Most enterprises aren’t just talking IT Transformation anymore – they are placing big bets and big money on modernizing IT infrastructures. None of this is technology for technology’s sake — senior executives have clear business goals in mind when they invest in IT Transformation. Unfortunately, despite these major investments in time and money, many of them still haven’t found the secret to transformation success or how to deliver concrete business results from these efforts.A new study by Forbes Insights and Dell EMC released today shows that the number of organizations dedicating up to 50% of their budgets to IT Transformation will rise nearly fivefold by 2018. The most critical goals include the drive to reduce IT costs (75% of respondents), be first to market with new products and services (73%) and reallocating funds to strategic business projects (67%). With so much riding on these transformations, it’s critical to understand the potential barriers and how to overcome them.Why? Because leaders – where IT Transformation is established and starting to be viewed as a key strategic priority – are more than 2X as likely to report they are ahead of their competition and 2.5X more likely to report return on investment in 12 months or less.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nnLkb__MJKoMany enterprises still aren’t gaining a clear competitive advantage from transformation strategies. In fact, 59% say they’ve achieved parity with competitors. Less than stellar transformation results often center on problems that arise between two pivotal players — CIOs and CFOs, who struggle to work together as a team.According to the study, collaboration problems are exacerbated by conflicts arising from traditional reporting structures and a lack of new incentives aimed at fostering closer cooperation between CIOs and CFOs. CFOs point to problems stemming from a lack of business expertise among CIOs and the conflicting priorities of the two groups – although they also acknowledge that their own attitudes about the role of CIOs are outdated.An astounding 89% of senior executives surveyed acknowledge that significant barriers keep CIOs and CFOs from collaborating more closely on IT Transformation initiatives. Nearly all respondents (96%) see close CIO/CFO collaboration as being important or critical to business success; however less than 40% would describe it as excellent. Interestingly, when asked to rate the effectiveness of CIO/CFO collaboration, nearly three-quarters (72%) of CEOs and 63% of COOs consider it excellent.Realizing the full benefits of IT Transformation requires better CIO/CFO collaboration, but where do you start? The report recommends these 6 steps:Update reporting structures to address the evolving roles of CIOsCultivate change agents among CIOs and CFOsMeasure — and reward — CIO performance according to business outcomesSee ROI calculations as guides, not hard and fast requirementsImplement clear milestones to monitor the progress of higher risk initiativesTurn the IT department into a consultancyWhen CIOs and CFOs are in sync, the biggest benefit according to the respondents is the ability to react more quickly to market changes (22%), attract new customers in current markets (16%) and more quickly introduce new products and services requested by the business (14%). There is a lot at stake with IT Transformation, but with closer collaboration between CIOs and CFOs, leading enterprises can turn it into a strategy for business success.If you’re interested in learning more about the relationship between CIOs and CFOs, and the impact it can have on IT Transformation, download the Forbes Insights report, “IT Transformation: Success Hinges on CIO/CFO Collaboration”.
By Dialogo June 23, 2009 Washington, 22 June (EFE).- Reza Cyrus Pahlavi, the son of Shah Mohammed Reza Pahlavi, deposed by the Iranian Revolution in 1979, today expressed his confidence that “it is time for Iran” to overthrow the Islamic regime, after years of failed attempts. In an emotional press conference, the Iranian prince, who has lived in the United States since 1984, characterized the protest movement that has developed in his native land as a result of the June 12 elections, considered fraudulent by the opposition, as a “cry for freedom and democracy.” With his voice breaking with emotion, he indicated that what is happening in Iran “is almost revolutionary” and that “this is the first time ever in modern Iranian history” that the Iranian people are demanding the intervention of the international community so that their voices may be heard. “We have to defeat the system; we know that this regime ultimately must end,” affirmed Pahlavi, who left Iran in 1978 and has lived in Morocco, Egypt, and the United States since then. The son of the last shah of Persia, who died in exile in Egypt in 1980, acknowledged that many have tried before to cause the “ultimate collapse” of the Iranian regime, but he expressed his conviction that “it is time for Iran after thirty years” of struggle. He affirmed that there exists “impetus” to put an end to Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s Islamic government, but he also suggested that the movement would not “succeed” without the support of the international community and the “tactic ,” more than verbal, support of foreign governments. “I have seldom seen non-violent