World
Turkish flight lands at IGI after bomb scare
A Turkish Airlines aircraft made an emergency landing at the Indira Gandhi International (IGI) airport here following a bomb scare. However, no explosives were found onboard after a thorough search.
 
An official said that flight TK-65 was on its way from Bangkok to Istanbul with 148 passengers on board when someone saw a bomb threat written on a windowpane.
 
"A message - there is a bomb in the cargo - was found written on a windowpane inside the aircraft," airport sources told IANS.
 
Sources said the plane made the emergency landing soon after the writing was detected.
 
"The flight was made to land at an isolation parking. All passengers were evacuated safely from the flight and emergency declared at the airport," a police official said.

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Fresh From The Farm – 3: Holy Cow!
Very few goshalas or cattle shelters accept old, injured animals; some sell the animals illegally
 
My last article was about how it is becoming increasingly difficult for farmers to take care of their cattle and the quiet ways in which they try to get rid of them.
 
I had heard about goshalas or cattle shelters; indeed, many social and religious organizations that run cattle shelters.
 
I asked some farmers why they do not leave their cattle at such shelters instead of abandoning them to their fate on the town’s thoroughfares. This was the answer:  Like many old age homes for people, these goshalas also asked for upfront charge if the cattle is accepted. Sometimes, a ‘donation’ or ‘deposit’ will settle the issue, some others also have monthly charges.
 
With farm incomes sinking, this is an unaffordable, say the farmers.
 
Also, many goshalas do not accept non-milch cows or cattle that are aged or are physically debilitated. What is more, the goshalas themselves are few and far between, at least in the three districts of coastal Karnataka.
 
I  have even discovered that the goshala run by a famous accepts only milch cows. Ditto at another, run by a social organization, which also rejects injured or physically deformed cattle.
 
However, at a goshala at Neelavara in Udupi district run by the famous Shri Vishwesha Teertha Swamiji, the famous seer of Pejawar Math, all types of cattle, including aged and injured ones are accepted. 
 
It is interesting to note that goshalas have had their share of controversies all over India, and, in many cases, the state government or courts have had to step in to resolve issues.
 
There have been allegations that some goshalas sell cattle to butchers illegally. Those in the cattle transport business complain of harassment by police or pro-cow activists despite having valid documents.
 
A Business Standard report on 4 March 2015 says that the Madras High Court has directed the Tamil Nadu government to conduct random checks in goshalas run by temples and maths.
 
The Court had issued a charter that goshalas should follow in managing donated cows that are sheltered with them, once they have passed the milk-yielding phase. 
 
The Court banned sale of cows donated by devotees and directed the temples to maintain details of the donors following outrage over temples selling cows to butchers. It also framed guidelines for the maintenance of goshalas, including clean and hygienic maintenance and periodic medical check-up for the cows.
 
According to The Hindu, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had instructed government officials to extend all help to goshalas, soon after coming to power. 
 
“We will look into the specifics needs of cow shelters and try to meet its demands instead of making just casual visits. Rice bran has also been procured,” said a senior official in the Telangana state’s Animal Husbandry Department, according to the report. 
 
In Uttar Pradesh, the police have successfully tackled the menace of cattle rustlers and have been delivering the rescued animals to goshalas; but many shelters are now refusing to accept the animals since they are becoming a huge burden.
 
Here in Udupi, when asked about cattle rustlers who take the animals away for slaughter, the farmers just shrug their shoulders. They just blame it on fate.
 
A story that is common to this region and elsewhere is that the children are educated and find greener pastures in towns and cities; the daughters are married off into well to do families and nobody has time for the ageing parents.
 
Sometimes, these busy children send money to parents or provide for their medical treatment and hospitalization; sometimes they cannot even come for their last rites.
 
If they do come, the first thing they do is sell off their ancestral homes and then abandon their parents in old age homes!
 
What to talk about cattle?
 
As they say, we can keep debating the issue till the cows come home…
 
(This is the 3rd part of the series, Fresh From the Farm. More to follow…)
 
You may also want to read…
 
 
 
(Shrikant N Shenoy has been a journalist since 1980, having worked in Mumbai, Hyderabad, Dubai. He launched a news portal and an online Konkani language channel from Manipal, Udupi, but ran out of money. In 2011, he successfully launched an English newspaper with five editions simultaneously on a shoe-string budget. He tweets as @udupinet.)

