In work that may help solar panels become a more viable source of mainstream power, a research group has created a dye-based solar cell with a high efficiency and high stability, and that lacks the volatile chemicals used in similar cells. This is a combination so far lacking in the newest solar-cell prototypes. The group, including researchers from the Changchun Institute of Applied Chemistry at the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) and the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, was studying a new type of solar cell that is being widely researched across the globe, one made of bendy, low-cost, lightweight organic materials rather than rigid, pricey, and often heavy inorganic materials. “We have uncovered new findings on old solar-cell materials and created high-performance cells,” said Peng Wang, a researcher in the Changchun Institute of Applied Chemistry and the study’s corresponding scientist, to PhysOrg.com.The type of organic solar cell Wang and his colleagues improved contains three key parts. The first two components are a semiconductor, such as silicon, and an electrolytic liquid—a conducting solution commonly formed by dissolving a salt in a solvent liquid, such as water. The semiconductor and electrolyte work in tandem to split the closely-bound electron-hole pairs produced when sunlight hits the cell, called excitons (holes are positively charged electron vacancies).The third component is the source of these photo-induced charge carriers, a photosensitive dye that gives the solar cells their name: “dye-sensitized,” with the most common dye being iodide. In addition, a nanomaterial is also often used to hold the dye molecules in place like a scaffold.The highest efficiency solar cell ever made is dye-sensitized, with an efficiency of 11 percent, meaning 11 percent of the solar energy is converted to electrical energy (compared to 8.2 percent achieved by Wang and his group). But the highest efficiency dye-sensitized cells also contain volatile solvents in their electrolytes that can permeate across plastic (i.e. organic compounds) and also present problems for sealing the cells. Cells that contain these solvents are therefore unattractive for outdoor use due to potential environmental hazards. So while they perform well, they have serious drawbacks.Researchers have developed solar cells that use solvent-free electrolytes, but the cell efficiencies are too low.The cell developed by Wang and his group avoids these issues using a “formulation” they developed. To create their electrolyte, they took three solid salts and mixed them to form a “fascinating” liquid, says Wang. The resulting electrolyte has an impressive conductivity as well as the favorable stability properties of all three salts.”The performance of our solar cell now matches that of cells that use volatile solvents,” said Wang. “This is an important step toward the production of large-scale outdoor dye-sensitized solar cells.”Citation: Yu Bai, Yiming Cao, Jing Zhang, Mingkui Wang, Renzhi Li, Peng Wang, Shaik M. Zakeeruddin and Michael Grätzel 29 June 2008 Nature advance online publication, DOI:10.1038/nmat2224Copyright 2008 PhysOrg.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or part without the express written permission of PhysOrg.com. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Explore further Citation: Researchers Produce Best-Yet Dye-Based Solar Cells (2008, July 31) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2008-07-best-yet-dye-based-solar-cells.html 2-D perovskite materials found to have unique, conductive edge states
This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. © 2011 PhysOrg.com Citation: Study finds European starlings flocking patterns similar to metals being magnetized (2012, March 14) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2012-03-european-starlings-flocking-patterns-similar.html Prior research by the same team regarding the velocity of the birds in a flock showed that if just a single bird changed its speed, that change would propagate out to all the other birds in the flock. In this new research, the team focused on orientation. They wanted to know how individual movements of birds in the flock caused changes in the direction of the flock as a whole.To find out, they set up multiple cameras around Rome, where the huge size of starling flocks is legendary. They took both video and stereometric stills which produce 3D imagery to allow them to capture the positions of birds in a flock as well as to project where they were going and how fast.In so doing, they discovered two things. The first is that a change in path by one bird impacts exactly seven birds surrounding it, regardless of the size of the flock. The second is that changes in flight path for the flock as a whole happens very similarly to the way single electron spins within a metal line up when a magnetic field is created.The first finding demonstrates that birds having neighbors is what is important to the flock, not how close they are. The seven birds that are impacted by the movement of one bird, then cause a change in the seven birds around each of them and so on until the entire flock has changed its alignment.The second finding demonstrates that at least some of the ways birds move in a flock can be defined mathematically, which means other models may be found as well. If so, they may lead to predicting how a flock will respond in various scenarios, which when combined with the way the birds impact their neighbors, may finally solve the age old mystery of how they fly in flocks the way they do. Explore further More information: The study will be published in PNAS at DOI:10.1073/pnas.1118633109 (not available at this moment yet). Image: Wikipedia. (PhysOrg.com) — Scientists and amateur enthusiasts alike have long been fascinated by the abilities of some groups of animals to move in lockstep with one another, most specifically with schools of fish and flocks of birds. Now, new research by a team of researchers studying the flocking abilities of European starlings has shown that some of their abilities might be mathematically defined, and that the ability of the birds to change directions almost simultaneously follows the same model as metal when it becomes magnetized. The team is set to publish the results of their study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Journal information: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Starling flocks fly like a single entity (w/ Video)
