kin of mumbai attack victims welcome

Relatives of victims of the 2008 Mumbai attack victims on Wednesday welcomed the execution of the lone surviving attacker, Ajmal Kasab, saying justice has been finally delivered. In Varanasi, Sunita Yadav, wife of victim Upendra Yadav, expressed her gratitude to the authorities for carrying out the execution.

Daily Bollywood News:Bipasha Basu - Bollywood will remain a hero-centric business

Women are active in show business like never before, but will they surpass the status Bollywood heroes enjoy? Never, says Bipasha Basu, who feels there is minimum opportunity for female actors in the Hindi film industry

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Thursday, November 5, 2009

STS-129: Atlantis Crew Prepares for Launch

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In preparation for liftoff of space shuttle Atlantis on the STS-129 mission, the six-member crew returned to NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida to finish prelaunch training, officially known as the Terminal Countdown Demonstration Test.

During an earlier visit, the astronauts practiced driving the M-113 armored personnel carriers as part of their emergency escape training.

They rehearsed evacuation procedures at Launch Pad 39A, where space shuttle Atlantis is undergoing launch preparations.

Crew members had an opportunity for a final fit check of their familiar orange launch-and-entry suits, and a chance to answer questions from media representatives who gathered for a news conference at the launch pad.

The centerpiece of the crew's most recent training was a launch dress rehearsal and practice countdown with the look and feel of a real launch day.

The astronauts also got a chance to check the mission's payload stowed inside the shuttle's cargo bay.

This sets the stage for Atlantis and crew to fly an 11-day mission to the International Space Station.

With the exercises behind them, the astronauts will continue training at their home base, NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston, before returning to Florida for launch.

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Tags : Space Shuttle, News in Nasa, Current Nasa News, Nasa Daily News, Nasa News Today, NASA, International Space Station, NASA's Jet

The Air Traffic Control Tower at the Shuttle Landing Facility. More to KSC Runway Than Shuttle Ops



Space shuttle Endeavour rolls down the Shuttle Landing Facility runway past the air traffic control tower. The tower is about 100 feet above the 3-mile-long runway and affords controllers working inside a clear view of the SLF and much of the Kennedy Space Center area. They also have radar and other technology to watch the airspace around the center. Photo credit: NASA


NASA's Shuttle Landing Facility, or SLF, was built for the space shuttle, but it also has hosted an international assortment of gigantic transport aircraft, fighter jets, race cars and even off-course skydivers.

Someone watching from the control tower might in one day see astronauts diving at the runway in a Shuttle Training Aircraft, NASA security helicopters sweeping the area, or a mosquito aircraft spraying near the launch pad perimeter. They also can find themselves making room on the runway for the occasional stray private pilot.

Such is life as an air traffic controller at one of the world's longest runways.

"You never know what's going to happen next," said Ron Feile, who oversees the air traffic control and operations at the SLF for EG&G.

Built a few miles west of the shuttle launch pads at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida, the landing strip was built for such a unique mission that it may be hard to think of it as an airport. But that's what it is, just ask the folks who man the control tower 100 feet above the 3-mile-long, concrete runway.

"You're always vigilant, you're always on your toes," said Ken Hooks, who has been working as an air traffic controller since 1968.

The control tower at the SLF is relatively new and offers some of the best views around of the spaceport. Standing inside the glass enclosure at the top of the tower, controllers have the same gear that other airports use to monitor and regulate aircraft moving around the area. The space is split between a NASA-focused controller for the runway, and one who works for the Air Force’s Eastern Range.

The controllers oversee rectangles of airspace running far north of Kennedy down to Port Canaveral. If something is flying inside any of the areas, the controllers want to know what it is.

"You'll have all these small little aircraft that are in here and have official business, but you need to know who they are, where they are and what they're doing," Hooks said.

The assortment of aircraft picks up greatly for launches and landings, Feile said. That is when the Kennedy helicopters patrolling the launch pads are joined by Air Force H-60 search-and-rescue helicopters from Patrick Air Force Base and several NASA aircraft. Also, astronauts not on the flight crew for launch fly T-38s and Gulfstream II aircraft on weather reconnaissance missions around the launch site.

The controllers also scan the area for weather concerns and monitor the shuttle servicing convoy and security forces so they can move around the area safely. The tower typically goes into launch or landing mode three days before a liftoff or the end of a mission. They also stay prepared to support unexpected orbiter contingencies throughout the missions.

If the shuttle lands in California, the controllers at Kennedy know to expect one of NASA's modified 747 Shuttle Carrier Aircraft at the SLF about a week later, with one of the orbiters on its back.

Given its proximity to spacecraft processing facilities, the SLF is also a preferred landing location for transports bearing shuttle payloads, satellites destined for launch aboard an expendable rocket and foreign jets carrying parts of the International Space Station.

The runway has hosted aerobatics teams such as the Air Force Thunderbirds and Navy Blue Angels for local air shows.

The tower controllers have a wealth of procedures and resources to call on in case someone breaks the cardinal rules of the airspace, particularly on launch day.

For instance, a private aircraft flew near the space center during a shuttle countdown in 2005 and had to be escorted to a landing by Air Force fighters.

When there is not a shuttle on the pad or landing, there still is plenty to see and do at the SLF. For instance, a skydiver and his tandem jumping partner were blown off course one day by a storm. They landed on a grass strip between the SLF runway and the canal – a point 12 miles from their intended landing zone.

There also was a pilot from the Midwest ferrying an airplane who mistook the 15,000-foot-long shuttle runway for the much smaller landing strip at Merritt Island Airport to the south.

In such cases, the uninvited pilots or skydivers are detained and questioned by Kennedy's security forces before they are allowed to leave. The Federal Aviation Administration also can get involved with intruders depending on the circumstances.

The runway is large enough to host any airplane in the world, so it occasionally is called on for a potential emergency airliner landing, though none have taken place.

Intruders on the runway are not always human, either.

Since the SLF is inside the Merritt Island Wildlife Refuge, animals of all sorts routinely make their way onto the runway and have to be chased off. Alligators, snakes and turtles may not seem particularly menacing to a multimillion-dollar aircraft, but hitting one of the creatures during a takeoff or landing could easily destroy the landing gear on an astronaut's T-38 jet.

So if a controller spots an animal on the tarmac, an operations vehicle is dispatched to scare them away. A truck approaching a gator from behind is normally enough encouragement to send the creature into the neighboring grass or a canal.

Lately, the vehicles on the runway have taken on unusual shapes as the space agency has cleared the way for more commercial uses of the facility when the shuttles aren't using it.

Starfighters Inc., a company that flies supersonic F-104 aircraft, has begun using the SLF for commercial spaceflight training and related missions.

While cutting-edge aircraft and spacecraft are part of the regular scenery at the SLF, vehicles that never leave the ground are becoming more common at the runway.

NASCAR and Formula 1 racing teams have been wringing out their road rockets on the runway to tweak designs. Tractor-trailers also are trying out new aerodynamic profiles in search of ways to save fuel and money.

As Goldy McKnight, one of the SLF workers who handles operations at the runway said, "We're very diverse out here.”




