Create Unique Film Looks in Final Cut Pro X with mVintage

first_imgQuickly give your Final Cut Pro X projects a vintage look with the plug-in pack from MotionVFX!The effects gurus over at MotionVFX knock it out of the park with their newest plug-in release for Final Cut Pro X and Apple Motion.  mVintage is a complete effects solution for giving your digital video footage a distinct vintage look.Once you apply mVintage to your footage, you can modify the look of the retro film effects through it’s user interface within Final Cut Pro X.  Choose a preset from each of the main effect parameters: film burns, scratches and over 50 different color filters.  Each of these variables is customizable by adjusting it’s strength and blending mode (choose from add, screen or dodge).Once you nail down the main look, add additional vintage effects:Roll:  Mimics the look of a film projector, rolling your footage inDrop:  Drops frames for a low frame-rate or stop motion effectShake:  Jittery film camera shakePrism:  Offset the colors in your footageFlicker:  Adds a film camera light flicker ALL of the parameters are totally customizable, allowing you take the vintage look from subtle to EXTREME for a look that’s all your own. Although similar plug-ins exist, this one really excels in it’s processing speed and ease of use.If you’re a dedicated Final Cut Pro X or Motion user, adding this plug-in pack to your editing arsenal is a no-brainer.  With the popularity of Instagram, Hipstamatic and other retro image emulators, the vintage look is hotter than ever. The mVintage plug-in for Final Cut Pro X get it right for video projects.Download a demo risk-free or buy mVintage for $89.last_img read more

How to Break a Script Down Into a Shot List

first_imgThe primary purpose of the shot list is to help break down the scene into specific steps which will serve as a blueprint — and safety net — to your day of production. There are hundreds of shot list templates you can download for Microsoft Word and Excel. I find the shot list included in the video below (via Delta Film Academy) to be incredibly detailed and helpful.It goes so far as including the length of the shot on the script page, and the predicted setup time for that shot. It’s ideal for efficiently planning shots. For further reading on the language of the script, I highly recommend the above-mentioned book Script Supervising and Film Continuity by Pat P. Miller. Although the primary purpose of the book is to study the craft of script supervising, it also breaks down a lot of other aspects such as the shooting schedule, how to break down a script, and so on.Do you have any specific shot list templates you always use? Let us know in the comments. There are a few different ways to create a shot list, but what matters most is that you take the time to do it. Here’s one tested method to try next time you break a script down into a shot list.Top image via Delta Film AcademyFilmmaking procedures will often change from production to production, studio to studio, and from region to region. There isn’t just one way to do something or one word to describe that particular function. Regarding shot lists, I’m sure you could find several different ways to create one.In the book Script Supervising and Film Continuity, author Pat P. Miller, explains expertly explains the formal process. Yet even Miller says “You may design any format that serves your purpose, so long as the following information is properly recorded…”Essentially, as long as your production crew is familiar with your format, you’re good to start shooting. First, you need to break down the shots on your script page. In the example piece above, I’m going to breakdown and visualize the information into different shots. As seen below, you do this with a line which is closed off at the top and the bottom top to signify the end of that shot.When you do this in your script, it’s best to use a pencil — if you use a pen and change your mind halfway down the page, your script will get messy.center_img In the marked page above, I have four different lines, each representing a different shot. You may notice that some lines overlap one another, such as shot 2) and shot 2a). This conveys a few things:Shot 2) is longer than shot 2a).Because the length of 2a) is just a single line, all that’s to be filmed is the information ahead of the marking — turning the radio on.In the edit, we would like shot 2a) to play out and then return back to shot 2).There is a common misconception that the first shot in a scene is called by the scene number and then the letter a. For example, 2a). This is incorrect.The first shot of a brand new scene is just the scene number on its own — 2). Every proceeding change (lens change, camera position, frame rate change) after the initial shot is when you add a letter.As a side tip: You can also put a wiggly line next to the character who is speaking but isn’t on camera. This is really more something a script supervisor would do for the editor, but if it’s going to help you distinguish who the camera is on when it comes to typing up your shot list, then use it to your advantage. You need to do this with your entire script. After all that is complete, start to implement this information into a more comprehensive and cleaner shot list.It’s really up to you how involved you want your shot list to be. It’s going to depend on the size of your production and budget level. Below is a basic shot list that I’ve put together from all the information outlined above.last_img read more

