“We thought we knew all about the Big Bang – but a blip in the cosmic afterglow is threatening our ideas,” reported Marcus Chown in The Independent. The “Axis of Evil” he speaks of is not North Korea and Iran, but a newly found polarity in the cosmic background radiation that is not explainable by current Big Bang cosmologies. Independent-thinking cosmologists like Jorge Magueijo are heightening their anti-bang rhetoric with these findings: “there may be something seriously wrong with our big bang models,” Chown, the author of The Universe Next Door, reported. Others are trying to fit the data into current models.The axis isn’t evil. The cosmologies built on faulty assumptions might be, but give the universe a break; it isn’t responsible for what mankind did.(Visited 23 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest The confidential crop survey from the National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) will be arriving in your mailbox soon and it’s very important to take the time to complete it. Anthony Bush farms in Mt. Gilead and is on the board of the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA). He says the number of farmers completing the survey has been declining in recent years and, as he tells the Ohio Ag Net’s Ty Higgins, that is bad news for farmers. Find out more about the survey at www.ncga.com/nass
The Sri Lankan cricket team is left stranded in Dharamsala due to heavy rain in the scenic hill town.The Lankan players had to stay at the airport for nearly four hours as their chartered plane could not take off due to bad weather.The Indian team though, managed to reach Mohali in time for the second ODI of the three-match series.”While the Indian team reached Mohali on time, incessant rain and bad weather left Sri Lanka stranded at the airport for about four hours. The team then decided to head back to the team hotel and is likely to fly out tomorrow,” media in-charge of the Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association (HPCA), Mohit Sood, said.Sri Lanka crushed India by seven wickets in the first ODI on Sunday to go 1-0 up in the three-match series.”This is the first time a team has been stuck here. There have been delays earlier but it has never happened that the planes have not been able to land or take off,” said Sood.He said that the Sri Lankan team was not willing to travel by road at night. The 240 km journey by road from Dharamsala to Mohali takes about 8-10 hours.”We had a discussion with the team management and they decided to stay back. But if the weather doesn’t clear up on Tuesday then the only option left will be to take the road,” Sood added.The local MeT office has predicted heavy rain over the next 48 hours in and around Dharamsala.advertisement(With PTI inputs)
One would imagine that a match-winning hundred like the 281 against Australia in the Kolkata Test would be the best moment in VVS Laxman’s career but no, the former India cricketer picked his maiden century against the same opposition in the Sydney Test as the one closer to his heart.The stylish batsman revealed this at the release of his autobiography ‘281 and Beyond’ in Hyderabad on Thursday night.Laxman, who shot to the limelight with a knock of 167 in 2000, believes this was closer to his heart as it was first international hundred and it gave him confidence and belief that he was capable of playing at the highest level.Also Read – Prithvi Shaw stole Virat Kohli’s thunder in Rajkot, says VVS Laxman”From 1996 to 2000, I never had a hundred. I never ever felt I was able to establish myself in the Indian team. If I had not got that 167, probably I would not have got another chance to play. The fashion in which I got these runs and against quality bowling on a challenging wicket and tough conditions gave me the confidence.””It removed doubts and apprehensions I had about my game. I started to feel that I belong to international cricket and that I can go out and perform against the best bowlers,” added Laxman in a chat with popular cricket commentator Harsha Bhogle.Also Read – Thanks for all the memories: Vaughan, Laxman pay tribute to Alastair CookLaxman, who retired from international cricket in 2012 after a career spanning 16 years, is known for his historic knock of 281 in 2001. His inning and record stand with Rahul Dravid, set up a stunning victory for India after following on.advertisementLaxman believes this was turning point for his career and also in the fortunes of the Indian team.He also revealed that this knock of 281 did not come as a surprise. Known as ‘Very Very Special’ in cricketing circles, Laxman said with the extensive fitness training and hard work, he was physically and mentally ready to play that kind of inning.Also Read – CAC trio of Tendulkar, Ganguly and Laxman could move away in new BCCIHe did not agree with Harsha Bhogle that 281 trapped him as people started to have huge expectations from him.”I learnt after the first 4 years of struggle at highest level that especially in our country you can’t afford to fall into a trap. Everyone will have expectations. I never played game to fulfill expectations of others.”Also Read – Sachin Tendulkar, VVS Laxman plant saplings under Haritha Haram programmeThe event saw Harsha Bhogle in free and frank conversation with Laxman, his family members, former cricketers Arshad Ayub, Venkatapathi Raju and autobiography co-writer R. Kaushik.Telangana’s Information Technology Minister K.T. Rama Rao and badminton coach P. Gopichand also shared their views at the event attended by former cricketers, coaches and friends of Laxman.Also Read – VVS Laxman’s kids broke down after David Warner’s ball-tampering banLaxman, who preferred cricketing career over becoming a physician like his parents, said the toughest decision for him was giving up as an opening batsman.In 1996 when Laxman was included in the Indian team he was announced as an opener. “I took it up as a challenge. It was one of the tough decisions,” he said.When he was dropped in 2000, he joined the Hyderabad team and started playing first class cricket. “I told myself that I am going to lead the life as a first class cricketer. I decided I will work hard but I will never ever open the batting. It was toughest decision because there was no guarantee of getting into playing XI of India,” he said.He recalled that at that time the middle order was packed with experienced players like Rahul Dravid, Sachin Tendulkar, Mohammed Azharuddin and Sourav Ganguly.Laxman represented India in 134 Tests, scoring 8781 runs at 45.97. He scored 17 Test centuries, six of which came against Australia.(With IANS inputs)Also Watch – It’s one of weakest teams vs one of strongest, says Harbhajan Singh