The Shuttle Landing Facility was the takeoff point for Steve Fossett's record-setting solo flight aboard the Virgin Atlantic GlobalFlyer. Photo credit: NASA



Part of an air traffic controllers duties during launch and landing operations is coordinating the search-and-rescue teams and landing convoy that are on hand for potential shuttle work. Photo credit: NASA




Air shows bring in the biggest variety of aircraft at once for the Shuttle Landing Facility. Here, an F-104 from Starfighters Inc., from bottom, two F-16s, an F-4 Phantom II and a pair of F-18s share the ramp at the SLF before a recent air show. Photo credit: NASA



Since there is no weight limit on the SLF runway, it can host any aircraft in the world, no matter how big. Here, a European transport brings a module for the International Space Station so it can be processed and taken to the orbital laboratory by the space shuttle. Photo credit: NASA




At 3 miles in length and about 100 yards in width, the SLF is one of the largest runways ever built. The black boxes painted on the concrete are the preferred touchdown points for a shuttle returning from space. The SLF complex includes a hangar, control tower, fire station and ramp facilities. Photo credit: NASA


Tags : Space Shuttle, News in Nasa, Current Nasa News, Nasa Daily News, Nasa News Today, NASA, International Space Station, NASA's Jet

Poisk Poised for Live NASA TV Space Station Docking

HOUSTON -- NASA Television will air the docking of the newest Russian module to the International Space Station starting at 9 a.m. CST Nov. 12.

The Mini Research Module-2, known as "Poisk," which means "explore" in Russian, will deliver 1,800 pounds of cargo to the station. Poisk is scheduled to automatically dock to the station's Zvezda Service Module at 9:44 a.m.

The 8-ton module is scheduled to launch at 8:22 a.m. Nov. 10 from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. The combination docking port and airlock will ride atop a Soyuz booster rocket. The Soyuz launch will not be broadcast on NASA TV.

The module will be used as an additional docking port for Russian vehicles, as an airlock for Russian-based spacewalks and as a platform for external science experiments. Its first use will be as a docking port during the relocation of a Soyuz crew vehicle in January.

A companion module, the Mini Research Module-1, will be carried to orbit on space shuttle Atlantis' STS-132 mission, targeted to launch in May 2010. That module will be robotically attached to the station's Zarya module.

For more information about the space station, visit:

http://www.nasa.gov/station

For more information about how to access NASA Television, visit:

http://www.nasa.gov/ntv


Tags : Space Shuttle, News in Nasa, Current Nasa News, Nasa Daily News, Nasa News Today, NASA, International Space Station, NASA's Jet

Ceremony Reset for ESA Handover of Tranquility to NASA

WASHINGTON -- The transfer of ownership of the Tranquility node from the European Space Agency, or ESA, to NASA has been rescheduled for 2 p.m. EST, Friday, Nov. 20. NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida will host the commemorative ceremony at NASA's Space Station Processing Facility.

Tranquility is a pressurized module that will provide room for many of the station's life support systems. Attached to the node is a cupola, a unique work station with windows on its six sides and top. The module will be delivered to the station during space shuttle Endeavour's STS-130 mission, targeted for launch Feb. 4, 2010.

Tranquility is the last element of a barter agreement for station hardware. ESA contributed the node in exchange for NASA's delivery of ESA's Columbus laboratory to the station. Thales Alenia Space in Turin, Italy, built the module.

NASA, ESA, Thales and Boeing managers involved in building and processing the node for flight will be available for a question-and-answer session after the ceremony. Journalists planning to attend must arrive at Kennedy's news center by 1 p.m. Participants must be dressed in full-length pants, flat shoes that entirely cover the feet, and shirts with sleeves.

Reporters without permanent Kennedy credentials should submit a request online at:

https://media.ksc.nasa.gov

International media accreditation for this event is closed. U.S. reporters must apply by 4:30 p.m., Nov. 17. For more information on the space station, visit:

http://www.nasa.gov/station

Tags : Space Shuttle, News in Nasa, Current Nasa News, Nasa Daily News, Nasa News Today, NASA, International Space Station, NASA's Jet

'One of my best' - Tendulkar

Sachin Tendulkar reaches 17,000 ODI runs, India v Australia, 5th ODI, Hyderabad,

November 5, 2009
Sachin Tendulkar became the first man to score 17,000 ODI runs © Getty Images



Sachin Tendulkar has rated his dazzling 141-ball 175 in the fifth one-dayer against Australia as "one of his best" innings. While orchestrating a stiff chase of 351, Tendulkar looked on course to break the record for the highest individual score in an ODI innings but was undone by a slower ball from debutant Clint McKay in the 48th over, after which India ended four runs short.

"It was one of my best innings, I was striking the ball very well and we were chasing 351 so there was constant pressure," Tendulkar said. "We maintained the run rate and brought the game close, but in the end it was very disappointing."

After sliding to 162 for 4, India were put back on track for what would have been the second highest target achieved in one-dayers by a 137-run stand between Tendulkar and Suresh Raina. India were favourites after 42 overs, needing only 52 runs with a Powerplay still in hand and Raina and Tendulkar in top gear. However, a combination of clever bowling and tigerish fielding from Australia, and some inept running from India handed the visitors a 3-2 series lead.

One bright spot for Tendulkar was that on 7, he became the first to reach the 17,000-run mark in one-dayers. When asked how he stayed motivated over the course of an international career which is days short of being two decades long, he said: "The passion - I care about playing for India. It's always been a dream and I'm absolutely honoured that I've been able to do that for the past 20 years."

Sourav Ganguly, with whom Tendulkar formed the most prolific opening partnership in one-dayers, lauded Tendulkar for reaching the milestone and hoped there was more to come. "It's really a remarkable achievement", Ganguly said. "I wish he scores another 2000 runs by 2011 World Cup. Sachin knows best how to accumulate runs. Once he gets going he becomes unstoppable."

Tags : India, Australia, Peter Siddle, Michael Clarke, Nathan Bracken

Source:cricinfo.com

Frost-Covered Phoenix Lander Seen in Winter Images



PASADENA, Calif. -- Winter images of NASA's Phoenix Lander showing the lander shrouded in dry-ice frost on Mars have been captured with the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment, or HiRISE camera, aboard NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter.

The HiRISE camera team at the University of Arizona, Tucson, captured one image of the Phoenix lander on July 30, 2009, and the other on Aug. 22, 2009. That's when the sun began peeking over the horizon of the northern polar plains during winter, the imaging team said. The first day of spring in the northern hemisphere began Oct. 26.

The images are available at http://hirise.lpl.arizona.edu/ESP_014393_2485.

"We decided to try imaging the site despite the low light levels," said HiRISE team member Ingrid Spitale of the University of Arizona Lunar and Planetary Laboratory.

"The power of the HiRISE camera helped us see it even under these poor light conditions," added HiRISE team member Michael Mellon of the University of Colorado in Boulder, who was also on the Phoenix Mars Lander science team.

The HiRISE team targeted their camera at the known location of the lander to get the new images and compared them to a HiRISE image of the frost-free lander taken in June 2008. That enabled them to identify the hardware disguised by frost, despite the fact that their views were hindered by poor lighting and by atmospheric haze, which often obscures the surface at this location and season.

Carbon dioxide frost completely blankets the surface in both images. The amount of carbon dioxide frost builds as late winter transitions to early spring, so the layer of frost is thicker in the Aug. 22 image.

HiRISE scientists noted that brightness doesn't necessarily indicate the amount of frost seen in the images because of the way the images are processed to produce optimal contrast. Even the darker areas in the frost-covered images are still brighter than typical soil that surrounds the lander in frost-free images taken during the lander's prime mission in 2008.

Other factors that affect the relative brightness include the size of the individual grains of carbon dioxide ice, the amount of dust mixed with the ice, the amount of sunlight hitting the surface and different lighting angles and slopes, Spitale and Mellon said.

Studying these changes will help us understand the nature of the seasonal frost and winter weather patterns in this area of Mars.

Scientists predicted that the ice layer would reach maximum thickness in September 2009, but don't have images to confirm that because HiRISE camera operations were suspended when Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter entered an extended safe mode on Aug. 26.

The Phoenix Mars Lander ceased communications last November, after successfully completing its mission and returning unprecedented primary science phase and returning science data to Earth. During the first quarter of 2010, teams at JPL will listen to see if Phoenix is still able to communicate with Earth. Communication is not expected and is considered highly unlikely following the extended period of frost on the lander.