7 DIY Filmmaking Techniques Using the Versatile Wheelchair Dolly

first_imgThe wheelchair dolly is a tried-and-true DIY tool — for projects of all sizes. Check out these 7 tips on how to use one to improve your film.Cover Image of Jean-Luc Godard on the set of Breathless (via Studio Canal).There are plenty of dolly options available for filmmakers at all levels of production. Even for those looking for DIY options can find tons of great resources to put something together on the cheap. However, if you’re looking for one simple solution (which can actually be much more versatile and fun), consider the indie-filmmaker’s favorite — the wheelchair dolly.While there are some wheelchair-style dollies specifically for filmmaking (all great options), let’s focus on using a standard-issue wheelchair, which you can often find secondhand at thrift stores or online (here’s a link to Ebay). Once you’re all set, here are seven creative ways to put your DIY wheelchair dolly to use.1. Push or PullImage via AMC.Let’s start with the basics. Using a wheelchair dolly is great for pushing in or pulling out shots. You’ll usually see these types of shots in large-scale productions, as they both see a lot of use for narrative effect (creating important moments) or for clarity of composition. If you keep the movement short and straight, the wheelchair will work very much like your standard track-dolly setup, but without all the assembly and breakdown.Bonus Tip: if you’re shooting solo or with an extremely small crew, you can always sit yourself in a wheelchair and do some short push or pull movements using only your feet. Try it — even a few inches can add style and depth to what would normally be a regular set shot.2. Walk and TalksImage from The West Wing via NBC.Along with straightforward push and pull shots for dramatic effect, a wheelchair is a great option for long tracking shots like the now-recognizable Aaron Sorkin-style Walk and Talk shot (which you can see parodied here). The wheelchair is great because your camera operator can face your subject or subjects while someone pulls them backward.3. Tracking Low AnglesImage via Tumblr.The flexibility a wheelchair offers to the camera operator while sitting is also great. You usually won’t need to lock the camera operator in, and they’ll have almost a full range of motion from the seat. As such, to get many low-angle tracking shots, you don’t need to assemble a tricky low-to-the-the floor dolly setup; you can simply direct your camera op to lean over and hold the camera at a low angle. This may make things a little less steady, but for shorter moves (and with surer-handed ops), it’s a solid technique.4. Curved Tracking MovesAnother aspect of the wheelchair dolly that makes it unique is the simple fact that it is not bound to a set of tracks. The wheelchair, by its nature, is more mobile and can perform complex and curved maneuvers. Try laying some track to recreate this famous circle move from Jean-Luc Godard’s French New Wave classic Breathless.5. Extremely Long Tracking ShotsImage via monnomestdavid.Similar to the Walk and Talk trick, using a wheelchair dolly for extremely long tracking shots is a great way to consolidate resources on DIY productions. The wheelchair can be quite effective, even with only a two-person crew: one to sit and one to move the wheelchair around. If you’re going over long distances, try situating your camera operator in a more relaxed and flexible position (they can also use a Steadicam or some other stabilizer). Be careful, though, with different floor textures (like thick carpet), thresholds between doorways, etc.6. Dolly ZoomsThe wheelchair dolly can also make it easier to perform dolly zooms (which is also known as the Hitchcock zoom or Vertigo Effect). With the camera operator sitting (or kneeling), their hands should be free enough to manually perform a zoom while someone pushes them in the chair at a medium to fast pace. You may have to do several takes, as hitting the focus will always be difficult during such a move, but the effort is worth it in the end.7. Using Natural GravityImage via Film Riot.Finally, one of the riskier wheelchair dolly tricks is to let things like gravity and inclines take control of your movements. These opportunities might not come up often, but if you ever need to simulate a character POV or follow a movement that rapidly increases in speed while slipping or sliding down, using a wheelchair in a controlled free fall move is a daring option. (Be sure to have plenty of people around to help guide and catch the camera op.)For more DIY production tips, check out some of these resources.Gear Hacks: DIY Camera Stabilizers and Rigs for Under $255 DIY Tutorials and Gear Hacks for Filmmakers5 DIY Tips for Your Next ShootPremiumBeat DIY ArchivesThree Ways To Light A Tent Scene On a Low Budgetlast_img read more

On a Positive Negative

first_img Essential Reading! Get my 3rd book: Eat Their Lunch “The first ever playbook for B2B salespeople on how to win clients and customers who are already being serviced by your competition.” Buy Now It’s difficult to overthrow the status quo. People don’t change without good reason. The kind of gaps that give rise to change can be negative or positive.The survival of the company is the greatest possible dissatisfaction and threat a business will ever face. That’s framing the problem or challenge in the negative. And it’s dissatisfaction, plain and simple.Another form of dissatisfaction is a company not reaching it’s full potential because it isn’t capitalizing on the opportunities available to it. Even if you frame the capturing of those opportunities as a positive vision of the future instead of negative one.Missing your revenue goals is dissatisfaction stated in the negative (how else could it be stated, you might ask). The opportunity to capture revenue you might otherwise miss is the same form of dissatisfaction stated as a positive.Diminishing margins is identifying a gap in a way that is negative, and perhaps one that is easily indicated by concrete evidence. Increasing your margins is the identification of that same gap in a positive way.Dealing with the rising cost of doing business is framing a form of dissatisfaction in the negative. Identifying ways and opportunities to better contain costs, manage the supply chain, and produce greater efficiencies, is framing that same gap in a more positive way.Positive or NegativeShould you always speak about gaps in the negative? Should you always frame them in a way that rubs salt into the wound?Or should you always frame gaps in the positive? Are people more can compelled by a positive vision than they are by the negative consequences of not doing something about the gap?It’s easy to answer questions like these as if there are universals. But it’s more complicated than that. There isn’t one right answer. There is only effective and ineffective.Sometimes things that have worked for you in the past and suggest that they would work for you now fail to produce the results you want. Other times things that have failed for you in the past end up being just the ticket for achieving the result that you want.Being effective means being aware and making good judgments about what might work in the particular circumstance you’re dealing with right now. So do something about making better choices or lose more opportunities. Or, maybe, take advantage of this opportunity to produce even better results.QuestionsAre all of the gaps you find in your prospective clients negative?Do you always frame them in the negative?Are you proactive enough to find the positive gaps after you’ve helped your clients with the negative gaps that won you the business?Which language is more powerful in motivating you personally? Are you more prone to take action through your fear or your aspirations? Is this always true?last_img read more

