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Hyderabad

IPL-2018: Bhuvneshwar takes three wickets as KKR manage 138/8

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India pace spearhead Bhuvneshwar Kumar took three wickets as Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) made the most of an hour-long rain break and some excellent catching by Manish Pandey to restrict Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) to 138/8 in 20 overs in an Indian Premier League (IPL) game at the Eden Gardens here on Saturday.
 
Bhuvneshwar (3/26) -- returning to the team after recovering from a sore back -- was ably supported by pacer Billy Stanlake (2/21) and Bangladesh all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan (2/21) also taking two wickets. Highly-rated leg-spinner Rashid Khan went wicketless, leaking 31 runs.
 
Former KKR batsman Pandey took two outstanding catches to send Nitish Rana (18; 16b 2x4 1x6) and Andre Russell (9; 5b 0x4 1x6) -- who hit a 36-ball 88 in the last game -- back in the hut as SRH bowlers reined in after skies opened up to halt play for 58 minutes when KKR were going steady at 52/1.
 
For the hosts, opener Chris Lynn (49; 34b 7x4 1x6) was the top-scorer as skipper Dinesh Karthik laboured to a 27-ball 29 hitting two fours and a six.
 
KKR got off to a slow start with SRH opening bowlers Bhuvneshwar and Stanlake conceding just 23 runs in the first four overs and also removing Robin Uthappa (3) who was caught behind off Bhuvneshwar's bowling.
 
The umpire first adjugded the batsman not out but the visitors straightaway asked for a review with replays showing a clear outside edge.
 
Lynn looked in fine fettle hitting Siddarth Kaul (1/37) for three fours in the fifth over.
 
In-form Rana, who starred with bat and ball in KKR's home game against Royal Challengers Bangalore, continued his purple patch smashing Rashid for a four and a six in his first over. Rashid was hit for his first six of the tournament as he leaked 12 runs.
 
At the end of Powerplay, the hosts were 49/1 and after managing three runs in the next over, it started drizzling. Play was stopped for almost one hour but there was no loss of overs.
 
Four balls after the restart, Pandey took a brilliant diving catch at point to remove Rana off Stanlakes's bowling.
 
Rashid had a chance to pull off a spectacular catch at long on to get rid of Lynn but the Afghanistan spinner spilled the ball over the line for a six. At the halfway stage, KKR were 70/2 and seemed to be going steady.
 
But in the next three overs, Shakib bagged the wickets of Sunil Narine (9;10b 1x4 0x6) -- batting at No.4 -- and Lynn taking a sharp diving catch to halt the Aussie opener from scoring a fifty.A
 
Andre Russell (9) was removed by Stanlake with Pandey taking another stunning catch runnning towards the boundary from point while Bhuvneshwar took the wickets of Karthik and Shubman Gill (3), who made his debut alongwith Shivam Mavi, both U-19 World Cup winners with India.
 
Brief scores:
Kolkata Knight Riders 138/8 in 20 overs (Chris Lynn 49; Bhuvneshwar Kumar 3/26, Shakib Al Hasan 2/21, Billy Stanlake 2/21) vs Sunrisers Hyderabad
 
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IPL: Rain stops play between KKR and SRH

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Rain stopped play between Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) and Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) in an Indian Premier League (IPL) game here at the Eden Gardens on Saturday.
 
SRH skipper Kane Williamson won the toss and elected to field. KKR were 52/1 after seven overs with Chris Lynn (31 not out) and Nitish Rana (18) at the crease. Robin Uthappa (3) got out to Bhuvneshwar Kumar caught behind.
 
IANS
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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IPL: Sunrisers Hyderabad elect to field against Kolkata Knight Riders

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Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) skipper Kane Williamson won the toss and elected to field against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in their Indian Premier League match here on Saturday.
 
KKR made three changes with U-19 World Cup winning batsman Shubman Gill, Australian pacer Mitchell Johnson and U-19 World Cup seamer Shivam Mavi replacing Rinku Singh, England all-rounder Tom Curran and out of form Karnataka medium fast bowler R. Vinay Kumar.
 
Sunrisers meanwhile welcomed back India pace spearhead Bhuvneshwar Kumar in place of Sandeep Sharma.
 
Teams:
 
Kolkata Knight Ridera: Chris Lynn, Sunil Narine, Robin Uthappa, Nitish Rana, Dinesh Karthik(w/c), Shubman Gill, Andre Russell, Mitchell Johnson, Shivam Mavi, Piyush Chawla, Kuldeep Yadav
 
Sunrisers Hyderabad: Wriddhiman Saha (w), Shikhar Dhawan, Kane Williamson (c), Manish Pandey, Shakib Al Hasan, Deepak Hooda, Yusuf Pathan, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Rashid Khan, Siddarth Kaul, Billy Stanlake
 
IANS
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Ban on Telugu actress who alleged sexual exploitation lifted

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Hours after the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) took suo moto cognizance of Telugu actress Sri Reddy's allegations of sexual exploitation, the Movie Artists' Association (MAA) on Thursday lifted a ban on her.

It also announced setting up of a Committee Against Sexual Harassment which would meet once in three months.

MAA President Shivaji Raja said the committee, comprising senior actors and filmmakers of Telugu film industry, would look into the complaints of sexual harassment.

Earlier in the day, the NHRC sent notices to the Telangana government and the Union Information and Broadcasting Ministry over Reddy's allegations.

The rights body took suo moto cognizance of media reports about the allegations raised by Reddy and a lack of grievance redressal mechanism for women in the film industry.

Reddy created a sensation by resorting to a stripping protest against casting couch in Tollywood in front of the office of Telugu Film Chamber of Commerce here on April 7.

She also questioned the Telangana government and MAA on the absence of a Committee Against Sexual Harassment.

MAA had not only dismissed her allegations but also declared that she would not be given its membership under any circumstances. It also said that action would be taken against any artiste who would share screen space with her.

Following the Commission's observation, MAA President said they had no grudge against Reddy but since her allegations hurt the artistes, it was decided to impose the ban.

He said all 900 members of MAA were free to work with Reddy.

IANS

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Sunrisers Hyderabad edge past Mumbai Indians in last-over thriller

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A brilliant all-round effort helped Sunrisers Hyderabad edge-past Mumbai Indians by one wicket in a thrilling Indian Premier League (IPL) match here on Thursday.
 
After posting 147, Mumbai bowlers did a fantastic job throughout the match but at the end, pacer Ben Cutting failed to hold his nerves and thus lost the issue on the last ball of the innings.
 
