|3D Picture of Science Channel|
Science News This Week:
|Extra Chromosome 21 Removed from Down Syndrome Cell Line|
1) Extra Chromosome 21 Removed from Down Syndrome Cell Line:
University of Washington scientists have succeeded in removing the extra copy of chromosome 21 in cell cultures derived from a person with Down syndrome, a condition in which the body's cells contain three copies of chromosome 21 rather than the usual pair.
A triplicate of any chromosome is a serious genetic abnormality called a trisomy. Trisomies account for almost one-quarter of pregnancy loss from spontaneous miscarriages, according to the research team. Besides Down syndrome (trisomy 21), some other human trisomies are extra Y or X chromosomes, and Edwards syndrome (trisomy 18) and Patau syndrome (trisomy 13), both of which have extremely high newborn fatality rates.
In their report appearing in the Nov. 2 edition of Cell Stem Cell, a team led by Dr. Li B. Li of the UW Department of Medicine described how they corrected trisomy 21 in human cell lines they grew in the lab. The senior scientists on the project were gene therapy researchers Dr. David W. Russell, professor of medicine and biochemistry, and Dr. Thalia Papayannopoulou, professor of medicine.
The targeted removal of a human trisomy, they noted, could have both clinical and research applications.
In live births, Down syndrome is the most frequent trisomy. The condition has characteristic eye, facial and hand features, and can cause many medical problems, including heart defects, impaired intellect, premature aging and dementia, and certain forms of leukemia, a type of blood cancer.
"We are certainly not proposing that the method we describe would lead to a treatment for Down syndrome," Russell said. "What we are looking at is the possibility that medical scientists could create cell therapies for some of the blood-forming disorders that accompany Down syndrome."
For example, he said, someday Down syndrome leukemia patients might have stem cells derived their own cells, and have the trisomy corrected in these lab-cultured cells. They could then receive a transplant of their own stem cells -- minus the extra chromosome -- or healthy blood cells created from their fixed stem cells and that therefore don't promote leukemia, as part of their cancer care.
He added that the ability to generate stem cells with and without trisomy 21 from the same person could lead to better understanding of how problems tied to Down syndrome originate. The cell lines would be genetically identical, except for the extra chromosome. Researcher could contrast, for example how the two cell lines formed brain nerve cells, to learn the effects of trisomy 21 on neuron development, which might offer insights into the lifelong cognitive impairments and adulthood mental decline of Down syndrome. Similar comparative approaches could seek the underpinnings of untimely aging or defective heart tissue in this genetic condition.
The formation of trisomies is also a problem in regenerative medicine research using stem cells. Russell and his team observed that their approach could also be used to revert the unwanted trisomies that often arise in creating stem cell cultures.
Figuring out the exact techniques for removing the extra chromosome was tricky, Russell said, but his colleague Li worked hard to solve several challenges during his first attempts at deriving the engineered cell lines.
"Dr. Li's achievement was a tour de force," Russell said.
The researchers used an adeno-associated virus as a vehicle to deliver a foreign gene called TKNEO into a particular spot on chromosome 21, precisely within a gene called APP, which sits on the long arm of the chromosome. The TKNEO transgene was chosen because of its predicted response to positive and negative selection in specific laboratory growth mediums. When grown in conditions that selected against TKNEO, the most common reason for cells to survive was the spontaneous loss of the chromosome 21 harboring the transferred gene. Other survival tactics were point mutations, which are single, tiny alterations in DNA base pairs; gene silencing, which meant TKNEO was "turned off" by the cell; or deletion of the TKNEO.
Russell explained a key advantage of this technique for getting rid of the entire extra chromosome: Once it was gone, nothing was left behind.
"Gene therapy researchers have to be careful that their approaches do not cause gene toxicity," he said. This means, for example, that removal of a chromosome must not break or rearrange the remaining genetic code. This method shouldn't do that."
|World's rarest whale seen for the first time|
2) World's rarest whale seen for the first time :
A whale that is almost unknown to science has been seen for the first time after two individuals -- a mother and her male calf -- were stranded and died on a New Zealand beach. A report in the November 6th issue of Current Biology offers the first complete description of the spade-toothed beaked whale (Mesoplodon traversii), a species previously known only from a few bones. The discovery is the first evidence that this whale is still with us and serves as a reminder of just how little we still know about life in the ocean, the researchers say. The findings also highlight the importance of DNA typing and reference collections for the identification of rare species.
"This is the first time this species -- a whale over five meters in length -- has ever been seen as a complete specimen, and we were lucky enough to find two of them," says Rochelle Constantine of the University of Auckland. "Up until now, all we have known about the spade-toothed beaked whale was from three partial skulls collected from New Zealand and Chile over a 140-year period. It is remarkable that we know almost nothing about such a large mammal."
The two whales were discovered in December 2010, when they live-stranded and subsequently died on Opape Beach, New Zealand. The New Zealand Department of Conservation was called to the scene, where they photographed the animals and collected measurements and tissue samples.
The whales were initially identified not as spade-toothed beaked whales but as much more common Gray's beaked whales. Their true identity came to light only following DNA analysis, which is done routinely as part of a 20-year program to collect data on the 13 species of beaked whales found in New Zealand waters.