HiRISE is run from the Lunar and Planetary Laboratory's HiRISE Operations Center, on the University of Arizona campus. Planetary Sciences Professor Alfred McEwen is HiRISE principal investigator. Planetary Sciences Professor Peter Smith is principal investigator for the Phoenix Mars Lander mission. The Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter is managed by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology, for NASA Science Mission Directorate, Washington. Lockheed Martin Space Systems, based in Denver, is the prime contractor and built the spacecraft. Ball Aerospace Technologies Corp., of Boulder, Colo., built the HiRISE camera.

For more information about the mission, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/mro .

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Unsettled Youth: Spitzer Observes a Chaotic Planetary System



Before our planets found their way to the stable orbits they circle in today, they wiggled and jostled about like unsettled children. Now, NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope has found a young star with evidence for the same kind of orbital hyperactivity. Young planets circling the star are thought to be disturbing smaller comet-like bodies, causing them to collide and kick up a huge halo of dust.

The star, called HR 8799, was in the news last November 2008, for being one of the first of two stars with imaged planets. Ground-based telescopes at the W.M. Keck Observatory and the Gemini Observatory, both in Hawaii, took images of three planets orbiting in the far reaches of the system, all three being roughly 10 times the mass of Jupiter. Another imaged planet was also announced at the same time around the star Fomalhaut, as seen by NASA's Hubble Space Telescope. Both HR 8799 and Fomalhaut are younger and more massive than our sun.

Astronomers had previously used both Spitzer and Hubble to image a rotating disk of planetary debris around Fomalhaut, which is 25 light-years from Earth. HR 8799 is about five times farther away, so scientists weren't sure if Spitzer would be able to capture a picture of its disk. To their amazement and delight, Spitzer succeeded. The picture can be seen online at http://spitzer.caltech.edu/images/2781.

The Spitzer team, led by Kate Su of the University of Arizona, Tucson, says the giant cloud of fine dust around the disk is very unusual. They say this dust must be coming from collisions among small bodies similar to the comets or icy bodies that make up today's Kuiper Belt objects in our solar system. The gravity of the three large planets is throwing the smaller bodies off course, causing them to migrate around and collide with each other. Astronomers think the three planets might have yet to reach their final stable orbits, so more violence could be in store.

"The system is very chaotic and collisions are spraying up a huge cloud of fine dust," said Su. "What's exciting is that we have a direct link between a planetary disk and imaged planets. We've been studying disks for a long time, but this star and Fomalhaut are the only two examples of systems where we can study the relationships between the locations of planets and the disks."

When our solar system was young, it went through similar planet migrations. Jupiter and Saturn moved around quite a bit, throwing comets around, sometimes into Earth. Some say the most extreme part of this phase, called the late heavy bombardment, explains how our planet got water. Wet, snowball-like comets are thought to have crashed into Earth, delivering life's favorite liquid.

The Spitzer results were published in the Nov. 1 issue of Astrophysical Journal. The observations were made before Spitzer began its "warm" mission and used up its liquid coolant.

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Indian Rupee Strengthens a Second Day as Stock Index Climbs

Nov. 5 (Bloomberg) -- India’s rupee strengthened for a second day as stock gains added to optimism foreigners are increasing purchases of the nation’s assets to gain from its relatively fast economic growth.

The currency advanced to its strongest level this week after the Bombay Stock Exchange’s benchmark Sensitive Index climbed 1 percent, extending yesterday’s 3.3 percent gain. Overseas funds added to their holdings of Indian shares in each of the last eight weeks, taking net purchases for the year to $14.2 billion on Nov. 3.

“The rupee strengthened later in the day following gains in the stock market,” which spurred speculation that capital inflows will increase, said Sanjay Arya, a treasurer at state- owned Bank of Maharashtra in Mumbai.

The rupee rose 0.1 percent to 47.025 per dollar as of the 5 p.m. close in Mumbai, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. That increased the currency’s gains this year to 3.7 percent, the fourth-best performance among Asian currencies.

Offshore contracts indicate bets the rupee will trade at 47.06 to the dollar in a month, compared with expectations of 47.11 at the end of last week. Forwards are agreements in which assets are bought and sold at current prices for future delivery. Non-deliverable contracts are settled in dollars rather than the local currency.

Crude Oil

The currency fell earlier on speculation the nation’s refiners increased dollar purchases to pay for costlier crude- oil imports. Oil prices in New York have gained almost 4 percent this week, extending October’s 9 percent advance, which was the biggest since May. India imports more than three-quarters of the oil it uses.

The rupee opened weaker “as oil steadily advances, adding pressure on India’s trade deficit to widen,” said Vikas Babu, a trader at state-owned Andhra Bank in Mumbai.

Crude oil has advanced more than 79 percent this year, boosting India’s oil import costs to a 10-month high of $6.34 billion in September. India’s trade shortfall increased to $7.8 billion in September, from $2.2 billion in February, government data show.

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Source: bloomberg.com

Indian bond yields end steady; bond sale eyed

* Govt to auction 90 bln rupees ($1.9 bln) bonds on Friday

* Policymakers' statements support positive sentiment-traders (Updates to close)

By Neha D'silva

MUMBAI, Nov 5 (Reuters) - Indian bond yields unwound an early fall on Thursday as traders made room for a $1.9 billion bond auction, but sentiment was supported by an uncertain economic outlook and easy cash conditions.

The yield on the 10-year benchmark bond IN069019G=CC ended at 7.29 percent, one basis point above Wednesday's close of 7.28 percent, after falling as low as 7.24 percent during trade.

Volumes were a heavy 87.40 billion rupees ($1.9 billion) on the central bank's trading platform.

"The credit offtake is not much, equity markets are volatile and there is sufficient liquidity in the system which is pressuring yields lower," said S.K. Chakraborty, general manager, treasury and forex for Allahabad Bank.

"Looking at the growth pattern, it looks unlikely the government would take away incentives it gave to the financial sector immediately and I don't think interest rates would fluctuate that much in the coming 1-½ months," he said.

On Wednesday, deputy chairman of the Planning Commission Montek Singh Ahluwalia said India would miss a target of 9 percent annual growth between 2007/08 and 2011/12 as the global slump and the weakest monsoon in four decades hit output. [ID:nBOM244859]

On Tuesday, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee said that fiscal stimulus would be maintained given the economic uncertainty. [ID:nBOM516605]

Dealers said Friday's 90 billion rupee bond auction should attract a good response as underlying sentiment was bullish.

The benchmark five-year interest rate swap closed at 6.61/65 percent after falling as low as 6.53 percent in intra-day deals, which was its lowest since Sept. 10. It had ended at 6.67/71 percent on Wednesday.

In interest rate futures on the National Stock Exchange (NSE), the December contract N10Z9 was implying an yield of 8.0084 percent, marginally above its previous close of 7.9969 percent.

The yield implied in the March contract N10H0 was 8.2897 percent, below its previous close of 8.4293 percent. ($1 = 47 Rupees) (Editing by John Mair)

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Source: in.reuters.com

Opel workers in Germany vent anger at GM

RUESSELSHEIM, Germany (Reuters) - Thousands of Opel auto workers in Germany downed tools on Thursday to show their anger at U.S. parent General Motors for its decision to abandon a Russian-backed rescue plan.

"We want Opel to continue to exist," Hesse state Premier Roland Koch -- one of the biggest lobbyists for a sale to Magna (MGa.TO) and its Russian partner Sberbank (SBER03.MM) -- told rallying workers at Opel headquarters in Ruesselsheim.

"We will have to fight again with the goal of saving jobs."

