on land and groundwater;” absence of current status and a detailed study of “effect of historical tsunamis;” and no copy of the no-objection certificate (NOC) from the state irrigation department “since the project is located in a command area”.

This casual approach to clearing a Nuclear Power Plant can lead to a major Nuclear disaster. Agriculture forms the backbone for human survival, and this project strikes on a very important asset of our country – the prime agricultural lands.

It is not that we are against electricity generation. But no serious thought has been given to the available sustainable alternatives for electricity generation. The solar and wind power have equal and more sustainable potential to produce electricity and that too in a decentralised manner.

Keeping in mind above facts to reiterate again, the said agency, the EIL does not have necessary accreditation to conduct EIA for Nuclear Power Plants and also other anomalies bear serious reconsideration, therefore demand the following:

  1. The concerned authority should immediately reject the present EIA of Mithi Virdi Nuclear Power Plant of NPCIL prepared by EIL.
  2. Let us have fair and open discussion on the proposed 6000 MW Mithi Virdi Nuclear Power Plant Project before taking any decision on the project.
  3. Consider other environmentally sustainable and non-hazardous technologies for electricity production, which can co-exist without disturbing the agricultural livelihoods.

We request you to give us date and time to explain in detail our above-mentioned points and other related points in the interest of justice.

Expecting your positive response.

Yours Faithfully,

Shaktisinh H. Gohil – Sarpanch, Jaspara village

Samuben Hirabhai Dabhi – Sarpanch, Mithi Virdi village

Vilasba Dharmendrasinh Gohil – Sarpanch, Mandva village

Pruthvirajsinh.M. Gohil – Sarpanch, Khadarpar village





Haryana School Closure Order Quashed by Punjab and Haryana High Court

24 01 2015

Centre for Civil Society
CENTRE FOR CIVIL SOCIETY
Social Change Through Public Policy
For Immediate Release New Delhi
Haryana School Closure Order Quashed by Punjab and Haryana High Court
New Delhi – The Punjab and Haryana High court passed a judgement on 15 January 2015, quashing the blanket school closure order issued by Haryana Authorities in 2013 against private schools that did not meet recognition norms, or had not applied for recognition under Sections 18 and 19 of the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act, 2009. The order stated:
“[…]the petitioners themselves admitted that after the notices were issued some of them had given replies and some of them had not; some of them applied for recognition under the Act and some may not have. Whatever were the failings of the petitioners, there is a modicum of procedure that the State is bound to follow before the orders are passed directing closure of the schools. If only the State had undertaken any inspection and noticed on a case to case basis that norms had not been fulfilled or applications had not even been filed or replies had not been given, it would not be possible for the State to pass the order in the manner that it did. […] An omnibus order that the replies submitted were not found in proper order only betrays a complete lack of application of mind. If the schools were required to be closed or recognition was required to be withdrawn, there bound to be for reasons laid down under the 2003 Rules or under the RTE Act. […] 
On 17 September 2013, the Haryana Government had  issued a blanket school closure order for private schools running in the state that did not comply with Sections 18 and 19 of the RTE Act. A Writ Petition (WP (c) no. 21936 of 2013) was filed by Jhilmil Phulwari and other budget private schools, including members of the National Independent Schools Alliance, an initiative of Centre for Civil Society,  in the High Court at Chandigarh, against the closure orders issued by the Haryana Authorities.
“Private schools outperform government schools on almost parameters, at a fraction of the functioning cost. The poor are voting with their feet away from government schools, and the High Court judgement is a step toward strengthening the position of budget private schools in the country and creating access to education of choice for all”, said Parth J Shah, President, Centre for Civil Society.
The court’s judgement is significant, especially in light of the facts that Pratham’s Annual Status of Education Report 2014 throws up. In 2014, enrolment in private schools in Haryana increased from 51.4 to 54.2 percent in rural areas. Private schools also perform better, on average, than government schools in the State, with only 36.5 percent of children in Std III in government schools being able to read a Std I text, while the figure for private schools is 82.8 percent. Similarly, for mathematics skills, in government schools, 24.3 percent student in Std III could do subtraction, while in private schools this figure is 74.7 percent.
“Norms and standards are not effectively applied to government schools, and if these schools do not comply with RTE norms, they are not shut down. But a private school is required to shut down, despite it having better learning outcomes than a government school” said Prashant Narang, Advocate, iJustice.
For further information, contact Samta Arora (samta@ccs.in | +91 99538 27773)





With Rahul Gandhi: Today is National Girl Child Day

24 01 2015

 
Today is National Girl Child Day and let’s vow to fight against all prejudices that the girl child faces from womb to world.
Today is National Girl Child Day and let's vow to fight against all prejudices that the girl child faces from womb to world.  #SaveGirlChild





BCCI issues ultimatum to WICB

24 01 2015

Jan 24,

The BCCI has issued an ultimatum to the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) demanding it to furnish around 42 million US dollars damages caused by the Caribbean team’s mid-tour pull-out last year. In a fresh letter to WICB, the BCCI has demanded that the compensation be paid at the earliest. The Indian Board has threatened legal action in case the WICB fails to respond to the letter within a week.