movements of change succeed without international support,” he stated. Along these lines, he described himself as “encouraged” by the most recent declarations by U.S. president Barack Obama, who over the weekend called on Tehran to “stop all violent and unjust actions against its own people.” Pahlavi, basing himself on reports reaching him from Iran and on his contacts with Iranians in political, military, and religious circles, explained that at the present time there are two groups in the upper levels of the Iranian government, those who are loyal to the regime and those who are carefully planning their “exit strategy.” Looking forward, the prince said that, as time passes, the movement will grow, and pressure on the regime will increase. “At some point there will be much clearer positions announced” on the part of members of the government, of military intelligence, and of the Iranian clergy, either against or in favor of the people in the street, he predicted. “This has become also a defining moment for the clergy to show a complete demarcation from the system,” he indicated. “A decision will have to be made pretty soon” by the various Iranian authorities on whether they join the voice of the people and distance themselves from the regime or continue to support it, he added. What is important is to keep the protest movement going, given that pressure will “further deteriorate and fragment” the Iranian theocratic regime, he insisted. “We will not let it die,” he said of the movement, which he considers “not Islamic or anti-Islamic,” but rather it seeks the “sacred” and “sovereign” of the voters’ decision to prevail. “This has gone beyond just a result of an election or a candidate,” he added, and has become a matter of achieving “democracy” and “the liberty to vote and choose freely.” Pahlavi, who lives in Maryland with his wife and three daughters, indicated that his decision to speak out in favor of the Iranian people had nothing to do with his own future, but rather with the struggle to establish a democratic, parliamentary, and secular system in his country, because this is “the only solution” and outcome for Iran.
The draw for the round of 16 of the Champions League took place in Nyon, Switzerland on Thursday, and some enticing ties await in the first knock-out stage.Primera Division champions Real Madrid have been paired with Manchester United as Cristiano Ronaldo returns to Old Trafford.Furthermore, 2011 winners Barcelona will have to deal with Italian giants AC Milan in what promises to be yet another mouthwatering tie.Last season’s finalists Bayern Munich take on Arsene Wenger’s Arsenal as they aim to make it to their third final in five years’ time.Serie A powerhouse Juventus will have to deal with Celtic in the first knock-out stage, while Schalke meet Turkish giants Galatasaray.Group winners will be away in the first legs on 12-13 and 19-20 February and at home in the return matches on 5-6 and 12-13 March. The draw for the quarter-finals will be held on March 15, and the tournament concludes at Wembley Stadium on May 25.Champions League round of 16 draw:Galatasaray v FC SchalkeCeltic v JuventusArsenal v Bayern Munich Shakthar Donetsk v Borussia DortmundAC Milan v BarcelonaReal Madrid v Manchester UnitedValencia v Paris Saint-GermainFC Porto v Malaga
Click HERE if you’re having trouble viewing the gallery or video on your mobile device.WATCH: 49ers post-game analysis by reporter Dieter Kurtenbach. It was a calamity. It was an embarrassment.It was a downright waste of time.But more than anything else, it was a reminder — a stark, oh-so-painful reminder — that successful NFL teams are more than a star quarterback and a few solid defenders.No sir, good NFL teams go 53 men deep, and it takes time, skill, and a bit of luck, to …
(Visited 278 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0 Behind the confidence of uranium-lead dates hides worry about numbers that don’t match up.Uranium-lead (U-Pb) dating is a staple of the billions-of-years claims about igneous and metamorphic rocks and meteorites – giving rise to the consensus age of the solar system at 4.55 billion years. The technique has been refined over the last century, but “discordances” (mismatches) remain. That’s because there are two “isotopically distinct yet chemically identical” decay chains, F. Corfu described in the Geological Society of America Bulletin this month: the 235U to 207Pb pathway, and the 238U to 206Pb pathway. (The ratios of the products, 207Pb/206Pb, can also be measured.) “These twin decay systems, running at different speeds, allow an immediate verification of the validity of their ages, which must be concordant to be considered valid, although under favorable circumstances, discordant data can be extrapolated to the correct age.” Since uranium is often locked in tightly-bound minerals called zircons, from which parent and daughter product are locked in, the method is thought by modern geologists to provide a reliable clock.In “A century of U-Pb geochronology: The long quest towards concordance,” Corfu, a geologist at the University of Oslo, described geologists’ frustration at persistent discordance between the two methods. The discordances are small; around 1% or less. Still, he finds it troubling that there should be any discordance if the same physical processes are operating for the same amount of