GM's board this week reversed the U.S. carmaker's decision to sell a majority stake in Opel, angering the governments of Germany and Russia and irking Opel staff in Germany who had pinned hopes on Magna to save as many jobs as possible.

Around half of Opel's 50,000 staff work in Germany.

One worker protesting GM's decision in Ruesselsheim was dressed as an undertaker and carried a black coffin made of styrofoam. Another held a sign that said: "We don't need sex because management screws us every day."

Like Magna, GM plans to cut Opel staff by a fifth and has said its European arm faced insolvency if workers do not agree to cost cuts and countries with Opel plants do not contribute to its 3 billion euro ($4.5 billion) restructuring plan.

As anti-American sentiment swelled in Germany, Koch warned GM not to "maximize profits by taking German workers hostage".

Staff had agreed with jilted suitor Magna on 265 million euros in annual savings, but Opel labor leader Klaus Franz again rejected cost concessions from workers to help out GM, whom many in Germany blame for mismanaging Opel into losses.

"Workers will not contribute a single cent," he declared, accusing GM of "threats, blackmail and intimidation".

CHERRY-PICKING

The reaction in Germany is in sharp contrast to that in Britain, home of Opel's sister brand Vauxhall, where workers have welcomed GM's decision to hang on to its European arm.

GM is counting on European countries that host GM plants including Germany, Britain, Spain and Belgium to provide financial support for a sweeping restructuring that aims to cut fixed costs at Opel by 30 percent.

European Union Industry Commissioner Guenter Verheugen urged Opel nations to stick together to boost their bargaining power.

"If everyone negotiates for himself with Detroit, the Americans will be able to pick the best offers," he told German paper Hamburger Abendblatt paper. "It is questionable whether that would be the most economically sustainable (approach)."

Opel workers across Europe had reached a deal on cost concessions with Magna this week after months of tense negotiations. Franz tore that deal up in disgust when GM reversed course and decided to keep Opel.

GM cited improving business conditions and the strategic importance of Opel, its European backbone, which also provides technology the group uses around the world.

European Union competition regulators on Wednesday urged GM to draft a restructuring plan driven by economics.

GM Europe head Carl-Peter Forster told German newspaper Bild he now expected "massive cuts" at Opel.

"We had negotiated a good restructuring plan which was ready and on the table," the paper quoted him as saying. "Now there is a danger that the sensible distribution of the burden we had agreed will unravel and the process will start all over again. One thing is certain: even with this solution, there will be massive cuts."

John Smith, GM's lead negotiator in the Opel deal, told a conference call on Wednesday the company had narrowly opted to retain Opel, because they believed losing it could have left a strategic gap in its operations.

Elsewhere in the automotive industry, the world's biggest carmaker Toyota Motor Corp (7203.T) posted a surprise quarterly profit and halved its loss outlook.


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Source:in.reuters.com

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Tendulkar 7 away from 17,000



It's a match day in the Honour Series and all eyes will be on India's batting maestro Sachin Tendulkar as, denied his milestone at Mohali, he is eyeing to complete 17,000 runs in his one day career in Thursday's game at Hyderabad.

Sachin is just seven runs away from the 17,000 mark. Tendulkar, who has been in focus in the series so far will go into the fifth match with a familiar burden of expectations.

He is currently the top run-getter in ODI cricket with 16, 993 runs to his name. Sanath Jayasuriya is second on the list with 13,377 runs while Aussie captain Ricky Ponting has a lot of catching up to do.

The master's blade has been quiet for most of the series. But the intent shown in Mohali has got the opposition worried.

Even former captain Sourav Ganguly believes that Sachin will be fired up in Hyderabad to over come the disappointment of not leading his team to a win in Mohali.

Tags : India, Australia, Sourav Ganguly, Sachin

Source: cricket.ndtv.com

Ranji round-up: Dhawan slams double ton



New Delhi: Shikhar Dhawan (224) cracked his maiden first-class double-century as Delhi piled on a huge 591 all out against a weakened Baroda attack on the second day of their Ranji Trophy Super League Group B match.

Already missing captain Irfan Pathan, Baroda had to play without the services of Salim Veragi, their opening bowler who was called twice for a suspect action.

To add to the woes of Baroda, all the Delhi top-order batsmen except captain Aakash Chopra (21) scored half centuries. Gaurav Chabbra (65), Rajat Bhatia (78), Mayank Tehlan (55) and Yogesh Nagar (55) made merry of the ineffective Baroda bowling to take the score to 591 all out from 168.4 overs.

For Baroda, Yusuf Pathan and Rakesh Solanki took three wickets apiece conceding 148 and 73 runs respectively.

In reply, Baroda openers Connor Williams (9) and Satyajit Parab (10) saw out the nine overs before stumps at 21 without loss.

In another Group B game, riding on Abhishek Jhunjhunwala's 95 and Manoj Tiwary's 88, Bengal piled up 325 runs in their first innings in reply to Maharsahtra's 179.

Maharshtra, in their second essay, were 46 for no loss with Harshad Khadiwale batting on 24 and Rohan Bhosale on 15, thereby trailing Bengal by 100 runs.

On a day dominated by the bowlers, Abhmanyu Mithun's five-wicket haul put Karnataka on the driver's seat against Uttar Pradesh at the end of the second day of the Ranji Trophy Super League Group B match on Wednesday.

Mithun (5/63) ran through the UP line-up to reduce the hosts to 214 for eight at stumps on day two after Karnataka had added 33 runs to their overnight score to be all out for 405.

Home » News
Ranji round-up: Dhawan slams double ton

Press Trust Of India

Posted on Nov 04, 2009 at 19:36 | Updated Nov 05, 2009 at 10:15 Comment 0 CommentsEmail Email Print Print
Tags: ranji trophy, Manish Pandey, Karnataka


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Manish Pandey (194) too could not add to his overnight score and missed his maiden double century by six runs.

Bhuvaneshwar Kumar (4/109) and Shalabh Srivastava (4/76) were in great form, dismissing the last five Karnataka batsmen for just 33 runs.

For UP, opener Tanmay Srivastava (30), Ravikant Shukla (27) and Parvinder Singh (32) did show some sparks in the top-order but failed to capitalise on their starts.

Earlier, Karnataka lost wickets in a hurry as UP bowlers' ruled the roost to eventually bundle out the visitors 405 in 103. overs.

In Delhi, Murali Vijay's unbeaten half-century consolidated Tamil Nadu's position as the side reached 150 for two after bundling out Railways for 327 on the second day of their Ranji Trophy Super League Group-A match.

Vijay was on 65 in company S Badrinath (33) at stumps.

Resuming at 242 for four, Railways earlier could add just 85 runs for the loss of six wickets today. Sanjay Bangar, who was on 111 on Tuesday, did not get support from the lower order. He carried his bat through the innings for 163.

In reply, Tamil Nadu started on a disastrous note with Mukund running himself out in the first over for a duck before Vijay and Arun Karthik (47) steadied the innings with a 83-run stand.

In another group A game, Sahil Kukreja's 90 and Abhishek Nayar's fluent 53 helped Mumbai reach 244 for the loss of seven wickets against Punjab on the second day.

Earlier, starting at the overnight score of 242 for nine, Punjab's last wicket could add just 17 runs as they were bowled out for 259.

Mumbai too got off to a disastrous start to their innings, losing the first three wickets cheaply with the scoreboard reading 65.

However, Kukreja and Nayar stitched together a valuable 115 runs for the fourth wicket to stabilise the Mumbai innings.

Ablish was the chief destroyer of Mumbai innings, claiming four wickets, while Gony took two wickets and Harmeet Singh scalped one victim.

In Ahmedabad, hosts Gujarat bowled out Orissa for a paltry 192 runs to earn a vital first innings lead of 78.