The real action unfolded in the last over. With 11 needed in the 20th over, Deepak Hooda (32 not out), who set the platform at the end, slammed a huge six off Cutting and then the bowlers delivered the wide.
 
Now, with four needed in five balls, the last pair of Hooda and Billy Stanlake (2) somehow managed to make it a one ball-one run affair and finally, the latter slammed it over the mid-wicket to seal the issue.
 
For Hyderabad, Mayank Markande scalped four wickets for 24 runs, while Mustafizur Rahman cracked three.
 
Unlike the last match, Mumbai openers Wriddhiman Saha (22) and Shikhar Dhawan (45) gave the perfect start, forging a 62-run partnership. But in the seventh over, Saha was dismissed by Markande.
 
After adding 11 more runs to the score with Dhawan, new batsman Kane Williamson (6) departed. In the very next over, Dhawan, who seemed good in the middle, was also sent packing.
 
With 77/3 in ninth over, middle-order batsmen Manish Pandey (11), Shakib Al Hasan (12)and Yusuf Pathan (14) failed to utilise the start and went cheaply. Pathan and Rashid Khan (0) were sent back to the pavilion in the same over.
 
Hooda, however, tried to narrow the gap between their score and the target.
 
With 11 runs needed in 11 balls, Mustafizur Rahman bowled a brilliant over, taking two wickets giving only one run. He dismissed Sidharth Kaul (0) and Sandeep Sharma (0). The scoreboard was then reading 137/9.
 
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The action unfolded in the last over in which Hooda and Stanlake guided their team to a thrilling victory.
 
Earlier, Sunrisers Hyderabad restricted Mumbai Indians to 147/8.
 
Opener Evin Lewis (29), Kieron Pollard (28) and Suryakumar Yadav (28) were the highest scorers for the team. For Hyderabad, Sandeep Sharma, Billy Stanlake and Siddarth Kaul took two wickets each.
 
Put in to bat, Mumbai started off on a bad note as skipper Rohit Sharma (11) departed in the second over with just 11 runs on the board.
 
Incoming batsman Ishan Kishan (9) also failed to give support to Lewis as he was dismissed in the sixth over.
 
In the same over, set batsman Lewis was also dismissed. He was clean bowled by Kaul. In his 17-ball innings, Lewis slammed three boundaries and two sixes.
 
Suryakumar Yadav and Krunal Pandya (12), however, tried to steady the innings but the latter was sent packing by skipper Shakib Al Hasan. Kieron Pollard (28) also tried to pace up the innings but after having a good start, he went back to the pavilion. Pacer Stanlake took his wicket in the 15th over.
 
Unperturbed by the fall of wickets, Yadav played sensibly, but lack of support from lower-order batsmen resulted in his wicket. Yadav was dismissed in the 19th over. Markande (6 not out) and Jasprit Bumrah (4 not out) only managed to score nine runs in the last over to finish the proceeding at 147 in their allotted 20 overs.
 
Brief scores:
Sunrisers Hyderabad - 148/9 (Shikhar Dhawan 45; Mayank Markande 4/23)
Mumbai Indians - 147/8 (Evin Lewis 29, Kieron Pollard 28, Sandeep Sharma 2/25) 
 
IANS
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IPL: Sunrisers Hyderabad restrict Mumbai Indians to 147/8

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A disciplined bowling effort helped Sunrisers Hyderabad restrict Mumbai Indians to 147/8 in their Indian Premier League (IPL) match here on Thursday.
 
Opener Evin Lewis (29), Kieron Pollard (28) and Suryakumar Yadav (28) were the highest scorers for the team. For Hyderabad, Sandeep Sharma, Billy Stanlake and Siddarth Kaul took two wickets each.
 
Put in to bat, Mumbai started off on a bad note as skipper Rohit Sharma (11) departed in the second over with just 11 runs on the board.
 
Incoming batsman Ishan Kishan (9) also failed to give support to Lewis as he was dismissed in the sixth over.
 
In the same over, set batsman Lewis was also dismissed. He was clean bowled by Kaul. In his 17 ball innings, Lewis slammed three boundaries and two sixes.
 
Suryakumar Yadav and Krunal Pandya (12), however, tried to steady the innings but the latter was sent packing by skipper Shakib Al Hasan. Kieron Pollard (28) also tried to pace up the innings but after having a good start, he went back to the pavilion. Pacer Stanlake took his wicket in the 15th over.
 
Unperturbed by the fall of wickets, Yadav played sensibly but lack of support from lower-order batsmen resulted in his wicket. Yadav was dismissed in the 19th over. Mayank Markande (6 not out) Jasprit Bumrah (4 not out) only managed to score nine runs in the last over to finish the proceeding at 147 in their allotted 20 overs.
 
Brief scores:
Mumbai Indians 147/8 (Evin Lewis 29, Kieron Pollard 28; Sandeep Sharma 2/25) against Sunrisers Hyderabad.
 
IANS
 
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SpiceJet to add Hubli as its fifth UDAN destination

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Low-cost carrier SpiceJet has said that it would commence operations with effect from May 14 from Hubli in Karnataka, its fifth destination under UDAN, the government's regional connectivity scheme.
 
SpiceJet was awarded Hubli under the second round of UDAN, a press release from the airline said.
 
With the addition of Hubli-Chennai and Hubli-Hyderabad routes, SpiceJet will operate six daily UDAN flights.
 
The airline had launched services on the Mumbai-Porbandar, Mumbai-Kandla, Jaipur-Jaisalmer and Hyderabad-Puducherry routes under the UDAN scheme last year.
 
SpiceJet will be the first airline to connect Hubli-Chennai and Hubli-Hyderabad with direct flights. The airline will also connect Hubli with key metro cities of Bengaluru and Mumbai, both of which are non-RCS sectors, the release said.
 
Hubli, the second largest city in Karnataka, houses the largest number of government offices in the state. Earmarked for the smart city project, it is also a major trading centre for commodities like cotton and iron.
 
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IPL: Shikhar Dhawan stars as Hyderabad outplay Rajasthan by 9 wickets

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Brilliant batting from opener Shikhar Dhawan (77 not out) helped Sunrisers Hyderabad outplay Rajasthan Royals by nine wickets in the fourth match of the Indian Premier League (IPL) here on Monday.
 
Right from the start, Dhawan, who slammed 13 boundaries and one six, made his intentions clear. Though Hyderabad started poorly, losing their opener Wriddhiman Saha (5), but after that there was no looking back as Dhawan and skipper Kane Williamson (36 not out) guided it to a comfortable victory with over four overs remaining .
 