time. At the beginning of the article, he quoted T. E. Krogh: “Only one answer is the right one, and only that one is good enough.”The progress in developments of the U-Pb method is both a history of technical discoveries and advances, as well as a history of a long struggle toward concordance, toward an understanding of the causes of discordance, and toward ways to eliminate it. Despite the enormous progress achieved in this field, the problems of U-Pb discordance have not yet been completely resolved and will be one of the main hurdles to overcome in the future.The paper is technical, so detailed evaluation of the contents should be left to geophysicists. The following quotes give a sense of the kinds of problems Corfu discussed, and their implications. Alert readers will want to watch for instances of card stacking, circular reasoning, extrapolation and sidestepping. Philosophers of science will want to watch for data manipulation, unargued interpretation and possible self-deception.Now, 60 yr later, we see two contrasting trends, two philosophies: one that continues the battle to eliminate discordance, but also a second one that bypasses the problem and solves the Gordian knot by essentially eliminating the concept, declaring U-Pb systems concordant by definition (see section “Administrative Concordancy”).[By 1956] There was a gradually growing consensus that the dominant cause of discordance was loss of Pb, and different attempts were made to rationalize the effect and extract reliable ages.While intellectually stimulating, these models and discussions could not provide unique and fully reliable solutions, and the problems of discordant U-Pb data remained a challenge….The rebound from these rather discouraging early phases in the development of U-Pb can be credited largely to the work and imagination of Leon Silver, at Caltech in Pasadena. He realized that the weak point in the analytical procedure was “the absence of a suitable approach in selecting samples from which data could be successfully systematized and interpreted” (Silver, 1963a, 1963b, p. 281). He understood that zircon populations in rocks can be extremely variable in terms of composition, crystallinity, and other parameters. He experimented in separating fractions according to size and magnetic variability, and his measurements of the U-Pb ratios of the different fractions revealed extreme variation in the degree of discordance, which correlated with U content and degree of radioactivity. The U-Pb results defined collinear arrays for which intercepts could be interpreted in terms of primary crystallization and secondary Pb loss (Silver, 1963a, 1963b; Silver and Deutsch, 1963).Silver’s developments set up analytical approaches that were to become standard procedures in the following two decades. Given that discordance was next to unavoidable in most samples, the strategy became that of maximizing the spread in order to establish more robust discordia lines and increase the reliability of their intercept ages. A major hurdle, however, remained the immense analytical effort needed to produce individual analyses from zircon fractions of 100–500 mg (Silver and Deutsch, 1963), which severely limited the utility of the method.The change of focus by Tom Krogh, then at the Carnegie Institution of Washington, to U-Pb geochronology from his previous involvement with Rb-Sr dating (Kamo et al., 2011) represents the next major step in the evolution of the method, and the one that really enabled the more widespread application and testing of the principles and analytical approaches defined by Leon Silver’s work…. Although this flurry of activities and new applications helped to solve many geological questions, many of the studies involving zircon had to rely on extrapolating the age from discordant arrays, which in complex cases had detrimental effects on the precision and accuracy of the ages.Since model solutions to discordance did not work very well, and since extrapolating the ages from discordant arrays could be problematic in all those cases that had undergone a Pb evolution involving more than just two stages, Tom Krogh concluded that the only reliable strategy had to be that of finding, isolating, and analyzing concordant domains of zircon.Because altered domains are easily soluble and could be separated from the unaltered zircon by partial dissolution, several workers experimented with partial dissolution techniques. The results, however, were not encouraging because the technique introduced secondary effects, fractionating U from Pb in the remaining parts of the zircons (e.g., Pidgeon and Hopgood, 1975; Todt and Büsch, 1981; Turek et al., 1982).Krogh (1982a) chose instead a different track. To avoid the side effects of the chemical attacks, he opted to remove the outside of the grains, or of fragments of grains, by spinning them around in a steel chamber with a jet of compressed air (air abrasion method). His tests showed that, in many cases, the technique could indeed strip most of the discordant zircon matter… In general, to achieve the best results, these methods had to be combined with careful inspection and selection of the grains under a binocular microscope, and in specific cases with imaging (cf. Corfu et al., 2003). [From here, Corfu discusses other method refinements and cross-correlation techniques leading up to the ion microprobe.]When