More information: Stabilizing Rabi oscillations in a superconducting qubit using quantum feedback, Nature, 490, 77–80 (04 October 2012) doi:10.1038/nature11505AbstractThe act of measurement bridges the quantum and classical worlds by projecting a superposition of possible states into a single (probabilistic) outcome. The timescale of this ‘instantaneous’ process can be stretched using weak measurements, such that it takes the form of a gradual random walk towards a final state. Remarkably, the interim measurement record is sufficient to continuously track and steer the quantum state using feedback. Here we implement quantum feedback control in a solid-state system, namely a superconducting quantum bit (qubit) coupled to a microwave cavity. A weak measurement of the qubit is implemented by probing the cavity with microwave photons, maintaining its average occupation at less than one photon. These photons are then directed to a high-bandwidth, quantum-noise-limited amplifier, which allows real-time monitoring of the state of the cavity (and, hence, that of the qubit) with high fidelity. We demonstrate quantum feedback control by inhibiting the decay of Rabi oscillations, allowing them to persist indefinitely. Such an ability permits the active suppression of decoherence and enables a method of quantum error correction based on weak continuous measurements. Other applications include quantum state stabilization, entanglement generation using measurement, state purification and adaptive measurements. Explore further This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Journal information: Nature Physicists seek to quantify macroscopic quantum states Rabi oscillations and feedback. Credit: Nature, 490, 77–80 (04 October 2012) doi:10.1038/nature11505 (Phys.org)—As understood in the field of quantum mechanics, objects are able to exist in more than one state at a time, a property known as superposition. Measuring such states is a challenge however, as doing so causes the superposition property to be destroyed, at least according to classical theory. Now, physicists working at the University of California have found a way to cheat the system, so to speak. They have, as they describe in their paper published in the journal Nature, found a way to take a quick peek at the oscillation of a qubit, without destroying its superposition property. Citation: Researchers devise a means to ‘gently’ measure qubit without destroying superposition (2012, October 4) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2012-10-gently-cubit-superposition.html © 2012 Phys.org The whole idea behind superposition was famously explained by Erwin Schrödinger, who suggested it could be thought of as a cat in a box that also contained a radioactive atom . The decay of the atom could not be known without opening the box and checking—an act that would change its state. From a perspective outside the box, the cat was apparently both dead and alive at the same time. In this new work, the researchers suggest that only partially opening the box gives them some insight into the box’s inner conditions without disturbing its contents. To make that happen, the team employed a feedback control mechanism whereby a superconducting qubit was coupled to a microwave cavity. It was then pushed into a superposition state by cycling its state back and forth between 0 and 1, repeatedly hitting all possible mixtures. Once there, they measured its oscillation frequency. This measurement was too weak to destroy the oscillation but strong enough to cause slight change. Using the measurement taken, the team very quickly calculated, and then created, an exact opposite charge which they injected back into the system, causing the oscillation to return to its former frequency: they had managed to measure a tiny part of the system without destroying the superposition state, a feat never before achieved in the lab. In order to carry out this experiment, the team had to first develop an amplifier that would allow them to inject the charge back into the system without making other changes—no small thing. This development led to the first instance of a qubit being measured, if only partially, without changing its state. The researchers suggest their technique might be used as a means of error control in a quantum system, i.e. computer, by allowing qubits to exist in a superposition state for longer periods of time.
More information: Three Classes of Newtonian Three-Body Planar Periodic Orbits, Phys. Rev. Lett. 110, 114301 (2013) DOI:10.1103/PhysRevLett.110.114301 (on ArXiv)AbstractWe present the results of a numerical search for periodic orbits of three equal masses moving in a plane under the influence of Newtonian gravity, with zero angular momentum. A topological method is used to classify periodic three-body orbits into families, which fall into four classes, with all three previously known families belonging to one class. The classes are defined by the orbits’ geometric and algebraic symmetries. In each class we present a few orbits’ initial conditions, 15 in all; 13 of these correspond to distinct orbits. Journal information: Physical Review Letters The (translucent) shape-space sphere, with its back side also visible here. Three two-body collision points (bold red circles) – punctures in the sphere – lie on the equator. Credit: Milovan Suvakov, V. Dmitrasinovic / arxiv.org/abs/1303.0181 New horseshoe orbit Earth-companion asteroid discovered Explore further (Phys.org) —Physicists Milovan Šuvakov and V. Dmitrašinović of the Institute of Physics, Belgrade in Serbia have discovered using computer simulations, 13 new solutions to the three-body problem—predicting patterns that describe how three bodies will orbit around each other in space in a repeating pattern. The two describe how they came up with their solutions using computer simulations in their paper published in Physical Review Letters. Citation: Physics duo discover 13 new solutions to Newtonian three-body orbit problem (2013, March 15) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2013-03-physics-duo-solutions-newtonian-three-body.html © 2013 Phys.org This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. When two bodies in space orbit one another, such as a planet and a star, their paths can be easily described by Newton’s laws of gravity—they are elliptical. When another body is introduced, however, things become so complex that scientists have not been able to find a way to predict the sorts of patterns that are possible for a stable system (where they don’t run into one another eventually) to come about. Until now, just three families have been identified: The Lagrange-Euler, the Broucke-Hénon, and the figure-eight.To discover a repeating pattern that describes how three bodies will orbit one another in stable fashion requires some degree of luck, the Lagrange-Euler family for example was discovered by the mathematicians for whom it is named and is demonstrated by the way the sun, Jupiter and the asteroid Trojan orbit one another. Another way requires some degree of brute force—that’s the approach taken in this new effort. The two researchers started with a known solution then changed some of the parameters in their computer simulations and ran the results to see what would happen. As it turned out, their way resulted in the discovery of 13 new families of patterns—stable orbits that eventually lead to all three bodies existing in the same place as they were when the simulation started.Because they found so many new solutions, the two came up with a way to classify them using what they call a shape-sphere to graphically show what the orbits look like and then gave each a name, based on what they thought they resembled: yarn, butterfly, goggles, etc.Thus far, the 13 new families haven’t been tested thoroughly enough to verify that their orbits would remain stable over long periods of time (which would mean holding their pattern despite slight perturbations), however—the researchers plan to do just that as part of their next effort. If it turns out some or all of them can withstand the test of time, then scientists can begin looking for instances of them in real systems and perhaps learning more about those systems as a result.