Williamson played 35 balls in smashed three boundaries and one six.
 
For Rajasthan, pacer Jaydev Unadkat was the lone wicket taker.
 
Earlier, disciplined bowling helped Sunrisers Hyderabad restrict Rajasthan Royals to 125/9 in their allotted 20 overs.
 
Apart from Sanju Samson (49), no other batsmen rose to the occasion and were dismissed one by one. For Hyderabad, pacer Sidharth Kaul and spinner Shakib al Hasan took two wickets each while Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Billy Stanlake and Rashid Khan chipped in one wicket each.
 
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Put in to bat, Rajasthan got off to a poor start as opener D Arcy Short (4) was departed on the last ball of the the first over. But after that wicket, new batsman Samson and opener Ajinkya Rahane (13) forged a crucial 46-run partnership to steady their team's ship.
 
Just when things seemed good in the middle, Rahane was dismissed in the seventh over by Kaul.
 
Unperturbed by the fall of the skipper's wicket, Samson played freely, smashing the bad balls. Middle-order batsmen Ben Stokes (5), Rahul Tripathi (17) failed to utilise the start and were dismissed cheaply in the process.
 
While trying to increase the run-rate, Samson was also dismissed by spinner Hasan in the 14th over. Samson played 42 balls and slammed five boundaries.
 
Krishnappa Gowtham (0) was next to go. Kaul dismissed him in the 15th over.
 
Jos Buttler (6) and Shreyas Gopal (18) then joined in the middle but the latter failed and departed in the 18th over. Gopal, however, tried to pace the innings but was sent packing in the last over by Bhuvneshwar Kumar.
 
Brief scores:
Rajasthan: 125/9 (Sanju Samson 49; Siddarth Kaul 2/17) against Hyderabad 127/1 (Shikhar Dhawan 77 not out; Jaidev Unadkat 1/28)
 
IANS
 
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IPL: Sunrisers Hyderabad restrict Rajasthan Royals to 125/9

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Disciplined bowling helped Sunrisers Hyderabad restrict Rajasthan Royals to 125/9 in the fourth match of the Indian Premier League (IPL) here on Monday.
 
Apart from Sanju Samson (49), no other batsmen rose to the occasion and were dismissed one by one. For Hyderabad, pacer Sidharth Kaul and spinner Shakib al Hasan took two wickets each while Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Billy Stanlake and Rashid Khan chipped in with one wicket each.
 
Put in to bat, Rajasthan got off to a poor start as opener D Arcy Short (4) departed on the last ball of the the first over. But after that wicket, new batsman Sanju Samson (49) and opener Ajinkya Rahane (13) forged a crucial 46-run partnership to steady their team's ship.
 
Just when things seemed good in the middle, Rahane was dismissed in the seventh over by Sidharth Kaul .
 
Unperturbed by the fall of skipper's wicket, Samson played freely, smashing the bad balls. Middle-order batsmen Ben Stokes (5), Rahul Tripathi (17) failed to utilise the start and were dismissed cheaply in the process.
 
While trying to increase the run-rate, Samson was also dismissed by spinner Shakib Al Hasan in the 14th over. He played 42 balls and slammed five boundaries.
 
Krishnappa Gowtham (0) was next to go. Kaul dismissed him in the 15th over.
 
Jos Buttler (6) and Shreyas Gopal (18) then joined in the middle but the latter failed and departed in the 18th over. Gopal, however, tried to pace the innings but was sent packing in the last over by Bhuvneshwar Kumar.
 
Brief scores:
Rajasthan: 125/9 (Sanju Samson 49; Siddarth Kaul 2/17) against Hyderabad.
 
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IPL: Sunrisers Hyderabad to bowl against Rajasthan Royals

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Sunrisers Hyderabad won the toss and opted to bowl in their campaign opener against Rajasthan Royals in the eleventh edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium here on Monday.
 
Rajasthan, who are making a comeback after two years in the cash-rich league, is led by Ajinkya Rahane in the absence of banned Steve Smith while Kane Williamson will be in charge of Hyderabad.
 
For Hyderabad, Rashid Khan, Billy Stanlake, Williamson and Shakib-al-Hasan are the four overseas players while Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler, D'Arcy Short, Ben Laughlin make the cut in the Rajasthan's team.
 
Teams:
 
Sunrisers Hyderabad: Shikhar Dhawan, Kane Williamson (captain), Manish Pandey, Deepak Hooda, Yusuf Pathan, Shakib Al Hasan, Wriddhiman Saha(w), Rashid Khan, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Billy Stanlake, Siddarth Kaul
 
Rajasthan Royals: Ajinkya Rahane (captain), D Arcy Short, Sanju Samson, Ben Stokes, Rahul Tripathi, Jos Buttler(w), Krishnappa Gowtham, Shreyas Gopal, Dhawal Kulkarni, Jaydev Unadkat, Ben Laughlin
 
IANS
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Calligraphy is worship for this Indian on a mission to revive the art

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Arabic calligraphy is worship for Muqtar Ahmed, an Indian calligrapher who has made a mark for himself at the international level. Hailing from a remote village in Telangana and currently based in Bengaluru, Muqtar is on a mission to revive this dying art in India.
 
As beautiful as pearls, his works attract attention even if one is not familiar with the Arabic language.
 
According to him, the aesthetics and refinement are the specialities of Islamic art.
 
"Writing the Quranic verses and Hadith (sayings of the Prophet Mohammad) is worship. These works are sawab-e-jaria (continuous reward)," the calligrapher, who believes that there is no script more beautiful in the world, told IANS.
 
Muqtar believes his efforts have started yielding results as his disciples are carving a niche for themselves at the global level.
 
The only Indian to obtain an "Ijazah" (Master's diploma) from the Istanbul-based Research Centre for Islamic History, Art and Culture (IRCICA) of the Organisation of the Islamic Cooperation (OIC), Muqtar is grooming young talent at the Institute of Indo-Islamic Art and Culture (IIIAC) in Bengaluru.
 
He has so far trained 500 youngsters, including students, professionals and others coming from varied backgrounds at the institute. A Japanese girl is among the three foreigners who learnt Arabic calligraphy under him.
 
Muqtar, whose calligraphic works adorn mosques and even private jets abroad, is happy that the institute is getting global recognition for the high standards set by it in Arabic calligraphy.
 
Three of those trained under Muqtar bagged the top prizes at a national-level calligraphy competition organised in New Delhi last year by Yayasan Restu, a Malaysian organisation. Ameerul Islam and Abdul Sattar of Hyderabad won the top honours. They were selected for an 18-month training programme in Malaysia.
 