compared to ID-TIMS [isotope dilution—thermal ionization mass spectrometry], the main disadvantage of the ion probe was a considerable decrease in precision, and hence loss of temporal resolution. This stemmed mainly from the much smaller amount of material available for measurement. Another critical step was the determination of the U-Pb ratios, which in SIMS [secondary ionization mass spectrometry] must be calibrated against the corresponding ratios of an external standard, in contrast to ID-TIMS, where the ratios are obtained by mixing a tracer of known composition with the sample. Because the sputtering of U and Pb is controlled to some degree by the composition and/or structure of the sample (McLaren et al., 1994), discrepancies can arise between sample and standard when they have quite distinct basic properties. The anomalous behavior is evident in some zircons very rich in U, such as the cases reported by Harrison et al. (1987) and Wiedenbeck (1995). This potential problem is now largely recognized in the SIMS community, and modern analytical protocols are generally concerned with proper matching of the reference zircons.The latest addition to the arsenal of U-Pb dating methods is the laser ablation–inductively coupled plasma–mass spectrometry (LA-ICP-MS) technique. The first experiments with U-Pb dating by LA-ICP-MS were done in the early 1990s (Fryer et al., 1993), and from there the technique rapidly improved. In less than a decade, many laboratories worldwide had adopted it, contributing to many improvements and refinements. The method is attractive mainly because of the high throughput capability, which makes it ideal for the study of large populations, such as in detrital zircon studies…. The main initial challenges for LA-ICP-MS were achieving control of the analytical fractionation between U and Pb, and correcting for common Pb….In my experience, it is generally difficult to apply the [chemical abrasion] method to U-rich and metamict grains because they dissolve too easily, even in cases where the grains, though rich in U, are free of alteration and yield concordant data when treated with air abrasion (e.g., Svensen et al., 2012).The Pb-Pb method is a special branch of U-Pb geochronology, but it has been used mostly to pursue a different type of problem, namely, employing the Pb composition of U-poor or U-free minerals and rocks to study the genesis of rocks rather than to date them. Occasionally, however, the two tracks overlap and complement each other.One of the most prominent applications of Pb isotopic analysis to dating was that of Patterson (1956), who determined the first (essentially) correct age of 4.55 Ga for meteorites and, by extension, the planet Earth.THE ROAD TOWARD CONCORDANCE: A UTOPIAN GOAL?At present, U-Pb dating is the method of choice in many studies of magmatic systems, metamorphism, and provenance. Thousands of studies have examined the behavior of the decay system, the behavior of U-Pb in different minerals, and the response in different geological settings. The preoccupation with discordance, which laid a cloud of skepticism over the initial enthusiasm, has been largely dispersed by the subsequent developments. Today, we have reasonably good control of the behavior of U-Pb systems. Yet, do we really understand discordance; do we really know how to navigate around it?… Although the basic definition of concordance is clear-cut, as soon as the analytical error is considered, the term becomes somewhat fuzzy, occasionally progressing into extreme fogginess.However, even the use of the better matching decay constant does not always succeed in bringing data sets into concordance.Another factor that can affect the degree of discordance is the U isotopic composition.A second set of causes that has been widely discussed, and convincingly proven in some cases, is related to initial disequilibrium in the decay chains from U to Pb.A related phenomenon is the excess of 231Pa [protactinium], which produces an excess of 207Pb (Fig. 2A-I). The phenomenon has been demonstrated convincingly in two cases (Parrish and Noble, 2003; Anczkiewicz et al., 2001) where the effect is very strong, but it has been discussed as a possible cause in many other cases where the discordance toward too high 207Pb/235U ratios for uniform 206Pb/238U is distinct, but not extreme.In practice, subtle disequilibrium effects can be difficult to distinguish from effects caused by other factors, such as small amounts of inheritance of xenocrystic material, Pb loss, incorrect common Pb corrections, or simply analytical biases from improper blank corrections, fractionation, and instrumental nonlinearities.More severely discordant data will generally have been produced by either Pb loss or mixing.By contrast, Pb loss by recrystallization and/or redistribution often means that there may not be any parts of a mineral left with preserved close-system relationships and thus that are capable of providing concordant ages.SOME MODERN DILEMMASThe main difficulty in interpreting such U-Pb data is in identifying correctly the reasons for the specific distribution of discrete data patterns.One critical question affecting modern studies done with chemical abrasion ID-TIMS is whether Pb loss effects can be completely eliminated by the chemical abrasion procedure. Some examples show that this assumption is not always