Some of India’s music industry’s biggest names came forward to raise awareness as well as funds for the Assam floods, at a concert in the Capital, this Sunday evening. The event, spearheaded by composer -singer Vishal Dadlani and Singer Papon, was hosted at the Blue Frog. Apart from Papon and m Vishal Shekhar, singers Arijit Singh, Benny Dayal, Shilpa Rao, Harshdeep Kaur, Neeti Mohan and the Band Indian Ocean came together for the concert called, #ForAssam. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’It was a jampacked concert as more than six hundred people turned up for it. The concert was was touted as one of the best singers’ line up for any indoor event in Delhi. The tickets were sold out in just eight hours. ‘The line-up is fantastic and what can be better than listening to your favorite singers on stage while donating for a cause like this? Personally I came here to see Arijit Singh live’, says Amadeep Singh Kalra, a software Engineer. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixVishal and Papon came up with the idea while talking on twitter a few days back. According to Vishal, ‘All it took was a bunch of phone calls to the best of the best artistes in the country and here they are, for Assam. We think that the catastrophe in Assam wasn’t given as much importance in the media and we are here to raise funds and more importantly, raise voices for Assam.’Papon who hails from Assam said, ‘I couldn’t help much financially, so my medium to help them is Music. Money doesn’t matter, what matters is that people should know of the situation there. North East is a corner and people feel neglected there. People there should know that when they need help, help will come.’ Performing numbers like Allah ke Bande and Roday, Rahul Ram, from the Indian Ocean band said, ‘Since Delhi has more people from the North East, I wish we could have done it on a bigger scale. This is our way of giving back to the people for all the love we have received’.The evening was packed with singers performing back to back to some of the biggest numbers of Bollywood. While some songs made the crowd go crazy, swaying and dancing; some soulful numbers reminded them of the greater cause of why the concert was held. All funds of the concert went to the Chief Minister’s fund and none of the organisers or their partners, claim to have taken any money for the event.
It all started with a thought – How would one know about those missing links of artist’s personal views and ideas, thoughts that have never sprung-up on the surface, at a social gathering or a public viewing. In December 2013, Exhibit 320 had a critically effective launch of this project and now they leap onto the second chapter of Artchiving; an artists’ perspective. A project cum exhibit theorized by Ranjita Chaney. Participating Artists will be MuktinathMondal, Pooja Iranna, Probir Gupta, Remen Chopra, VibhaGalhotra. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Artchiving; an artist’s perspective focuses on thoughts and opinions about an artist’s current state of mind, documented over a period of time, seeing them evolve addressing to same issues and ideas. To express largely, this is an effort of presenting art and practice to a broader audience through personal interaction. By documenting, not artists’ works and beliefs alone but their personal and private thoughts in their naked studios and individual places. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixThe main aim is to create an archive of artist’s practice and their beliefs, attempting at a resourceful exchange of dialogues between artists’ practices and influences in their ongoing journey. Seeing finished works on display from every artist, interviews about their practice and thesis on their work style, is not sufficient. The basic question is ‘How is it done’, ‘what is the artist thinking when making or working on a piece and many more?’ Hence, an attempt to collect imagery along with words and information for our archives from this artistic journal.Where : Exhibit320, When: 22 November to 15 January
Kolkata: The British Council Summer School has come back to the city once again. The school has a lot to offer to children aged between 7-14 years, enhancing communication, creativity and confidence.After coaching 650 students in Kolkata in 2017 through engaging methodologies, the Summer School aims to make learning a fun process for children this year as well.Children aged between 7-14 years can spend their summer holidays discovering their inner creativity in fun and engaging ways, through a mixture of games, projects, drama and communicative activities at the British Council Summer School. The programme also encourages students to interact in pairs, small groups and whole class situations, improving their English fluency and confidence. Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flightsThis year will see British Council run two themes during the Summer School: Explorers (through a virtual trip around the world, children will travel to one country each day, learn about different cultures, develop language skills and build confidence) and Media Magic (children will explore communication channels such as the radio, television and the internet. They will learn how to write blogs, create an advertisement and newspaper report).Debanjan Chakrabarti, Director, East and Northeast, British Council, said, “Our English language teaching centre in Kolkata is an exciting hub of activity all summer. The year 2018 marks the 70th anniversary of the British Council’s presence in India.”