Remember the Heroes

first_img Essential Reading! Get my 2nd book: The Lost Art of Closing “In The Lost Art of Closing, Anthony proves that the final commitment can actually be one of the easiest parts of the sales process—if you’ve set it up properly with other commitments that have to happen long before the close. The key is to lead customers through a series of necessary steps designed to prevent a purchase stall.” Buy Now The time to protest a war is before it begins. If you disagree with the war on whatever grounds, you should call your Congressman, write the President, and march in the street holding up signs. You should make your voice heard (and as loudly as possible). That is your right and your duty.But once the war has begun, the time for protest is over. You have to support the decision and work to end it as quickly as possible (something we in the United States aren’t at all very good at). The decision is made, and the soldiers in harms way require your support to complete their missions. Protests only show a weak resolve, poor intestinal fortitude, and increase the horror of war.Today is a day to remember heroes who did what their country asked of them. And more.The soldiers who served and died didn’t want to go to war. They wanted to be home with their families. But they did what we asked of them.The soldiers who served and died didn’t want to put themselves in harm’s way. But that was their duty, and their honor and their responsibility required it of them. So they marched into the fray.The soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice didn’t want to make that sacrifice. They didn’t want the medals. They didn’t want their family to receive a flag in their place. But they gave all.The soldiers that we lost gave themselves out of the love they had for the soldiers standing next to them and out of the duty they had to their country.You are a beneficiary of their sacrifice. Be grateful to the heroes who were asked to do the unthinkable and did so out of duty, honor, and the love of their country. Your country.last_img read more

Mindfulness in Sales

first_img Essential Reading! Get my first book: The Only Sale Guide You’ll Ever Need “The USA Today bestseller by the star sales speaker and author of The Sales Blog that reveals how all salespeople can attain huge sales success through strategies backed by extensive research and experience.” Buy Now Your body may be sitting across from your prospective client, but your mind may be somewhere else, somewhere very far away. It might be thinking about some problem or challenge you are experiencing now. Or it could be off somewhere in the past, dealing with something unresolved that still has part of your attention.You are writing an email to follow up on a number of concerns that your dream client shared with you during a meeting. Your fingers are tapping out words on the keys, but they aren’t capturing what you want to say because you are distracted by all the incoming emails, many of which require you to do something. Your head isn’t in the game.Your manager is sharing with your team the changes to your solutions, the changes to your overall strategy, and everything that is going to be expected of you in the coming months. Everything she is saying is important, but your mind has wandered off into a different future, all the things you must do on important personal relationships.Mindfulness is being fully present in the moment. In the more traditional sense, mindfulness is acknowledging your thoughts and emotions without allowing them to take over your mental state. It’s why many people practice meditation.When you are with your clients or prospects, they need to feel that you are fully present, giving them every ounce of your attention. Doing so proves that you care about them and what they are saying. The time you get with clients is too rare to waste it being only partially there.Every communication has a chance to help you create and win an opportunity, to cause the opportunity to slip away, or to make no impact at all. There is no reason to communicate without working on the positive outcomes you need from that client interaction, whatever it may be, and in whatever medium you choose. The language choices you make matter, and you need to give yourself over to the outcome, eliminating all distractions, real or imagined.Mindfulness is a mental state, and it is under your control, even if it can sometimes feel as if it is outside of your control. You can change your mental state through conscious effort or by changing your physical state. I have found it impossible to hold any kind of negative state while running, something I believe is due to the massive increase in oxygen and other physiological changes.Wherever you are, be there. Whatever you are doing, do that.last_img read more

India, Bangladesh border guards celebrate Holi together

first_imgThe Border guards of India and Bangladesh on Sunday celebrated Holi together along the International Border.The Border Security Force and Border Guards Bangladesh (BGB) played Holi at Akhaura, an integrated check-post, and other bordering areas of Tripura and exchanged sweets.Holi, was celebrated in some parts of the country on Sunday and it is being celebrated in other parts on Monday.“The BSF and the BGB are very close and have celebrated various annual carnivals each year. Celebration of each other’s festivities together would bring both the organisations closer,” BSF’s 195 Battalion Commandant Ajit Kurmar P. said at the Akhaura check-post here.last_img

