May 31, 2012

Army Chief General VK Singh retires today

General VK Singh will retire as Indian Army Chief today. His retirement will bring to an end his controversial tenure, which was marred by his Date of Birth (DOB) issue and revelation of bribery offered by top military brass.

General Singh (62) will hand over the charge to Eastern Army Commander General Bikram Singh, who will be the next Army Chief for tenure of two years and three months.

General Singh was appointed as the Army Chief on March 31, 2010. He was the first trained commando to become Army General and was also the first serving Indian military chief to take the Government to court.

He is the first General, who had drawn the government's attention over the shortage of arms and ammunition. His startling revelation about the bribe offering had created storm in the Parliament.

Born to a Colonel in the Indian Army in Bhiwani district in Haryana, General Singh is known as an honest, firm and upright officer.

May 30, 2012

India becomes Biggest ‘Baby Factory’ for UK

India has become the biggest ‘Baby Factory’ for Britain, a media report has suggested. It claims that UK is the sole biggest source of clients for India's booming 1.5 billion pounds surrogacy industry.

With a remuneration of 6,000 pounds a woman in India donates egg and carries baby as a surrogate mother, the report says. For the whole procedure to get a child (using surrogate mothershi) in India the Britons reportedly pay an average of 25,000 pounds.

"It is estimated that 2,000 births to surrogate mothers took place in the country last year, with most experts agreeing that Britain is the biggest single source of people who want to become parents in this way," the report said.

It should be noted that British women are banned from accepting surrogate motherhood. However, many top professionals including bankers, senior civil servants, executives at multinational companies and even National Health Service (NHS) doctors have taken the opportunity to become parents through surrogacy in India, as per the report.

There are nearly 1,000 unregulated clinics to support surrogated motherhood in India, many of which help Britons become parents.

Petrol becomes Cheaper in Delhi by Rs 1.26

In a partial relief for people of Delhi, petrol will become cheaper by Rs 1.26. The state government has decided not to charge 20% vat on hiked amount of Rs 6.28.

With the price slashed by Rs 1.26, now the petrol will be available at Rs 71.48 per litre in Delhi.

Delhi is the fourth Congress ruling state to cut the fuel taxes after a steep price hike in petrol last week.

May 28, 2012

Crying Babies feel Stressed, says Study

Babies who are left deliberately to cry by themselves to go sleep eventually without being comforted could feel ‘stressed’ even after they appear to settle, a new research has suggested.

Some parents opt for an odd procedure to stop their kids crying. It is called ‘controlled crying’. In this method, the baby is left unattended and uncomforted to cry and settle by itself which in regular course trains it to settle into a routine. But this is an absolute wrong therapy as the present study finds that in this case the kid feels stressed even after settled.

The study by Global Management, Ahmedabad and Wendy Middlemiss at the University of North Texas recently conducted the research in this context. The scientist took babies aged four to ten months and left them cry by themselves to fall asleep without comfort from their mothers and her team monitored their levels of hormone.

Researchers measured the length of time they cried for three nights and their mothers were requested to wait in a nearby room. By the third night of the study, infants were found to have cried for a shorter time before falling asleep. It was found that the levels of cortisol in their saliva remained increased.

The study found: "On the third day of the program, results showed that infants' physiological and behavioral responses were dissociated. They no longer expressed behavioral distress during the sleep transition but their cortisol levels were elevated."

The study further described that although the infants showed no behavioral indications that they were experiencing distress at the changeover to sleep; they continued to experience high levels of physiological distress, as per their cortisol level.

The chief researcher of the present study Dr Middlemiss is a member of the Attachment Parenting International Research Group, the Society for Research in Child Development, the National Council on Family Relations, and the American Psychological Association. He is also associated with Global Management, Strategic Management Consultant based in Ahmedabad, India.

The findings of the study were published in the journal Early Human Development.

May 26, 2012

Facebook launches iOS Camera App

World’s top social networking giant Facebook has launched its own photo sharing application for Apple’s iOS devices. The new mobile app allows users to upload photos faster and easier on Facebook.

Camera for iOS allows users to upload multiple photos at once. The event was being waited by many that how Facebook’s new app will impact Instagram, which the company acquired for $1 billion last month. Facebook’s Camera for iOS is available now on the Apple’s App Store.

