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  • Indian roller: Farmers' friend & auspicious bird for nation
    New Delhi, January 5 (IANS): It was early morning in Tal Chapar blackbuck sanctuary in Rajasthan. "Pull over" I shouted in excitement and my friend, veteran wildlife photographer Kamal Sahansi, braked hard on the jeep. "Neelkanth, wow! Beautiful" don't make any sound. Just click," said Sahansi, sharing expert advice. There it was, my favourite bird-the Indian roller on a perch, looking up at the skies as if communicating with the almighty. Called the
  • Brexit: Finale at last
    By Asad Mirza IANS | January 4 The British public will have to face the repercussions of the sordid Brexit saga, mostly based on lies, during the pandemic times. On December 31, 2020, at 11 p.m. UK time and 12 p.m. Brussels time, -- four years, 27 weeks and two days after a referendum that split the UK almost down the middle in 2016 -- the curtains on the Brexit saga, finally came down, as the UK left the embrace of the European Union (EU) in a departure that was notably low key
  • 'Nations that voted against UN Rohingya resolution could play better role'
    Dhaka, January 4 (IANS): Bangladesh Foreign Minister Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen said that the countries, including Russia and China, which voted against a resolution recently adopted by the 75th UN General Assembly (UNGA) on the human rights situation of the Rohingya refugees, "could play a better role". On December 31, 2020, the UNGA plenary adopted the resolution by a recorded vote of 130 in favour to nine against, with 25 abstentions. Besides China and Russia, t
  • So that the trolley is not forgotten
    New Delhi, January 3 (IANS): Amidst fiery speeches, exaggerated sounds from tractors all around getting set to travel to a village in Rewari from the Tikri border, photographer and filmmaker Randeep Maddoke remembers the time when he worked as an agricultural labourer and a daily factory worker near his village in Moga, Punjab for Rs 50 a day. He also remembers how once he had to borrow Rs 12,000 from a teacher to pay tuition fee at the Government College of Art in Chandigarh. "
  • Education trends to look out for in 2021
    New Delhi, January 2 (IANSlife): According to UNESCO, in 2020, one billion students, two-thirds of the global student population, faced either school closures or uncertainty. The most vulnerable populations, particularly girls, remained especially at risk. 2020 brought remote, virtual learning to the horizon at a pace and scale never before. Is this to be carried forward into 2021? As per Antonius Raghubansie, Director of Learning Services, British Council India. the year 2020 saw p
  • Women-led countries haven't fared better during Covid: Study
    New Delhi, January 1 (IANS): As the world appreciates New Zealand's Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern's success in "flattening the curve", a new study has revealed that countries led by women have not fared significantly better in the Covid-19 pandemic than those led by men. While the researchers led by the University of Memphis in Tennessee in the US find some limited support for lower reported fatality rates in countries led by women, they are not statistically signi
  • India joins UNSC as world confronts changing reality
    United Nations, January 1 (IANS): India became a non-permanent member of the Security Council on Friday taking a seat at the UN's highest decision-making body at a time of changing reality even as it presses ahead with its quest for a permanent seat. As a member, India will be able to push its agenda of promoting the ethos of "Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam" -- the world is one family -- while being the leading voice on combating terrorism, and also confronting China's atte
  • 2020 Wrap: Books to mark the year gone by
    New Delhi, December 31 (IANSlife): From a presidential memoir to COVID-focused reads, the insights by an influential former civil servant, The Dalai Lama's message on climate change and a power-packed book by the co-founder of Black Lives Matter movement, 2020 was a significant year for books. Here's what kept us company during the tumultuous 2020. A Promised Land by Barack Obama A riveting, deeply personal account of history in the making-from the president who inspired
  • Each year, 1,000 Pakistani girls forcibly converted to Islam
    Karachi, December 30 (AP): Neha loved the hymns that filled her church with music. But she lost the chance to sing them last year when, at the age of 14, she was forcibly converted from Christianity to Islam and married to a 45-year-old man with children twice her age. She tells her story in a voice so low it occasionally fades away. She all but disappears as she wraps a blue scarf tightly around her face and head. Neha's husband is in jail now facing charges of rape for the und
  • Coronavirus brought tourism to its knees in 2020
    New Delhi, December 29 (PTI): The year 2020 exposed the vulnerability of our cultural heritage which is dependent on tourism for its survival and forced the government to look at alternatives to keep not just the sites and monuments alive, but also to position India as the choice of destination when the coronavirus pandemic ends. While acknowledging that in 2021, both approaches towards policy making and implementing them would be vastly different from what was done so far, Union Mi