Three killed in BSF firing in Tripura border

first_imgBSF shot dead three tribal villagers, including a woman, at a border location in south Tripura on Friday afternoon. Two villagers sustained injuries in the incident that occurred after residents allegedly attacked a security patrol following seizure of cattle meant for smuggling to Bangladesh.Police said tension was brewing in the tribal-dominated area since March 13 after BSF troops of 31battalion captured seven cattle at Bangamura in Sabroom subdivision. Friday’s incident occurred at Herbatali, near border pillar number 22043RI and 300 meter from Bangladesh border.BSF battalion Commandant T.S. Negi claimed a crowd attacked Assistant Sub Inspector Abhay Singh and Constable Rabi Datta after they foiled another cattle smuggling attempt on Friday afternoon. “Rabi Datta came under attack by people armed with sharp cutting weapons and he fired shots in self defense”, he told The Hindu by phone.He said Rabi Datta was injured in the attack. Mr. Negi said villagers refused to accept medical help from BSF medicos.While Mr. Negi could not give number of casualties, police confirmed death of three villagers. Sur Laxmi Tripura, 35, Min Kumar Tripura, 35 and Pora Kumar Tripura, 35 received bullet shots and died on the spot. Jiban Kumar Tripura and Prem Kumar Tripura were injured.Tension was running high in the area with villagers claiming they were protesting against rape of a tribal woman by BSF personnel before being fired upon. BSF troops were withdrawn from local post in view of current situation.Senior police officials arranged transfer of bodies and injured to a hospital after reaching the incident sport. Tribal political parties condemned the incident and demanded punishment of guilty BSF men.On July 22 last year a BSF trooper shot dead a woman at Tarapukur in Sonamura of Sepahijala district. The assailant allegedly made a rape attempt on young woman before firing.last_img read more

BJP State executive to meet in Pimpri

first_imgPune: The Bharatiya Janata Party will hold a two-day meet of the State executive at Pimpri on Wednesday. This will be the party’s second executive in Pimpri after more than three decades, the first being in the early 1980s.“The venue has been chosen as a symbolic marker of our triumph over the NCP, which had dominated the PCMC [Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation] for so long,” a BJP leader said. The saffron party won unprecedented landslides in polls to both Pune and Pimpri-Chinchwad civic bodies, bagging 98 out of 162 seats in the Pune Municipal Corporation and 77 out of 128 seats in the PCMC.The BJP’s top brass from Maharashtra, including Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and the party’s State unit chief Raosaheb Danve are expected to be in attendance, along with Union Ministers Nitin Gadkari and Suresh Prabhu.The sessions will focus on policy-making in Maharashtra and the party’s plans after securing overwhelming victories in most of the civic bodies and local bodies across the State.There are speculations that Congress strongman Narayan Rane might formally enter the BJP’s fold during the meet. However, local party leaders refused to comment on the matter.BJP’s Pimpri-Chinchwad president Laxman Jagtap said the meet will be held at the Ramkrishna More auditorium, and will be attended by more than 500 party leaders.The party virtually had no presence in PCMC, be it the civic or Assembly level, until the 2014 Parliamentary polls.However, its fortunes changed when Mr. Jagtap, who was formerly the NCP’s vital point man in the area, joined the BJP in 2014. This paved the way for the entry of more NCP heavyweights, like Bhosari legislator Mahesh Landge and former PCMC mayor Azam Pansare, into the saffron party.Stormy protests are expected by the Opposition NCP and the Shiv Sena, the BJP’s disgruntled ally, during the meet.The Sena’s Maruti Bhapkar (a former Aam Aadmi Party leader) said a combined Opposition would stage a hunger strike to protest against the failure of the promises made the BJP-led Central and State governments on various issues.last_img read more

Jawan killed as Maoists blast vehicle in Gadchiroli

first_imgOne commando was killed and 18 others were injured when an IED exploded in the Gadchiroli district of Maharashtra on Wednesday night. The commandos were part of Maharashtra’s elite anti-Naxal Unit C-60. Maoists blew up the commandos’ anti-land mine vehicle with the IED, Inspector-General Shivaji Bodkhe of Maharashtra confirmed.Five of the injured have been airlifted to Nagpur and seven more are on their way. One jawan is said to be in critical condition.last_img