The visitors were bundled out in just 70.5 overs. Niranjan Behera top-scored with 78 runs of 195 deliveries, while B S Pati and Rakesh Mohanty contributed 24 and 34 runs respectively.

Earlier, the hosts resuming the day at 237 for seven and could only muster 33 more runs before their innings folded for 270.

In a Group A game, unbeaten half-centuries from Paras Dogra and Ajay Mannu helped Himachal Pradesh reach 166 for three against Hyderabad.

Dogra was unbeaten on 54 while giving him company at the crease was Mannu on 52 as the duo played cautiously after the fall of three wickets to amass the runs in 59 overs.

For Hyderabad, Alfred Absolem picked up two wickets for 48 runs while out-of-favour India left-arm spinner Pragyan Ojha scalped one victim giving away 38 runs.

Earlier, starting at the overnight score of 237 for six, the last four Hyderabad batsmen added 91 runs in 28.3 overs to take their score beyond 300.

However, the day started on a bad note for Hyderabad as Abhinav Kumar could only add three runs to his overnight score of 70.

But Hyderabad's cause was helped by Munagala Praneet Arjun's gutsy 71 and some indicipline bowling from Himachal bowlers, who gave away 39 run extras.

Vikramjeet Malik shone with the ball for Himachal with figures of four for 67. He was ably supported by Ashok Thakur at the other end, picking up two wickets for 71 runs.

Tags: ranji trophy, Manish Pandey, Karnataka

Source: cricketnext.in.com

Renault mulls quitting Formula One: reports



LONDON — Renault have held an emergency board meeting in Paris to discuss pulling out of Formula One, on the same day as Toyota announced it was also quitting the sport, according to reports.

The French car company was considering whether to remain in Formula One, switch to become an engine supplier only to teams, or exit the sport altogether, the BBC reported.

The outcome of Wednesday's meeting, attended by Formula One team bosses Bob Bell and Jean-Francois Caubet, was not immediately clear, the Guardian said.

Renault has been dogged in recent months by a race-fix scandal in which they decided not to contest charges that Nelson Piquet was ordered to deliberately crash in Singapore last year to help teammate Fernando Alonso to victory.

Renault's former team boss was banned from the sport indefinitely and its chief engineer was suspended for five years.

Renault finished a dismal eighth out of 10 in the constructors' championship after the final race of the season on Sunday in Abu Dhabi.

The meeting came as Formula One was left reeling by Toyota's decision to quit in response to the economic crisis, just days after tyre manufacturer Bridgestone also pulled out.

Toyota said its decision to leave after this season reflected "the current severe economic realities."

Honda have already withdrawn, while Germany's BMW have announced they were leaving at the end of the season to cope with the credit crunch.

While F1 attracts millions of viewers, the amount of money it costs to run a team -- estimated at hundreds of millions of dollars a year -- means it has become an unaffordable luxury for some manufacturers.

Farooq asks Chidambaram to review Jammu and Kashmir prepaid ban

JAMMU: Union minister for new and renewable energy Farooq Abdullah told home minister P Chidambaram to reconsider the continuation of the ban on
prepaid mobile services in Jammu and Kashmir when Chidambaram concluded his day-long visit to the state on Wednesday night, officials said.

According to official sources, Farooq raised the issue during an informal chat with Chidambaram on Wednesday evening.

Farooq said the ban on prepaid services had created anger all across the state.

At a press conference here, the home minister said the ban would stay because of security reasons and that security could not be compromised.

Chidambaram shared with Farooq some of the reasons why the ban had been put into effect in Jammu and Kashmir.

The minister was clear that there were compelling reasons for the home ministry to implement this step, which he called a "considered decision".

He said that the "alarmist picture" by the media was not helping anyone.

On the issue of dialogue with separatists, Chidambaram made it clear that it would be with all sections of people in the state. "No one will be left out," he said.

Chidambaram's statement clearly implied that the government would not hold talks with the separatists only but with mainstream parties as well.

He told Congress workers that the mainstream view was important as parties like the Congress, National Conference and Peoples' Democratic Party had fought elections and had got substantial endorsement of their programmes from voters.

Source: timesofindia.indiatimes.com

It's too much cricket: Siddle



Forced out of the ongoing one-day series against India due to a side soreness, Australian pacer Peter Siddle on Thursday said his injury was a result of playing almost non-stop cricket for the past five months.

On his return to the country this morning, Siddle, one of the five Australian cricketers who have been forced out of the series due to injuries, said he is glad to be back home after being on the road for so long.

"It's very pleasing to be home, back to see family and friends and sleep in my own bed," Siddle quipped.

"It has been a long tour, I guess, and the guys have been away for a long time now and we've probably played a bit too much cricket but we will see how we go and I am sure the boys will go well in the next three matches and come home with a (series) win," he was quoted as saying by 'The Australian Associated Press' here.

Siddle played in the World Twenty20 Championship, the Ashes, a seven-match one-day series in England, the Champions Trophy, the Champions League Twenty20 for Victoria before being called up for the seven-match series in India.

The pacer said his injury, which he picked up during the fourth one-dayer in Mohali, was not all that serious and he would be fit for the home Test series against West Indies later this month.

"It's nothing bad. I just pulled up a little bit tight, with a bit of soreness, from the last match and they decided the best thing with the first Test coming up was just to come home and rest up and make sure I am 100 per cent fit and ready to go for that," Siddle said.

Tags : India, Australia, Peter Siddle, Michael Clarke, Nathan Bracken

Source: indianexpress.com

Mr India Pravesh Rana in Bigg Boss

Mr India title holder Pravesh Rana has bagged a wild card entry for Bigg Boss. He will go into the Bigg Boss house today. Rana had to audition
and was chosen from about 65,000 names.

He said, “We men are not very privileged (as compared to women). I auditioned for the show in Delhi and got selected. All the same, I am happy to be part of the show”.

He added, “I am going to fill in the vacuum of good-looking men for the good-looking ladies. Everybody is expecting me to flirt with Claudia and Shamita, who are the only two single women. I am taking this as a game and one has to play sensibly to win it.”

Tags : Actress, Bollywood, Desi Hot Babes, Fans, Hot girls, News

Source: timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Ashutosh Gowariker picks Sikander Kher for his next

Sikandar's first innings in B-Town (2008's Woodstock Villa and Summer 2007 ) was a lacklustre one. The actor has now signed his first film with an A-grade director. He will feature in Ashutosh Gowariker's new film Khelein Gay Hum Jee Jaan Se and this might just be the boost his career needs.


Mere buddy ko lo!

A source reveals, "Sikandar is very close friends with Abhishek Bachchan, who plays the protagonist in this film, and he was the one who recommended his buddy's name for the part. Ashu had already auditioned a couple of newbie actors for the same role but hadn't locked anyone."

The source further adds, "Ashu called Sikandar and made him audition for the role, like all others actors vying for the role. Ashu liked what he saw and signed him the following day. Getting this movie is a big step for Kirron Kher's son's career."

Celebrations in order

The movie is a four-hero project. AB Jr plays main lead while Sikandar will play second lead. Sikku signed on the film last week and over the weekend, even threw a party for close friends at one friend's house in Bandra celebrating the fact that he landed the film."

The film mounts sets later this month and will release by 2010-end.

Ashutosh remained unavailable for comment. Sikandar refused to comment on the story, citing he was too busy in an important meeting.

Tags : Actress, Bollywood, Desi Hot Babes, Fans, Hot girls, News

Source: mid-day.com

Aamir Khan influenced by Murgadoss!



Aamir Khan has started promoting his new Christmas release 3 Idiots aggressively.

In an interview to a Mumbai tabloid Aamir says: “The most challenging part of playing a 20-something in Raj Kumar Hirani’s 3 Idiots was to work on my physical appearance”.