"When these specimens came to our lab, we extracted the DNA as we usually do for samples like these, and we were very surprised to find that they were spade-toothed beaked whales," Constantine says. "We ran the samples a few times to make sure before we told everyone."
The researchers say they really have no idea why the whales have remained so elusive.
"It may be that they are simply an offshore species that lives and dies in the deep ocean waters and only rarely wash ashore," Constantine says. "New Zealand is surrounded by massive oceans. There is a lot of marine life that remains unknown to us."
|Xenoceratops: Canada's newest horned dinosaur|
3) Meet Xenoceratops: Canada's newest horned dinosaur:
Scientists have named a new species of horned dinosaur (ceratopsian) from Alberta, Canada. Xenoceratops foremostensis (Zee-NO-Sare-ah-tops) was identified from fossils originally collected in 1958. Approximately 20 feet long and weighing more than 2 tons, the newly identified plant-eating dinosaur represents the oldest known large-bodied horned dinosaur from Canada. Research describing the new species is published in the October 2012 issue of the Canadian Journal of Earth Sciences.
"Starting 80 million years ago, the large-bodied horned dinosaurs in North America underwent an evolutionary explosion," said lead author Dr. Michael Ryan, curator of vertebrate paleontology at The Cleveland Museum of Natural History. "Xenoceratops shows us that even the geologically oldest ceratopsids had massive spikes on their head shields and that their cranial ornamentation would only become more elaborate as new species evolved."
Xenoceratops (Xeno + ceratops) means "alien horned-face," referring to the strange pattern of horns on its head and the scarcity of horned dinosaur fossils from this part of the fossil record. It also honors the Village of Foremost, located close to where the dinosaur was discovered. Xenoceratops had a parrot-like beak with two long brow horns above its eyes. A large frill protruded from the back of its skull featuring two huge spikes.
"Xenoceratops provides new information on the early evolution of ceratopsids, the group of large-bodied horned dinosaurs that includes Triceratops," said co-author Dr. David Evans of the Royal Ontario Museum and University of Toronto. "The early fossil record of ceratopsids remains scant, and this discovery highlights just how much more there is to learn about the origin of this diverse group."
The new dinosaur is described from skull fragments from at least three individuals from the Foremost Formation originally collected by Dr. Wann Langston Jr. in the 1950s, and is currently housed in the Canadian Museum of Nature in Ottawa, Canada. Ryan and Evans stumbled upon the undescribed material more than a decade ago and recognized the bones as a new type of horned dinosaur. Evans later discovered a 50-year-old plaster field jacket at the Canadian Museum of Nature containing more skull bones from the same fossil locality and had them prepared in his lab at the Royal Ontario Museum.
This dinosaur is just the latest in a series of new finds being made by Ryan and Evans as part of their Southern Alberta Dinosaur Project, which is designed to fill in gaps in our knowledge of Late Cretaceous dinosaurs and study their evolution. This project focuses on the paleontology of some of the oldest dinosaur-bearing rocks in Alberta, which is less intensely studied than that of the famous badlands of Dinosaur Provincial Park and Drumheller.
"This discovery of a previously unknown species also drives home the importance of having access to scientific collections," says co-author Kieran Shepherd, curator of paleobiology for the Canadian Museum of Nature, which holds the specimen. "The collections are an untapped source of new material for study, and offer the potential for many new discoveries."
Xenoceratops was identified by a team comprising palaeontologists Dr. Michael J. Ryan, curator of vertebrate paleontology at The Cleveland Museum of Natural History; and Dr. David Evans, curator, vertebrate palaeontology of the Department of Natural History at the Royal Ontario Museum; as well as Kieran Shepherd, curator of paleobiology for the Canadian Museum of Nature.
|Comet Collisions Every Six Seconds Explain 17-Year-Old Stellar Mystery|
4) Comet Collisions Every Six Seconds Explain 17-Year-Old Stellar Mystery :
Every six seconds, for millions of years, comets have been colliding with one another near a star in the constellation Cetus called 49 CETI, which is visible to the naked eye.
Over the past three decades, astronomers have discovered hundreds of dusty disks around stars, but only two -- 49 CETI is one -- have been found that also have large amounts of gas orbiting them.
Young stars, about a million years old, have a disk of both dust and gas orbiting them, but the gas tends to dissipate within a few million years and almost always within about 10 million years. Yet 49 CETI, which is thought to be considerably older, is still being orbited by a tremendous quantity of gas in the form of carbon monoxide molecules, long after that gas should have dissipated.
"We now believe that 49 CETI is 40 million years old, and the mystery is how in the world can there be this much gas around an otherwise ordinary star that is this old," said Benjamin Zuckerman, a UCLA professor of physics and astronomy and co-author of the research, which was recently published in the Astrophysical Journal. "This is the oldest star we know of with so much gas."
Zuckerman and his co-author Inseok Song, a University of Georgia assistant professor of physics and astronomy, propose that the mysterious gas comes from a very massive disk-shaped region around 49 CETI that is similar to the sun's Kuiper Belt, which lies beyond the orbit of Neptune.
The total mass of the various objects that make up the Kuiper Belt, including the dwarf planet Pluto, is about one-tenth the mass of Earth. But back when Earth was forming, astronomers say, the Kuiper Belt likely had a mass that was approximately 40 times larger than Earth's; most of that initial mass has been lost in the last 4.5 billion years.