The app allows you see your friends and family’s photos as well, showing albums and individual images. One can use the app to share multiple photos instead of having to post them one at a time. The app also has the facility adding captions and tagging them along the way. Using the tools you can also crop, rotate and add filter effects to the images using the app.

May 25, 2012

Petrol price hike: Firms offer Discounts on Petrol Cars

India's leading car makers have announced discounts of up to Rs 50,000 on petrol variants for a limited period following a steep hike in petrol prices by Rs 7.50 per litre.

While Maruti Suzuki India has started offering a discount up to Rs 30,000 on its best selling small car Alto in order to increase its sales, Tata Motors is giving discount between Rs 10,000 and Rs 50,000 on the petrol variants of Indica and Indigo.

Similarly, a discount of up to Rs 3,000 is being offered on the petrol variants of Hyundai Motor such as Eon, Santro, i10, i20, Accent and Verna, HMIL under a "Petrol Price Lock Assurance" scheme. It will continue till May 31.

The move has been taken the sales of the cars declined due to high fuel prices in past few months.

When asked about offering rebate on the petrol models, Tata Motors spokesperson said: "We are offering discounts on the petrol variants of Indica and Indigo family. The rebate will vary between Rs 10,000 and Rs 50,000 depending on the model".

There will be discount on Nano of up to Rs Rs 10,000 even though Tata offers rebate on its small car every month.

May 23, 2012

Reebok alleges Rs 8,700 Cr Fraud by former MD, COO

Reebok India has alleged a massive Rs 8,700 crore fraud by its former Managing Director Subhinder Singh Prem and former Chief Operating Officer Vishnu Bhagat. It could be said as the second biggest corporate scam after Satyam.

The scandal hit the headline when Reebok lodged an FIR with the Gurgaon police against Prem and Bhagat. They were accused of stealing products by setting up 'secret warehouses', fudged accounts and indulged in fictitious sales to cause a multi-crore dent to the company.

Later, the company’s financial director, Shahim Padath, lodged a written complaint alleging the duo for shipping off the company’s money and forging the bills in the last five years.

He alleged that the duo had caused a loss of Rs 1,300 crore to the company through various means.

The economic cell of Gurgaon police found that Singh and Bhagat had allegedly rented four warehouses without informing their seniors and used them to store goods and claimed they were supplied to genuine dealers.

They are accused of shipping off good to ghost companies and distributors across the country.

The scam came to light in March 2012 when Subhinder Singh was appointed as the MD of Adidas India in 2011 as part of an integration of the businesses of both Adidas and Reebok. Later, he was dismissed from the company along with Bhagat.

The company also alleged that the jobs of around 40,000 employees involved directly and indirectly in Reebok and Adidas in India were put at risk due to such fraudulent act by the duo.

May 18, 2012

India lead Global Maternal Death Rate

India leads with a maximum of 19 percent of the global maternal death rate – a report by the World Health Organization (WHO) has suggested.

While India tops the maternal death rate with 19 per cent Nigeria maintains the second position at 14 per cent of the global maternal death rate.

The report provide that approximately 287,000 women died in pregnancy and childbirth in 2010 across the world including the maximum of 56,000 in India followed by 40,000 in Nigeria.

Maternal deaths dropped by nearly half in the past two decades due to improvement in health systems and increased female education which is a decline of 47 per cent from levels in 1990.

The global Maternal Mortality Rate (MMR) in 2010 was 210 maternal deaths per one lakh live births, down from 400 maternal deaths per one lakh live births in 1990 – 2010 released by UN Population Fund (UNFPA), World Health Organization , UN Children`s Fund and the World Bank.

As per the report a woman dies of pregnancy-related complications like severe bleeding after childbirth, infections, high blood pressure every two minutes during pregnancy and unsafe abortion.

Of the 180 countries and territories that were covered in this UN study, 154 countries experienced total MMR percentage declines while 26 countries had an increase.

May 17, 2012

Spa Massage gives relief from Stress

Spa has become an important part of people's health and fitness activities these days. Spa or Swedish style massage gives body and mind deep relaxation. It also increases circulation to help bring oxygen and nutrients to the tissue and remove toxins from the body.

