Doping-tainted weightlifting must reform or risk 2024

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has made it clear that weightlifting will have to prove it is doping-free or risk losing its spot for the Paris 2024 Games.

In July, the IOC had already told the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) to provide a report by December describing how it plans to tackle the issue of doping in the sport.

Post December, the IOC and the World Anti-Doping Agency will be monitoring to ensure that the changes have been made to their satisfaction.

The IOC President Thomas Bach made it crystal clear at the body’s session meeting in Lima that if the sport is declared non-compliant with the WADA code, then the situation might be different with regards to Paris 2024.

“This is the idea behind this formula concerning weightlifting, that the decision to include them (for Paris) is subject to the compliance with the WADA code.”

Out of the total 106 positive tests emerged from the re-tests conducted by the IOC in the past two years of samples from the 2008 Beijing and 2012 London games, about half of them came from weightlifters.

Along with athletics, the sport represented more than 80 percent of the positive cases from the re-tests, informed IOC member Denis Oswald.

The IWF banned Russia from the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro for “bringing weightlifting into disrepute”, now several other countries are facing potential bans after a series of positive tests.

Sources – Reuters, India Today

Image Source – REUTERS/Mariana Bazo

Sindhu reached Korea Open Superseries final vs Nozomi Okuhara

Adding another win to her name, badminton star PV Sindhu booked a place for herself in the finals of the Korea Open Superseries in Seoul by defeating He Bingjiao of China in the semi-finals today.

Starting strong, Sindhu kept Bingjiao on her backfoot winning the match by 21-10, 17-21, 21-16. Taking an 11-4 lead, Sindhu wrapped up the first game 21-10 in just 16 minutes.

However, the Chinese counterpart stepped up her game and made a comeback in the second winning the game after Sindhu had already established an 11-6 lead. Bingjiao won the game by 17-21.

The third game saw Bingjiao attacking right from the start and a seemingly tired Sindhu giving up points to the former’s drop shots. However, Sindhu’s powerful shots helped her take an 11-9 lead changing the game.

After establishing a 14-14 set, Sindhu took charge again with a 18-14 lead. Bingjiao struggled to comeback, but Sindhu’s power smashes proved to be too much to handle.

Eventually, Bingjiao netted a shot giving the world number 4 player the final win.

With this, Sindhu now moves forward to facing the final against Nozomi Okuhara of Japan on Sunday.

Sources – HT, Indian Express

Image Source – Getty Images

No one killed Pehlu Khan, 6 accused cleared by Raj Police

The Rajasthan police has closed the probe in the death of Alwar farmer Pehlu Khan. In an incident earlier this year, Khan was beaten to death by a violent mob accusing him of smuggling cattle. The video of the incident went viral and caused a nationwide stir.

In a statement given to a police officer in an intensive care unit hours after the incident, Khan had named the six accused – Om Yadav (45), Hukum Chand Yadav (44), Sudhir Yadav (45), Jagmal Yadav (73), Naveen Sharma (48) and Rahul Saini (24). But now based on the statements by the staff of a cow shelter along with phone records, the police have cleared the six men.

Out of these six, three are linked to Hindu right-wing organisations. Khan’s family has expressed their outrage at the development, with his son Irshad claiming, “The police are saying this under pressure”. Irshad was present with Khan on the fateful day and was injured in the attack and asserted that he heard the names of Om, Hukum, Sudhir and Rahul during the attack.

Now, the case will be further carried on against the nine other people identified by the viral video, out of these seven have been arrested while two are absconding.

Sources – HT , India Today

Image Source – Sonu Mehta/ HT via Getty Images

Sewage worker dies after inhaling poisonous gas

In an unfortunate incident on Wednesday, Bharat Dhaokar, a 43-year-old sewage worker died after inhaling poisonous gas while cleaning a drainage chamber in the Kalewadi area of Pimpri-Chinchwad. The incident poses questions on the attitude of the civic authorities towards their staff.

Seema Savale, the Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) Standing committee chairperson ensured that the contractor will have to pay Rs5 lakh as assistance to the family of the deceased.

Another worker employed with Dhaokar was rushed to the hospital, and is now out of danger. The PCMC administration has appointed a two-member committee of Joint Commissioner Dilip Gawde and Joint City Engineer Ravindra Dudhekar to probe the incident and take corrective measure to avoid recurrence.

According to Shravan Hardikar, the Municipal Commissioner, both the workers were trying to drain out the water from the drainage chamber using a jet suction machine. To place the machine, as soon as the workers opened the chamber, they suffered from suffocation and had to be hospitalised.

But, as per an eye-witness account, both the workers were lowered into the 10-feet deep chamber and after clearing it, they felt “uneasy and fell unconscious”.

