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World's Longest Sea Bridge Between China-Hong Kong to Open Shortly October 20, 2018 08:57

The world's longest sea bridge Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge will be thrown open for traffic on October 24, the authorities said Saturday.The 55-kilometer-long bridge, located in the Lingdingyang waters of the Pearl River Estuary, will be the world's longest sea bridge, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.The construction of the multibillion-dollar bridge had begun in December 2009.It will cut the travel time between Hong Kong and Zhuhai from three hours to just 30 minutes, further combining the cities in the Pearl River Delta.The bridge will be opened for traffic on October 24, the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge Authority said.According to a report in South China Morning Post, earlier, lawmakers in Hong Kong warned that the bridge, which provides a direct link to Hong Kong International Airport, could bring extra traffic to Lantau Island, and cause congestion. The Transport Department has already capped the number of permits for cross-border private cars at 5,000, it said.A government-commissioned study from 2016 estimated that 29,100 vehicles would use the bridge daily, by 2030, which was 12 percent down from a report written in 2008.-Sowmya Sangam

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Most Corrupt Bookies in International Cricket are Indians: ICC Official October 20, 2018 08:47

Amid investigations on profound corruption in Sri Lankan cricket, the International Cricket Council's (ICC) Anti Corruption Unit official Alex Marshall disclosed an appalling fact that most of the bookies indulging in corrupt doings are Indians.Last week, legendary Sri Lankan Sanath Jayasuriya tuned out to be the first high profile player from the island nation to be charged for breaching ICC's anti-corruption code. The erstwhile Sri Lanka skipper has been charged for non-co-operation with investigating authorities.Recently, ICC's Anti-Corruption Unit shared information about active corruptors with England and Sri Lankan cricketers, presently active in a limited overs series.Asked if all involved corruptors are local, ICC's General Manager ACU, Marshall, told ESPN Cricinfo: "In Sri Lanka, it was both local and Indian corruptors. In most other parts of the world, it is mostly corrupt Indian bookies." Marshall's disclosures, even though alarming, is not astonishing after Pakistan leg-spinner Danish Kaneria on Thursday admitted to spot-fixing, having taken money from an Indian bookie.Even when the match-fixing scandal broke in 2000, most of the corrupt bookies hanging around the players were believed to be of Indian-origin."During the briefing (to England and Sri Lanka players), we showed names and pictures of active corruptors in cricket who were trying to get at players both in Sri Lanka and at tournaments elsewhere in the world," Marshall said.He further said, "So we have openly shared the current information of active corruptors, we have shown their pictures, given their names and details. This way we felt the players are better informed. The exercise has already lead to new information coming forward from the teams". Marshall said that ICC is currently monitoring "12-20 active corruptors" while there is suspicion on at least six, who the players should be wary of."We showed them six. There are probably 12-20 very active corruptors that we are currently monitoring. The pictures shown were all men, but there are a couple of women, too, involved in the whole picture," added Marshall.-Sowmya Sangam

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Kannada Actress Delighted to Act Alongside Nani in 'Jersey' October 20, 2018 07:47

Kannada or Sandalwood film actress Shraddha Srinath is now going to be seen in a sports-based titled Jersey alongside Tollywood actor Nani, directed by Gowtam Tinnanuri under Sithara Entertainments banner. The makers of the film are going to kick-start shoot today. In the latest interview, Shraddha said that she is so glad to be acting alongside Nani and revealed that Jersey has a lovely story about sports, emotions, and relationships. She further said she plays the partner of Arjun, the character played by Nani in the movie. Shraddha has already acted in a couple of Telugu movies which are set for release. She is familiar to Telugu audiences for her role in Mani Ratnam's Cheliyaa. -Sowmya    

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Pandem Kodi 2 Movie Review, Rating, Story, Cast and Crew October 18, 2018 12:26

Pandem Kodi 2 is the story of Raja Reddy (Raj Kiran) who owns a prominent place in the hearts of a bunch of villages from Kadapa. He is a dictator and he is backed by his son Balu (Vishal) who plays a pivotal role. He falls in love with Charulatha (Keerthy Suresh) and impresses her. Due to the drift from the past, Raja Reddy's family gets disturbed because Bhavani (Varalaxmi Sarathkumar). The rest of Pandem Kodi 2 is all about how Balu clears the air and wins his love. Watch Pandem Kodi 2 to know about the rest.

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Two Indian-Americans gain momentum ahead of mid-term polls October 18, 2018 11:51