Militant attacks continue in Valley amid shutdown

first_imgJammu cops to donate a day’s salary to martyrs’ kin Tension prevailed in Kashmir Valley for the second consecutive day on Sunday as restrictions continued in parts of Srinagar.Meanwhile, militants opened fire at security forces in three places. In Bijbehara, militants fired at army’s road opening party. “Militants fled immediately after opening a few shots,” said a police spokesman. Militants also opened fire on the Army and CRPF camps in Bijbehara and Budgam on Saturday night.Meanwhile in south Kashmir, where two civilians and three militants died in Friday’s gunfight, a spontaneous shutdown impacted life. There were also sporadic incidents of stone-pelting.Locals alleged security forces barged into their residences following an incident of stone pelting in Astan Pora in Anantnag and “thrashed inmates”.Meanwhile, train services resumed services after halting it for two days. The service on Budgam-Srinagar-Anantnag- Qazigund- Banihal track has been resumed, said an official. Most separatist leaders were also placed under house arrest.A 26-year-old youth, who was injured after unknown gunmen opened fire at him at Pingleena area of Pulwama in south Kashmir on Saturday evening, succumbed to injuries in Srinagar hospital on Saturday night.The victim has been identified as Aijaz Ahmad Malik. He had received two bullets in the abdomen.Also Read  ‘No threat to pilgrims’Hurriyat chairman Syed Ali Geelani said on Sunday that there was no terror threat to the Amarnath Yatra pilgrims.“The people of Kashmir have always been friendly and generous to visitors, especially the Amarnath pilgrims. They have treated the Amarnath pilgrims with unique hospitality,” he said.“An adverse propaganda is being launched by the media suggesting that the pilgrims are facing a threat from the people of the State. Terror threat to the Amarnath Yatra is a brazen lie, aimed at maligning the people’s movement,” he said. He said the people of Kashmir “are not against any religion.” “Fanatical forces in India are desperate to give a bad name to the freedom movement and are relying on negative propaganda…”last_img read more

Police warned weeks ago of attack on Amarnath pilgrims, says ‘top secret’ memo

first_imgAs the government on Tuesday blamed separatists for gunning down seven Amarnath pilgrims and wounding 19 more in Kashmir before fleeing into the night, rebel groups in the disputed region condemned the deadly attack on civilians and insisted they had no part in it. An intelligence report that was circulated to Jammu & Kashmir police, military and paramilitary units two weeks ago indicates security officials had been expecting an attack. The intelligence report, marked “top secret,” warned that a “sensational attack by terrorist outfits cannot be ruled out” in the region. The memo, dated June 25, and verified as authentic by The Associated Press, said, “terrorists have been directed to eliminate 100 to 150 pilgrims and about 100 police.” It described circumstances eerily similar to what transpired on Monday night- “The attack may be in the form of standoff fire on yatra convoy, which they (militants) believe will result in flaring of communal tensions throughout the nation.” Also Read  Police were searching for the assailants, who they said were from the Pakistan-based rebel group Lashkar-e-Taiba. “We’re investigating the attack, but we know certainly that the Lashkar has done it. We’ll soon deal with them,” police Inspector General Muneer Ahmed Khan said. Lashkar-e-Taiba denied any involvement in the attack, which they called “reprehensible” and “un-Islamic,” according to a statement sent to local media in Srinagar. “No Kashmiri has ever targeted any pilgrims, and this barbarity and atrocity is the trademark of Indian forces,” the group’s statement said. Omar Abdullah, former Chief Minister of Kashmir, asked the Home Ministry to protect Kashmiri students and workers across the nation. “Possibility of backlash can’t be ignored,” he said in a Twitter message. Most of the pilgrims wounded in the attack were released from hospitals on Tuesday. The bodies of those killed were flown to New Delhi on their way to Gujarat and Maharashtra. The attack sparked outrage across Kashmir and other states. In the Jammu region, hundreds of protesters shouted angry slogans against the militants and burned a faceless effigy meant to represent both terrorism and Pakistan. Many shops and businesses were shut for a protest strike in Jammu. Meanwhile, students in Ahmadabad gathered for a sit-in protest against all religious violence, while peace activists planned a candlelight vigil in New Delhi on Tuesday night. Kashmiri separatist leaders condemn terror attack on Amarnath pilgrims Amarnath Yatra attack: Narendra Modi says India will never be bogged down by evil designs of hate  Police said the attack began with gunmen unleashing a hail of bullets on an armoured police vehicle and, soon after, on a nearby police patrol. They said that a bus carrying 60 pilgrims had been passing through the area when the patrolling police and militants were exchanging fire, and that some bullets struck the bus and its passengers. The police also said that the bus had been travelling at night, despite instructions to avoid the roads after dark. Though security had been increased along the route for the pilgrimage, thousands of deployed soldiers and police do not patrol overnight. Several bus passengers who were wounded gave a different version of events, saying the bus had been targeted from three directions during the attack. They said the driver kept driving the bus as it was being struck with bullets near Anantnag . The annual summer pilgrimage to the Amarnath cave shrine, which began on June 29 under heavy security, has been targeted in the past. On Tuesday, thousands of pilgrims continued the pilgrimage undeterred, as soldiers and police increased security along the Himalayan route for buses carrying pilgrims to the base camps where they start walking the path to the high mountain cave. None of the rebel groups in the region have claimed responsibility for the attack, and the three top separatist leaders in Kashmir condemned it. They demanded an independent investigation into the attack. “This incident goes against the very grain of Kashmiri ethos,” the separatist leaders Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Mohammed Yasin Malik said in a joint statement. Also Readlast_img read more