The Right to Information Act allows for a public authority to disclose records which are otherwise exempt from disclosure if public interest outweighs the harm protected.Activist Subhash Agrawal had sought from the Prime Minister’s Office the records related to the freedom fighter and leader of the Indian National Army to clarify the mystery surrounding his alleged death in a plane crash 70 years back.Agrawal had also asked for information of the steps taken by the top office to make such records public and the action taken on requests seeking such documents. Also Read – Need to understand why law graduate’s natural choice is not legal profession: CJIBut toeing the line of the UPA government, the PMO had cited an exemption clause in the RTI Act which allows withholdnig of information that could prejudicially affect relations with a foreign country. The PMO, however, did not even give the names of the countries with which the relations may get affected once the said information is made public.When the first appeal was filed before a higher officer in the top office, the Appellate Authority, Krishan Kumar, had rejected the argument that public interest would be served through the disclosure of the documents related to Bose’s death.Home Minister Rajnath Singh, while campaigning for polls, had claimed that there was a larger public interest involved in the disclosure of the documents, but the PMO under Modi does not seem to be in agreement.
Two incidents in the recent past have brought back the spectre of extra-judicial killings. The first incident refers to the alleged encounter killing of a Delhi-based businessman by officers of the Delhi Police Special Cell. The second incident refers to an earlier encounter killing of 20 red sandalwood smugglers near Tirupati in Andhra Pradesh by officers from the Andhra Police. Since both incidents are currently under judicial scrutiny, it would be unwise to arrive at judgements surrounding their culpability. However, rising evidence against the versions presented by both sets of police forces has left numerous observers, from both the political class to civil society, rather disturbed. Also Read – Working on improving tiesIn the first case, reports have emerged that 10 days before the Delhi-based businessman was gunned down in an alleged encounter, the Delhi Police Special Cell had told a local court that neither an FIR nor a complaint was received against him. This discovery flies in the face of the Special Cell’s claim that the slain businessman was wanted in several cases and had been on the run from the law. With reference to the encounter killing of 20 red sandalwood smugglers, news reports have emerged that the many of the slain were possibly tortured before being murdered. According to the police, these 20 labourers had attacked them with sickles, axes and stones and the police had gunned them down in self-defence. This claim is perplexing on many levels. Also Read – Political parties and our RepublicThe police was not involved in a skirmish with highly trained and heavily armed militants; they were dealing with a group of underpaid minimum wage labourers. If it was indeed in self-defence as they claim, where are the injuries of the task force members? Reportedly, only two members of the task-force were injured. Further disheartening is the inefficacy of our legal system in resolving encounter killings. According to government figures, out of 555 recorded encounter killings between 2009 and 2013, only 144 cases were been resolved. Irrespective of a final judgement on both incidents, one cannot rationalise extra-judicial killings, without going down a very slippery moral slope. Once the State and its police go down the path of extra-judicial killings, it is likely to make its way towards tyranny. It is impossible to condone summary executions, especially if they are conducted by those who consider themselves to be the guardians of the law. Instead of summary executions, the State, especially its police, must follow the due process of law and subject the suspect to a trial process. Even Ajmal Kasab, one the perpetrators behind the heinous terror attack in Mumbai, was subjected to a trial process. According to respected political commentator Praful Bidwai, “Civil liberties are too valuable to be subordinated to reasons of state without undermining democracy”. The truth behind both these murky incidents, therefore, must come through soon.
Kolkata: Three persons were killed and two others injured when a car hit a road side tree near Golsi Chowmatha area in East Burdwan on Friday.The injured persons are stated to be serious. They have been undergoing treatment in Burdwan Medical College and Hospital. The police are yet to confirm the identity of the deceased persons. According to the preliminary investigation, police said the accident occurred because a tyre of the vehicle had burst. As the car was at a high speed, the driver could not control the vehicle. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeThe incident triggered traffic congestion in the area for nearly one hour. According to the police, the vehicle was carrying five passengers including the driver. They said the victims were returning to Burdwan from Joyrampur at around 11 am when the persons met with the accident. The vehicle was headed towards Galsi Chowmatha area when it rammed into a roadside tree. Locals heard a loud thud and rushed to the spot. They found the frontal portion of the vehicle completely damaged and the victims were trapped inside the mangled car. Some of the locals managed to rescue three victims who were sitting on the back seat. One of the three passen gers succumbed to his injuries in the hospital, while the driver and another person on the front seat died on the spot. Police removed the two bodies from the car with help of a gas cutter. Police are investing other possible angles which might have led to the incident. The investigating officers collected samples from the damaged car for investigation. According to sources in Burdwan Medical College and Hospital, the two persons admitted have multiple injuries on their bodies. They have been kept under close monitoring. One of the injured victims also received head injuries in the accident. Various medical tests have been performed on the victims on Friday.Police suspect that the car was running at a speed of anything between 100-120 km per hour. They have started a detailed probe in this regard. The situation was brought under control by seniorpolice officers.