By contrast, the Kuiper Belt analogue that orbits around 49 CETI now has a mass of about 400 Earth masses -- 4,000 times the current mass of the Kuiper Belt.
"Hundreds of trillions of comets orbit around 49 CETI and one other star whose age is about 30 million years. Imagine so many trillions of comets, each the size of the UCLA campus -- approximately 1 mile in diameter -- orbiting around 49 CETI and bashing into one another," Zuckerman said. "These young comets likely contain more carbon monoxide than typical comets in our solar system. When they collide, the carbon monoxide escapes as a gas. The gas seen around these two stars is the result of the incredible number of collisions among these comets.
"We calculate that comets collide around these two stars about every six seconds," he said. "I was absolutely amazed when we calculated this rapid rate. I would not have dreamt it in a million years. We think these collisions have been occurring for 10 million years or so."
Using a radio telescope in the Sierra Nevada mountains of southern Spain in 1995, Zuckerman and two colleagues discovered the gas that orbits 49 CETI, but the origin of the gas had remained unexplained for 17 years, until now.
|Drinking Green Tea With Starchy Food May Help Lower Blood Sugar Spikes|
5) Drinking Green Tea With Starchy Food May Help Lower Blood Sugar Spikes:
An ingredient in green tea that helps reduce blood sugar spikes in mice may lead to new diet strategies for people, according to Penn State food scientists.
Mice fed an antioxidant found in green tea -- epigallocatechin-3-gallate, or EGCG -- and corn starch had a significant reduction in increase in their blood sugar -- blood glucose -- levels compared to mice that were not fed the compound, according to Joshua Lambert, assistant professor of food science in agricultural sciences.
"The spike in blood glucose level is about 50 percent lower than the increase in the blood glucose level of mice that were not fed EGCG," Lambert said.
The dose of EGCG fed to the mice was equivalent to about one and a half cups of green tea for a human.
Lambert, who worked with Sarah C. Forester, postdoctoral fellow, and Yeyi Gu, graduate student, both in food science, said EGCG was most effective when the compound was fed to the mice simultaneously with corn starch. For humans, this may mean that green tea could help them control the typical blood sugar increases that are brought on when they eat starchy foods, like breads and bagels that are often a part of typical breakfasts.
"If what you are eating with your tea has starch in it then you might see that beneficial effect," Lambert said. "So, for example, if you have green tea with your bagel for breakfast, it may reduce the spike in blood glucose levels that you would normally get from that food."
The EGCG had no significant effect on blood sugar spikes in mice that were fed glucose or maltose, according to the researchers who released their findings in the online version of Molecular Nutrition and Food Research. Lambert said that the reason blood sugar spikes are reduced when the mice ate starch, but not these sugars, may be related to the way the body converts starch into sugar.
An enzyme called alpha-amylase that is produced in both the mouth and by the pancreas helps break down starch into maltose and glucose. EGCG may inhibit the enzymes ability to break down the starch, the researchers indicated, since they also found that EGCG reduced the activity of alpha amylase in the pancreas by 34 percent.
If the mechanism holds in humans, this may mean that people who want to limit the blood sugar spike should skip adding sugar to their cup of green tea.
"That may mean that if you add sugar into your green tea, that might negate the effect that the green tea will have on limiting the rise in blood glucose level," Lambert said.
Lambert added that the green tea and the starch would need to be consumed simultaneously. For example, drinking a cup of tea well after eating a piece of toast would probably not change the blood sugar spike.
For the study, researchers separated mice into several groups based on body weight. After a fasting period, the mice were given common corn starch, maltose, or sucrose. One group of mice received EGCG along with the feed, while a control group was not fed the compound.
The researchers then tested the blood sugar levels of both groups.
Lambert said the researchers next step is to test the compound on people.
"The relatively low effective dose of EGCG makes a compelling case for studies in human subjects," the researchers said.
|3D Picture Of Political news|
Political News of This Week:
|Arvind Kejriwal targets 'blackmoney list', 'govt incapable of bringing it back'|
1) Arvind Kejriwal targets 'blackmoney list', 'govt incapable of bringing it back':
In his fresh expose against the 'corrupt' in the Indian system, activist-turned-politician Arvind Kejriwal raked up the issue of blackmoney at a press meet in New Delhi on Friday afternoon.
Kejriwal said HSBC's Geneva branch has accounts of 700 Indians. He said France had given this list to the central government five years ago. The figures are till 2006.
Kejriwal said the names include:
1. Mukesh Ambani – Rs 100 crore.
2. Anil Ambani – Rs 100 crore
3. Motech Software Pvt Ltd (Company has shareholding by Mukesh Ambani`s Reliance) – Rs 2100 crore
4. Reliance Industries – Rs 500 crore
5. Late Sandeep Tandon (former IRS officer)– Rs 125 crore. (Kejriwal said Tandon was close to Mukesh Ambani. His two sons are also in the reliance). His wife Anu Tandon has Rs 125 crores too, Kejriwal said. She is the Congress MP from Congress. Kejriwal also said she is a core group member of Rahul Gandhi)
6. Kokila Dhirubhai Ambani has no money but has an account.
7. Naresh Goyal From Jet Airway- Rs 80 crore
8. Dabur Group - 25 Crore
In his last expose on October 31, Kejriwal had termed RIL's D-6 block in the Krishna Godavari (KG) basin deal as a "classic case of crony capitalism" and said both the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) and Congress-led UPA governments were responsible.
