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  • Covid could push 72mn more kids into learning poverty: World Bank
    Washington, December 3 (IANS): The Covid-19-related school closures risk pushing an additional 72 million primary school aged children into "learning poverty" - meaning that they are unable to read and understand a simple text by age 10, the World Bank has said. The pandemic is amplifying the global learning crisis that already existed, according to two new World Bank reports, which outlined a new vision for learning and the investments and policies needed, including on ed
  • Why making MSP mandatory is problematic
    New Delhi, December 2 (IANS): The Narendra Modi government claims to give minimum support price (MSP)for crops to farmers at one and a half times the costs of production. On the other hand farmers are seeking a guarantee for procurement of crops on the MSP fixed by the government. But the toughest part about giving a guarantee on MSP is that a chunk of the government's budget will go into it. Experts point out that the government will need about Rs 17 lakh crore to procure all crop
  • 59% Indians sceptical about Covid-19 vaccine, won't rush to take it: Survey
    New Delhi, December 2 (IANS): With chances of affordable Covid-19 vaccine likely to be available by February 2021, 59 per cent Indians divulged that they will not rush to take it, a survey revealed on Wednesday. The last few weeks have given hope to the world with three vaccine makers -- Pfizer, Moderna and Oxford-AstraZeneca releasing their efficacy data. Oxford-AstraZeneca has a partnership with Serum Institute of India for production and reports suggest that the vaccine could be
  • Biden's budget chief pick Tanden recounts rise from poverty to power
    New York, December 2 (IANS): Neera Tanden, who has been named Joe Biden's budget chief, shares a common upbringing with Kamala Harris -- both were raised by single mothers, who came from India and through their determination saw their daughters rise to positions of power -- exceeding the American dream. "Like the vice president-elect's mother, Shyamala, my mother, Maya, was born in India. Like so many millions, across every generation, she came to America to pursue a be
  • Nobel laureate says pandemic raising violence, trafficking
    United Nations, December 1 (AP) Nobel Peace Prize laureate Nadia Murad said the coronavirus pandemic has increased trafficking of women and gender-based violence, leaving the health and safety of women on the line. The 27-year-old activist, who was forced into sexual slavery by Islamic State fighters in Iraq, said curfews, lockdowns and travel restrictions imposed by governments to slow the spread of the virus have had unintended consequences on women worldwide. Rather than reduc
  • Amazon ancestral land not up for sale, says 'Green Nobel' winner
    Nemonte Nenquimo, first female leader of the Waorani, won a landmark court case to protect half a million acres of rainforest   BOGOTA, November 30 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - As a girl growing up in Ecuador's Amazon rainforest, Nemonte Nenquimo would listen to stories passed down from her ancestors about how the Waorani indigenous people preserved their forests and defended their lands from settlers and oil companies. Those tales of survival and resistance later ins
  • HIV/AIDS epidemic in North East India alarming: Report
    (AIDS Day Special) Agartala/Aizawl, November 30 (IANS): The status of HIV/AIDS epidemic in north-eastern states of India is indeed alarming, said a report by the National AIDS Control Organisation (NACO). The AIDS-related mortality per 1,00,000 population in India was estimated to be the highest in Manipur (36.86), followed by Mizoram (28.34), Nagaland (26.20), Andhra Pradesh (21.76), Puducherry (15.33), Meghalaya (11.08) and Telangana (10.79), the NACO report added. Union Min
  • The new team in Washington surveys West Asia Trump leaves behind
    BY SAEED NAQVI IANS | November 29 For the new team being announced by the Biden administration any innovation can only follow repair work of the considerable wreckage that is being left behind by the outgoing team. At this moment of transition, what construct does one place on the outgoing Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo's participation in the cloak-and-dagger meeting with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman and Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu in the mega city
  • Writing about sacred food helped me figure out my faith: Shoba Narayan
    By Vishnu Makhijani New Delhi, November 28 (IANS): Award-winning author and columnist Shoba Narayan is a graduate from the Columbia Journalism School with a Pulitzer Travelling Fellowship and writes on food, travel, fashion, and art and culture for a slew of International and Indian publications like the Conde Nast Traveller, NYT and Brunch. All her four books are firmly rooted in Indian culture, as is her latest offering, "Food & Faith - A Pilgrim's Journey Through Ind
  • Pele vs Maradona: A rivalry that found peace in bitterness
    New Delhi, November 27 (IANS): On October 1, 1977, Brazilian football superstar Pele was handed the microphone to address the crowd ahead of a friendly between New York Cosmos, the team he had played with for over two years, and his beloved Santos, where his career started and reached dizzying peaks. Among the sold out crowd at the Giants Stadium in New Jersey was boxing legend Muhammad Ali and England's World Cup winning former captain Bobby Moore, apart from Pele's father and