About 400 people from calligraphy institutes across the country participated in the competition. "For the first time, people in India saw what real Arabic calligraphy is," said Muqtar, who has participated in many exhibitions in different parts of the world.
 
According to him, the art in India has been in continuous decline after the end of Mughal rule. He pointed out that the calligraphy work in India was never recognised globally as it was nowhere near the international standard.
 
Ameerul Islam and Abdul Sattar are now teaching calligraphy at the institute's Hyderabad branch, which was opened recently. The talented youth, who have participated in competitions in various countries, are training more than 20 students.
 
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Muqtar, who plans to open another branch of the institute in Lucknow, believes that with more youngsters evincing interest in Arabic calligraphy, the art has bright future in the country.
 
The "ijazah" obtained by Muqtar in 2013 may have fetched him a good job in the Arab world, where Islamic art is greatly valued. But he stayed back to revive the art in India, where it once enjoyed royal patronage.
 
Syed Mohammed Beary, chairman, Bearys Group of Companies, came forward to help him in his mission by setting up IIIAC.
 
One of the works of 50-year-old Muqtar, settled in Bengaluru for nearly three decades, was purchased by the then governor of Madina in 2011 when he participated in the international exhibition in the holy city in Saudi Arabia.
 
Interested in calligraphy from his school days, Muqtar migrated from his village in Medak district to Hyderabad to learn the art. He them moved to Bengaluru where he started working for a Urdu daily.
 
Rendered jobless after the newspaper replaced calligraphy with computers in the early 1990s, Muqtar started writing wedding cards to make a living. "It was not my goal. I wanted to go deep into the art," recalled the artist who improved his art under renowned international calligraphers Mamoun Luthfi Sakkal and Mohammed Zakariya of the US, and refined it further under the guidance of Turkey's Hassan Chalabi and Dawood Biktash.
 
Muqtar, who uses special, hand-made pens for his writings, said he achieved precision with perseverance. "Even a small piece of calligraphy takes several hours. You have to write a letter hundreds of times to achieve accuracy," he said.
 
IANS
 
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Medlife, Xiaomi, Truecaller partner with GrabOn Cricket Fantasy in IPL season

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Online coupons and deals platform GrabOn has launched Cricket Fantasy League, its popular gaming event, once again to coincide with the 11th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL).
 
The latest edition of GrabOn Cricket Fantasy will see sponsorship from returning partner Medlife with new partners coming on board in the form of smart phone and TV brand Xiaomi and gaming site Rummy Passion.
 
GrabOn Cricket Fantasy gives cricket fans an opportunity to create their fantasy league and win attractive prizes, a press release from the Hyderabad-based company said.
 
“The previous season had an upward of 65,000 players participating in the contest and this year we expect to draw in over 1 lakh participants. We have planned events which are more competitive, with higher stakes and prizes worth up to Rs. 15 lakh up for grabs,” said Ashok Reddy, founder of GrabOn.
 
The Fantasy Cricket League requires users to build a team from the players participating and score points depending on the chosen player’s performance. The more points scored means the higher you can reach on the leaderboard. Players can also participate in engaging match and tournament predictor contests, to win easy points by answering simple questions and predicting the outcome of the matches.
 
Partnering with caller-identity pioneer Truecaller and major radio station 92.7 BIG FM, GrabOn Cricket Fantasy looks to target the youth. The prizes to be won include high-end Mivi headphones, vacation packages inclusive of flights by Klook, and gift vouchers from Xoxoday, among others. In addition, GrabOn has partnered with popular hangout spot Café Heart Cup Coffee, Hyderabad to offer a good time to cricket fans during the cricketing season. The offer is available at its outlets only to GrabOn Cricket Fantasy participants.
 
Apart from these regular events, GrabOn is also introducing a new fun game this year. It is guaranteed to help participants earn more points, top the leaderboard and win gifts every day. Players can earn additional bonus points by following certain procedures like logging in with Truecaller, referring friends to the game, and more. 
 
"This summer, GrabOn is giving you a chance to pocket big prizes off the field while records are being smashed on it," the release added.
 
Users can participate in the GrabOn Cricket Fantasy by visiting this link.
 
following link: 
 
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Telugu news anchor commits suicide in Hyderabad

 
Hyderabad TV anchor allegedly commits suicide
A Telugu news anchor committed suicide by jumping off the fifth floor of her apartment building here, police said on Monday.
 
V. Radhika Reddy, 36, who was associated with the V6 News channel, killed herself at Srivila Apartment in Moosapet on Sunday night.
 
A suicide note written in Telugu was found from her handbag. She wrote that her brain was her enemy and that nobody was responsible for her death.
 
Radhika was a divorcee with a 14-year-old son, who is mentally disabled. The police suspect she took the extreme step due to depression.
 
She was divorced six years and was since living with her son and her father.
 
The police said that witnesses saw her returning from work on Sunday night. Some saw her walking briskly towards the stairs. Instead of going to her flat, she went up to the top floor and jumped off.
 
Assistant Commissioner of Police Bhujanga Rao said a probe into the suicide was ongoing.
 
IANS
 
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Hales to replace Warner at Sunrisers Hyderabad

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Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) have signed England batsman Alex Hales as a replacement for disgraced Australian star David Warner for the upcoming 2018 season of the Indian Premier League (IPL).
 
"Breaking news: Alex Hales, the hard hitting English batsman has joined the #OrangeArmy!" the IPL outfit announced on its Twitter handle on Saturday.
 
Warner and Australia captain Steve Smith have been banned for 12 months and the former's opening partner Cameron Bancroft has been handed a nine-month ban for attempting to tamper with the ball on the third day of the third Test match against South Africa.
 
Warner, who was SRH captain last year, has also been banned from this year's IPL by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) along with Smith.
 
Hyderabad coach Tom Moody also took to social media to welcome Hales to the team.
 
"Welcome @AlexHales1 look forward to seeing you in Hyderabad. #OrangeArmy #SRH," Moody tweeted.
 
Hales had previously featured in the IPL in its 2015 edition when he replaced an injured Corey Anderson in the Mumbai Indians squad.
 
The only Englishman in the top 10 of the International Cricket Council's (ICC) Twenty20 International (T20I) rankings, Hales has scored 1,456 runs in 52 T20Is with a highest score of 116 and an average of 31.65.
 
He had enjoyed a successful domestic season in England with Northamptonshire last year, winning the T20 Blast and the One-Day Cup.
 