WASHINGTON – As NAFTA talks enter their most sensitive phase, a fever of speculation has broken out about whether Donald Trump might soon announce his intention to withdraw from NAFTA — and it’s likely to last a while.With only couple of months left in the currently scheduled rounds of talks, Canada will be keeping an ever-closer eye on the U.S. president, who has repeatedly said it might be necessary to start the withdrawal process in order to gain leverage and win concessions.Here’s a brief guide to what such a pullout announcement would likely mean.— NAFTA survives, at least for a while: The agreement’s withdrawal clause is not an automatic-exit trigger. It isn’t like Brexit and the European Union’s Article 50. NAFTA’s Article 2205 requires six months’ notice before anyone can actually pull out.— Loonie drops: Goldman Sachs projects a six-cent drop in the Canadian dollar if Trump announces a pullout, and a more dramatic effect on the peso. Mere speculation about a withdrawal in news reports this week caused a momentary dip. Currency markets can act as shock absorbers in the event of trade jolts, softening the impact of tariffs.— Lawsuit watch: A debate is already raging within the American legal community about the constitutionality of a president pulling out of a trade agreement without an act of Congress. Some insist Trump has the authority; others disagree. What everyone does seem to agree on is the likelihood of lawsuits. Behind the confusion lies a few historical contradictions: A U.S. Constitution that gives the president power over international relations, but the Congress power over trade; court cases that uphold the president’s power over international agreements, versus others that say he can’t contradict established law. This area of law hasn’t been tested much — it’s pretty rare for a U.S. president to be more hostile to trade deals than Congress, which is traditionally more protectionist. It’s unclear what would happen to the 1994 U.S. law passed by Congress implementing NAFTA, which remains on the books.— Mexico probably walks: Insiders familiar with the Mexican negotiators’ strategy are adamant: they will leave the negotiating table if Trump triggers Article 2205. The Mexicans have said this publicly, and sources there have been even more explicit in private conversations.— Canada probably stays: The Canadian government has been far cagier when asked what it would do next. But people familiar with its intentions say it would likely stay at the table and keep talking.— Trump’s next decision: Does he choose to pause negotiations during elections in Mexico and the U.S., and resume talks after a new Mexican government is sworn in this December? Stay at the table with whichever party chooses to keep talking? Turn the trilateral negotiation into a bilateral, if it’s only the U.S. and Canada? Or does he proceed to killing NAFTA after the six-month grace period?— Zombie NAFTA: The countries keep trading without tariffs, the agreement’s dispute mechanisms keep working, cross-border companies can keep investing and hiring anywhere, but all with the knowledge that the deal is half-dead and could be buried any time after six months. Without free trade, the countries would be free to apply their international tariffs — they average 3.5 per cent for U.S. imported products, 4.1 per cent in Canada, and 7 per cent in Mexico, though some products would face much higher tariffs.
New Delhi: The Election Commission Friday said the BJP has sought 10 more days to respond to a show cause notice issued to a member of its national election committee for sharing an “audio-visual advertisement” titled “main bhi chowkidar hun” on social media without complying with the directions of the poll body. Delhi’s chief electoral officer, in a statement, said, “As regards the show cause notice dated March 26, issued for sharing the audio-visual ad titled ‘main bhi chowkidar hun’ on social media, the BJP has sought 10 days to file a reply.” Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss bank a/c details The poll body had earlier asked the BJP election committee member to submit a reply within three days. Earlier this month, the EC had directed political parties to keep the country’s defence personnel out of election campaigning and not to use their photographs in advertisements. The EC’s Media Certification and Monitoring Committee (MCMC) had issued a conditional certificate dated March 16 to BJP national election committee member Neeraj “in respect of the said advertisement subject to the exclusion of the clips depicting Army personnel”. Also Read – Tourists to be allowed in J&K from Thursday In a bid to check violation of the poll code on social media, the EC had earlier asked political parties and candidates to get their digital content certified by the MCMC before posting it. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had on March 16, launched the “main bhi chowkidar hun” campaign by putting out a tweet that read: “Your Chowkidar is standing firm & serving the nation. But, I am not alone. Everyone who is fighting corruption, dirt, social evils is a Chowkidar. Everyone working hard for the progress of India is a Chowkidar.” He had also tweeted a video that begins with the PM addressing the people saying, “Your chowkidar is absolutely alert.” The video then moves into a song with visuals of people from across the length and breadth of the country, singing “main bhi chowkidar hun”. The clip also shows a group of men in army fatigues engaged in a mock operation.