valid (Schoene et al., 2010a). A similar uncertainty, but in the opposite direction, is introduced by the difficulty of evaluating whether some slightly too old grains might indicate the presence of antecrysts or traces of xenocrystic material.Finally, the not always easily controllable role of disequilibrium in 230Th, 231Pa, and 222Rn, discussed previously, can further complicate the interpretation of high-resolution data.Ultimately, the overriding criterion for the validity of an interpretation is the mutual coherence of the data, their consistency with the various properties of the analyzed zircons, the consistency with coexisting minerals, and the consistency within the geological framework….A somewhat related dilemma, which becomes more acute in interpreting Paleozoic and older U-Pb data sets, concerns the interpretation of data that are nearly, but not fully, concordant (Fig. 2A-III). One common solution is to extrapolate to the concordia curve….In some cases, the choice is strongly supported by the combined available evidence, whereas in other cases, it is very much open to debate and often decided on the basis of the interpreter’s bias.The question as to whether discordant data should be interpreted in terms of modern or ancient disturbances can also have a large impact on the use of Hf [hafnium] isotopic compositions in zircon.…the examples stress the importance of a proper consideration of the reality, and the causes and the effects of U-Pb discordance on the results and their interpretations…. Evidently simply ignoring discordance distorts the reality, because, as the present examples show, discordance matters.[Regarding a graph in Figure 5] The initial and the final peaks correspond to the two real events, but the intermediate ones are spurious and geologically meaningless. The example shows that an awareness of discordance and precision are important for accurate interpretations.However, in a modern detrital zircon study, such a pattern would normally be interpreted as indicating real ages, and the possibility that individual subconcordant data may be recording partial resetting or mixing is rarely, if ever, considered. This may not be a very important factor in sedimentary rocks produced from relatively simple sources, such as an island arc, but it is likely to have serious repercussions on the apparent age distribution produced in zircon derived from more complex high-grade terranes.Administrative Concordancy [i.e., user choice to consider the data concordant by fiat]Some contamination by common Pb (and U) is essentially unavoidable in all dating techniques…. The ID-TIMS method introduces Pb and U contamination during the dissolution, the chemical separation, and the loading on a filament in preparation for the mass spectrometry. In SIMS and LA-ICP-MS measurements, contaminant Pb (and U) can be introduced mainly during the mounting and polishing process. Practitioners of all three methods are concerned with keeping the common Pb levels as low as possible, and have devised specific techniques to achieve this goal. Nevertheless, it is likely that some contamination will affect every analysis.Questions affecting the precision are usually related to the proportion of blank versus initial Pb, and to how well one knows, or can estimate, their compositions and uncertainties. These factors propagate into the total uncertainty, and for very small samples they become its dominant element.In LA-ICP-MS analyses, the main problem is caused by the interference on 204Pb by 204Hg introduced with the Ar gas. It is, in principle, possible to minimize the amount of Hg present and correct for it by measuring the abundance of 202Hg (Gerdes and Zeh, 2009), but most users consider that this correction introduces too much uncertainty, and choose instead to either make no correction at all, based on the assumption that zircon has no common Pb and that the blank is negligible, or they correct the common Pb with a model calculation that assumes a coherent behavior of Th/Pb and U/Pb and estimates the time of the isotopic disturbance (Andersen, 2002). Both approaches can have problematic implications for the accuracy of the data and the geological deductions.Factors that are important for a proper interpretation of U-Pb data include the geological and mineralogical context of the studied minerals, the internal textures of the minerals, the age relationships between different components of a mineral and between different coexisting minerals, the type and spatial arrangement of inclusions, and the mineral’s chemical composition.Progress in the development of U-Pb dating techniques has been driven forward by the spirit of technical innovation, but at the same time, it has been moderated by some inherent limitations. Many imaginative approaches had to be developed to make the system work.Discordance, however, remains a general problem, the minimization of which still requires work and creative solutions, unless, out of convenience, the historical consciousness of discordance simply disappears from the collective awareness.In that last sentence, Corfu warns that researchers could simply ignore discordance out of “convenience.” They could pretend that the problems don’t exist or aren’t important, because it’s too much work to get to the one right answer that Tom Krogh said is the only one that’s good enough. If ignoring