The West Indian team had pulled out of the tour of India last year owing to a pay dispute with its Board. It had forced the hosts to arrange a series against Sri Lanka at the eleventh hour.





FM hints at not raising tax rates

24 01 2015

  FM  providing incentives to manufacturing sector in budget

Jan 24

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has hinted at not raising tax rates and providing incentives to manufacturing sector in the coming budget. He promised a stable tax regime that will not come up with unreasonable demand and charge taxes retrospectively.

Mr. Jaitley was addressing a session on ‘India’s Next Decade’ at the World Economic Forum in Davos yesterday. The Finance Minister said, he is not in favour of raising the rates of taxation as that could become counter productive. While referring to various revenue sources, Mr. Jaitley said, as economic activities picks up the government capacity to raise revenue will also increase.

Talking about subsidies, he said a scheme has now been started under which leakages will be plugged in the first place. Mr. Jaitley said, there is a need to take a series of reforms as the last 10 years got lost because of unnecessary debates.





Terrorists operating with impunity in Pakistan: US

24 01 2015

Jan 24

The White House on Friday said, a number of terror groups are functioning with impunity in parts of Pakistan. It stated that the US values counter-terrorism co-operation with India.

Hours before President Barack Obama’s departure to India, White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest expressed concern over the continued presence of terror safe havens in Pakistan even though the Pakistan Army has taken steps against them in recent months.





Cairn Juniors Hockey Cup 2015 enters day four

GBSSS, Begumpur and SBV, Ashok Nagar

New Delhi, January 18, 2015: The inaugural Cairn Juniors Hockey Cup 2015, being played at the Shivaji Stadium in the city entered day four today. In a junior’s (U-17) match GBSSS, Khanpur beat GBSSS, Saket J Block 1-0 in a closely contested game. Khanpur took an early lead in the 7th minute and it was enough for them. Saket J block did try to make a comeback and created few opportunities nut failed to find the back of the net. Kalvinder Singh scored the winning goal for GBSSS, Khanpur.

In another juniors game SS Mota Singh, Janakpuri thrashed DTEA, Mandir Marg 7-0 in a one sided game. The boys from Janakpuri took the lead in the 14th minute and there was no stopping them from thereon, as they completed a comprehensive victory. Harnoor and Amandeep scored two goals each, whereas Rahul,Deep and Prabjhas scored a goal apiece.

In the third game in the junior category Anglo-Arabic SSS, Ajmeri Gate and GBSSS, Ashok Vihar played a goalless draw.

In the last game in the junior category GBSSS, Saket J beat SBV, Janakpuri 2-0. Sushil scored the first goal in the 9th minute and Sonu doubled the lead in the 43rd minute.

In a sub junior (U-14) match GBSSS, Begumpur and SBV, Ashok Nagar played a thrilling draw. SBV took the lead in the 16th minute and doubled the lead in the 19th minute. The Begumpur boys made a remarkable comeback and scored three goals in the next 25 minutes to take a 3-2 lead, however SBV scored in the dying minutes of the game to level the score at 3-3. Ganesh socred two goals and Manish scored one for SBV. Kishan Kashyap scored a couple and Mohan scored one for GBSSS, Begumpur.

In another sub junior game VCS Agriculture, Khera Kheri completed a comfortable victory over SBV, Ashok Nagar as they beat them 4-0. Manish scored the first goal in the opening minute of the game.  Captain Sunny, Suraj and Sushil scored the other three goals for VCS Agriculture School.

Schedule Day 4 – January 19

Junior category (Under 17)

11.30 hrs

Modern School, Barakhamba Road

Vs

Army Public School, Daula Kuan

13.00 hrs

GBSSS, Saket J

Vs

Delhi Police Public School

14.30 hrs

SS Mota Singh, Janakpuri

Vs

Manasthali

15.30 hrs

SBV, Ashok Vihar

VS

GBSSS, Mahrauli

 

Sub Junior Category (Under 14)

10.00hrs

GBSSS, Mb road

VS

SBV,Ashok Nagar

Cristiano Ronaldo wins FIFA Ballon d’Or award for the third time

 

Cristiano Ronaldo has won the FIFA Ballon d’Or award for 2014, earning the title of world’s best football player for a third time. The Portugal captain beat Germany goalkeeper Manuel Neuer and four-time winner Lionel Messi in a vote of national team captains and coaches from FIFA’s 209 member countries, plus selected journalists.

Ronaldo retained football’s highest individual honour after scoring 61 goals for Real Madrid and Portugal last year. His record tally of 17 in a Champions League season helped his club win an unprecedented 10th European Cup title.

In the women’s award, Germany midfielder Nadine Kessler beat Marta of Brazil and United States forward Abby Wambach.

 

Swimmer Bhakti sets world record in Antarctic Ocean

 

India’s open water swimmer Bhakti Sharma has set a world record by swimming 1.4 miles in 52 minutes in one degree temperature at Antarctic Ocean. She has bettered the earlier record of British open water swimmer Lewis Pugh and American swimmer Lynne Cox. A release issued in New Delhi said, Bhakti is now the youngest in the world and the first Asian girl to have achieved this feat.