Asserting that the government is succumbing to illegitimate demands of Reliance Industries, Kejriwal had said Mukesh Ambani is running the country and not Prime
Minister Manmohan Singh.
He had demanded that Reliance should be stopped from exploiting national wealth and an end should be put to "crony capitalism".
Kejriwal had earlier targetted Congress president Sonia Gandhi's son-in-law Robert Vadra's land deals, the then Law Minister and present External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid of allegedly misusing funds allotted to his NGO and BJP president Nitin Gadkari.
Arvind Kejriwal targets HSBC, Ambani brothers
EXPRESS EXCLUSIVE France hands over list of 700 bank accounts in Switzerland
EXPRESS EXCLUSIVE Black money: Rs 565 cr stashed in Geneva accounts, says report
EXPRESS EXCLUSIVE Govt may move against HSBC, Rs 80 cr mopped up
EXPRESS EXCLUSIVE ‘Massive’ collections in Swiss black money probe
(PTI) In his latest round of allegations, Arvind Kejriwal today targeted multinational HSBC Bank accusing it of indulging in money laundering and claimed Ambani brothers, Naresh Goyal and Congress MP Annu Tandon had parked their blackmoney in its Geneva branch.
Addressing a press conference, Kejriwal and lawyer Prashant Bhushan alleged around Rs 6,000 crore blackmoney was lying in 700 accounts of the Geneva branch of the bank.
They claimed that people who had deposited "small amounts of money" in the bank were raided but "big fish" like Mukesh and Anil Ambani, Naresh Goyal (Jet Airways), Tandon and Burmans (Anand, Pradeep and Ratan) of Dabur were "let off" at the behest of the government.
"Who is running the country? It seems that Ambani is running the country," said Kejriwal, pointing out the silence of Singh.
He also provided statements of three persons, whose names appeared in the list and questioned by Income Tax officials, in which they have told interrogators that HSBC facilitated them opening accounts without them going to Geneva.
The money was handed to over to an agent here and whenever, they wanted to withdraw they used to contact a person in Geneva and the amount was delivered in India, he alleged.
"There is no physical transfer of money. This is money laundering. The statements by the three persons reveal that HSBCis openly and brazenly running a hawala racket in India.
"These statements are enough to arrest HSBC officials. Their operations should be immediately suspended as it is a fit case for charging them under sedition and waging war against India," Kejriwal said.
Alleging that only about 125 of the 700 persons named in the list were raided, Kejriwal sought to question the rationale behind the pick and choose policy of the government in excluding the big fish from the raids.
News Source : http://www.indianexpress.com/news/arvind-kejriwal-targets-blackmoney-list-govt-incapable-of-bringing-it-back/1029250/6
Kejriwal said the then finance minister Pranab Mukherjee had even planned an amnesty for all the 700 Swiss account holders. He also demanded strict action against HSBC bank for encouraging kidnapping, corruption and terrorism in the country.
"Like America, we should enact a law that makes it mandatory for foreign banks operating in the country to furnish a list of all account holders to the income tax department," he said, asking the thousands of HSBC bank employees to quit their jobs.
2) Some Serious Truths of Annu and Sandeep Tandon:
Annu Tandon (b. 1957-11-15) :
is an Indian politician. She is an MP in the 15th Lok Sabha from Unnao, Uttar Pradesh with the Indian National Congress party.
Tandon is the founder director of the Hriday Narain Dhawan Charitable Trust, which has been active in philanthropy in the district since before 2000.The charity, funded mostly through family funds, has worked in education, and gathered attention for innovative projects like helping children of illiterate parents with their homework.The charity also works with weaker groups like widows and the handicapped.She was also associated with Rehabilitation wing of the Congress party.
She was earlier managing MoTech Software Pvt. Ltd, a firm ( Rs 2100 Crores Present in Swiss Bank A/C in this Company Name) launched by Mukesh Ambani,
and also ran Salonica Vasans, a textile export firm.
She has a B.Sc. degree from Dayanand Subhash National Post Graduate College, Unnao
In the Indian general election in Uttar Pradesh, 2009, Annu Tandon was fielded as a novice political candidate by the Congress. Unnao is India's largest electoral constituency, and in the previous general elections in 2004, Congress had come up fourth here, and the seat had been won by the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP).
During the elections, many prominent personalities including film star Salman Khan campaigned for her.
Source : Wikipaedia
India Against Corruption leader Mr Arvind Kejriwal alleged that Ms Anu Tandon has Rs 125 crores with HSBC - Geneva under her name.
Over the last 15 years, many Indian Revenue Service officers too have been wooed by the private sector. Leading the pack is Sandeep Tandon, a 1975 IRS officer who was the departmental representative in the Central Income Tax Tribunal in Delhi. He decided to leave after just 18 years of service, and is currently group advisor to Reliance Industries (Mukesh Ambani group). This is, however, not his full-time job. He also has his private practice as an advocate.
Sandeep Tandon, husband of Anu Tandon, Congress Member of Parliament, Unnao, passed away at Zurich, Switzerland on Wednesday dated 17 May 2010. Besides his wife, Sandeep Tandon is survived by his two sons, Shalin Tandon and Sachin Tandon and daughter-in-laws Sneha Tandon and Pranjal Tandon.