Bengaluru: The ruling alliance in Karnataka will launch their joint Lok Sabha polls campaign Sunday with Congress chief Rahul Gandhi and JD(S) patriarch H D Deve Gowda addressing a mega rally on the outskirts of the city.Titled ‘Parivartana Samavesha’, this will be the first rally jointly organised by the Congress and JD(S) after the combine came to power. Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy, who visited BIEC ground near Nelamanagala to inspect the arrangements being made, said the event would be “historic.” Also Read – Uddhav bats for ‘Sena CM'”This will be the first joint campaign by Congress and JD(S)…tomorrow’s meeting is historic as it will send a clear message to people of the country from Karnataka for Lok Sabha polls,” Kumaraswamy told reporters here. Congress and JD(S) ministers, MLAs and leaders will be part of the event. Sunday evening’s rally will also be attended by lakhs of workers of both parties from Tumkur, Ramanagara, Bengaluru Rural and Bengaluru urban districts, Congress and JDS sources said. Also Read – Farooq demands unconditional release of all detainees in J&KFollowing this, state leaders of both parties would organise similar joint meetings at several places across Karnataka, they said. According to seat sharing arrangements, the Congress and JD(S) have decided to contest in 21 and 7 seats respectively. For the coalition to emerge as a formidable opposition to BJP and win more number of seats, it is crucial for the Congress to transfer its votes to the JD(S) and vice-versa. However, dissidence over seat sharing among workers of both parties, who have been arch rivals for decades, has caused worry to coalition leaders. According to the sources, organising the joint campaign is aimed at addressing this disgruntlement and send out a message that both the alliance partners are together. Both parties that had fought against each other ahead of May 2018 assembly polls joined hands to form an alliance as the election threw up a hung verdict. Karnataka will go to the polls in two phases, 14 constituencies each, on April 18 and 23.
Colombo: The St. Sebastian’s Church in the western coastal town of Negombo bore the brunt of a series of powerful blasts across Sri Lanka on Easter Sunday with 74 deaths and a top priest saying pieces of flesh were thrown all over the walls, on the sanctuary and even outside the church. At least 215 people were killed and around 500 others injured when six near simultaneous and coordinated explosions rocked three churches, three luxury hotels frequented by tourists in Sri Lanka on Easter Sunday, officials said. Two separate blasts took place in the afternoon, claiming five more lives, including that of three police personnel. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince ‘snubbed’ Pak PM, recalled jet from USSri Lankan media reported that the Negombo Hospital has reported at least 74 deaths and received 113 injured worshippers from the Sebastian’s Church. Father Edmond Tillekeratne, social communications director for the Archdiocese of Colombo, spoke to CNN from St. Sebastian’s Church, one of the locations targeted. He said that the blast took place after Easter Mass, and that there were about 30 bodies lying in the area of the church. He said three priests had been celebrating the mass at the time of the blast. Two of them were badly injured by flying glass and debris, and one was only lightly injured because he was behind the altar. Also Read – Record number of 35 candidates in fray for SL Presidential pollsHe estimated that more than a thousand people had come to the church for Easter Sunday “because it is a special day.” Many people came from villages, he said. He described the ground as covered in rubble and shattered glass. “You can see pieces of flesh thrown all over the walls and on the sanctuary and even outside of the church,” he added. The church, built in 1946, is one of the many churches in Sri Lanka dedicated to St Sebastian who is considered a martyr in the Catholic Church history. At the St. Anthony’s Church in Colombo, journalists saw bodies lying on the floor, some draped with scarves and clothes. Reports say said much of the church roof had been blown off in the explosion, with tiles, glass and splintered wood littering the floor — along with pools of blood. The Archbishop of Colombo has demanded that those responsible for the Easter Sunday blasts in Sri Lanka to be punished “mercilessly.” Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith, in a strong statement, urged the government to launch a “very impartial strong inquiry” and to punish those found responsible “mercilessly because only animals can behave like that.” All Easter mass in the Colombo District have been cancelled, the Cardinal announced. The Shangri-La Hotel in Colombo, which was the site of one of the explosions, released a statement, saying it was one of the several locations in Colombo which were affected by this morning’s attacks. “We are deeply saddened and shocked by the incident and our thoughts and prayers are with the families of the casualties and those who have been affected. “We are working closely with local authorities and emergency services to provide our fullest assistance and support to the affected staff and guests. “Our immediate priority is to look after the safety and wellbeing of all involved. A Shangri-La crisis management team has been activated to provide all necessary support. “As this is an active investigation, we are unable to comment further at this stage. We will provide an update once more information is available,” the hotel said.
Jaipur: External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj said Friday that the country saw an unprecedented development under Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government and its respect has increased globally. Addressing a ‘Vijay Sankalp’ dialogue here, Swaraj referred to the ‘honour’ India received at the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) meet after Modi took charge. She said Pakistan’s chair was vacant as the country had boycotted the OIC meet, citing India’s presence at the convention. Swaraj said the demand for declaring Masood Azhar as a global terrorist was going on since 2009. But due to the diplomatic acumen of the prime minister, Azhar was declared a global terrorist on May 1. Referring to the plans and achievements of the central government, the minister said many remarkable works were done in the last five years.