  • Maradona & Messi: Two symbolic extremes of a football superstar
    NEW DELHI, NOVEMBER 26 (IANS): A glance at the statistics and some hard facts would show that as far as their individual careers are concerned, Lionel Messi has eclipsed his legendary former Argentina coach Diego Maradona, who passed away on Wednesday. At the international level, 33-year-old Messi has 87 goals in 165 appearances, making him Argentina's all-time highest goal scorer. Maradona scored 42 in 106 recorded appearances. Messi's goal-scoring record at club level is o
  • One key conspirator of 26/11 attacks still missing
    NEW DELHI, NOVEMBER 26 (IANS): Twelve years after the Mumbai terror attacks in which 166 people were killed and over 300 wounded, one of the key conspirators along with David Coleman Headley and Tawahhur Hussain Rana, is still missing. A Pakistani national from Lahore, Sajid Mir, who went by several aliases -- Ibrahim, Wasi, Khalid, Vashi, Vashibhai, Bhai Ali, Ali Bhai, Moosa Bhai, Wasi Bhai, Wasi Ibrahim, Sajid Majeed, Sajjid Mir, Bhai Moosa, Ibrahim Shah -- was one of the key plan
  • Maradona goes off to shake the Hand of God (Obituary)
    New Delhi, November 25 (IANS): Widely rated as the greatest footballer of all time, there was no stopping Diego Maradona's aura from reaching levels of divinity wherever he went, with or without the ball on his feet. His murals, most of which show him with a halo behind or over his head or in the garb of Jesus Christ himself, adorn the streets of Buenos Aires, Argentina and Naples, Italy. It was evident when Maradona arrived in Kolkata in 2008 and 2017 to cheering crowds. He had
  • To reopen or not to reopen: That is the fraught question for U.S. schools
    By Kristina Cooke, Benjamin Lesser and M.B. Pell November 25 (Reuters) - After a two-week deluge of calls and messages from parents - and at least one death threat - the school board in Chandler, Arizona, called a special meeting this fall. The board would revisit its decision, prompted by the coronavirus, to temporarily close local campuses and offer all classes online. Parents, teachers and others poured out their thoughts in 1,100 public comments posted online before the Se
  • Global warming likely to raise disease risk for animals
    New York, November 24 (IANS): Changes in climate can increase infectious disease risk in animals, with the possibility that these diseases could spread to humans, warn researchers. The study, published in the journal Science, supports a phenomenon known as "thermal mismatch hypothesis," which is the idea that the greatest risk for infectious disease in cold climate-adapted animals -- such as polar bears -- occurs as temperatures rise. The hypothesis proposes that smalle
  • Carbon pricing rises as world's weapon of choice in climate fight
    LONDON/BRUSSELS, November 24 (Reuters) - Can you put a price on pollution? Some of the world's biggest economies are doing just that as they wrestle with how to make good on grand pledges to tame planet-warming emissions. Matters are coming to a head. China, Japan and South Korea have all followed the European Union in pledging to cut emissions to "net zero" in recent weeks, where they release only as much as they remove from the air. U.S. President-elect Joe Biden
  • Only a generic, not-for-profit COVID-19 vaccine can protect the world's poorest
    By Shaz Memon | Wells on Wheels Monday, 23 November 2020 * Any views expressed in this opinion piece are those of the author and not of Thomson Reuters Foundation. Rich nations will snap up the initial COVID-19 vaccines. We should look to India’s generic vaccine as a model to help the poorest Today’s announcement by AstraZeneca that their Covid vaccine has up to 90% efficacy, while not requiring cold-chain storage and being provided ‘at cost’ could be
  • India's expectations from Biden Presidency
    BY D.C. PATHAK IANS | November 23 Prime Minister Narendra Modi has personally congratulated President-elect Joe Biden on his success and used the occasion to emphasise on the importance of strategic partnership between the two countries. There is little doubt that the change of regime in the US will not affect the tested foundations of this friendship that were in fact laid with Obama administration declaring India as a major defence partner of the US. The deep convergence that
  • G20 says it will strive for fair global access to COVID-19 vaccine
    G20 leaders say they are concerned that the pandemic might further deepen global divisions between the rich and the poor * Emphasis on COVID-19 relief for poor as well as rich * Commitment to keep supporting economic growth * IMF calls for G20 debt relief measures to be expanded (Adds comments from Jadaan, Merkel and Trump) DUBAI/RIYADH, November 23 (Reuters) - Leaders of the 20 biggest economies vowed on Sunday to spare no effort to supply COVID-19 drugs, tests and vacc
  • UP farmers rewrite their destiny with dragon fruit farming
    Lucknow, November 22 (IANS): Four years ago, Ram Sakal Yadav, a young farmer in Uttar Pradesh's Kaushambhi district, had almost packed his bags. He was set to migrate to Mumbai in search of a job that would ensure him a steady income. "Our agricultural income was reducing and the family was increasing. I had no option but to migrate and feed the family", he recalls. It was then that a district official in Kaushambhi persuaded Ram Sakal Yadav to stay back and tr