Sandeep Tandon was a member of elite group in the Reliance Industries Limited led by Mukesh Ambani. Born on November 11, 1951 in Varanasi, he did his schooling both from Lucknow and Varanasi. Later, he went to Allahabad for higher studies. Thereafter, he cleared his Indian Revenue Services and became director enforcement Income Tax department.
|HSBC fears US anti-money laundering penalty may top $1.5 billion|
3) HSBC fears US anti-money laundering penalty may top $1.5 billion :
LONDON: HSBC Holdings said it's likely to face criminal charges from US anti-money laundering probes and the cost of a settlement may "significantly" exceed the $1.5 billion the bank has already set aside.
The bank made an additional $800 million provision in the third quarter to cover the costs of the investigation, adding to the $700 million it had already earmarked.
HSBC also put aside more than $357 million in the period to compensate UK clients wrongly sold payment-protection insurance on loans as it posted an increase in pretax profit that missed analysts' estimates.
"The final amount of the financial penalties could be higher, possibly significantly higher," HSBC said in a statement today. "The resolution of at least some of these matters is likely to involve the filing of corporate criminal as well as civil charges."
Chief Executive Officer Stuart Gulliver's attempts to reduce costs at the bank are being hobbled by the US probes and compensation claims from UK clients. A Senate committee said in July that failures in HSBC money-laundering controls allowed terrorists and drug cartels access to the US financial system.
Standard Chartered Plc, which like HSBC makes most of its profit in Asia, paid $340 million in August to settle a regulator's claim it broke Iranian sanctions rules.
"The size of the provision is a shock," said Simon Maughan, a financial industry strategist at Olivetree Securities Ltd. in London. "There was a huge fuss made about Standard Chartered's fine, but this far exceeds that."
Underlying pretax profit, which excludes acquisitions and disposals as well as accounting losses on the fair value of the lender's own debt, rose to $5.04 billion in the third quarter from $2.24 billion in the year-earlier period, missing the $5.6 billion median estimate of eight analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.
Underlying income, at $16.1 billion, missed the $16.5 billion estimate of Gary Greenwood, a banking analyst at Shore Capital Ltd. in Liverpool, England.
Gulliver, who became CEO in January 2011, is seeking to cut costs by $2.5 billion to $3.5 billion and revive profit by selling assets to focus on emerging economies in which the bank has a greater market share. The savings are likely to exceed that range and be met by the end of 2013, HSBC said.
Costs as a proportion of revenue increased to 71% from 50% in the year-earlier period, outside Gulliver's 48% to 52% target range, as the lender set aside more for the potential US fines and PPI claims.
"Today's cost performance is very disappointing," Maughan said. "It raises a question mark about how rapidly these efficiencies can be made by Gulliver and his team."
HSBC has been in talks with US regulators over allegations it laundered funds of sanctioned nations including Iran and Sudan. The probes prompted Standard & Poor's to question whether the lender, Europe's largest by market value, is too big to be managed effectively.
A settlement of $1.5 billion would be the biggest reached in the US over such allegations, topping the $619 million in penalties paid in June by ING Groep NV, the biggest Dutch financial-services company.
The provision "is based on the discussions we've had with the various departments of the US government" since June, Gulliver told reporters on a conference call today. He said it was up to the US as to when the matter would be settled, and declined to comment further.
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Source : http://articles.economictimes.indiatimes.com/2012-11-06/news/34927003_1_hsbc-holdings-simon-maughan-standard-chartered
|UBS Suspected of Helping 52,000 Americans Evade U.S. Income Taxes|
4) UBS Suspected of Helping 52,000 Americans Evade U.S. Income Taxes
In February 2009, UBS (United Bank of Switzerland) agreed to pay $780,000,000 to settle charges that it helped 52,000 Americans evade U.S. income taxes through secret offshore "black accounts." Since the settlement, UBS has resisted efforts of the U.S. Justice Department to force it to divulge the names of its American secret account holders. UBS maintains that revealing the names of secret account holders would be a criminal violation of Swiss banking laws. UBS turned over the names of 250 suspected U.S. tax evaders to U.S. authorities in February, a move that was criticized by the Swiss Bankers' Accociation.
UBS has suffered massive losses in subprime mortgage investments and received a $59 billion bailout from the Swiss government last fall.
According to Arvind Kejriwal Indian Government Should start fresh investigations inspired from the Strict steps taken by U.S Government against Tax Evasion.
Source : http://ralphdeeds.hubpages.com/hub/Crook-Alert-UBS-and-47-000-Americans-Secret-Accounts
|Have not sold jewellery, have only embellished it: Vijay Mallya : Mallya gets lifeline, loses Royal Challenge|
5) Have not sold jewellery, have only embellished it: Vijay Mallya : Mallya gets lifeline, loses Royal Challenge :
It may not be time to rejoice at Kingfisher Airlines yet after United Breweries chairman Vijay Mallya today said he would handle the Kingfisher issue separately after striking a deal with Diageo Plc, the world's biggest spirits maker, to sell a controlling stake in United Spirits. The UK-based spirits maker will acquire a 53.4 stake in United Spirits for Rs. 11,166 crore (nearly $2 billion).