the problem becomes the choice of the “collective awareness,” credibility of the U-Pb dating method—or any other method—will suffer as a result.For anyone taking the time to wade through all those sample quotations from the paper, or even to scan through the bold parts, it should become evident that a great deal of guesswork, human interference and manipulation precedes those confident announcements that such-and-such a rock is xyz million years old. None of these techniques are simple; the potential for investigator interference is large. The rock doesn’t just talk on its own. Under enough torture, it can be made to squeal out any age the investigator wants.Sometimes in science, the discordant data is the most significant part. Remember when some 19th-century physicists downplayed the “ultraviolet catastrophe” in blackbody radiation theory? Most of the theory worked just fine. Those darned outliers were seen as a problem that would soon be solved within the consensus paradigm. When a bold maverick, Max Planck, decided to focus on the outlier data, he gave birth to quantum mechanics – a revolutionary new paradigm that changed everything.As a human with biases, a scientist can be prone to cover up the outlier data points when showing a graph to their colleagues that mostly shows a perfect fit. In this paper, Corfu has done a good job identifying the known factors that can cause discordance. But what about the unknowns? What about the unknowable factors? Since some of the known causes of discordance came to light over decades, we have no confidence now that new unknowns yet to be identified will not color or revolutionize the interpretations of age accepted today by the consensus.One big factor is built into the interaction between geologist and lab. It’s typical for the lab to ask the geologist how old he thinks the rock is based on its provenance in the geologic column. How many discordant dates are simply tossed and never published because they are “obviously wrong”? There’s a huge space there for circular reasoning. How often, if ever, do labs perform true blind tests, publishing results with no prior knowledge of the expected date, letting the sample speak for itself? Creation geologists have submitted blind samples (i.e., not telling the lab what date to expect), and obtained wildly discordant results that profoundly contradict evolutionary expectations. See geologist Andrew Snelling’s Earth’s Catastrophic Past, Vol. 2, ch. 103 for examples. This is a huge topic that deserves more “collective awareness.”No human was present when the rocks were laid down. The apparently minor discordances Corfu identified should be re-evaluated in light of what he said about assumptions and interpretations. They could be much more important than even he, as an evolutionist and believer in long ages, would admit. His statements waffle between “not a problem” and “big problem!” For instance, he claimed that Patterson’s estimate of the age of meteorites (“and by extension, planet earth”) was “(essentially) correct”. But a little later he said, “The main handicap of the method has been the necessity to rely solely on the Pb composition, without assistance from U-Pb, thus limiting the ability to evaluate the state of concordance of the analyses.” So what is it, correct or handicapped? Could it be a case of “extreme fogginess” he warned about? Maybe the consciousness of discordance simply disappeared from his individual awareness, for the sake of convenience, in that instance.The role of prior belief in millions of years in interpreting the rocks to be millions of years old would make a good study. We hope our spotlight on Corfu’s paper will stimulate thinking along those lines.
The National Commission for Women and National Human Rights Commission on Monday took cognizance of the gangrape of a girl in Bettiah town of West Champaran district and issued notices to Bihar officials.The rape survivor, who was an inmate of the Muzaffarpur shelter home had been rehabilitated with her family after revelations of the sexual abuse of 34 girls in the home was reported in May 2018. The Supreme Court is monitoring the case.The survivor had lodged a complaint with the Bettiah town police station that she was gangraped by four of her neighbours in a moving SUV on the Bettiah-Pakhnaha road on the night of September 13. The survivor was later admitted to the government hospital for treatment and medical examination.On Monday, the NCW and the NHRC took cognizance of the incident and issued notices to the Bihar Chief Secretary and Director General of Police. A committee of the NCW, headed by its Chairperson Rekha Sharma will travel to Bihar later this week to meet the girl, the DGP and other officials.“She is already a victim, rather than helping her out, she has to go through this,” said Ms. Sharma. The NHRC has asked for a “detailed report in the matter within four weeks ”.“Apparently, the girl has become a victim of the State’s apathy,” observed the Commission in its notices. The Bettiah police said the incident took place when the girl was reportedly on way to her sister-in-law’s house.The four youths allegedly dragged her inside an SUV and sexually assaulted her in the moving vehicle.“None of the four accused have been arrested yet, though the local police have conducted a massive manhunt,” said a senior police official in Patna.