It target tissues may include muscles, tendons, ligaments, skin, joints, or other connective tissue. Massage can be applied with hands, fingers, elbows, forearm, and feet among many other application techniques. It is the best possible way to get relief from any kind of anxiety and stress.

Spa is not only a way for reduction or recovery; it has a lot more benefits for the body. Since stress is the major reason for illnesses, stress relief is one of the main purposes of Spa, besides transformation and embossing.

The Spa treatment helps to eliminate toxins and metabolic wastes from the body, it boosts metabolic rate to burn more calories, and it also soothes muscles and nourishes the skin making it look youthful and glowing. Other benefits of Spa are – improving digestive and immunity system, lowering cholesterol, regulating blood pressure, insomnia and fatigue.

There are several different types of spas to best suit your needs like Swedish massage is a full body, oil-based massage, couple massage, Deep Tissue and Sports Massage, Hot Stone Therapy, Shiatsu Massage, Hand and Foot Reflexology massage.

Modern life can be stressful, so what better way to relax than to visit a spa for a massage treatment. It not only relaxes your body but also mind.  Whether you have only a few hours or several days, take some time off work and get a massage to benefit your health.

May 10, 2012

Facebook launches own App Centre

Social network giant Facebook announced on Wednesday that it is building its own app center. Besides providing a lot of new apps, the new app centre will also enable paid Facebook apps for the first time.

The app centre is a new tool to discover the best apps, games and services available at the social network. It will come out as an important feature of the website as well as the apps for iOS and Android.

At present users of Facebook are using the same search bar they use to find people, groups and events to search an app. But after the launch they will be provided with a complete dashboard with details and ratings for each app.

The dashboard will show a list of top apps, exhibiting apps as per the user’s own usage patterns.

The new app centre is expected to be the zone to find great apps like Draw Something, Pinterest, Spotify, Battle Pirates, Viddy, and Bubble Witch Saga. Every app will have also an app detail page to describe what exactly makes an app unique.

The company will also let developers charge a one-off fee to use their service through Facebook. Earlier Facebook had launched the Facebook’s Open Graph initiative. It encouraged many top content providers to amalgamate their services into Facebook which also appeared at their Timeline or within the Live Ticker.

The new app of Facebook will also introduce paid apps on that will offer a new opportunity for Facebook developers to monetize their Facebook accounts. However Facebook will collect a 30% cut from each of these transactions.

Facebook is rapidly growing to meet the ever increasing passion of its users as well as introducing revolutionary facilities to attract even new surfers to enter its world. In this attempt, it seems very interesting to know about the new app centre.

We urge our readers to let us know about their reaction to the new approach by commenting on this article.

May 7, 2012

સરકારી બેન્કોમાં પૈસાના નામે નરોવા કુંજરોવા - ભારતની આંતરરાષ્ટ્રીય બેન્કનો કડવો અનુભવ

ગુજરાતી ભાષામાં એક કહેવત છે કે જો તમને કશી જ ખબર ના હોય તો એને "નરોવા-કુંજરોવા" કહેવાય. આજે મને આ વાતનો પ્રત્યક્ષ અનુભવ થયો. ફોરેન કન્ટ્રીમાંથી અમારા સંબંધીએ મોકલેલા પૈસા લેવા હું બેંક ઓફ બરોડા, આશ્રમ રોડ બ્રાન્ચમાં ગયો. ત્યાં જઈને મેં પૂછ્યું કે 'મનીગ્રામ' (આ એક વૈશ્વિક કક્ષાની પૈસાની લેતી-દેતી કરતી સંસ્થા છે જેમકે વેસ્ટર્ન યુનિયન). હું આશ્ચર્ય ચકિત થઇ ગયો એ જાણીને કે બેન્કના પટાવાળાથી માંડીને બેન્કના ટોપ કક્ષાના વ્યક્તિને આ સેવા વિશે ખબર જ નથી. મેં જયારે એક કસ્ટમર સર્વિસમાં બેઠેલા બહેનને પૂછ્યું કે "બહેન તમે મને જણાવશો કે આ મનીગ્રામ વિશે ક્યાં વિભાગમાં મારે પૂછવું?" એમણે મને કહ્યું કે "ભાઈ આ બેંકમાં તમે પૈસા ક્યાં જમા કરાવવા એ પૂછશો તો બધા લોકો તમને કહેશે કે અમારી પાસે આવો, પરંતુ જો પૈસા લેવાનું પૂછશો તો કહેશે કે સામેની બારીએ જઈને પૂછો".