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COMMENTS

B Pugazhendhi

1 year ago

If there is a fear that cows donated to the temple are sold to butchers after they stop giving milk, then the practical solution would be to open common goshalas for temple clusters by the Hindu Religious and Charitable endowments Board of the State (whereever such Boards exist). That would be putting the money of the temples to appropriate use prescribed by the religion instead of spending the temple income on non-religion related issues and projects.

Narendra Doshi

1 year ago

There are several goshalas run efficiently by Jain Institutions and exemplary work is still being done(since last few decades) on a continuous basis by Shri Kumarpal V Shah and his team stationed at Kalikund, Near Ahmedabad, mostly all over Gujarat.

Online rummy on a high roll in India
And in case you're wondering, these online game portals are exempted from gambling laws since rummy is considered as a 'game of skill' according to a 1967 Supreme Court ruling, and the gambling laws only apply to a 'game of chance'
 
From what was essentially a club-oriented indulgence and would peak among certain sections during Diwali, card games like rummy have now become a year-round indulgence for revellers in India. With the advent of online gaming portals that host these games with an option to bet real money, Indians needn't indulge in illegal gambling activities and yet fulfill their love for betting.
 
And in case you're wondering, these online game portals are exempted from gambling laws since rummy is considered as a "game of skill" according to a 1967 Supreme Court ruling, and the gambling laws only apply to a "game of chance".
 
India's prohibitive legislation has paved the way for illegal gambling activities, unlike Macau which is widely heralded as the hub of legalised gambling across the world. According to the Goa, Daman and Diu Public Gambling Act 1976, casinos can be set up only at five star hotels or offshore vessels with prior permission of the government.
 
Online games like rummy have, however, brought in a change for youngsters and long-time betting enthusiasts who can legally bet and earn money on these portals.
 
"Skill games like rummy are exempt from gambling laws in India and hence whether they are played with money or not, the legality doesn't change. However, non-skill games are not legal for real money play," Ankush Gera, CEO, gaming company Junglee Games, which introduced JungleeRummy.com, an online destination for all rummy players, told IANS.
 
These portals, however, aren't operational in Assam and Odisha due to amended state laws. The Assam Game and Betting Act, 1970, and the Orissa Prevention of Gaming Act, 1955, do not create any exception for games of skill.
 
The buy-ins range from Rs.12 with a point value of 0.1 to Rs.2,400 with a point value of 10 on online card gaming portal adda52.com , and if multiple users are to be believed, it's standard on most platforms.
 
The websites host rummy games where players, who are 18 years and older, can bet actual money after buying chips through various online payment options. Although Indians are said to be sceptical when it comes to online transactions, the number of active players has only risen in the past few years, says Gera.
 
"The market size has grown 400 percent. Rummy dominates real money gaming in India and 'teen patti' (a popular card came) dominates social free to play," Gera said.
 
Delhi-based online rummy player Gopal Rathore, says that not only the number of players but the number of game portals have also increased over the years.
 
Most of the participation on the game portals, which promise a safe online environment for players, come from the 25 to 50 year age group.
 
"Taj Rummy provides a safe environment for gamers who play with real money. Our software is licensed and there are encryptions in place to make sure our players get exactly what they are paying for," Parikshit Madishetty, managing director of Grid Logic Software, the company behind Taj Rummy, told IANS when asked about their online security.
 
A frequent rummy player, Ranjeet Rajotia, says the game helps him de-stress and he finds it a good way of spending his leisure time.
 
"It's a fun experience where I get to practice my skills, relax and hopefully win some cash. I've been playing twice a week, sometimes more than that, for the past year," 22-year-old Rajotia said.
 
The growth of the trend is mainly credited to customer satisfaction, which is why the online portals have a high retention quotient.
 
"(Our players are) extremely satisfied... and retention is extremely high. People find entertainment and games are one of few things that bring joy into people's lives," Madishetty said.
 
The peak participation on the websites is seen during holidays and festivals with the portals offering high value prizes and promotional tournaments. In fact, in March, JungleeRummy.com hosted a World Rummy Tournament 2015 in Singapore.
 
It is interesting to see how card gaming has reached a virtual level where norms and conditions are strictly applied to ensure safety for gaming enthusiasts who do not hesitate to partake in real money gaming.
 
Although online card gaming has a long way to go in India, the impact it has made in recent years is noticeable and it is clear that the future of the industry may be bright in the country.
 
 

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COMMENTS

Yash Brijwasi

2 weeks ago

Rummy is legal and traditional game in india ,PokaBunga offers the best gaming experience for Indian Rummy games

Sakshi Jain

7 months ago

Definitely, online rummy is one of the best games ever. You can also play http://www.rummycircle.com>Indian rummy online and win huge cash prizes.

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