The holding company, United Breweries Holding Limited, will decide on a rehabilitation plan for Kingfisher Airlines separately, he said, adding that inter-company issues, if any, will be sorted out.
“(I am) happy that the dream has come true…United Spirits will receive a large cash infusion. It will deleverage itself via the cash received and get Rs. 3,300 crore via the deal, and UB Holdings will get Rs. 2,400 crore via the deal, Mr Mallya said, adding “Have not sold jewellery, have only embellished them”. Mr Mallya was referring to media reports earlier that he may have to sell his prized assets to save the troubled Kingfisher Airlines.
Mr Mallya, who will continue in his current role as chairman of United Spirits, said: “We have multiple businesses and each business operates independent of each other, there is no cross contamination with each other. I have done what is best for the beer business, now I have done what is better for the spirits business. Similarly, I will do what is best needed for the Kingfisher Airlines at the appropriate time.”
Some analysts, however, said the deal may not be enough to revive Kingfisher Airlines, according to a Reuters report. The Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation has said a fully funded turnaround for Kingfisher would cost at least $1 billion.
"At this moment, Kingfisher may be a difficult cause to revive. As other UB Group companies are also quite overleveraged, I think they will prioritize restructuring other group companies ahead of Kingfisher," Jagannadham Thunuguntla, head of research at SMC Investments and Advisors Ltd in New Delhi, said.
|3D Picture of Other News|
Other News of This Week:
|On India-China border, reports of UFOs skyrocket|
1) On India-China border, reports of UFOs skyrocket:
Mysterious yellow spheres that appear to lift off from the Chinese side are causing more embarrassment than fear as India struggles to figure out what they are.
Adding to the litany of issues besetting neighboring nuclear rivals China and India, ranging from border disputes to the Dalai Lama to trade deficits, is a new one: UFOs.
"Over 100 UFOs seen along China border," said a headline in Tuesday's Times of India.
Indian troops guarding the often-tense 2,100-mile border between the two Asian giants say the objects seen in recent months are yellow spheres that appear to lift off from the Chinese side, slowly traversing the sky for three to five hours before disappearing. Indian military officials have reportedly ruled out Chinese drones — 99 of which reportedly were documented during the first 10 months of 2012 — or low-orbit satellites.
The acronym-happy Times of India says the UFO sightings have stumped the DRDO, NTRO, ITBP and other Indian military organizations. If they weren't stumped, this would presumably make them IFOs, not to be confused with ULOs, short for unidentified luminous objects. That's what other Indian new organizations have dubbed the objects, given the glow they reportedly give off "at day and by night."
In September, the Indian army reportedly deployed a mobile ground-based radar unit and a spectrum analyzer to assess what was dancing around up there. As the troops watched the light show, however, the machines picked up zilch, according to India Today magazine, suggesting that the UFOs were non-metallic.
The army reportedly aimed one of its drones in a UFO's direction, but the object disappeared. Astronomers were also called in. According to local media, they saw some of the same unexplained objects but gave up after three days, concluding that they were "non-celestial." Indian border troops report nearly 100 sightings over the last three months.
The lack of answers has caused more embarrassment than fear in military circles, India Today reported, amid concern that this could be a crude psychological operation by the Chinese or a sophisticated probe designed to test Indian readiness.
"If there has been some sightings, I wouldn't be surprised if it's a technology demonstration by the Chinese, and the Chinese are very advanced," said Lt. Gen. B.S. Jaswal, former Northern Army commander. "During my time, we didn't have such sightings."
N. Ratnashri, director of New Delhi's Nehru Planetarium, believes they could be some sort of balloon-borne objects that reflect ambient light, given that they're visible for several hours, which tends to rule out a meteor shower.
"I wouldn't put much faith in photographs of a shape that could be anything," she said. "There's nothing to tell us there isn't extraterrestrial life, but nothing to tell us there is."
Gaurav Tiwari, founder of the 500-member Indian Paranormal Society, said the news dovetails with reports he's read of alien camps in the Himalayas that the Indian army tolerates. But he hasn't been able to do his own research in the area, he said.
"Earlier reports said the Indian government was in touch with aliens and was getting technology from them," Tiwari said. "It's all over the Internet."
This is hardly the first time mysterious objects have been reported along the border, including sightings of unexplainable lights over the last decade around Ladakh, part of a barren militarized area wedged between the Pakistan-controlled part of Kashmir and Chinese-controlled Aksai Chin. But the number and frequency in recent months have set off alarm bells, launching reports up the military chain and even into the prime minister's office.
Troops have sometimes balked at reporting the sightings, fearful of being ridiculed. In 2010, the air force was reportedly called in to investigate UFOs that it ultimately concluded were Chinese lanterns. A decade ago, then-area commander Gen. N.C. Vij is said to have angrily dismissed similar reports of dancing lights as hallucinations.
Sunil Dhar, a geology professor with Dharamsala's Government Post Graduate College, was on a research expedition with four other geologists and several reporters in 2004 when they saw a 4-foot-tall robot-like figure one morning descending a hill just as they were climbing out of their tents.
As the object approached, some in the group raised the alarm, Dhar said, and it ascended back up the hill, changed color from white to metallic black and went airborne, hovering for about 10 minutes before disappearing.