અંતે કંટાળીને હું પાછો ઓફીસ આવી ગયો. આ બધી હકીકત એ સાબિત કરે છે કે જો તમે તમારા ગ્રાહકને સારી સગવડ પૂરી ના પાડી શકો તો તમે આ બીઝનેસમાંથી ફેંકાઈ જશો. લોકોને આજે સારા પ્રોડક્ટની સાથે સારી સર્વિસ અને સાથે સાથે સાચી માહિતી પણ માંગે છે.


Innovation experts have long argued that companies should be more tolerant of failure. But not all failure is created equally. Here are three types of failure that rarely contribute to learning and should be avoided whenever possible:

- Knowingly doing the wrong thing: When a project falls apart because someone hid information or misled others, any learning is moot. Failure is only acceptable when the project was done with good intentions.

- Failing to gather the right data: Often you can avoid failure by doing some simple research: asking target customers for input or testing an idea before launching it.

- Prioritizing research over experience: Some things are unknowable without real life experiments. Don't waste resources on researching a theory when you can create a prototype or conduct an experiment that will give you a more realistic answer.

Why Hillary Clinton arrives in Kolkata ?

US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton arrived in Kolkata today on a three-day India visit. She will meet West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee tomorrow.

Clinton arrived in Kolkata from Dhaka. She attended a programme at the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) on issues related to women. The programme was held at the Rabindranath Tagore Centre. She met victims of human trafficking.

After meeting Mamata Benerjee tomorrow, Hillary Clinton would leave for Delhi. It is speculated that the would urge India to cut oil imports from Iran. High security arrangements have been made in Kolkata to prevent any untoward incident during Hillary Clinton's visit.

May 5, 2012

Indian Smartphone Users access Internet more than US

For the Indians, it is not wrong to say that their Smartphone is not only a device to call and send message but it is like a supercomputer for them through which they can link to anybody online.

A recent survey conducted by Google in partnership with a France based research company ‘Ipsos’ has revealed that the number of Indians prevail over the number of Americans in accessing internet on their Smartphones.

The survey revealed that 56 per cent of the Smartphone holders in India access internet on their phones several times in a day in comparison to 53 per cent in US. Out of the 56 per cent Indian users 59 per cent are males and 48 per cent females.

The Survey further provides the statistics that more than 75% of the Indians visit social networking sites on their Smartphones as compared to 54 per cent in the US. Again, while they access email up to 81 per cent the same is 73 per cent for the US users.

However, it is interesting to know that Smartphone users in India are less than 50 per cent of the 245 million Smartphone users in the US. In fact, mobile phone, which is always available with a person, has become the first choice to follow news, watch TV, listen to music, check e-mail and access internet.

May 4, 2012

Mobile Tariff may go up by 100%

The telecom firms said that if the recommendations of the Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) are accepted by the government, the mobile tariff will be increased by 100%, which will put pressure on their subscribers.

The telecom giants are putting pressure on the government to review the suggestions made by the TRAI. Holding a joint media conference on Thursday, the chief executives of Bharti Airtel, Vodafone, Idea Cellular, Telenor owned Uninor and Videocon, said that the proposal if accepted would lead to 100 percent hike in the call rates.

The firms described the TRAI's suggestions as the death of knell for the telecom industry. Speaking at the joint press conference, Sanjay Kapoor, CEO Bharti Airtel, said that the telecom industry is already struggling to get rid of high debts. The TRAI's recommendations would make things worse for both the firms and subscribers.

The TRAI's suggestions if accepted would play havoc in a country like India where people are fed up of having high inflation. The executive said that TRAI's argument that the move would lead to 2 paise per minute annually is not realistic. He said that the call rates could be increased higher.

Rajiv Bawa, chief representative officer of Telenor, said that the recommendations are not in line with Supreme Court’s order, which has cancelled all the 122 2G spectrum licences allotted in 2008 during the tenure of former telecom minister A Raja.

The court has directed the government to redistribute all the 122 licences in the auction.

The telecom giants also demanded the government to reduce the base price of spectrum by 80%. They said that all available spectrum should be put for the auction and the market should be allowed to discover the real price for the spectrum.