  • Expressing the nine emotions through Indian modern art
    New Delhi, December 28 (IANSlife): Drawing from a collection of pre-modern and modern Indian art, art gallery DAG has curated an unparalleled art show, 'Navrasa -- The Nine Emotions of Art', that views stellar works of Indian masters through the lens of the aesthetic expression of nine bhavas or emotions that lies at the foundation of Indian art. Exploring a melange of moods that we experience during the course of our lives -- sometimes on the same day -- but with a skew tow
  • An art show exploring exclusion, marginalisation in society
    New Delhi, December 28 (IANSlife): 'FRIN/GE', a ongoing group show presented by Vadehra Art Gallery and curated by Shaleen Wadhwana, unpacks the ideas and feelings that govern norms, behaviours and actions leading to the creation of an exclusion or periphery, which serve as foundational undercurrents for contemporary realities. It features a total of 25 artworks across a wide range of all-encompassing media, from paintings, to AI technology, to photographs and videos, by art
  • Experts foresee travel trends for 2021
    New Delhi, December 27 (IANSlife): It's been a year of cancelled trips and missed experiences. The New Year is around the corner and we can't wait to talk about what is on the horizon as we get to say goodbye to what has been a very difficult year for mankind. 2020 has been a year like no other and while much has been said about the adversity, positive news around the vaccine rollout has also uplifted spirits helping all see a glimmer of hope. "The pandemic has been a s
  • 2020 was of struggle, innovation for teachers
    New Delhi, December 26 (PTI): From turning walls of mud houses into blackboards to taking classes through loudspeakers on moving carts, from 'mohalla' classes to using public announcement system of panchayat bhawans, 2020 was full of struggle and innovation for teachers to ensure learning was not disrupted as schools remained closed due to COVID-19. The over 10-month-long shutdown inspired creative ways to teach thousands of students who could not log on to online classes be
  • Unforgettable in 2020: Infection curves, Covid-19 dashboards
    New York, December 25 (IANS): Back in January 2020, Lauren Gardner, co-director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Systems Science and Engineering, was tracking measles data when a couple of her PhD students began talking about a new coronavirus in China. Many of these students were Chinese and they were already tracking it closely. In a few hours over one evening, one of Gardner's students built an original Covid-19 dashboard from scratch. By the end of February, the Johns Hopk
  • Empathy, equity inseparable part of our judicial system: Bansuri Swaraj
    New Delhi, December 25 (IANS) A strong criminal justice system is often argued as a deterrent to arrest rising crime, but it is also vulnerable, as an excessively harsh system may result in over criminalisation and stand in the way of a fair and equal society. On many occasions, the Supreme Court has urged the judges to show humane attitude and compassion while passing orders to incarcerate a person, and make bail a rule and jail an exception. But where does the balance exist? Ad
  • Seeds of discontent in Bengal BJP as turncoats join saffron fold
    Kolkata, December 24 (IANS): The fight between the old and new members of West Bengals Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has intensified as the high-voltage Assembly elections scheduled in 2021 draws closer. In a measured tactical move, the party has apparently sent out a clear signal to a section of BJP state leadership about their outrageous comments on the social media. Recently, it has sent show-cause notices to two prominent BJP West Bengal unit leaders - Sayantan Basu and Agnimitra
  • 89% Indians keen to resume travel: Survey
    New Delhi, Dec 24 (IANSlife) A combination of lockdown fatigue and strong pent-up demand, coupled with positive sentiment due to announcements about the vaccine saw 89 percent respondents displaying keen interest to resume travel, finds a new survey. The Second Holiday Readiness Report (December 2020) added that 11 percent are unsure or undecided. Thomas Cook India and its Group company, SOTC Travel, surveyed over 2,700 customers across India's Tier 1 & 2 cities in a rece
  • A season of fear, not cheer, as virus changes Christmas
    Barcelona, December 23 (AP): Montserrat Parello lost her husband eight years ago, and Christmas gatherings with children and grandchildren had helped her deal with her loneliness. But this year, the 83-year-old will be alone for the holiday at her home in Barcelona, due to the risk of infection from the coronavirus. In these days of pandemic, I feel loneliness and anger, she said, expressing fears that I will leave this life devoid of affection, of warmth. All most people wanted
  • 44% rural Indians ready to pay for Covid vaccine: Survey
    New Delhi, December 22 (PTI): Nearly 44 per cent of rural Indians are willing to pay for the COVID-19 vaccine, while more than half of the population in India's villages believe the coronavirus crisis is a "conspiracy by China', a survey showed on Tuesday. The survey, conducted by Gaon Connection among 6,040 rural respondents across 60 districts in 16 states and one union territory, found that 36 per cent said they would not want to pay for it. The remaining 20 per cent