DD blacked out Tripura CM’s speech, says CPI(M)

first_imgThe CPI(M) said on Tuesday that Tripura Chief Minister Manik Sarkar’s Independence Day speech was blacked out by Doordarshan and All India Radio. “Doordarshan and All India Radio had recorded his speech… However, they subsequently informed him that the speech could not be carried as it stood and asked him to ‘reshape’ it,” the party said in a statement. The act was reminiscent of the “Emergency days,” it said. “In fact, it goes beyond as it seeks to gag the elected Chief minister of a State. The Centre is trampling upon the autonomy of Doordarshan/AIR and Prasar Bharati by such acts of censorship.” In a series of tweets, CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury said DD’s and AIR’s behaviour was against “cooperative federalism” that Prime Minister Narendra Modi talked about. “Doordarshan is not the private property of the BJP or the RSS. Its refusal to broadcast Tripura CM’s speech is undemocratic and illegal,” he said. The IANS news service quoted Mr. Sarkar as saying in his speech that India was yet to get economic independence. “India got independence 70 years ago. Indians got political freedom, but they have not got economic independence yet,” he said. He claimed that over 70 lakh workers were retrenched in one year and over 1.35 crore youths were jobless despite having professional degrees. “The main political parties are misguiding the people, especially the youth, for their narrow political interests. Divisions are being created among people in the name of religion and other issues,” he said. According to sources, this year, Doordarshan has shifted the speeches of all Chief Ministers from main DD channels to DD Bharti. A former Prasar Bharti official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said it was a break from the past. “There is no precedent of DD or AIR dictating a Chief Minister’s speech. Usually, it is telecast live on DD’s regional channels and a round-up is shown on DD National,” he said.last_img read more

CBI summons Lalu and Tejashwi again

first_imgThe Central Bureau of Investigation has issued fresh summons to Rashtriya Janata Dal chief Lalu Prasad and his son Tejashwi Yadav in a case of corruption in the award of maintenance contracts of two Railway hotels to a Patna-based private company.The agency has asked Mr. Prasad to appear before the investigating team on Monday and his son the next day. The agency has registered a case against Mr. Prasad, his wife, Rabri Devi, and son under Sections 420 (cheating) and 120-B (criminal conspiracy) of the Indian Penal Code, read with provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act. The Enforcement Directorate has summoned Ms. Devi for Tuesday for recording her statement under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act. It is alleged that during Mr. Prasad’s tenure as Railway Minister, contract conditions were changed to favour Sujata Hotels in awarding the maintenance contracts of Railway hotels in Ranchi and Puri, in lieu of about three acres of commercial property in Patna.last_img read more

Two militants and soldiers killed in Hajin gunfight

first_imgTwo militants and two soldiers were killed in an early morning operation in north Kashmir’s Bandipora area on Wednesday.A police official said security forces, comprising of army and local police, sealed off Rakh (Paribal), Hajin, around 5 a.m. The operation was launched after “follow up of inputs about the presence of a large group of armed militants in the area.”In the initial exchange of firing, two militants were killed. “However, two soldiers also sustained injuries, who succumbed later [sic],” said the official.Both militants are believed to be associated with the Lashkar-e-Taiba. The search operation is on as the firing from both sides have stopped. “It was an intense operation. Two members of the army’s Air Force Garud were killed,” army spokesperson told The Hindu. On September 27, a BSF jawan, who was home on a leave, was killed by militants in Hajin.last_img read more

It’s Lord Ram’s wonder, says Akhilesh

first_imgSamajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav on Thursday made light of Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath’s visit to the Taj Mahal, saying it is Lord Ram’s “kamaal” (wonder).Mr. Adityanath had to visit the Taj Mahal under “pressure from the Centre”, the SP leader charged. “See how time changes… BJP did not consider it as heritage… and now the CM is cleaning West Gate of the Taj Mahal with a ‘jhadu’ (broom),” Mr. Yadav told reporters here.“He (CM) is wielding broom there. We have nothing to do with it. It is Lord Ram’s ‘kamaal’,” he said.Tourists from all over the world visit the monument, he observed.“I am waiting for him to get clicked on that seat (with the Taj Mahal in the background),” he said.“BJP men had termed the Taj Mahal as Shiva Temple. Some termed it as a blot on Indian culture. ,” he said.Damage controlMr. Yadav had visited the Taj as the U.P. Chief Minister over two years ago on Valentine’s Day and sat on one of the benches in front of the monument along with his wife and Kannauj MP Dimple Yadav.Mr. Adityanath’s visit is seen by many as a damage control exercise after a series of controversies erupted, beginning with a UP tourism department booklet not mentioning the white marble monument in its list of development projects in the state.Last year, Mr. Adityanath had said that the Taj does not represent Indian culture and that visiting dignitaries should be given the Gita rather than Taj replicas.last_img read more