The actor admits that it was a tough ask for a 40 plus man to look like a 20 year old. He had to work on his mind, body, body language and even his wardrobe single-mindedly.

Aamir confessed that to look like a 20 year old he borrowed the look and wardrobe style of his Ghajini director AR Murgadoss.

Says Aamir: “There is a boy’s look about him and the thin Murgadoss always wears worn-out clothes and T-shirts that are two sizes large”.

He also added that he borrowed a couple of oversized T-shirts from his Ghajini director! Murgadoss has become a style statement and that too endorsed by one of the biggest stars in Indian cinema.

Tags : Actress, Bollywood, Desi Hot Babes, Fans, Hot girls, News

Source: sify.com

Specially designed clay pieces form my look in Paa: Amitabh



Actor Amitabh Bachchan, who plays a 12-year-old progeria patient in Paa, says he had to stick on several pieces of specially crafted clay to get the right look for the movie.

The actor couldn't wait to upload the first poster of the film on his blog bigb.bigadda.com on Wednesday, and wrote at length about what went behind his look of a child suffering from progeria, a rare disease that causes premature ageing among children.

"The face that you see is the result of deep research. Kids affected by this problem lose all their hair, become bald and their veins begin to show prominently on their heads, which enlarge to a size beyond normal. Their teeth and eyes suffer also...," posted Amitabh.

To get the special look for the character, director R. Balki roped in international make-up artist Stephan Dupuis, who did Robin Williams' make-up in Mrs. Doubtfire.

"The prosthetic process is arduous. Around eight pieces, specially designed through laborious clay models, are most meticulously stuck on to the face. Once the make-up starts, it is impossible to move even a few centimetres. Eating and drinking has to be avoided and you cannot talk because it displaces the pieces over the contours of the face. Separate pieces form the entire look," the actor posted.

The 67-year-old went on to add how the head and ears were one unit and came on as a helmet with the ears being add ons. He says his hearing used to be impaired when the make-up was applied as silicone covered his own ears.

"Two small holes are bored into the skull so some sound can go through. Also when you speak it reverberates inside the skull and you constantly feel you are inside a tunnel with pronounced echo," he said.

"Eye lids come on close to the eyes, the forehead is another piece, the nose, the two cheeks, the upper and lower lip, the chin and finally the neck all get stuck on and then blended through an intricate electronic spray which merges all the pieces to look like one cohesive mass," added Amitabh.

The actor says that since they wanted the look to be authentic, he also had to shave off all hair on his hands, arms, chest and legs regularly so they could highlight the veins by colouring them.

Paa is being produced under Amitabh's banner AB Corp and also stars his son Abhishek. In a role reversal of sorts, Abhishek plays Amitabh's father in the film.

Tags : Actress, Bollywood, Desi Hot Babes, Fans, Hot girls, News



Source:
sify.com

Royal Enfield to double capacity at Chennai plant

Motorbike manufacturer Royal Enfield said on Wednesday that it plans to invest Rs 65 crore to double the capacity of its Chennai plant from 50,000 to one lakh units by 2013.

This is apart from the Rs 65 crore the company has already invested in the plant.

“We will add a production capacity of about 10,000 units in 2010 and by 2013 we aim to reach annual production of one lakh units,” said Mr R.L. Ravichandran, CEO, Royal Enfield, at the sidelines of a bike launch.

The company has generated revenues of Rs 300 crore in the January-September period, said Mr Siddhartha Lal, Managing Director and CEO, Eicher Motors.

He added that at present monthly sales are 4,500-5,000 units, while it is targeting to sell about 50,000 units in the whole year.

“We are looking at a 25% growth in bike sales and a 20-30% growth in revenues,” he said.

Exports
Mr Lal added that Enfield exported about 1,700 bikes until September in the current calendar year, which is about 5% of the total production.

“We aim to increase exports by about 5% every year. In the next four to five years, exports should be 15% of our total sales,” he said.

On a descending order of export volumes, Enfield’s primary overseas markets are the UK, US, Germany, France and Italy, followed by Japan and Australia. “In the future, we will go to Africa, Latin America and the Middle-East,” he said.

New models

The Eicher Group company launched the Classic 500cc and 350cc motorbikes in the country, priced at Rs 1,24,918 lakh and Rs 98,086 respectively. The bikes are powered by an all-new single cylinder unit construction engine with fuel injection technology.

According to the company, the new engine platform has 15% fewer parts than the previous one, making it lower on maintenance.

“We have doubled our service interval for the new bikes to 6,000 km,” said Mr Ravichandran.

The motorbike, launched overseas in October 2008, has sold more than 2,000 units, said Mr Lal.

Mr Lal added that the product profile for India would still consist mostly of 350cc bikes with the carburettor technology, although it will slowly be replacing its older engines with the new fuel injection-based ones.

“It is mainly a pricing challenge for the company, margins are obviously higher in exports,” he said.

To relaunch Machismo

He said that Machismo would soon be re-launched with a new design and engine change. “We will change from the lean burn engine to the new platform and will announce it shortly,” he said.

On product upgrades to meet the new emission norms which come in place in April next year, Mr Lal said that the company would look to upgrade drivability and design as well, besides the engine.

When asked about the October sales of Eicher Motors, he said that it had shown a growth of around 70%.

“Last month we sold around 2,300 commercial vehicles in Eicher and 50-60 from the Volvo joint venture,” he said.

Centre mulls package for plantation sector

The Centre is planning to come out with a fiscal package for the plantation sector. The package, among other things, may come to the aid of the tea industry to meet its “high social cost” and “debt relief package” especially for the coffee growers.

Talking to newspersons here on Wednesday on the sidelines of a meeting organised by the city-based Bharat Chamber of Commerce, the Union Minister of State for Commerce, Mr Jyotiraditya Scindia, said, “Social cost is a major issue with the tea industry. The Government is taking this matter very seriously and we are going to come out with a package for tea industry shortly.”

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The Minister also alluded to the need for debt relief for the small and medium coffee growers.

“A detailed note is being forwarded to the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) for offering relief to the plantation sector,” Mr Scindia said. The proposed relief to the tea sector would be in addition to the Special Purpose Tea Fund (SPTF) for re-plantations and rejuvenation of tea plantations.

Social cost includes all the basic amenities which are provided to labours by the plantation owners. According to sources in Indian Tea Association (ITA), social cost adds approximately Rs 7 a kg in the production cost of tea.

The Minister also urged the tea industry to improve the quality of the tea and focus more on exporting the orthodox variety of tea rather than CTC (crushed tear and curl).

“The world market for tea is of the orthodox variety. However, we export mostly the CTC variety. We should look to reorganise our tea export basket. There is also a need to focus on value-added products like the tea-bags,” Mr Scindia said.

Ex-CM Madhu Koda's arrest anytime soon



Ranchi: Former Jharkhand chief minister Madhu Koda will be arrested the moment he is discharged from a hospital in Ranchi, the officer probing the politician’s alleged involvement in a Rs 4,000-crore scam has told CNN-IBN.

The Enforcement Directorate’s Chief Investigator told CNN-IBN investigators had enough evidence against Koda, who was admitted in Ranchi’s Apollo Hospital on Tuesday after he complained of a stomachache, vomiting and high blood pressure.

The ED has asked the hospital too keep it informed about Koda’s health and not to discharge him without telling them.

CNN-IBN has also learnt that during the four days of continuous interrogation, Koda allegedly admitted to stashing away Rs 375 crore in Swiss banks.

Koda’s residence in Ranchi was sealed on Wednesday amid allegations that he had amassed illegal assets worth Rs 4,000 crore.

CNN-IBN Investigation: Koda's Rs 4,000-cr empire

Madu Koda, from labourer to Chief Minister

Income Tax (IT) officials allegedly seized four money-counting machines, investment documents, cash, jewellery, a laptop and computer hard disk from his Ranchi residence on Wednesday.