Travelling has changed a lot over the decade and definitely the world has become a smaller place. The Indian corporate traveller has seen a major growth over the years and with its upsurge, the demand for better facilities and a better travel experience is on the rise. Along with comfort and exquisite service, travellers also look out for a convenient environment, where they can relax and unwind, enjoy a good WiFi service to stay connected always and of course good food to satisfy the palate. Plaza Premium lounge, the world’s largest independent airport lounge network, is the perfect solution to all the hassles at the airports for providing a space with top-notch services and facilities for travellers at major international airports. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfComfortable seating, enticing food and beverage selection, showers with amenities, private resting suites, VIP rooms, recharging stations, Wi-Fi, computer workstations are but a few of the services offered to enhance the airport experience. In addition, Plaza Premium Lounge also has Spa facilities that offer massage treatments tailored specifically to tackle travel ailments and fatigue, as well as speedy nail and salon services for a groom on the go. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveThe lounge, has also come up with an exciting winter special menu containing a wide array of dishes serving healthy food loaded with nutrients, antioxidants, and immune-boosting powers, for people travelling in the chilling weather.The new menu offers seasonally inspired dishes, thoughtfully prepared by Executive Chef Ankit Mangla and his team of culinary experts using only fresh seasonal vegetables like carrots, radish, yams, garlic, spinach, mustard leaves, goose berries, oranges and guava. A lot of protein rich foods such as paneer, ghee, butter, cheese and khoya are also used. The menu also has some healthy items made of whole grains like millet and corn and whole spices with anti-microbial properties.Some exciting dishes include Pasta with assorted winter vegetables, Mushroom and spinach lasagna, Falafel with assorted winter vegetables, Methi murgh masala, Gajar mutter gobhi masala, Corn spinach and mushroom fondue, Vegetable cannelloni, Thai veg green curry, Ratatouille, assorted vegetables in Sichuan sauce, Murgh saagwala to name a few. Guests may also enjoy variety of salads and dessert options such as Gajar ka halwa, Gulkand phirni, Carrot olive mint salad, Banana and honey french toast etc. These new menu items are sure to impress and please any palate with a fusion of flavors. Moreover, Plaza Premium Lounge has tie ups with Visa, Master Card and Amex. Different customers are liable to different discounts and offers. When the person swipes in his/her card, the system model is already fed in the computers which allows the person at the counter to see and validate the customer of the different deals, offers and discounts that the card avails him/her.
Kolkata: The first bonded, cross-border, land-air transshipment from Bangladesh departed from Kolkata Airport since EFL (Expo-Freight Limited) introduced a tailor-made logistics solution to handle such cargo transshipment between the two neighbouring countries.The EFL offices in Bangladesh and India worked jointly in handling the cargo of apparel. Bangladeshi trucks carrying cargo weighing 4.1 tonne transferred the goods to Indian trucks at the Benapole (Dhaka) — Petrapole (India) border. From there, via GPS enabled trucks, the cargo moved to the Kolkata airport. Finally, it was air freighted to reach the terminal destination in Europe within the specified time window. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeKolkata turned out to be a strategic and useful transshipment doorway to Bangladesh for inbound and outbound air transportation, through this trial initiative. “We are proud to enrich our ties with Bangladesh through this movement and alternative solutions of this nature will enable us to enhance efficiencies of our logistics operations to promote international trade,” said S Senthilnathan, CEO, EFL Group. EFL is considering this breakthrough to be instrumental in positively impacting business growth beyond borders.
Deepshikha Singh, wife of an army officer currently posted in Shillong, has recently won Mrs India Galaxy 2017, India’s most prestigious pageant for married women, organized by Vibrant Concepts. She has also bagged the title for most beautiful eyes. The event was a grand affair and was attended by the most eminent personalities of the fashion world. The jury included popular punjabi singer Shankar Sahney and Supermodel Universe 2016 Gagan Verma.Deepshikha Singh who is teaching in Army Public School, Shillong, informed that the contest began on September 16, flagging the theme “Stop Violence Against Women” at Tivoli Garden Resorts, Chhatarpur. The contestants stayed at the resort for 4 days and underwent several grooming sessions on health and lifestyle under the guidance and mentorship of Ginny Kapoor and Gagandeep Kapoor, directors of Vibrant Concepts. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfThe contest included various rounds including talent round, presentation/act on Stop Violence Against Women and many more. Thereafter, the contestants were given the opportunity to have a portfolio shoot wherein they were provided with professional make up and styling tips and were also taught to pose like models, by professional photographers.The auditions were held across the country and around 4000 women were screened by the members of an expert panel. Towards the end, only 40 women were selected as finalists. The contestants were given various challenges and online tasks and were being assessed throughout on that basis.Deepshikha Singh, who is elated by her great success, is now looking forward to represent India at the International level.