However, he went unsold in the IPL auction earlier this year as no franchise showed any interest in his services.
 
Hales has been in poor form for Islamabad United in the Pakistan Super League recently where he could only manage a top score of 46.
 
However, the 29-year-old is looking forward to his second stint in the IPL. 
 
"Very excited to be part of @SunRisers for this years IPL! Can't wait to get out there and get started!" Hales wrote on Twitter.
 
IANS
 
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CSIR scientists working on new vaccine for malaria

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Despite efforts over the decades by scientists across the world, malaria continues to be a major vector borne disease, particularly in Asia, Africa and South America. The World Health Organisation’s malaria report for 2016 estimated that globally there were 216 million cases with 445,000 deaths.
 
Malaria parasite, though a tiny single-celled organism, has a highly complex life cycle. It has 15 different stages and they occur in different cellular environments. 
 
The protein make up of the parasite also substantially differs from stage to stage and several organelles in the cells keep varying. Many organelles, particularly those required for the parasite to enter host cells, are produced and disposed of as and when required. Additionally, the parasite not only breaks down host cellular contents to obtain nutrients but also enslaves many host proteins for its benefit.
 
Scientists have been trying to come up with strategies to defeat the parasite. Researchers at the Hyderabad-based Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB) are working towards developing a whole parasite vaccine that can be conditionally attenuated when given to humans.
 
Speaking to India Science Wire, Dr. Puran Singh Sijwali, principal scientist at CCMB, who heads the team working on the vaccine, said “we have been developing conditionally attenuated parasite lines and testing them in mouse models. One of the lines is showing promising results. We now have to develop a parasite line for human use.”
 
Dr. Sijwali conceded that the task ahead was not a cake walk. “The basic problem is that malaria parasite species that infect human and mouse are different. We can adopt the concept that we have validated using mouse malaria species for developing a vaccine for human malaria parasite also. Importantly, the target used for conditional attenuation is also present in human malaria parasite. But we cannot be sure how effective it would be. Culture tests can give indication for attenuation. However, one has to do clinical trials with human volunteers to test whether the attenuated parasites will function as vaccines.”
 
The whole process could take several years. If successful, it would be a great advance. Despite number of efforts, a malaria vaccine is still awaited. A candidate malaria vaccine developed by GSK in collaboration with Walter Reed Army Institute of Research is set to be tested in Ghana, Kenya and Malawi.
 
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The pilot project, which will begin later this year, is expected to provide initial insights on programmatic feasibility of delivering a candidate vaccine. A large scale Phase 3 efficacy and safety trial of the candidate vaccine, which concluded in January 2014, had showed that it could help in reducing burden of malaria when used alongside currently available interventions like bed nets and insecticides.
 
Dr. Sijwali and his team are also investigating two important pathways in malaria parasite - ubiquitin proteasome and lysosomal pathways, which likely regulate parasite development and disease pathogenesis, and could be a treasure of potential targets for vaccine and drug development. He said, “we combine gene knock-out/gene knock-in/gene knock-down approaches with biochemical and cell biology methods in our studies on both P. falciparum and in the vivo models of malaria”.
 
The team is also working to understand the virulence of P. falciparum that causes cerebral malaria and pregnancy related malaria. Five species of plasmodium cause malaria in humans: P. falciparum, P. vivax, P. malariae, P. ovale, and P. knowlesi.
 
Most infections are caused by P. falciparum and P. vivax, but P. falciparum is the most dangerous: it accounts for almost 90% of total malaria toll. P. falciparum malaria is particularly fatal in children under five and pregnant women.
 
Dr. Sijwali made a presentation on his work at a recent international conference on cell biology. It was the first of its kind meeting, where three organisations came together: International Federation for Cell Biology (IFCB), Asian Pacific Organization for Cell Biology (APOCB) and Indian Society of Cell Biology (ISCB).
 
During the five-day programme, organised by CCMB at Hyderabad, cell biologists from across the world presented and discussed their work. The meeting also commemorated the 30th anniversary of the APOCB.
 
(India Science Wire)
 
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Aircraft suffers tyre burst while landing at Hyderabad Airport

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Over 70 passengers on board an Indigo aircraft from Tirupati had a narrow escape while one of its tyres burst while landing at Rajiv Gandhi International Airport here on Wednesday night, the airline said.
 
"The 72 passengers plus 1 infant and 4 crew are safe. All passengers of flight 6E 7117 have disembarked and taken with luggage to arrival hall," said a statement by IndiGo.
 
"ATR 72 is currently in a process to be removed to the parking bay," it added.
 
As the tyre burst led to sparks, alert personnel of fire fighting team rushed to the aircraft to prevent any disaster, airport sources said.
 
The incident occurred around 10.30 p.m when the aircraft was landing on the runway. It caused panic among passengers.
 
YSR Congress Party legislator Roja was among the passengers. The former actress sent few visuals from the aircraft to some television channels. In the video clippings, some passengers were seen having heated argument with crew over the delay in opening the doors.
 
The pilot was heard advising passengers to be calm and remain seated. He assured them that there is nothing serious.
 
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Sindhu suffers ankle sprain, to resume CWG training soon

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Indian badminton ace P.V. Sindhu's right ankle injury, which she suffered during training on Tuesday, is "just a sprain", and she will resume training soon.
 
The 2016 Rio Olympic silver medallist, a top gold medal prospect for India at the coming Commonwealth Games, went off the practice court after suffering a sprain in her right ankle while practising at the Gopichand Academy in Hyderabad.
 
"It is not a major injury. Medical tests have revealed that it is just a sprain," the 22-year-old's mother Pusarla Vijaya told IANS over phone.
 
"She can go to training from tomorrow onwards," she added about her daughter who reached the semi-finals of the All England championships last week.
 
Sindhu is a three-time World Championships medallist and had won bronze in the 2014 CWG edition in Glasgow. Not only in the singles category, the Hyderabadi will be a key player in the mixed team event as well.
 
The badminton competitions at the CWG will begin with the mixed team event on April 5.
 
IANS
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‘Wings India 2018’ gets underway with ‘India-Global Aviation Hub’ as theme

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The four-day biennial event ‘Wings India 2018’ began here yesterday with ‘India-Global Aviation Hub’ as the theme.
 
Jointly organized by Ministry of Civil Aviation, Airports Authority of India and FICCI, Wings India 2018 is a platform for interactions, forging alliances, investments and air connectivity between the States and the global aviation players & stakeholders, an official press release said.
 
The event was attended by senior ministers of Telangana Government and senior officials of Ministry of Civil Aviation, DGCA, AAI and representatives from FICCI.
 