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Touch Football Australia would like to congratulate two of the hardest working members of our community on being short-listed in the Confederation of Australian Sport (CAS) 27th Annual Sports Awards.Respected Referee Luke Mc Kenzie has been nominated for Official of the Year, whilst outgoing Federation of International Touch (FIT) President Cary Thompson has been recognised in the Volunteer of the Year category for 2007.Both gentlemen have impressed the voting panel with their record of service and quality contributions to our game.In a “New media” format, the Top three nominees were announced yesterday live on the CAS website in 18 different Gold and Silver Award categories, with both Cary and Luke snaring a spot in the final three in their respective areas of expertise.On Wednesday 20 February, the winners will be announced on the CAS Australian Sports Awards website at www.australiansportsawards.com.au and at www.sbs.com.au and will include video interviews and presentations of the Awards to each of the category winners.Cary has been nominated alongside Greg Mc Lennan (Life Saving) and Robert Middleton (Lawn Bowls) who both have an impressive catalogue of service to their respective sports.Luke will be up against some tough opposition in his category with Tammy Ogston, who refereed the Women’s Football World Cup final in 2007, and Barbara Morgan, who was the Chief Referee at the 2007 Australian Pool Lifesaving Championships and other International events standing between Luke and the coveted award.Luke’s nomination is even more metorious when you consider that officials of the ilk of National Rugby League Telstra Grand Final Referee Tony Archer were overlooked for the finalist stage of this category.Luke was honoured, but shocked with the news of his shortlisting this morning.“It’s great – you don’t chase recognition, but it’s nice to think you’ve made a worthwhile contribution and it is appreciated. I’m a bit stunned really and very grateful for the nomination,” Mc Kenzie said.Touch Football Australia has a fine history in the event with teams, coaches, officials and administrators being nominated for the awards in previous years.Cary’s nomination in the Volunteer of the Year category is back to back recognition for the sport in this area.Cathy Gray, TFA’s Director of Elite Programs, was a finalist in the Volunteer of the Year category last year, whilst in a major coup for the sport, Touch Football Australia,under the direction of Information Technology guru Jon Pratt, collected the Information Technology Award at last year’s ceremony.Luke and Cary have good reason to be optimistic about their chances of claiming the top award when their catelogue of achievements is examined.Luke Mc Kenzie achieved a life long ambition when he officiated in the 2007 FIT World Cup Women’s Open Final in Stellenbosch in January. Mc Kenzie is highly respected in Australian Touch circles for his tireless voluntary service to the game.In 2007, Luke travelled to over 20 tournaments around the nation to officiate, coach, deliver courses, and mentor fellow referees of all levels and abilities.Luke took on Volunteer Administration duties for the “Southern Suns” NTL Permit and has done an exceptional job to ensure the Suns have been at the forefront of development efforts in NSW. He was awarded the 2007 NSWTA “Rod Wise” Medal for Volunteer of the Year and is the President of his local affiliate Wagga, of which he’s been a board member of for 9 years.Luke is a wonderful role model who has the respect and admiration of many, his passion for officiating and voluntary administration is exemplary and his recognition in this way is fitting.Mr. Cary Thompson has made a monumental contribution to the sport of Touch Football.The President of FIT since 1991, Mr. Thompson has been a prime mover in the development of the sport that now has 33 full time member nations globally.Cary has an illustrious record in sports administration. He has been awarded 9 Life memberships of various Touch Football Associations, including TFA and the NSWTA, of which he was a founding member. He has assisted in the constitutional framework of 10 associations.He has also authored 13 publications on the sport and written 30 educational articles.He has held numerous honorary positions at all levels including Director of the TFA Board, Chairman of TFA Selectors, and National Coaching Director. He has been awarded the ASC “Excellence in Touch” (1988) The “Unice Gill Coach Education Award” (1998) Australian Government – “Sports Australia Award” (2001) and the Touch Football Australia “Lifetime Achievement Award” (2007).Mr. Thompson has shown outstanding leadership and administrative skills in his 36-year association with the game and the sport is well established at all levels due largely to his unstinting commitment and passion.The modest Thompson deflected the recognition and thanked those people he has serves so dilligently in his life long association with the game.“It’s a lovely honour… but I feel that I’ve just done what anyone would do; and it’s always been about doing things to help people enjoy our sport better so this is more for them than me, but it’s great for the game to be acknowledged,” Mr. Thompson saidTouch Football Chief Executive Officer Mr. Colm Maguire heaped praise on the duo, citing their contributions as indicitive of the quality of the Volunteer army in our game.“Both these gentleman have contributed so much to the game and it is typical of the quality of people we have working in our affiliates. Luke has been unstinting in his dual roles as referee and administrator, and Cary is one of the true legends of our game. His time, energy, expertise, and passion for the sport from grass root to International has been outstanding and the recognition is overdue,” Mr. Maguire said.The Touch Football community congratulates both these fine ambassadors of the sport on their nomination and short listing and wish them the very best for their future.Check out all the nominees in all the categories by visiting the CAS Sports Awards website at: www.australiansportsawards.com.au