In this Monsoon season Ustad Nishat Khan of the Seniya Gharana, with the tunes of Malhar, soaked the mind of the audience and forced them to stuck. Ustad Nishat Khan was presenting himself in the program ‘The Music of the monsoon – the magic of Malhar’ centered on Monsoon season in the fifth ‘Purnima Concert’ organized by Indira Gandhi National Center for Art (IGNCA). Youth Tabla player Ustad Amjad Khan was giving him accompaniment on tabla.IGNCA has been organizing music concert every month on the occasion of ‘Purnima’ (full moon), which was started by the singing program of Bombay Jayshree on the occasion of Buddha Purnima. Manjusha atil, Pandit Ronu Majumdar, Jayanti Kumaresh, Pandit Debashish Bhattacharya, Artists like Pandit Sugata Nag, Samarjit Kumarasen have also given their musical presentations. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfUstad Nishat Khan during his presentation said, “I look forward to this season so that I can play Malhar during this season. I am thankful to IGNCA as they called me for sitar playing in this program centered on monsoon and malhar.” In his presentation, Ustad Nishat Khan spelled the audience for about an hour. At the end, he concluded the event by raag bhatiyali.In the beginning of the program, well-known art critic Shailza Khanna enlightened the audience about ‘The Music of the monsoon – the magic of Malhar’. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsive”Today this festival is centered on the Malhar raga played in the rainy season. The period of rainy season stays only for 40-45 days. In this way, it is also the best time to play the songs like Malhar.”On behalf of the Center Member secretary Dr Sachchidanand Joshi honored Ustad Nishat Khan and Ustad Amjad Khan.In addition to the young artists as well as the list of senior artists and artists of the country, the list also had prominent names like Ustad Iqbal Ahmed Khan, Ind u Sharma, Adnan Khan, Dr. Shyam Rastogi.
Kolkata: The much awaited marine drive connecting Udaypur in the Bengal-Odisha border with Sankarpur may be thrown open for the public soon, as the construction work for the same is on the verge of completion.People can currently take a stroll along the sea shore between old Digha and New Digha, as marine drive exists only between these two places. The completion of construction work will now help people move between Udaypur and Sankarpur with the sea in the backdrop. There is also a plan to ply small battery operated vehicles to ferry tourists along the marine drive. It will connect many important sea beaches. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataThe newly built marine drive will start from Udaypur and then pass through New Digha, Old Digha and Digha Mohana before touching Sankarpur. The laying of roads has already been completed in these stretches and the marine drive is expected to be inaugurated before Puja this year. The marine drive will further be extended up to Mandarmani. Beautification drives have also been taken up. There will be restaurants along the way where the tourists can have their food. Also Read – Lightning kills 8, injures 16 in stateThe Mamata Banerjee government has given a facelift to the beach towns in the East Midnapore district. Beautification drive has been given paramount importance by the local administration. After being prodded by the Chief Minister, the East Midnapore district administration had taken initiatives to begin the construction of three marine bridges, which Banerjee had proposed. Following Banerjee’s instructions, a sketch was chalked out to set up a marine drive in the area. The whole idea of marine drive was conceptualised by the Chief Minister herself. After coming to power, her government had taken up various development works along the sea beach in Digha, as a result of which the tourist footfall has gone up considerably. The district administration officials believe that once the marine drive, which will come up within Puja, gets completed, it will attract a large number of tourists not only from the state but also from other districts. The Irrigation department has already spent crores for development projects along the sea coast — from Old Digha to Udaypur. The entire coast line has been concretised to prevent soil erosion. Sewer lines have been revamped and further beautification works have been taken up. Lighthouses have been set up as well.
Kolkata: Stressing on the need for biodiversity conservation in and around Rabindra Sarobar, state Urban Development minister Firhad Hakim on Friday took part in a major awareness initiative about the do’s and dont’s there based on the order of the National Green Tribunal (NGT).As per judgement of the green bench, littering in or around the lake, bathing in its water, using excessive bright lights around it, washing clothes or utensils, emitting sounds that disturb the birds in the area and entering the lake premises with any kind of plastic bag is forbidden. The minister walked from the gate of Rabindra Sarobar till Nazrul Manch auditorium and took part in a programme aimed at generating awareness among citizens. The minister planted a tree beside the auditorium as a token of the green initiative being carried out by the KMDA there. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee will undertake a padayatra from Rabindra Sarobar on August 1 spreading the message of forest and water conservation (Jangal Bachao, Jal Bachao). Officials of the Kolkata Metropolitan Development Authority (KMDA), the custodian of the sprawling artificial waterbody in South Kolkata, replaced old banners and signboards placed at different spots on the bank of the lake with biodegradable ones. “The NGT has recommended planting of indigenous trees of around nine varieties like hijol, jarul, asatha, neem, etc surrounding the lake. We are following the guidelines of the green bench,” a senior official of the KMDA said. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataFirhad Hakim said Subhas Sarovar in Beliaghata in the eastern part of the city has also been beautified in the same pattern as that of Rabindra Sarobar. Apart from the area around Subhas Sarovar where work for the East-West Metro project is on, the remaining part has already undergone beatification. “Both these places are ideal for morning walk as you will get fresh oxygen. So we have given equal priority,” Hakim said. It may mentioned that the West Bengal Biodiversity Board has already conducted a study of the rich biodiversity of Rabindra Sarovar where they had stumbled upon a plethora of aquatic creatures and birds. An exhibition was held inside Nazrul Manch where pictures of the fauna in and around the waterbody was showcased. The minister on the occasion released two booklets to spread awareness about biodiversity conservation and the fauna there. Local MLA Sobhandeb Chattopadhyay and Chairman of the State Pollution Control Board Kalyan Rudra were also present.