"We were all amazed," he said. "We thought it was some UFO, some object from some place that may not be the Earth."
They provided photos to authorities, they said, but the government never issued a report.
"The UFOs in this area should be studied," he said. "Why in such remote topography? That is important."
Have humanoid UFOs returned to India? The army thinks so:
The flying humanoid UFOs allegedly spotted in northern India in 2004 appear to have returned, according to more than 100 reports from soldiers describing yellow spheres hovering in the sky.
India Today unflinchingly announced the news thus, "UFO sightings in Ladakh spook soldiers", before explaining that the story echoes the "clearest 'UFO' sighting yet" made in 2004, 100km south of the region in Lahaul-Spiti. At that time, a group of geologists and glaciologists linked to the nation's Space Applications Centre were exploring the mountainous region when they spotted a four-foot tall "robot-like" humanoid figure stalking the valley edge 50 metres from them for about 40 minutes, before jetting off and disappearing from sight. Despite 14 people witnessing the mysterious spectacle -- including six scientists -- and passing film footage to intelligence units and the army, the matter, says
This time around, it was Indo-Tibetan Border Police Force (ITBP) who flagged up the mysterious spheres, with the army, Indian Astronomical Observatory, National Technical Research Organisation and Defence Research Development Organisation all called in to investigate. So far, all have been left stumped.
"Something is clearly wrong, if our combined scientific resources can't explain the phenomena," a Delhi-based senior army official told India Today.
|Ancient 'Vampire' Bodies Found In Bulgaria|
2) Ancient 'Vampire' Bodies Found In Bulgaria:
Bulgarian archaeologists have unearthed centuries-old skeletons with iron rods through their chests - believed to have been victims of an old anti-vampire ritual.
According to Bozhidar Dimitrov, head of the National History Museum in the Bulgarian capital Sofia, two skeletons from the Middle Ages have been discovered near the Black Sea town of Sozopol.
"These two skeletons stabbed with rods illustrate a practice which was common in some Bulgarian villages up until the first decade of the 20th century," said Mr Dimitrov.
Widespread superstition led to iron rods being hammered through the chest bones and hearts of those who did evil during their lifetimes for fear they would return after death to feast on the blood of the living.
People believed the rod would pin them down to prevent them from leaving their graves at midnight and terrorising people as they slept, the historian explained.
In 2004, archaeologist Petar Balabanov unearthed six nailed-down skeletons at a site near the eastern town of Debelt.
He said the pagan rite also was practised in neighbouring Serbia and other Balkan countries.
Vampire legends form an important part of the region's folklore.
The most famous tale is that of Romanian count Vlad the Impaler, known as Dracula, who staked his war enemies and drank their blood.
Bulgarian archaeologists have discovered two vampire graves in the city of Sozopol on the Black Sea. The burials, which are about 700 years old, were each held down with a massive iron stake through the chest. One vampire was buried in the apse of a church – a spot usually reserved for aristocrats – and showed evidence of multiple stab wounds.
Bozhidar Dimitrov, head of the Bulgarian National Museum of History, says more than a hundred vampire graves have been found in Bulgaria. He says that most suspected vampires were aristocrats or clergy. Interestingly, none were women.
One possible explanation for the vampire myth comes from anthropologist Paul Barber in his book "Vampires, Burial, and Death." He posits the vampire legend started because people didn't know how bodies decomposed. Rigor mortis is only temporary. After a few days the muscles ease up and expanding gases in the body will actually shift it within the coffin. Blood seeps out of the mouth and the face and belly get a flushed and puffy look. So. . .a guy dies, they bury him, and shortly thereafter several more people die. The villagers decide the first guy is a vampire, and when they open up his grave they find he's moved, looks fat and flush with life, and has bloody teeth. When you drive a stake through a body filled with corpse gas it lets out a shriek.
There are several good vampire attractions in Europe, such as Dracula's Castle in Romania, the Vampire Museum in Paris and Highgate Cemetery in London, scene of a wave of vampire sightings in the 1970s.
|3D Picture Sports News|
Sports News This Week:
|India squad announced for first two Tests against England|
1) India squad announced for first two Tests against England:
Yuvraj Singh staged a remarkable comeback to the Test fold, while struggling off-spinner Harbhajan Singh also returned from wilderness as India named a 15-member squad for the first two Tests against England starting November 15.
The 30-year-old, who fought back after being diagnosed with a rare germ cell cancer last year, forced his way back into the squad after commendable performances in the domestic circuit.
Harbhajan also got the nod from the new selection panel headed by former Test cricketer Sandeep Patil more than a year after his last appearance in a five-day game.There were no major surprises by the selectors, who dropped Suresh Raina to accommodate Yuvraj while Harbhajan made his way at the expense of injured leg-spinner Piyush Chawla.
Sachin Tendulkar, the senior most member of the squad, will provide solidity in an otherwise inexperienced middle-order line-up which will also have the in-form Virat Kohli. Cheteshwar Pujara and Yuvraj will be the others in the middle order.Tamil Nadu opener Murali Vijay was also named in the squad as a reserve opener though the selectors retained the experienced duo of Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir despite both of them going through a form slump for a long time.Vijay replaced S Badrinath, who featured in the last Test against New Zealand in August.
