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Polling peaceful in four North Eastern States

U.K. scientists make body parts in laboratory


Last year, the team made a nose for a British man who lost his to cancer. Scientists added a salt and
sugar solution to mold of the nose to mimic somewhat sponge-like texture of the real thing. Stem cells
were taken from the patients fat and grown in the lab for two weeks before being used to cover the
nose scaffold. Later, the nose was implanted into the mans forearm so that skin would grow to cover it.
Giant bubbles to help beat smog in China?
Their project which is still in the conceptual stage, would be able to create outdoor green spaces which
would be covered by giant bubble-shaped domes in the Chinese cities where adverse environmental
conditions mean that people are unable to spend time outdoors without risking their health.
Four-way Ukraine talks announced as 'hostages' freed
US and EU diplomats crucially agreed with Moscow that it was time to deescalate the worst European
security crisis in decades by setting up a four-way round of negotiations involving Kiev next week.
OIL is first Indian firm to raise $1 bn in bond sale
Jat reservation to stay
About 40% foodgrains stored unprofessionally: Assocham
Each grain bag is handled at least six times before it is finally opened for processing;
April 11, 2014
Sindhurakshak may have been sabotaged: probe
Sabotage is one of the six possible reasons for the sinking of kilo-class submarine INS Sindhurakshak
in August 2013; in January 2014, Sindhughosh was about to run aground when it entered the Mumbai
harbour and in February, a fire broke out on Sindhuratna;
Ratan Tata appointed board member of China-backed Boao Forum
He has been inducted as a member of the Chinese government-backed Board of Boao Forum for Asia
Every year top worlds political and business leaders gather at Boao to brainstorm on global political
and economic issues. FICCI is an ordinary member of the forum.
Worlds largest single crystal of gold identified
The structure or atomic arrangement of gold crystals of this size has never been studied before, and we
have a unique opportunity to do so;
Private sector feels India is a 'difficult place' for business: World Bank
Israel launches new spy satellite-->Ofek 10
Satellite is expected to be used to observe Iran and hostile militant groups in the Middle East.
India, China among world's poorest countries
The top five poorest countries - India (with 33 percent of the world's poor), China (13 percent), Nigeria
(7 percent), Bangladesh (6 percent) and the Democratic Republic of Congo (5 percent) - together are
home to nearly 760 million of the world's poor.
April 12, 2014
Japans new energy policy supports nuclear use
The Basic Energy Plan describes nuclear power as an important base-load power source that is cheap
in terms of operation costs and can generate electricity continuously through the day.
The move comes as Mr. Abe has moved to reactivate idled reactors. All of the nations 48 reactors have
been suspended amid public fears about nuclear power following the 2011 Fukushima Disaster.
NASA approves spacecraft for asteroid trip
to collect the first ever samples from an asteroid in 2018; OSIRIS-REx is scheduled to launch in 2016,
rendezvous with the asteroid Bennu in 2018 and return a sample of it to Earth in 2023;
Justice R.M. Lodha to be next Chief Justice of India
Ratan Tata gets one of Britain's highest awards
Official sources said that Tata, who was honoured with a KBE (Knight Commander) in 2009, is to be
honoured during this year for his services to UK/India relations, inward investment to the UK and

philanthropy.
Tata is one of five foreign nationals to be honoured by Queen Elizabeth during 2014.
The Tata Group employs nearly 60,000 people in the UK, making it one of the largest employers in the
country. Tatas long-standing engagement with Britain spans various sectors, including philanthropy
and academia.

1 million new cancer cases being diagnosed in India each year: Study
LONDON: Latest estimates announced on Friday have revealed some worrying findings about the
growing burden of cancer in India.
The latest figures published in the British medical journal The Lancet show that around one million
new cancer cases are being diagnosed in India each year, projected to nearly double to 1.7 million new
cases in 2035.
Around 700,000 people are dying from cancer in India annually, projected to rise to around 1.2 million
deaths in 2035.
Fewer than 30% of cancer patients in India survive for more than five years after their diagnosis.
Around 40% of all cancers in India are attributable to tobacco.
Breast cancer is the most common cause of cancer deaths overall, and the most frequently diagnosed
cancer in women, accounting for more than 1 in 5 of all deaths from cancer in women.
More than three quarters of cancer expenditures in India come directly out of patients' pockets, leading
to catastrophic health expenditures with a cancer diagnosis.
Most (92%) patients from rural households in India first present with cancer to private practitioners,
over three quarters (79%) of whom have no medical qualifications.
China, India, and Russia have found to together experience 46% of all new cancers worldwide and
account for more than half (52%) of all cancer deaths globally.
Political leaders have now been urged to act on the "devastating" economic and human costs of cancer
in India by a Commission examining the challenges facing effective cancer control in China, India, and
Russia led by Professor Paul Goss of Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital
Cancer Center in collaboration with over 40 leading cancer experts from the regions studied, and across
the world.