ibis announces a new program, ibis Music, in partnership with global music giant Sony Music to bring live music experiences to its customers. The global partnership involves hosting multiple live gigs across 17 countries, promoting ibis’ passion for music. This is the latest step in the brand’s transformation, offering local residents and travellers a totally new experience in hospitality, creating vibrant social hubs for increased social interactions. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfThe program will provide a platform to new and upcoming artists to showcase their talent and extend a quirky space to music lovers or travellers who enjoy sitting in a relaxed, uplifting atmosphere with some great tunes. Under this program, a musical evening will be conducted on July 19, at ibis Kolkata Rajarhat. Come watch and enjoy an eclectic mix of musics with the band M Sonic. Packages at the hotel: Unlimited drinks and food at INR 999 plus taxes /per person, Unlimited food at INR 699 plus taxes / per person
Researchers have found that students who feel a greater sense of belonging with their peers, family and school community are less likely to become bullies. The findings suggest that parents and teachers should consider ways to create a supportive and accepting environment both at home and at school. “What we have found is that students’ perceptions of how supportive their school environment is has the power to alter bullying behaviour. This means that even acts of simple compassion and efforts to create an accepting and supportive space for students can help prevent bullying in schools,” said Chad Rose, Associate Professor at the University of Missouri. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfFor the study, researchers analysed survey responses from more than 900 middle school students from rural schools throughout the US. The survey addressed their sense of belonging as well as bullying behaviour. The results indicate that the more a student feels like they belong among their peers and family, the more likely they will feel like they belong at school. In addition, the more they feel like they belong within their school community, the less likely they were to report bullying behaviour. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveThis indicates that parents might be able to play a proactive role in increasing their child’s sense of belonging at school by focusing on improving family belongingness. “If you have children with varying interests, it might be beneficial to suggest the whole family get together to attend each other’s events and activities, even if it does not please the whole crowd every time,” said Christopher Slaten, Associate Professor at the University of Missouri. The study suggests that one of the ways parents can increase a child’s sense of family belonging is to organise activities that cater to every child’s interests.
A POW was released from captivity in Russia in 2000. He wasn’t taken prisoner in Afghanistan in the 1980s, Russia’s most recent war at that time. No, he had been held in captivity in a Soviet/Russian psychiatric hospital since World War II. His name was Andras Toma, and he was the last POW of WWII.One of the weapons that the Soviet Union used against its enemies was putting them in “psychiatric hospitals” or asylums. Throughout the 1960s and ’70s, the regime put dissidents into these places for a number of reasons.German POWs marching through the Ukrainian city of Kiev under Soviet guard. Photo by Liepaja1941 CC-BY-SA 3.0First, to punish them. There were legitimately disturbed inmates there who could make a person’s life a living hell – especially for extra rations or privileges. Second, the regime could say to the public, “This person is insane. Nothing they say can be trusted. They are not well.” This was thought to de-legitimize any opinion a dissident had. Third, many dissidents were subject to gross “psychological” experiments involving drugs, electric shock, and other unethical treatments.For the legitimately ill, Soviet mental institutions were not much better. The same restrictions that are placed on psychiatric professionals in the West simply were not in place. This was true after the fall of the Soviet Union as well. Drugs, abysmal care, bad food and apathetic staff filled many of the Soviet Union’s psych wards.Hungarian soldiers in the Carpathian Mountains, 1944.Andrea Toma had been placed there in 1945. He had been captured in defense of a small city in Poland in 1944. Hungary was an ally of Germany until almost the last days of the war when the Soviets threatened to virtually raze their country to the ground if they didn’t switch sides. Mr. Toma was taken prisoner before the Hungarians saw the writing on the wall. He was listed by the Hungarians authorities as missing in action and eventually was counted as dead.Toma was placed in a Soviet POW camp with a mass of German prisoners. He did not speak German, and the Germans spoke no Hungarian. Nor did any of the Soviet guards or authorities speak Hungarian. As a matter of fact, they thought Mr. Toma was speaking gibberish.Axis POWs in Moscow. Operation “The Great Waltz”, the parade of 57,000 POWs was held on July 17, 1944.Hungarian is virtually unrelated to any other language in Europe. It does share very loose ties with Finnish and Estonian, but they are not mutually intelligible, as are Swedish/Danish and Norwegian, for example. In the uncaring, rushed environment of WWII and the Soviet prison/hospital system, no one knew what Mr. Toma was saying – nor did he seem to have the ability to learn Russian, other than to be able to convey basic needs for food, water, etc.Related Video: WW2 Stuka dive bomber found beneath the waves after 70 yearsIn 2000, a Slovakian linguist, called in by the Russian authorities to see if he could crack Mr. Toma’s language, identified it as Hungarian. When he returned to Hungary later that year, many people were outraged that no one in fifty-five years managed to care enough to find out what Toma’s story was, and that no one recognized the language he was speaking – that of a long-time Soviet ally.After speaking with Mr. Toma, who unsurprisingly was a quiet, somewhat withdrawn man who showed signs of PTSD, Hungarian authorities did much research and narrowed down his identity. This was made more difficult by the fact that hospital authorities had listed his name wrong. A surviving brother and sister were found, and immediately, though they were much younger than Andras, knew him immediately – he was the spitting image of their father. DNA tests confirmed this.Upon his return to Hungary, Mr. Andras’ memories came flooding back. He had been trained as a blacksmith and was inducted into the Hungarian Army in 1944. He only fought briefly before being taken prisoner. Mr. Toma barely lived a life. Taken prisoner at 19, he was released at 74. He spoke an older version of Hungarian that was sometimes difficult to understand. He also had very little awareness of the passage of time, having spent most of his time in isolation. When he was told he was going to be shown a movie of events of WWII, he moved his chair to the back of the room, so that he could see the whole movie screen – only to be disappointed when he was shown the movies on a TV, which he had never seen.Read another story from us: In 25 images: The Corpus Christi naval air station where WW2 pilots earned their wings The Hungarian government recognized the sacrifice that Mr. Toma had made. They paid him his back wages – for 55 years. He spent the remaining years of his life being cared for by his sister. He passed away in 2004, having spent most of his life in captivity, a victim of war and apathy who lived in the horror show of Soviet psychiatric hospitals for decades.