Pace spearhead Zaheer Khan, whose fitness was under the scanner after he limped off the field during a Ranji Trophy match yesterday, has also been retained apparently after getting the physio's nod. Umesh Yadav and Ishant Sharma are the two other pacers in the squad.
The team has seven specialist batsmen, three pacers, three spinners and one wicketkeeper batsman in skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni.
The series starts in Ahmedabad from November 15, followed by the second Test in Mumbai (from November 23 to 27). The third Test is scheduled in Kolkata (December 5 to 9) and the final match will be played in Nagpur from December 13 to 17.
It is an emotional comeback for Yuvraj, who made his international return during the World Twenty20 Championships in Sri Lanka in September.
The all-rounder then went on to impress one and all with his fine performance in the Duleep Trophy for North Zone.
His 208 against Central Zone was followed by a 59 and a five-for against England for India A at the Brabourne Stadium last week, proving that he was fit for the rigours of five-day cricket.Harbhajan, on the other, went wicketless in his 21 overs for Punjab against Hyderabad in Mohali but did reasonably well during a county stint for Surrey before this.The presence of Vijay in the squad puts pressure on Sehwag and Gambhir to perform since Ajinkya Rahane is already in the side and can perform the role of an opener.In the spin department, the selectors have opted for two off-spinners in R Ashwin and Harbhajan, while left-arm spinner Pragyan Ojha adds variety in the absence of any leg-spinner.
Squad for first and second Tests: Mahendra Singh Dhoni (c), Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir, Virat Kohli, Sachin Tendulkar, Yuvraj Singh, Cheteshwar Pujara, R Ashwin, Umesh Yadav, Pragyan Ojha, Ajinkya Rahane, Harbhajan Singh, Ishant Sharma, Murali Vijay, Zaheer Khan.
|Destiny smiles again on Mohammad Azharuddin|
2) Destiny smiles again on Mohammad Azharuddin:
Former Indian cricket team skipper Mohammad Azharuddin had labelled himself Destiny's Child when he stormed into the limelight stroking three hundreds in his first three Tests against England in 1985. A god-fearing man and a devout Muslim, the wristy batsman repeated those words when he was made the skipper in 1990.
Perhaps, it was destiny that the man who went on to lead India to a record 14 Test wins and was the apple of the eye of most cricket fans before Sachin Tendulkar stole his thunder, allegedly took a 'bite' of the forbidden fruit and fell from the eyes of those very fans who had put him on a pedestal.
On Thursday, 12 years after he was banned by the BCCI, for match-fixing and involvement with bookies, destiny chose to smile on him again.
The life ban imposed on the cricketer-turned politician in December 2000, was set aside by the AP High Court. A division bench comprising Justices Asuthosh Mohunta and G Krishna Mohan Reddy delivered the judgement, allowing the appeal filed by Azharuddin against BCCI's ban as also a civil court's approval of the ban order.
The bench also set aside the ban preventing Azharuddin from playing any cricket match conducted or authorised by the ICC and BCCI. It further set aside the ban on a benefit match for the player.
Azharuddin was prevented from not only playing a match, but wasn't even allowed to enter any venue that was staging a match under the aegis of the ICC.
The two judges were unanimous in their opinion that the BCCI went about condemning the cricketer without even giving him the opportunity to be heard. The board also failed to substantiate its claims of wrongdoing by Azharuddin with any credible evidence, the bench said.
The match-fixing scandal came to light in April 2000, after the then South Africa captain Hansie Cronje claimed in his confession that Azharuddin had introduced him to bookies.
The removal of the ban though, may not mean much to Azharuddin as far as his playing career is concerned. At 49, and especially when he has made a successful switch from cricket to politics, the game is not a priority any more.
But getting his name cleared of the match-fixing allegations is a huge victory indeed. The court order will now allow him to plan his long overdue benefit match and also claim what is due to him from the cricket board.
|3D Picture of Movie Release News|
Movie Release This Week:
1) Skyfall :
In Skyfall, Bond’s loyalty to M is tested as her past comes back to haunt her. As MI6 comes under attack, 007 must track down and destroy the threat, no matter how personal the cost.
As the Civil War continues to rage, America's president struggles with continuing carnage on the battlefield and as he fights with many inside his own cabinet on the decision to emancipate the slaves.
|A Royal Affair|
3) A Royal Affair:
A young queen, who is married to an insane king, falls secretly in love with his physician - and together they start a revolution that changes a nation forever.
4) Dangerous Liaisons:
In Shanghai, an aging socialite's infatuation with her ex-boyfriend manifests itself as a risky game, where her former lover agrees to seduce, then abandon a naive young woman.
LUV follows 11-year-old Woody Watson, a timid Baltimore orphan who dreams of a better life -- and awaits the return of his absent mother. Woody also reveres his uncle Vincent as the father figure he never had. A street hustler and former drug dealer, Vincent's fresh off an eight-year stint in prison and wants a new direction.
When Vincent bypasses his nephew's school one day and offers to show Woody how a man handles his business, Woody jumps at the opportunity to join his uncle on a field trip of life lessons. But the temptations of Vincent's old life of crime return to haunt him, and a day once bright with optimism quickly spirals downward into a world of violence. Coming of age all too fast by day's end, Woody starts to doubt his hero and ultimately must decide where to stand.