Professor Mohandas Mallath of the Tata Medical Centre, Kolkata, lead author of the paper on the
growing burden of cancer in India said "The need for political commitment and action is at the heart of
the solution to India's growing cancer burden. The extent to which death and illness from cancer will
actually increase in the next 20 years will depend a lot on the investments made in future decades in
tobacco control, healthcare delivery, cancer research, clinical trials, and increasing the public awareness
as to how we can all help to reduce the risk of cancer by eliminating risky behaviours such as smoking,
vaccinating those at risk of cancer causing infections and following a healthy diet and lifestyle."
Experts say one of the reasons for the excessive burden of deaths from cancer in India is the existence
of huge gaps between the demand and supply for cancer care: 95 % of the medical colleges in India do
not have comprehensive cancer care services comprising of surgical, medical and radiation oncology
departments in the same campus.
Currently there are around 2000 medical and radiation oncologists in India - one per 5000 newly
diagnosed cancer patients - and in almost all remote or rural areas even the most basic cancer treatment
facilities are non-existent.
As a result, urban cancer centres are overcrowded and under-resourced, leading to long waiting times,
delayed diagnoses and treatment that comes too late for many patients.
Moreover, very low levels of public funding for healthcare in India mean that more than three quarters
of cancer costs are paid out of pocket directly by the patient or care givers. There is also a big regional
imbalance in cancer care facilities and numerous patients from northern, central and eastern regions of
India have to travel very long distances to the south or western regions along with their care givers and
live under very harsh conditions for many months, adding to the high mortality and financial
bankruptcy.
"Most district hospitals and even regional cancer centres do not have the facilities needed to provide
quality cancer care to the people who need them," says professor C S Pramesh of the Tata Memorial
Centre, Mumbai, lead author of the paper on delivery of affordable and equitable cancer care in India.
"Because of the extremely low level of government and state funding for healthcare in India, a cancer
diagnosis is increasingly responsible for catastrophic expenditures from the patients' own pockets,
which has the potential to negatively affect not only the individual with cancer, but also the welfare and
education of several generations of their family. Delivering affordable and equitable care for cancer is
one of India's greatest public health challenges - but it is a challenge we must rise to if we are to
mitigate the devastating economic and human costs that this disease is already exerting on our nation."
Improving cancer outcomes in India will not only depend on addressing shortfalls in the medicines and
treatment facilities available to patients, but will also need far more concerted efforts towards
preventing people from getting cancer in the first place.
For example, addressing India's high levels of tobacco usage - including smokeless tobacco products,
which lead to high levels of oral cancers and other illnesses - should be a priority for state and regional
governments, say the authors.

SC ruling on section 377 was unexpected: UK report


Britain on Thursday said it was closely following developments related to the Supreme Courts
decision to reinstate Section 377 of the IPC that criminalises same-sex relationships, and added that the
December ruling of the court was unexpected.
Setting out concern over the issue, the Human Rights and Democracy 2013 report released by Foreign
secretary William Hague said: We are closely following developments on the Indian Supreme Court
decision, which reinstated a law that criminalised homosexuality.
This ruling was unexpected. The report added: There has been widespread public criticism of the
decision within India.
It is important that Indias democratic institutions work through this issue, taking account of the fact
that to render consenting same-sex relations illegal is incompatible with international human rights
conventions, including the ICCPR (International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights).
The report does not list India among the 28 countries of concern, but mentions Indias poor record on
womens rights, use of the death penalty and corruption.
Noting that in 2013, the Indian government took positive steps to improve the lives of women and
girls, it said that inequality, discrimination and domestic violence are still pervasive, particularly in
Indias poorest states.
The report said that Indias laws on crimes against women had been strengthened following
recommendations of the Justice Verma Committee, but added: (A) number of provisions under this
new legislation carry the death penalty as a sentence so, while we welcome a tough approach for such
serious crimes against women, we continue to oppose the death penalty in all circumstances.
During 2013, the report said that the UK government continued to support womens rights in India.

India to join China Navy exercise; Japan, U.S. keep out


India has decided to send the naval stealth frigate INS Shivalik to participate in an international fleet
review and maritime exercise hosted by the Chinese Navy on April 23 - an exercise that has acquired
particular diplomatic significance with the United States declining to join the review after Japan was
excluded from the event.