Sasquatch, also known as Bigfoot, is a legendary mythical creature said to be roam North America. It’s been described as some sort of mix between a human and an ape — a giant, hairy animal that is able to walk upright.There has never been definitive proof found that such beings exist, but sightings of it persist, particularly in the northwestern parts of the United States and Canada.“Bigfoot” carving at the Crystal Creek Reservoir. Photo by Alexander Migl CC BY SA 4.0One famous sighting was made by Canadian Albert Ostman, in 1924. However, Ostman didn’t go public with his story until 1957, after an increase in Sasquatch sightings were reported.The construction worker, logger, and prospector said he had been afraid to talk about his experience before then for fear of being labeled as “crazy.”Sasquatch crossing sign in the Oregon wilderness.Albert Ostman worked at various jobs. After one particularly long construction project, he decided to take a vacation. His plan was to do some hiking, as well as look for a lost gold mine that was thought to contain valuable material. Ostman traveled to the interior of British Columbia to start his search.The prospector hired an indigenous guide to lead him to the general area where the mine was thought to be. While walking together, the guide related a story of a white man that had found gold at the same mine and repeatedly went back for more, until one day he never came back. It was believed that a giant Sasquatch had killed him. Ostman said it was the first time he had ever heard of this creature and figured it was an old legend.1895 article describing a giant grizzly bear named “Bigfoot”After several days hiking into the wilderness, the guide left Ostman. Carrying around 80 pounds, the adventurer slowly climbed the mountainous region. Every evening he would build a quick campsite for cooking and sleeping.Ostman then built himself a more permanent site to stay at. Following the first night at this new site, Ostman woke up to notice that some of his belongings had been moved around, but nothing was taken.Sign on Pikes Peak Highway. Photo by Gnashes30 CC BY-SA 3.0Figuring it was some sort of curious animal snooping around, the next night Ostman slept with his rifle in his sleeping bag. A deep sleeper, he didn’t wake up until morning, when he discovered that a sack of food that he’d hung on a rope was turned upside down and items emptied unto the ground. Some food was missing, but nothing was destroyed or ripped apart as a bear might do.Ostman planned to stay awake the next night to spot the intruder but eventually fell asleep. He was awakened during the night when something picked up his sleeping bag with the hapless Ostman trapped inside, and walked away from the campsite.Artists impression of Bigfoot.Stuck in an uncomfortable sitting position, Ostman said he tried to reach for his knife but was unable to. Instead, he held his rifle as the creature clutched the sleeping bag tightly and carried it through the mountainside for hours.Finally the movement stopped, and Ostman was dropped and able to crawl out of his sleeping bag. He saw four mysterious creatures — two large human-like beings and two smaller ones that he described as being covered with hair and not wearing clothes. Ostman believed they were a Sasquatch family. They spoke to each other, but Ostman couldn’t understand any of it.Following the surprise of his situation, Ostman began to think about escaping his captors. He still had food, but only enough to last for several more days.A bigfoot hoax footprint made in 1960.Ostman said the larger creature that had carried him from his campsite remained close to the only exit in the valley. When Ostman walked toward the exit the Sasquatch blocked the way.Although he had a rifle, Ostman wasn’t sure he had enough bullets to kill the creature. Instead, he pondered a different strategy, hoping to distract it. Among his belongings was a tin box with snuff in it. Ostman put a pinch of snuff into his mouth. The large Sasquatch curiously watched until it grabbed the box of snuff and emptied all of it into its own mouth.The snuff must have made the Sasquatch feel sick as it ran off, perhaps in search of water. This was Ostman’s chance. Grabbing what he could of his belongings, he made a run for it.Read another story from us: The ‘Dogman’ of Michigan: A Legend with More Sightings than BigfootAfter more than a day of hiking through forest, Albert Ostman found some loggers and told them he was lost. He claimed he never mentioned the rest of his story for more than 30 years.