Speaking at the inauguration, Civil Aviation Secretary R N Choubey said the Government was committed to connecting the cities and towns to increase regional connectivity. The oil prices needed to remain soft, below $80 a barrel, for the sector to grow at a CAGR of 15% for the next 20 years, he said.
 
The event will witness the presence of 125 exhibitors and 35 CEOs. It will also see representation from 10 countries. Besides the conference and exhibition, Roundtables on Tourism, Cargo and Logistics and Skills and G2B and B2B meetings are scheduled.
 
More than 300 B2B meetings are scheduled during the event. The conference will focus on fostering partnership to transform Indian aviation and the role of a conducive regulatory framework to facilitate the growth of civil aviation market.
 
Coinciding with the event, FICCI is set to launch its maiden edition of ‘Wings India Awards’ for Excellence in the aviation sector. The awards will be conferred upon the aviation-related companies, institutions and organizations in 14 categories.
 
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10 Maoists, one commando killed in gunbattle on Telangana-Chhattisgarh border

 
10 Maoists killed in encounter with security forces in Pujari Kanker
At least ten suspected Maoists were killed in a gunbattle between them and the police in Pujari Kander on the border between Telangana and Chhattisgarh early this morning.
 
The Maoists killed in the incident included six women, official source said.
 
A constable of the Greyhounds commando force of the Telangana Police was also killed in the incident. His body was recovered from the scene and flown to Bhadrachalam, they said. Three other police personnel suffered injuries and were airlifted to a hospital.
 
The sources said the encounter took place when a joint team of the Telangana and the Chhattisgarh Police began a combing operation in the area following a tip-off that Maoists were present there.
 
They surrounded the Maoists and asked them to surrender but were greeted, instead, with gunfire, after which the police retaliated, the sources said.
 
The incident has come about two and a half months after eight Maoists were killed in an encounter in the Mellamadugu forest in Tekulapalli mandal of Bhadradri Kothagudem district on December 14, 2017.
 
Additional police forces were rushed to the area and have launched combing operations.
 
Some automatic weapons and ammunition, a laptop computer, a scanner and about Rs. 40,000 in cash were recovered from the slain Maoists, the sources said.
 
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Nutrition may help overcome genetic risk of diabetes: Study

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For years, scientists have been engaged in finding human genes associated with lifestyle diseases like diabetes and heart disease to know if certain population groups are prone to these disorders. Now Indian scientists have found that good nutrition can actually modify the risk of diabetes posed by presence of certain faulty genes.
 
New research has revealed that good nutrition – in the form of B12 and folic acid supplements – has a beneficial impact on genes associated with Type 2 diabetes. The study has been led by scientists at the Hyderabad-based Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB), a laboratory of the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR).
 
Vitamins B12 and folate plays an important role in DNA methylation – a process that regulates various function of genes without altering the sequence. In DNA methylation, basically methyl group is added to DNA which can result in change in its activity.
 
Researchers provided Vitamin B12 and folic acid to a group of children for one year and examined the DNA methylation status by analysing their blood samples. They found that only vitamin B12 and not folic acid influences regulation of several Type 2 Diabetes associated genes through methylation of a specific microRNA.
 
“This assumes significance in the light of our earlier observations that maternal homocysteine levels due to vitamin B12 deficiency are predictive of the future risk of cardio-metabolic risk in their children. Hence, this study provides a novel epigenetic explanation for the association between disordered one-carbon metabolism and risk of adiposity, insulin resistance and diabetes and has translational potential,” Dr. Giriraj R Chandak, who led the research, told India Science Wire.
 
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To understand the programming of complex diseases in more detail, the group is currently working a group of mothers who were given micronutrients, to see the effect of supplementation in their offspring. This work is being done in collaboration with Dr C S Yajnik at KEM Hospital and Research Centre (KEMHRC), Pune. In order to understand molecular mechanism of programming in more details, similar conditions have been generated in animal models and effects are being analyzed in their cells, tissues and organs.
 
“Finding of this study will enrich our understanding of the molecular mechanism of fetal programming, cause, and development of complex diseases. These studies will have potential public health significance and help in designing prevention policies,” added Dr. Chandak.
 
The research team also included Dilip Kumar Yadav and Smeeta Shrestha from –CCMB; Hong Pan and Joanna D Holbrook from Singapore Institute for Clinical Sciences; Caroline HD Fall and Karen A Lillycrop from Southampton General Hospital, UK; Charu V Joglekar and C S Yajnik from KEM Health Research Centre, Pune. 
 
The study was funded by CSIR, Wellcome Trust and Department of Biotechnology (DBT).
 
(India Science Wire)
 
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India a hot-spot for digital innovation, growing market for tech innovation: Modi

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said India is the hot-spot of digital innovation across all sectors, not only having a growing number of innovative entrepreneurs, but also a growing market for tech innovation.
 
“We were and we remain one of the most tech-friendly populations in the world, with over one lakh villages linked with optical fibre, 121 crore mobile phones, 120 crore Aadhaar and 50 crore internet users,” Mr Modi said in his inaugural address through video conference at the World Conference on Information Technology (IT) here.
 
Noting that the event is being held in India for the first time, he said it has been organized in partnership with NASSCOM, WITSA and Telangana state government.
 
“India is best placed to leverage the power of technology and leap-frog into the future while ensuring empowerment of every citizen. Digital India is a journey bringing about digital inclusion for digital empowerment aided by the digital infrastructure for digital delivery of services. Leveraging technology in such a holistic manner was unthinkable some years ago,” the Prime Minister said.
 
“We have successfully completed this life-cycle in the last three and a half years. This has been possible through a change in public behaviour and processes. Digital India has not remained merely a Government initiative, but has become a way of life,” he said.
 
Mr Modi said while most Government initiatives depend on a Government push, Digital India is succeeding because of the people’s pull.
 
The JAM trinity combining 320 million Jan Dhan bank accounts of the poor with Aadhaar and Mobile with direct benefits of welfare measures has saved Rs 57,000 crore, he said.
 
Around 22 million digital hospital transactions across 172 hospitals in India are bringing comfort in the lives of patients. The National Scholarship Portal for easy scholarships today has 14 million students registered for it, he added.
 
eNAM- an online agriculture market offering the best prices to the farmers has 6.6 million farmers registered and 470 agriculture markets connected. Digital payments through BHIM-UPI has registered transactions of Rs 15,000 crore in January 2018, he said.
 
The unique Umang app launched only three months back is already offering 185 Government services, he pointed out.
 