China's People's Liberation Army (PLA) Navy is hosting the review and exercise in the northeastern
port of Qingdao, the headquarters of its North Sea fleet, as it prepares to mark its 65th anniversary with
great fanfare. Chinese President Xi Jinping is also expected to presided over the celebrations.
The international fleet review and exercises on April 23 and 24 have, however, acquired diplomatic
colour after the PLA Navy declined to invite Japan.
At least 10 countries have so far confirmed their participation in the fleet review and exercise,
including India, Australia, South Korea, New Zealand, Indonesia and Pakistan, according to a
provisional list.
With India and Pakistan taking part, the review and exercise will also provide a rare instance of both
countries jointly taking part in a naval exercise.
The fleet review and maritime exercise will take place along with the annual meeting of the Western
Pacific Naval Symposium (WPNS) a U.S.-established grouping of 20 countries, including Australia,
Canada, Russia, Japan, South Korea and China, and three observers - India, Bangladesh and Mexico.
China invited Japan's Navy chief to attend the WPNS, but the PLAN decided to exclude Japan from the
international fleet review and exercise, to which a number of other countries were invited.
Japanese Defence Minister Itsunori Onodera said last week it was "unforutnate that China took such an
approach", with the moves following rising tensions over disputed East China Sea islands.
The U.S., which initially stayed clear of the dispute, has recently voiced backing for its ally Japan, with
Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel calling on China to refrain from "intimidating" its neighbours during
his visit to Tokyo this week, which was followed by a trip to Beijing.
By pulling out of the fleet review and exercise, the U.S. has signalled its support to Japan, although
both countries will attend the WPNS.
China also conveyed its desire for India's Navy chief to attend the event. But with the resignation of
Navy Chief D.K. Joshi a month ago and a successor as yet unappointed, the Navy will send a "fairly
high-ranking" delegation, sources said.
The Indian Embassy in Beijing said in a statement the visit by INS Shivalik "highlights the friendly
exchanges and bilateral defence cooperation" between India and China. The ship will be open to public
visits on April 22, the Embassy said.

India, Russia finally sign agreement on Kudankulam 3, 4 units


After years of deadlock on liability issue, India and Russia have signed an agreement for building units

3 and 4 of the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant project (KKNPP) at a cost of Rs 33,000 crore.
The Nuclear Power Corporation of India Ltd (NPCIL) signed a General Framework Agreement (GFA)
with its Russian counterpart yesterday, sources said here today.
However, some permissions are required from Atomic Energy Regulatory Board (AREB) before work
on the project could actually start, they said.
Units 3 and 4 of the KKNPP have stuck over the "Right to Recourse" Clause of the Civil Liability
Nuclear Damage Act 2010 (CLND) as the Russians have been apprehensive over it.
In October last year, the deal could not be signed over the same issue when Prime Minister Manmohan
Singh visited Russia due to lack consensus over the issue between both the countries.
However, the issue has been sorted out after hectic negotiations. Last month, DAE secretary R K Singh
along with other senior officers of the department had a meeting here with the Russian counterparts in
which the breakthrough was made.
Things were expedited and the proposal was moved before the Cabinet Committee on Security last
month. The atomic energy department wanted to seek permission of the Election Commission as polls
were declared a week later.
"We wanted to play safe and did not want any kind of hurdle as the project has already been delayed for
a long time," the sources said.
"KKNPP 1 and 2 also got commissioned during the Manmohan Singh tenure and the government
wanted this agreement to be signed at the earliest," the sources added.
In its ten-year tenure, the UPA government has signed nuclear deals with US, UK, France, Kazakhstan,
South Korea for exchange of technology on nuclear issues and import of good quality uranium required
for nuclear plants. Unit 1 of KKNPP was also commissioned during the UPA regime.
However, there are several impediments in KKNPP, to which the government has not found a solution.
Despite the signing of the agreement, it is still unclear on how will the government sort out liability
issue.
Under the CLND act, it is mandatory to have an insurance of over Rs 1500 crore, which could be used
as compensation in case of any nuclear accident.
The General Insurance Company (GIC), with which the government is planning to tie-up with, has said
that it has not yet offered any kind of insurance to units 3 and 4 of the KKNPP. This leaves the
government with little options on getting the reactors insured.
Units 3 and 4 of KKNPP will be coming up in Tamil Nadu's coastal district of Tirunelveli which has
already seen large scale protests. S P Udayakumara led People's Movement Against Nuclear Energy
(PMANE) undertook several agitations with fishing hamlets in the country. Questions were also raised
on who was funding this agitation.
Interestingly, the anti-nuclear activist is also contesting election from Kanyakumari Lok Sabha seat on

the same plank.