According to sources, the IT department has traced a person who allegedly helped get hundreds of crores of rupees belonging to Koda deposited in a Swiss bank. The name and identity of the person has been withheld in the interest of the investigation.

During interrogation, Koda, now an MP, is learnt to have admitted to making unpublicised trips to foreign countries while he was the mines and geology department minister from March 2005 to September 2006, the sources say.

At that time, Arjun Munda was the Chief Minister of Jharkhand. In the past, he too has accused Koda of making foreign visits without informing him.

According to the sources, Koda had visited Liberia, Bangkok and Dubai without informing Munda. As per protocol, a minister should inform the chief minister if he makes any foreign visit.

On October 9, the ED lodged a case under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) against Koda and three former ministers as well as his associates Vinod Kumar Sinha and Sanjay Chaudhary.

(With inputs from CNN-IBN and IANS)

Source: ibnlive.in.com

Maytas Infra bags project worth Rs 790cr from ITNL

MUMBAI: Infrastructure development firm Maytas Infra today said it has bagged an order worth Rs 790 crore from IL&FS Transportation Networks
Ltd (ITNL) for road construction work.

The company has been awarded the Pune-Sholapur road contract worth Rs 790 crore, Maytas Infra said in a filing to the Bombay Stock Exchange.

The project is to be completed in a period of 20 months. "Through this project, we envisage assisting our client in building and providing a quality infrastructure link between the two important cities of Maharashtra and contribute to its economic growth," Maytas Infra President Chander Sheel Bansal said.

Maytas Infra Ltd had submitted its offer to ITNL in October 2009.

"This contract will go a long way in boosting the image of Maytas Infra in the market and restoring the confidence among its stakeholders," the filing added.

Shares of Maytas Infra were trading at Rs 145.80 on the BSE, up 2.42% from its previous close.

Source: timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Wipro buys Yardley personal care businesses

MUMBAI (Reuters) - Wipro, India's No. 3 software services exporter, said on Thursday it had agreed to buy some personal care businesses of Yardley for about $45.5 million, adding to its consumer goods business.

Wipro said it had signed an agreement with UK-based Lornamead group, which owns the Yardley brand, for the businesses in Asia, the Middle East, Australasia and some African markets.

The transaction is expected to be completed by mid-December, it said in a statement.

(Reporting by Prashant Mehra; Editing by Ranjit Gangadharan)

(For more news on Reuters Money visit www.reutersmoney.in)

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Source: in.reuters.com

India gold may extend losses; copper flat

MUMBAI, Nov 5 (Reuters) - India's gold futures may extend losses on Thursday profit-taking after hitting a record high in the previous session, analysts said.

The benchmark December gold MAUZ9 on the Multi Commodity Exchange (MCX) closed 0.2 percent lower at 16,588 rupees per 10 grams, after hitting a record high of 16,677 rupees.

December gold is likely to open at 16,580 rupees per 10 grams, said Aurobinda Prasad, deputy manager-research, Karvy Comtrade.

"There could be profit-taking in gold, and further directions could come in from (U.S.) data due later. Support would be seen at 16,480 rupees," said Prasad.

Gold may trade in the range of 16,530-16,750 rupees, said Murukesh Kumar, senior analyst with JRG Wealth Management.

COPPER:

India's copper futures may open flat as support from a weak rupee is likely to be offset by rising inventory in the London Metal Exchange, analysts said.

The most-traded November contract MCCX9 on the Multi Commodity Exchange of India (MCX) ended 0.3 percent higher at 309.45 rupees per kg in the previous session.

November copper may open at 308.50 rupees, said Abhishek Chauhan, technical analyst, Angel Commodities.

"Copper would trade sideways and seek for direction from the U.S. data," said Chauhan.

Copper may trade in the range of 304-315 rupees, said Kunal Shah, an analyst with Nirmal Bang Commodities.

Copper stocks in the warehouses monitored by the London Metal Exchange rose 250 tonnes to 374,050 tonnes on Wednesday. [0#LME-STOCKS]

The Indian rupee eased in early trade tracking lower regional sharemarkets, which could prompt foreign investors to repatriate funds from local stocks. [INR/]

A weak rupee makes the dollar-quoted asset expensive.

Investors are eyeing monthly U.S. employment data due Friday. [ID:nN30432695]

November zinc contract MZIX9 closed 1.1 percent higher at 104.05 rupees per kg, while lead for November delivery MLDX9 ended 2.4 percent higher at 109.80 rupees per kg in the previous session. (Reporting by Siddesh Mayenkar; Editing by Prem Udayabhanu)

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Source: in.reuters.com

Asia shares dip; dollar shaky on cautious Fed

HONG KONG (Reuters) - Asian shares dipped on Thursday, and the dollar fell after the U.S. Federal Reserve vowed to keep rates near zero for "an extended period" and said the recovery of the world's biggest economy would be sluggish.

The Fed's pledge to stick to a very loose monetary policy was expected and gave investors little new to trade on, although its cautious economic outlook prompted light profit taking.

Shares of exporters were hit by Asian currencies' modest gains. The dollar index was flat at around 75.8 but the U.S. currency was quoted at 90.54 yen, down from 90.75 in late Asian trade on Wednesday, and slipped against other currencies.

"I do not think the Fed signaled any change," said Richard Grace, chief currency strategist at Commonwealth Bank of Australia. "The policy guidance remains the same. I think the downtrend in the U.S. dollar is intact and we could see the dollar index fall to around 74 in the short term."

Japan's Nikkei .N225 slid 1.4 percent as the yen's advance hurt exporters, but Nissan Motor (7201.T: Quote, Profile, Research) was up 1 percent after soaring sales in China prompted the carmaker to reverse its annual outlook to a profit from a loss.

A rise in the Korean won, to as high as 1,174 to the dollar from 1,178.4 at Wednesday's close, also hurt exporters in Seoul where the KOSPI index .KS11 tumbled 1.4 percent. That was despite upbeat economic data, including double-digit department store sales growth and a further rise in exports to China last month.

"Investors are looking at the first batch of fourth-quarter indicators now that we are unsure about whether markets will remain solid in November or not," said Kim Seung-han, a market analyst at HI Investment & Securities in Seoul.

The Dow Jones .DJI rose just 0.3 percent on Wednesday, giving up earlier gains after the Fed's statement, which said the lack of inflation pressure would enable it to maintain loose monetary policy.

Network equipment vendor Cisco Systems (CSCO.O: Quote, Profile, Research) posted positive earnings after the bell though, sending its shares up 3.1 percent. And there was encouraging economic news as data showed the U.S. services industry grew modestly for a second month in October and private sector job losses slowed.

TAKEOVER REJECTED

In Asia, the MSCI index of Asia Pacific stocks traded outside Japan .MIAPJ0000PUS was down 0.9 percent while the Thomson Reuters index of regional shares was 1.4 percent lower.

Shares in Australia were down 0.8 percent, but toll-road operator Transurban Group (TCL.AX: Quote, Profile, Research) surged as much as 20 percent after the company rejected a takeover offer by two Canadian pension funds but said it was open to talks.

Japanese government bond futures fell, tracking a slide in longer-term U.S. Treasuries overnight on investor fears of excessive government debt supply after the Fed's statement.

The euro was down slightly at $1.4841, from $1.4865 in early trade, as investors awaited a European Central Bank meeting later on Thursday. The ECB is expected to keep interest rates at a record low but may give clues on when it will start weaning banks off cheap funds.

The Bank of England also meets on Thursday with policymakers set to decide whether to inject more stimulus into the British economy.

Gold hovered around $1,088 an ounce after hitting another record high overnight, at $1,097.25.