Mr. Modi said that, as of date, 2.8 lakh Common Services Centres in different parts of the country were providing several digital services. About 10 lakh people work in these centres, including thousands of women entrepreneurs.
 
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“In order to leverage the skills and talent of our youth, BPOs have started operating from places like Kohima and Imphal in North East India to areas of Jammu and Kashmir. As many as 86 units across 27 states and Union Territories have already become operational and much more are likely to come up soon,” he added.
 
“To ensure digital literacy in every household, we have initiated a Pradhan Mantri Rural Digital Literacy Mission to make 60 million adults digitally literate in rural India. Under this scheme, 10 million people have already been trained.
 
“We have come a long way with the convergence of Make In India and Digital India. From only two mobile manufacturing units in India in 2014, today there are 118 units operating in the country, including some of the best global brands,” the Prime Minister said.
 
The Government e-Market-place has been developed as the National Procurement Portal of India. It enables small and medium enterprises to compete in meeting the procurement requirements of the Government. This simple IT framework has improved transparency in Government procurement. It has also speeded up procurement processes and empowered thousands of small and medium enterprises, he added.
 
“We stand today at the cusp of the fourth Industrial Revolution. Technology, if used well for public good, can deliver lasting prosperity to mankind and a sustainable future for our planet. It is in this context that I place the World Conference on Information Technology, in India today,” Mr Modi said.
 
 “The key themes at this conference reflect the opportunities that await us. Disruptive technologies such as Block-chain and the Internet of Things will have a deep impact in the way we live and work. They will require rapid adaptation in our workplaces.
 
“Skilling citizens for the workplace of the future is Important. In India, we have launched the National Skill Development Mission to prepare our children and youth for a bright future. We also need to ensure that our existing work-force is able to re-skill, as new technologies emerge,” the Prime Minister pointed out.
 
 "One of the invited speakers at this event, the robot Sophia shows the potential of new technologies. We need to reflect on the changing nature of jobs, in the emerging age of intelligent automation. I compliment NASSCOM for developing the “Skills of the Future” platform,” he said.
 
“I am told, NASSCOM has identified eight important technologies. They include Artificial Intelligence, Virtual Reality, Robotic Process Automation, Internet of Things, Big Data Analytics, 3D Printing, Cloud Computing, Social and Mobile. NASSCOM has also identified 55 job roles that are going to be in high demand globally,” he added.
 
The Prime Minister said the Government had launched the Start-up India initiative to prepare millions of small and medium businesses for this transformation in a short time.
 
“We believe our startups are the key to finding viable and economical solutions across sectors and verticals. Under the Atal Innovation Mission, we are building Atal Tinkering Labs in schools across India. The objective of this scheme is to foster curiosity, creativity and imagination in young minds,” he added.
 
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CCMB working to make personalised medicine a reality

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One size does not fit all. This applies to medicine, as much as for garments. Some medicines might work on some but not on others. The key to unravel this secret lies in the uniqueness of the cells of each one of us. However, unlike garments, the consequences can be quite serious when we do not respond favorably to the drugs. Could we then have a test run of the drug on a body double and pick only the ones that work for ourselves?
 
Recent developments in life science research have led to a novel solution for this problem. Scientists can now convert ordinary cells extracted from a patient’s body into what are called pluripotent stem cells and use these to develop a variety of organoids – multiple miniaturized and simplified versions of body organs. These can then be used to screen a variety of drugs for the ailment a person is suffering from and identify those that are best suited for him or her.
 
The Hyderabad-based Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB), a part of the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), is in the process of setting up a facility to take the benefit of this new technology to common people.
 
Noting that several other new technologies have also come up in recent years that could help make personalised medicine a reality, the Director of the institute, Dr. Rakesh K.Mishra, said steps were underway to put them, too. into use.
 
For instance, it is now possible to make cells produce bioactive products like insulin and deliver them to patients who do not produce enough of them in the form of patches. “The technologies are available. We just need to put them in place after obtaining appropriate approvals. Lots of activities are happening on this front”, he said.
 
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CCMB, he said, is looking to engage with clinicians and the industry in a big way, with them participating right from the beginning stages of research.
 
“We want them to invest and be a partner in developing technologies. This will help accelerate research in industrial context. We will also gain a lot from their expertise in marketing and production,’’ Dr Mishra said. In this regard, he recalled how Shanta Biotech, one of the first major biotechnology companies in India had begun its journey from CCMB.
 
The institute focuses both on contributing intellectually as well as in terms of developing industry ready manpower. “We interact with the industry, find out what kind of manpower they require so as to design appropriate short term courses of one, two and six month duration. In this programme, we focus on producing properly qualified technicians, technical officers and other manpower required by industries engaged in biology-related activities,” he said.
 
The research institute has recently started a programme to expose students in medical colleges in Telangana to various aspects of medical research. The aim of the programme is to foster collaborations between scientists and medical professionals in medical research. 
 
(India Science Wire)
 
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Iranian President Hassan Rouhani to pay state visit to India from February 15-17

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Iranian President Hassan Rouhani will reach Hyderabad today at the start of a three-day state visit to India during which he will hold bilateral talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi here on February 17.
 
In Hyderabad, Dr. Rouhani will visit the Salar Jung Museum, the Golconda Fort, the Qutab Shahi Tomb and the Makkah Masjid tomorrow. He will also have a meeting with the Iranian community in the city tomorrow afternoon before leaving for Delhi in the evening.
 
Dr. Rouhani will be accorded a ceremonial reception here on February 17. He will have a meeting with President Ram Nath Kovind in the evening of that day.
 
External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj will call on him in the morning, while Vice-President M. Venkaiah Naidu will meet him in the evening.
 
During the talks between Mr. Modi and Dr. Rouhani, both sides would review the progress achieved in bilateral relations and also exchange views on regional and international issues of mutual interest. 
 
Mr. Modi had paid a state visit to Iran in May, 2016.
 
Dr. Rouhani is also slated to attend a business event here that morning. He will also deliver a special address at the Observer Research Foundation (ORF). He  will aso attend an Indian Parsi community event in the evening on February 17.
 
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GE, Tata group hold ground-breaking ceremony for aero-engine centre of excellence in Hyderabad

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GE and the Tata group held the ground-breaking ceremony for a world class Structural Center of Excellence (COE) focused on aero-engine components at Hyderabad on Monday.
 
The ceremony was held in the presence of Mr. K T Rama Rao, Minister for IT E&C, Government of Telangana, and other dignitaries from the State government. The manufacturing facility will be located in Adibatla here.
 