The curse of technology


Source: By Bharat Jhunjhunwala: Deccan Herald
Parties are vying with each other in promising that they will generate jobs for the unemployed. This
will not be easy though. Actually, workers are becoming increasingly irrelevant in the modern world.
Machines are producing goods in large quantities with few workers. Say, there is demand for 10,000
yards of cloth per day in a town.
Previously 1000 weavers were involved in producing this. Now, the same cloth is being produced by 10
workers on automatic looms. Businessmen find it profitable to employ more machines and less labour
because the cost of capital is declining. It is cheaper to borrow money from banks and buy machines.
On the other hand, the cost of labour is increasing by the day. Economic development has become its
own enemy. Development means prosperity which, in turn, means low interest rates. Development also
means high standards of living which, in turn, mean high wages.
The final result is that economic development is leading to displacement of workers by machines.
Indeed a number of high-skill jobs are being created in the modern factories such as in designing,
computerisation, etc. But number of these jobs is small in relation to the population. Moreover, these
jobs are concentrated in big cities. Weavers are losing jobs in Varanasi while engineers are gaining
them in Gurgaon.
It may appear that jobs are being created in cities but that is really a local phenomenon. Nearly one-half
of our youth are unemployed at the national level. Such would not have happened if large number of
jobs were being created in IT and other sunrise sectors. The only way to create jobs in large numbers is
to make it profitable for businesses to employ labour instead of machines to undertake production.
This requires that the cost of labour be brought down. Governments across the world are moving in this
direction. Labour reforms are designed to achieve this objective. Allowing businesses to lay off
workers when not required, to employ them through contractors and to give them right to hire and fire
as per their choiceall such measures lead to a reduction in the cost of labour. That is the natural
direction to go. But we should not be under any illusion that this will lead to an increase in wages.
There is a trade-off between numbers of jobs and wage rates. Businessmen will employ less number of
workers if wages are high. Contrariwise they will employ larger numbers if wages are low. Labour
reforms will lead to a reduction in wages and increase in the number of jobs. Many scholars are of the
view that imparting of better skills and better matching of applicants with available jobs can help solve
the problem of unemployment.

Some positive impact will indeed take place but this may be like a drop in the ocean. Better skills will
enable the workers to produce more goods. This will lead to lower cost of production.
Job reduction
Improvement in infrastructure will have a small impact on job creation. Better roads, banking and
communications will lead to a reduction in the cost of transaction. Once again it will lead to a reduction
in the cost and an increase in demand. But these improvements simultaneously lead to a reduction in
employment. Previously we would employ large number of workers in making paper, making
envelopes and sorting the letters and making from the post office.
Now the same communication takes place with a click of the mouse. The paper and envelope makers
and sorters in the post office have lost their jobs. The fact that infrastructure and good governance does
not lead to creation of jobs is easily verified by comparing developing countries like India and
developed countries like Japan.
Unemployment remains at high levels in these countries. This is not to decry the benefits of modern
technologies but only to point out that solution to the problem of unemployment will not come from
this route.
The culprit is technology.
The modern production process simply does not require large number of workers. Existence of the
humankind is becoming increasingly irrelevant to the workings of the economy. The solution will come
from making employment generation the direct objective of the economy. We cannot assume that
economic growth will automatically lead to an increase in number of jobs.
It may be necessary to move towards lower rates of growth. For example, say an unemployment tax is
imposed on modern textile mills. This will lead to an increase in cost of cloth. It will lead to lower rate
of economic growth. High cost of cloth will lead to lesser demand and overall economy will slow
down. But it will also lead to restart of handloom industry. Large number of jobs will be created in
weaving. Hence there can exist an opposite relation between economic growth and employment.
High economic growth secured by the use of automatic machines will lead to less employment, not
more as conventionally held. The new government should take this reality on board. Following the
beaten track of infrastructure, good governance and skill development will lead to short term gains.
There will be a sense of euphoria in the first two or three years. But this will not sustain.
India is today an unemployed developing country. Tomorrow, it may become an unemployed developed
country. Therefore, the new government should impose heavy taxes on select modern industries where
there is a large employment potential. The opposition to FDI in retail would be a correct step in this
direction. There is a need to improve governance, infrastructure and skills. But benefits of these will
reach the common man only when combined with measures to explicitly and directly create jobs.