Savale has promised the committee will take swift action and make those responsible pay.

Source – The Indian Express

Image Source – Rajesh Stephan

30 crore families have bank accounts under Jan-Dhan : Arun Jaitley

Addressing the Conclave on Financial Inclusions organised by the United Nations in India in Delhi on Wednesday, Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley highlighted the three-year progress of the central government’s Pradhan Mantri Jan-Dhan Yojana (PMJDY) programme.

Talking about the launch of the initiative three years ago, Jaitley emphasised that the programme came at a time, “when banking was just a prerogative of a small section of society, with almost 42 percent of India being excluded from it”.

Further, the FM went on to discuss the progress of the scheme. So far 30 crore new accounts have been opened under the PMJDY. Also, zero balance accounts have also decreased to about 20 percent from 77 percent in these three years.

Underlining the value of financial inclusion in the Central government’s policies, Jaitley also mentioned how the introduction of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) will help make formalisation “beneficial” for the country.

Discussing how another initiative Pradhan Mantri Mudra Yojana has aided the cause of financial inclusion, he explained that the scheme has helped in providing small loans and financing small businesses and the recipients have been women and vulnerable sections.

Sources – Deccan Chronicle , Firstpost

Image Source – Dalip Kumar

 

Samsung launches Galaxy Note 8 in India

Specifications –
Display – 6.30-inch
Processor – 1.6GHz octa-core
Front Camera – 8-megapixel
Rear Camera – 12-megapixel
Resolution – 1440*2960 pixels
RAM – 6GB
OS – Android 7.1.1
Storage – 64GB
Battery Capacity – 3300mAh

After almost a two-year gap, Samsung is back with its Note series with the latest Galaxy Note 8 launched in India on September 12, 2017. The last phone in the series Note 7 was technically announced in India, but never hit the stores, prior to that Note was launched in the country in 2015.

Note 8 is becoming the talk of the town for its 6.3-inch display along with the price tag of Rs 67,900 attached with the model. The bezel-less Infinity display in the phone ensures that the phone has a more compact factor compared to the other six-inch-plus displays.

With a 18.5:9 aspect ratio and S Pen support, Note 8 sports the largest screen ever on a Samsung Galaxy Note handset. Other features include the dual rear camera setup, first for any Samsung smartphone till date, along with iris scanner and face recognition feature.

Another highlight in the Note 8 is the Bixby virtual assistant. Bixby is more efficient in understanding Indian dialects, accent and context, giving the phone a stronger market in the country.

Launched in its 64 GB inbuilt storage variant, the smartphone will be available in Maple Gold and Midnight Black colours. Apart from select Samsung retail stores and the Samsung online store, the phone will also be available on Amazon. Pre-bookings in the country will be available now and shipping to users will be started from September 21.
Along with the phone, the buyers will be getting a free clear case, and AKG-tuned headphones. A free wireless charger bundled with the smartphone, as well as a one-time screen replacement will be bonus offers for early buyers.

Sources: Indian Express, NDTV

The big joke – Indian Democracy

“The further a society drifts from the truth, the more it will hate those who speak it” – George Orwell

Narendra Dabholkar, Govind Pansare, MM Kalburgi, Gauri Lankesh; they all spoke the truth and paid the price for it with their lives. Their only crime was to show the mirror to a society used to living in a system poisoned by caste divides, hate crimes and communal violence.

Gauri was a Kannada journalist known for fiercely voicing out her opinions against the increasing violence by the extremist Hindutva groups and overall majoritarianism practiced by the Hindu organisations in the country. Like Dabholkar, Pansare and Kalburgi, Lankesh also never backed out of speaking up for the exploited and underprivileged sections of the society.

And then, this voice was silenced on September 5 when unknown assailants murdered the bold and courageous journalist in cold blood. Sadly, the list doesn’t end with Lankesh. At present, the Indian democracy is going through a crisis. The sole right to express dissent with the policies and ideologies of our political leaders is being snatched away from the common man.

Not only does criticism invite shaming and hatred from online bullies, things have gone as far as people simply being killed as if equality and freedom are just words meant to mock the largest democracy in the world.

But, it seems that the ones living in their high rise offices and travelling in their luxurious flights seem to have forgotten the power that lies with the Indian public. The massive outrage after Gauri’s death makes one believe that all is not lost yet; in-deed times have become dangerous for any voice that dares to disagree but these threats are only going to strengthen our resolve in protecting our country.

As long our people don’t let these threats silence our freedom and expression, they can’t take away the soul of our nation for which Gauri and many others laid their lives. Long Live Indian Democracy.

Source – The Guardian

Image Source – PTI