Kolkata: Bengal government is set to conduct camps in all the offices of Block Development Officers (BDO) across the state from September 9-26 to provide ration cards to 4 to 5 per cent of the total population in the state, who have still been left out of the Khadya Sathi scheme.Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee in the Assembly on Wednesday instructed the state Food and Supply Minister Jyotipriya Mallick to conduct an all-party meeting to take consensus and also to bridge the gaps which are still there in the system. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari PujaDuring her speech in the Assembly, Banerjee pointed out that many people in the state possess the ration cards but they do not avail facilities of the Khadya Sathi scheme, a brain child of the Chief Minister. On the other hand, there is another section belonging to the BPL category who possess the ration card and enjoy various facilities extended by the state government. The Chief Minister asked the Food and Supply minister to conduct a survey in this regard. Also Read – Bengal civic volunteer dies in road mishap on national highway”Following the announcement of the NRC by the Centre, some people in the state are scared and they want to hold the ration card for the sake of identity and not avail the benefits extended by the state. We have found that 4-5 per cent of the total population in the state is still deprived as they do not have a ration card. Hence, we have decided that camps will be conducted in all the BDO offices across the state so that the people left out can be brought under the Khadya Sathi scheme,” Banerjee told the House. Food and Supply Minister Jyotipriya Mallick during his speech in the Assembly said advertisements will be published to make people aware about the camps to reach out to the people who are yet to get a ration card. People have to come to the camps in the BDO offices with proper documents to receive their cards. The officials of the Food and Supply department will also be present at the camps. The whole process will be conducted within November 31. It was learnt that the Food and Supply department will hold the all party meeting in this regard on next Friday.
Approximately 2,000 volunteers from around the world will pack their tools and take a trip to Nepal in November 2015 for Habitat For Humanity’s 32nd annual Jimmy & Rosalynn Carter Work Project.Scheduled to take place Nov. 1-6, 2015, former President Jimmy Carter and his wife, Rosalynn, will lead volunteers as they build homes in Pokhara, Nepal’s third largest city and home to three of the 10 highest mountains in the world. Pokhara is located 124 miles west of the Nepalese capital of Kathmandu.“I’ve had the pleasure of traveling to Nepal many times and getting to know the rich culture, history and traditions of its people,” said President Carter. “And we look forward to sharing that experience with the many volunteers who will travel with us to help Nepalese families build better lives for themselves.”Often referred to as Habitat for Humanity’s “most famous volunteers,” President and Mrs. Carter give a week of their time each year to help Habitat build, renovate or repair homes in order to shed light on the critical role decent housing plays in providing a path out of poverty. Carter Work Projects have been held in 15 countries including the United States, Mexico, Canada, Hungary, South Africa, South Korea, India, the Philippines, Thailand, Cambodia, China, Laos, Vietnam and Haiti. In 2014, the Carter Work Project was held in Dallas and Fort Worth, Texas.“For more than three decades the Carters have continued their amazing efforts in support of affordable housing worldwide,” said Jonathan Reckford, CEO of Habitat for Humanity International. “We look forward to partnering with the Carters once again as they lead thousands of volunteers to Nepal during the 2015 Carter Work Project.”At a special event in Kathmandu, Aruna Paul Simittrarachchi, country director of Habitat for Humanity Nepal; Rick Hathaway, Asia-Pacific vice president of Habitat for Humanity; Dr. Narayan Khadka, minister of urban development for Nepal; Rabindra Adhikari, constituent assembly member of parliament for Nepal; and Prem Baniya, youth ambassador for Habitat for Humanity Nepal, announced the selection of Pokhara as the 2015 location of Habitat’s signature project.“Hosting the Carter Work Project in Nepal is a huge honor and will help draw attention to, and support for, our efforts to address the significant housing deficit in our country,” said Simittrarachchi. “This will act as a catalyst to increase Habitat’s impact in the country and help many more families in need of decent housing.”For more information on how to volunteer for the 2015 Jimmy & Rosalynn Carter Work Project, please visit habitat.org/cwp/2015.