A press release from Tata group said the COE would incorporate latest technologies from GE and best manufacturing practices to deliver complex high precision aero-engine components to the world’s fastest-selling jet engine, the CFM LEAP engine. 
 
This is part of the strategic partnership signed in November 2017 between GE Aviation and Tata Advanced Systems (TASL) to join forces for manufacturing, assembling, integration and testing of aircraft components, it said.
 
Banmali Agrawala, president, infrastructure, defence and aerospace, Tata Sons, said, “Tata group’s partnership with GE will boost the domestic manufacturing expertise, and enhance the capabilities of the group in the global aerospace industry. We look forward to developing a resilient ecosystem through this collaboration that will help both companies to strengthen manufacturing expertise in the country. This investment will create highly skilled jobs and develop a high-end supply chain that will offer a globally competitive manufacturing ecosystem in India.”
 
Vishal Wanchoo, president and CEO, GE South Asia, said, “Both GE and Tata have a long and distinguished history of delivering on commitments to help customers solve some of their toughest challenges. The collaboration between the two companies will deliver results for India’s aerospace and defence industry which will be unmatched. Through our technology centres in Bengaluru and Hyderabad, GE has developed high-tech research capabilities in India. Combining GE’s R&D capability with state of the art manufacturing within Tata’s new facility in Hyderabad is a significant step forward in building indigenous capability for the Indian aerospace industry.”
 
The agreement for manufacturing of LEAP components and establishment of TASL as a COE provides the opportunity for TASL to expand into other GE product lines in both commercial and military engines in the future. 
 
GE military engines have a strong history in India. GE currently provides the jet engines and marine gas turbines for many Indian military applications including the Air Force Light Combat Aircraft-Tejas Mk 1, Indian Navy P-8I aircraft, and P-17 Shivalik class frigates. Several military programs under development that include the Light Combat Aircraft-Tejas Mk 2, P-17A & P-71 ships, and the AH-64 attack helicopters will be powered by GE engines, the release said.
 
TASL, the strategic aerospace and defence arm of the Tata Group, is fast emerging as a key player in the global aerospace and defence market with established capabilities throughout the aerospace value chain from design to full aircraft assembly. TASL is a premier manufacturing partner for global original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) as well as the Government of India’s Defence Research and Development Organisation, the release added.
 
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Are we alone in this universe? Big data algorithms may help find answer

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The search for life outside the earth is all set to get intensified. Indian astronomers have developed a new technique to know if any of the newly discovered exoplanets -- planets outside our solar system -- are potentially habitable.
 
Till now, over 3500 exoplanets have been discovered and scientists estimate that the number could run into billions in our galaxy alone and trillions in the observable universe.
 
The earth, according to astrophysicists, is actually an average planet and our solar system may not be unique in the sense of its ability to support life. In this scenario, efforts are on to find if there are life-harbouring and earth-like planets.
 
The technique developed by Indian scientists is based the emerging understanding that habitability need not be defined solely from the perspective of the earth or the solar system we are part of. So far, the search for life has been confined to stellar habitable zones where liquid water exists on surface, but now it has expanded to galactic and even universe habitable zones.
 
Habitability depends on an understanding of physical planetary parameters like orbital properties, chemical composition, mass, radius, density, surface temperature, distance from parent star, and temperature or mass of parent star. Applying these parameters to each of the newly discovered exoplanets one by one is going to be a time consuming and tardy task.
 
Indian researchers have automated this process by using data analysis and machine learning techniques – an exercise which represents an emerging discipline called astroinformatics that combines astronomy and computing. The new technique was presented at the 36th session of the Astronomical Society of India (ASI) being held at Osmania University here recently.
 
The present approach to look for life on planets outside the solar system is to search for earth-like conditions or planets similar to the earth, what we call ‘earth similarity’ and also for possibility of life in a form known or unknown to us, meaning ‘habitability’. For this, two indices used are Earth Similarity Index (ESI) and Planetary Habitability Index (PHI).
 
“We have proposed a different metric - a Cobb-Douglas Habitability Score (CDHS) - which computes the habitability score by using measured and estimated planetary input parameters like radius, density, escape velocity and surface temperature of a planet. The values of the input parameters are normalized to the Earth Units. The metric, with exponents accounting for metric elasticity, has analytical properties that ensure global optima, and can be scaled up to accommodate more input parameters,” explained Margarita Safonova of Bangalore-based M P Birla Institute of Fundamental Research, and a member of the research team, while speaking to India Science Wire.
 
The Cobb-Douglas Habitability Score has actually been derived from an economic theory first proposed in 1920s. “Using known parameters of each exoplanet, like density, radius, escape velocity and surface temperature, our sophisticated model predicts a score for each planet, by comparing it to the Earth. These scores are fed into powerful machine learning and artificial intelligence algorithms that can group these planets into various classes of habitability potentia,l” said Prof Jayant Murthy of Indian Institute of Astrophysics, Bangalore.
 
The new metric has been applied to the exoplanet Proxima b orbiting the nearest star (Proxima Centauri) to the Sun. There is expectation that Proxima b is potentially habitable, since it is located in the star’s habitable zone and its mass is 1.27 the earth’s mass. Though it orbits its star eight times closer than Mercury, the amount of energy it receives is 2/3rd of what the earth receives from the sun, raising the possibility that liquid water can exist on the surface.
 
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“We computed the habitability score CDHS of Proxima b using radius, density, escape velocity and surface temperature, only surface temperature and radius, stellar flux and radius, and stellar flux and mass. According to our classification algorithm, Proxima b falls in the ‘Earth-League’”, said Safonova. Earth’s habitability ‘floor function value’ is 1, and the difference between its CDHS and the earth’s CDHS is within the acceptable threshold.
 
“Our algorithm emphatically exhibits potential habitability of Proxima b, matching with estimate the Planetary Habitability Laboratory at the University of Puerto Rico which maintains the catalogue of all exoplanets,” she added. “This indicates that the model may be extended for a quick check of the potential habitability of newly discovered exoplanets in general. We have created a web page for this project to host all relevant data and results including datasets, figures, animation video and a graphical abstract.”
 
Snehanshu Saha, Kakoli Bora, S. Agrawal, Swathi Routh and Anand Narasimhamurthy are also members of the research project, which was conducted by astronomers from Indian  Institute of Astrophysics, PES University and MPBIFR. The work was funded and supported by Vision Group on Science and Technology (VGST), Government of Karnataka, and the Inter-University Centre for Astronomy and Astrophysics (IUCAA). 
 
(India Science Wire)
 
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