2 Al-Qaeda supporters arrested

first_imgTwo supporters of the Al-Qaeda affiliate Ansar Ghazwat-ul-Hind were apprehended by the police in J&K on Saturday, while six other terrorist supporters were counselled to resume normal life. A semblance of normalcy returned in the Valley after six days.A police official said Rafiq Ahmad Dar of Awantipora, a member of Ansar Ghazwat-ul-Hind, was apprehended in Pulwama. “One hand grenade, which he was about to lob upon security forces, was also seized,” the official said.According to the police, he helped identify the group’s another supporter, Abid Majeed Shiekh, alias Raj Gada, of Dadsara. In a separate initiative of the police, six youths were handed over to their families after counselling, in south Kashmir.last_img

Man lynched in U.P. over cow slaughter rumours

first_img The family of Sameyddin, a resident of Madapur, told The Hindu that he had gone to get grass for the cattle. He saw someone being beaten after which he got scared and ran. He was cornered and brutally beaten by the mob.Locals alleged that an announcement was made from a local place of worship at Bajhaida Khurd, about smugglers stealing cows and slaughtering them.These allegations are yet to be investigated by the police.As against the claims by the victims’ families and villagers, the local administration presented the case to be that of a road rage.Police have rejected villagers’ allegation of cow slaughter rumours as the basis of the lynching. They have detained five people in connection with the incident.According to Bajhaida Khurd villagers, a mob ran towards a farm following rumours of some people smuggling cows from farm lands for the purpose of cow slaughter.The mob went towards the village in vicinity, Madapur, and found Qasim and Sameyddin working in the farm. It attacked them with sticks. As the news of the lynching spread, officials immediately reached the spot. Circle Officer Pawan Kumar and police station in charge Ashwini Kumar took the injured to a local private hospital where Qasim was declared ‘brought dead’ by doctors.Given the sensitivity of the matter, senior officials from Hapur, including Superintendent of Police Sankalp Sharma, Assistant Superintendent of Police Rammohan Singh and the Sub-Divisional Magistrate Hanuman Prasad reached the police station.Villagers confront each otherAs the news of Qasim’s death spread, residents of Bajhaida Khurd and Madapur confronted each other, leading to communal tension in the area. Police and personnel of the PAC were immediately deployed in the area.The residents of Bajhaida Khurd alleged that Qasim was trying to smuggle the local cows and when they protested, he started attacking the villagers.Sameyddin’s family members alleged that he was cutting grass for his cattle when he was picked up and beaten by local villagers.SP Hapur Sankalp Sharma, however, rejected the allegation that rumours of cow slaughter was the basis of the attack and lynching.“The victim’s family has given us a written complaint, saying that the beating and the fight was triggered after a motorbike hit some people. One person died and another was assaulted,” Mr. Sharma said.“This has nothing to do with cow slaughter rumours. Police are investigating the matter and we will take strict action against the culprits,” he added. A 45-year-old man was beaten to death and another was injured allegedly over rumors of cow slaughter at Pilakhua in Hapur district of western Uttar Pradesh on Monday evening.Qasim, 45, a cattle trader, received a call from someone who claimed to be a seller of cattle, asking him to come to Bajhaida Khurd, said his son Mahtab. The next thing he got to know was that his father was dead.“This looks like a conspiracy. It needs to be investigated,” said Mr. Mahtab, a resident of Siddiqpura village, next to Bajhaida Khurd.Also Read Prominent attacks by cow vigilantes since 2015last_img read more

Rural Maharastra can drink without hassle

first_imgThe new year has brought some good news to alcohol consumers and sellers in rural Maharashtra, as the State government has decided to allow liquor shops under gram panchayats to renew licences, a procedure that was on hold since April 2017. As per a government circular issued on January 1 and a letter sent by the State Excise Commissioner to all district collectors, except for the dry districts of Wardha, Chandrapur and Gadchiroli, the licences can be renewed in any gram panchayat which fulfils at least one of two criteria. The first is that the population under the gram panchayat should be at least 3,000 as per the 2011 census. Alternatively, the area should be located within 3 km of the limits of a municipal corporation or within a kilometre of a municipal council or municipal panchayat. According to a government official, the decision will benefit 1,500 permit rooms, and 400 country liquor and 700 beer shops. As per a Supreme Court decision of December 2016, wine shops and permit rooms within 500 m of highways were stopped from selling alcohol. Later, the move was amended to exclude highways within city limits.“A number of licence holders who still could not get their permits renewed had approached the Bombay High Court through writ petitions. In May 2018, the court directed the State government to hold hearings of these cases. Following the hearing, the government has decided to allow renewal of licences,” an official from the Excise Department said.last_img read more