May 2, 2012

What We Know about Google's Penguin Update

Google’s Penguin update is an algorithm by Google to catch people who spam its search results or purposely do things to rank better that are against Google’s publishers guidelines.

The Penguin Update launched on April 24. It was a change to Google’s search results that was designed to punish pages that have been spamming Google.

In the ‘Google Webmaster Central’ blogs Google has written about the penguin update in these words: “In the next few days, we’re launching an important algorithm change targeted at webspam.

The change will decrease rankings for sites that we believe are violating Google’s existing quality guidelines. We’ve always targeted webspam in our rankings, and this algorithm represents another improvement in our efforts to reduce webspam and promote high quality content”.

What is “webspam” or search spam?

Pages that try to gain better rankings through things like:

• Keyword stuffing
• Link schemes
• Cloaking, “sneaky” redirects or “doorway” pages
• Purposeful duplicate content

Through this step Google wants to differentiate “white hat SEO” from “black hat webspam” to encourage people to continue with SEO best practices.

Google wants the webmasters to focus on creating high quality sites that create a good user experience.

Google believes that the new update will impact about 3.1% of queries in English; 3% in German, Chinese and Arabic. The percentage might be higher for languages where spam has been slipping through even more, such as in Polish, where 5% of queries are expected to change.

With an intention to get higher rankings or traffic, a few sites use online techniques that don’t benefit users. Those sites actually aim to look for shortcuts that would rank pages higher than they deserve to be ranked. In fact, Google observes all sorts of these webspam techniques every day. Hence, to restrain this practice Google has launched this algorithm.

Google’s Penguin update is a welcome step for all the genuine users, searchers and surfers but on the other hand it is a harsh blow to the cunning web crooks who want their sites to gain traffic following shortcuts.

Google has provided these steps for genuine surfing:

1. Avoid hidden text or hidden links.
2. Don’t use cloaking or sneaky redirects.
3. Don’t send automated queries to Google.
4. Don’t load pages with irrelevant keywords.
5. Don’t create multiple pages, subdomains, or domains with substantially duplicate content.
6. Don’t create pages with malicious behavior, such as phishing or installing viruses, trojans, or other badware.
7. Avoid “doorway” pages created just for search engines, or other “cookie cutter” approaches such as affiliate programs with little or no original content.
8. If your site participates in an affiliate program, make sure that your site adds value. Provide unique and relevant content that gives users a reason to visit your site first.

May 1, 2012

Only Kalam fit to be India's President

The term of present President of India Dr. Pratibha Devisingh Patil ends on July 24, 2012 and we have less than 3 months left to decide a new President for our nation.

In this context, among the long lists of names few names are emerging out as the finalists, such as Ex-President Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam, Vice President Hamid Ansari, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee, Scientist Sam Pitroda, NR Narayana Murthy (Co-founder Infosys), E. Sreedharan or even actor of the yester years Waheeda Rehman.

However, majority of the opinions have at least agreed on one point - the new person should be apolitical, above partisan politics and non-controversial and name of the former President APJ Abdul Kalam has been the most in contention.

The media, including social media is abuzz with excitement for the return of the 81-year-old aerospace engineer to the Rashtrapati Bhavan.

It is also heard that Mulayam Singh’s Samajwadi Party, J Jayalalithaa’s AIADMK and Mamata Banerjee’s Trinamool Congress have reached an accord on supporting Dr. Kalam for the first citizen. The BJP has also extended its support to Dr. Kalam, while the Congress and DMK are opposing his candidature.

Big debates are going on mainly on the topic that whether Dr. Kalam is fit for the second innings or not. Also, many people have conveyed their doubt that the former President may not opt to come back to the Raisina Hills.

Rajesh Kalra, the Chief Editor of Times Internet has presented his view in a blog article on the Times of India that calling back Dr. Kalam again to the Rastrapati Bhawan exhibits the state of a bankruptcy of human resources in the country, of course accepting the Nuclear scientist to be the most loved and non political man. But with due respect to your idea, we don’t feel offering the highest post to Dr. Kalam would anyway show bankruptcy of HR.

In a nutshell, one can observe it on the social media that only Dr. APJ Kalam is fit to be the President of India and he is the fittest candidate to take the responsibility for another term.