In New Zealand, markets were still pricing in monetary tightening by the end of April but the Kiwi dollar fell after comments from the central bank that the economic recovery was more vulnerable than in Australia and after the jobless rate hit a nine-year high at 6.5 percent.

"New Zealand has had a recession, and the pick-up is slower and more vulnerable -- a difference financial markets do not appear to appreciate," Reserve Bank of New Zealand Governor Alan Bollard said in notes prepared for a business group.

The Kiwi fell to as low as $0.7192, from around $0.7270 before Bollard's comments.

The oil price dipped 0.6 percent to $79.9 a barrel, after gaining more than $3 a barrel in the past three days.

(Additional reporting by Gyles Beckford in Wellington, Kim Yeon-hee in Seoul and Anirban Nag in Sydney; Editing by Jan Dahinten)

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Source: in.reuters.com

Nifty slips below 4700; IT, auto down

MUMBAI: Benchmarks opened in the red on Thursday in line with Asian markets. Profit booking was seen across the sectors after a short covering
BSE



“Markets are likely to open slightly lower this morning as there will be little conviction to buy stocks after a runaway rise seen on Wednesday. There were no surprises in the FOMC statement that communicated that the Fed is unlikely to give up its easy money stance in a hurry.

The US markets have ignored that and are in a wait and watch mode for the all important non-farm payroll numbers that will be released this Friday. The ADP report, that talks only of private jobs and that came on Wednesday, did not really help matters as it reduced its earlier job loss tally for September but reported higher than expected jobs losses for October.

While the markets recovered on Wednesday, they are likely to settle in a new found range, with strong resistance in the 4820-50 region and support at 4538. The severity of the fall indicates that even if the consolidation happens within this range, the path of least resistance is down. We continue with our bearish stance on the markets and would recommend further lightening of commitments in any short term spikes on the higher side,” said Anagram Stock Broking note.

At 9:58 am, National Stock Exchange’s Nifty was at 4673.25, down 37.55 points or 0.80 per cent and Bombay Stock Exchange’s Sensex was at 15794.05, down 118.08 points or 0.74 per cent.

BSE Midcap Index was up 0.04 per cent and BSE Smallcap Index moved 0.11 per cent higher.

“Nifty after breaching mentioned support of 4600 mark has bounced back sharply towards 4700 mark. Technically, Tuesday’s low of 4538 will remain a key support in near term. Profit-booking at higher levels of 4800-4850 clearly not ruled out.

Key support for the day is placed at 4610-4615 range. Hurdle is seen in the range of 4770-4775 range on higher side,” said Reliance Money report.

Meanwhile, the Federal Reserve has kept interest rates unchanged and hinted that the rates would remain the same in the near future. The US markets discounted the news flow and ended little changed. Dow Jones ended 0.31 per cent higher, S&P 500 edged 0.10 per cent up and Nasdaq slipped 0.09 per cent.

Asian markets were under pressure on concerns of global economic recovery. Nikkei 225 was down 1.31 per cent, Seoul Composite fell 1.42 per cent and Strait Times declined 0.48 per cent.

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Source: economictimes.indiatimes.com

Boat with children capsizes in Kerala, 8 dead



MALAPPURAM: Tragedy struck on Wednesday evening at Areekode in Malappuram when a ferry carrying nearly 50 school children capsized in the Chaliyar River. Seven boys and one girl of the Plus One and Plus Two classes of Moorkkanad Sullamusallam Higher Secondary School were killed in the mishap. The victims have been identified as Suhail Pe rumbarambu, son of Aboobacker; Mushthiq, son of M C Bava, Kizhissery; Thoufeeq Palappatta; Shahidali, son of Shoukat Ali, Kozhakkottoor; Siraj Kuniyil; Shihab Velleri; Shameem Irivetti and Thohiba Kozhakkottoor. One student, Jithin Joseph of Pathanapuram, has been admitted to the critical care unit at Kozhikode Medical College Hospital.

Two other students, admitted to the hospital, are in critical condition.

The boat, used by the locals to travel across the river, capsized in the middle of the Chaliyar when the children were on their way back home. The incident was reported around 4.30 in the evening.

Most of the students in the boat managed to swim to the shore. The few who were caught under the boat were the ones who could not escape death.

Some students who were good swimmers even succeeded in saving many of their friends.

The bodies of the eight students are at Areekode Community Health Centre. The postmortem will be done at Areekode itself as per the information.

Those who were rescued after the mishap were first taken to Areekode CHC and then to Manjeri District Hospital, nearly 16 kilometres from the accident spot, for treatment. A medical team under the Malappuram DMO and a team from Kozhikode Medical College Hospital treated the injured.

According to eye witnesses the boat capsized when students stood up in the boat when it reached the middle of the river.

The rescue operations were carried out by sand mining workers who were quite familiar with the condition of the river. The Fire and Rescue Services and the police, along with the locals, took part in the rescue operations.

District Collector M C Mohandas has ordered a comprehensive inquiry into the incident.

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Source: expressindia.com

In red bastion, Trinamool matches Marxists’ powerplay



Arambagh Even as Railway Minister and Trinamool chief Mamata Banerjee was gearing up to address a mammoth rally at Garbari ground in Arambagh, CPM and Trinamool Congress supporters clashed intermittently in the surrounding areas.

Trinamool supporters matched CPM cadres in strength and were seen wielding lathis just like their rivals. But amid this, the police remained a mute spectator.

Nine people were injured in the clashes and over a dozen vehicles were set on fire allegedly by CPM cadres who had set up blockades at various entry points to Arambagh to foil Banerjee’s rally.

Trinamool supporters also retaliated by setting ablaze two CPM party offices and ransacked a CPM camp near Arambagh. Some shops in the area were ransacked too.

Banerjee also got in touch with Union Home Minister P Chidambaram a number of times and informed him about the violence.

“There is no democracy in Bengal, just rule of CPM’s gun. I had to fight every inch of the way to reach the rally venue. Our supporters too had to endure attacks while they were on their way here,” said Banerjee and described how she was “gheraoed and threatened by CPM men” at Mayapur.

“After having reached here, it is evident that people have faith in me,” she added.

At Mayapur adjoining Khanakul road, around 500 CPM cadres, mostly women, had gathered. They gheraoed Banerjee’s 20-car convoy and shouted slogans like “Go back Mamata”.

The convoy, which was stuck for around five minutes, started moving only after a huge contingent of police arrived there and cleared the road.

After the rally ended, Banerjee stayed back till the evening to ensure that all her supporters return home safely.

Earlier in the day, incidents of violence were reported from Champadanga crossing on Tarakeshwar-Arambagh Road , 40 kms from Arambagh rally spot, where CPM cadres had put up a camp and a road blockade.

The blockade started around 12 pm and went on till 2 pm. Over 60 buses and other vehicles carrying Trinamool supporters from different districts towards the venue were left stranded in the blockade.

Ultimately, Trinamool supporters armed with bamboo sticks stormed the camp and ransacked it. This was done in the presence of a police contingent, which was placed there, but chose to stand idle.

In Bosontopur near Arambagh bus stand, 10 buses and two Maruti vans carrying Trinamool supporters were ransacked. Bombs were hurled even near the rally venue.

“Nine persons were admitted today with one being critical. But I do not know the nature of their injuries or to which political party they belong,” said Animesh Dutta, superintendent of Arambagh sub-divisional hospital.

While Trinamool blamed the CPM for stopping its supporters from attending the rally, the latter alleged that the Opposition initiated the violence.

“The Trinamool supporters were armed. They attacked our supporters and our party offices. They even ransacked shops in various areas. We are lodging an FIR with police regarding this,” said Muzammel Hussain, CPM zonal secretary of Arambagh.

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Source: expressindia.com