Unorthodox Study Claims Drug Prolongs Lives of Children With Premature Aging Disease

first_imgIt’s been 7 years since dozens of children with progeria—a devastating disease that causes symptoms resembling premature aging—first began receiving an experimental drug called lonafarnib. That’s an eternity for them and their parents given that most afflicted with the extremely rare condition die by their teenage years. There’s now a hint that this medical gamble has paid off, at least to a small extent. The Progeria Research Foundation (PRF), which funded the initial trial of the drug and an ongoing follow-up involving it and two other drugs, announced this week that the interventions have likely added, on average, about 19 months to the children’s lifespans.  This is “an important first step,” says Leslie Gordon, a physician who, along with her husband, founded PRF after their son was diagnosed with progeria. “Though these medications are not curative, we show for the first time that lifespan may be influenced in children with progeria.” But that conclusion, detailed in a study published online on 2 May in Circulation, has many scientists questioning whether the results are meaningful, because the trials lacked an untreated control group—as is sometimes the case for extremely rare disease treatments.Only about one in 4 million to 8 million newborns have the mutation in a gene called LMNA that causes what is formally known as Hutchinson-Gilford progeria syndrome. LMNA normally produces a protein that helps provide a scaffold for a cell’s nucleus. The mutation leads to the buildup of an abnormal version of the protein, which causes misshapen nuclei and other changes within cells. The ultimate result is a collection of symptoms that resembles premature aging of certain tissues: hair and weight loss, thin skin, joint stiffness, and atherosclerosis. The latter leads to heart attacks that cause the majority of deaths from the disease.Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)In 2005, a study led by researchers at the University of California, Los Angeles, showed that a class of drugs called farnesyltransferase inhibitors (FTIs), which block the attachment of a molecule to the faulty protein that allows it to accumulate around the nucleus, restored normal shape to cells from kids with progeria. Several groups working with mice having the same mutation next established that the drug also reduced signs of premature aging in those rodents. Because FTIs had already been tested in children with cancer, with no significant side effects, PRF quickly pushed to start a trial of the FTI lonafarnib in 2007. Gordon, working with a team led by oncologist Mark Kieran of the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston, initially followed 25 children as they received the drug for at least 2 years. The trial results, published in 2012, showed that many of the patients had small weight gains and reductions in the stiffness of their blood vessels, though some scientists found the results inconclusive and hard to interpret.In the new analysis, Gordon and her colleagues wanted to see whether children treated so far—including those in the first lonafarnib trial and those in an ongoing trial that adds two other drugs to the treatment—survived longer than untreated kids. But because there are so few children with progeria, and the disease is invariably fatal, PRF and the study designers had agreed not to create a group receiving a placebo; all who participated in the study received the drug, including Gordon’s son. For a comparison group, Gordon and her colleagues instead collected data about untreated children from historical records in the foundation’s international registry, previously published case reports, and public databases.That’s what makes some question whether the apparent lifespan extension is real. Studies with historical controls are “notoriously unreliable,” says Donald Berry, a biostatistician at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston. Because various studies and databases may have different criteria for including a patient, factors outside the efficacy of the drug could contribute to differences in lifespan. Gordon and her colleagues, however, tried to address this issue by matching children in the treatment group with untreated kids of the same age and gender, born on or after the treated subjects. The comparison found that in the 6 years after starting treatment, those receiving the drug survived, on average, 1.6 years longer than their untreated counterparts. Over that period, 21 of 43 children with progeria who hadn’t enrolled in the study died, compared with 5 of the 43 who had received a treatment.The finding “is very gratifying and encouraging,” says physician-geneticist Francis Collins, who is director of the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland, and whose research team has studied the mechanisms of and potential treatments for progeria. Collins acknowledges that the lack of a direct control group enrolled in the trial is “not ideal,” but he notes “there really wasn’t much of an alternative to what was done—namely, to do an open-label trial where all of the kids were given the chance to have access to the drug.”But others, including Berry, have trouble drawing a positive conclusion from the study in light of that limitation. He notes that a more dramatic improvement in lifespan might have overcome his doubts: “Had the patients lived a normal life span then the results would have been compelling. But even an improvement of ‘only’ 10 years (and possibly even 5 years) would have been enough to establish the principle that the treatment was effective.”Beyond the age and gender issues Gordon’s team addressed, there are untold differences between trial participants and the untreated group, notes Howard Worman, a cell biologist and physician at Columbia University, who was the first to characterize the LMNA gene. The children and their parents who enroll in a clinical trial may be more aware of their disease and more proactive with their health than nonparticipants, for example. “Until there’s a matched, concurrent, ideally placebo-controlled group, it’s hard to say if there really is a survival advantage,” he says.Gordon and her colleagues continue to track the children in the study, who are still taking the FTI and the two other medications—more time may make any survival advantage more obvious. Her son, recently the subject of an award-winning documentary, died in January.last_img read more