Two Indian-American candidates have enhanced their winning chances in the November 6 mid-term elections as the Democratic committee has joined them to the 'Red to Blue' program which is for the high-impact and most feasible campaigns.Hiral Tipirneni is running for the United States House of Representatives, from 8th Congressional District of Arizona and Sri Kulkarni from Texas' 22nd Congressional District.On November 6, Americans will vote for members of both chambers of Congress - the U.S. House of Representatives and the Senate, also for governors in 36 out of the 50 states.All 435 seats in the House are up for election while 35 out of the 100 seats are being contested in the Senate. Republicans currently control the House and the Senate.'Red to Blue' appellation by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC)'s is for the most practicable and high-impact campaigns.Earlier this year, the party had recognized Aftab Pureval from Ohio's 1st Congressional District with its 'Red to Blue' designation.Today's addition of Tipirneni and Kulkarni represents a record number of Indian-American candidates on 'Red to Blue', said Indian-American Impact Fund."In March, Impact Fund endorsed Hiral and Sri because we were confident they have the passion, tenacity and drive it takes to run, win and lead," said Deepak Raj, co-founder of Impact and chair of the Impact Fund."We're thrilled that the DCCC agrees with our analysis and grateful for their strong support for our candidates," he said.Hiral and Sri are both highly qualified and passionate candidates who will bring fresh energy and ideas to Congress, said Raj Goyle, co-founder of Impact and a former member of the Kansas House of Representatives."With just 20 days to go, it's critical that Indian-American voters, volunteers, and donors do their part to get them across the finish line," Goyle added.-Sowmya Sangam

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RBI to Now Allow Money Transfer between Mobile Wallets Using UPI October 18, 2018 11:39

The Reserve Bank of India has relaxed interoperability norms for digital wallet companies in India making it possible for digital wallets to not only transfer funds from one wallet account to another but also make two-way transfers, according to a report in Economic Times.This means that users can now transfer funds between wallets and as well from their wallets to bank accounts. For instance, a Paytm user can send money to a MobiKwik user.All these have been made executable with one rider that the wallets must have amply complied with the KYC (Know Your Customer) norms already spelled out by RBI. What's more, these digital wallets will get the opportunity issue prepaid cards to their customers as well.RBI has cleared the air on all these issues relating to the digital or e-wallet operations in its elaborated guidelines. Related content: India to Have Over 700m Smartphone Users by 2022: CounterpointThe interoperability will be implemented with the Unified Payment Interface (UPI). The identical way, the cards, if issued will be brought within the existing card networks which have a beefy arrangement in accepting cards issued by different entities through the POS machines regardless of who supplies these machines.Some of the existing rules governing the issuance of and transactions through all card instruments, particularly with respect to the security necessitates will apply to these PPIs too, issued by the e-wallet companies. This will likewise mean these companies may not have to reinvent the wheel by going through onboarding of merchant establishments either. The cards issued will follow the EMV chip design from the word go dissimilar to the existing card issuers who are still in the process of replacing the old magnetic strip cards. Thus, for all practical purposes, it is a win-win situation for them.One significant development out of these fresh RBI guidelines is that some of these digital wallets can short-circuit the banks and offer direct deals to their customers.-Sowmya Sangam

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Hello Guru Prema Kosame Movie Review, Rating, Story, Cast and Crew October 18, 2018 11:00

Hello Guru Prema Kosame is the story of Sanju (Ram), a fun loving guy who is pampered by his parents. After being forced by his uncle, he moves to Hyderabad in search of a job. During his journey, he falls in love with Anu (Anupama Parameshwaran) and in a surprising way, he lands in her home. Her father (Prakash Raj) turns a close friend of Sanju as time passes. The rest of Hello Guru Prema Kosame is all about how Sanju wins his love convincing both the families. Watch the film to know about the entire story.

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Charan Continues To Keep His Fans In Waiting Mode October 18, 2018 08:48

Mega Powerstar Ram Charan is busy with the shoot of his next film which is directed by Boyapati Srinu. Touted to be a high voltage mass entertainer, the film's first look has been planned to be out on the eve of Dasara. The makers remained tight lipped and wanted to make things official once the title of the film will be locked. A close source to the movie unit clarified that there will be no Dasara treat for Mega fans. The title of the film is yet to be finalized and hence the first look of this untitled film has been kept on hold as of now. Ram Charan wrapped up a short Vizag schedule and returned back to Hyderabad. Kiara Advani is the heroine and Vivek Oberoi is the lead antagonist. Bankrolled by DVV Danayya, this untitled film will release during Sankranthi 2019. Devi Sri Prasad is composing the music and the entire shoot will be called off by the end of November.

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Tape Reveals Jamal Khashoggi "Decapitated": Turkish Media October 18, 2018 08:40

A pro-government daily Yeni Safak on Wednesday reported that Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi who went vanished on October 2, was tortured before being decapitated inside Riyadh's consulate in Istanbul, saying it had heard audio recordings.Khashoggi's alleged killers tortured the journalist during interrogation by cutting his fingers off, Yeni Safak said, claiming it had heard multiple recordings of the incident.The newspaper said Khashoggi, a Washington Post contributor, was then decapitated.Khashoggi went missing after entering the consulate for official documents ahead of his upcoming wedding to his Turkish fiancee. While Turkish police consider he was killed by a special team of 15 Saudi officials, Riyadh has denied such asserts as "baseless".The Washington Post has earlier cited unnamed United States and Turkish officials pointing to audio and video recordings that confirm Khashoggi was killed inside the consulate and was then dismembered. But this is the first time Turkish media has claimed to hear the tapes.Pro-government newspaper Sabah reported at the weekend that Khashoggi's Apple Watch recorded his interrogation, torture, and killing, although some experts have said it is not possible that the watch could have recorded the events in the way described.According to Yeni Safak, Saudi Arabia's consul to Istanbul, Mohammed al-Otaibi, can be heard on one tape saying during Khashoggi's torture: "Do this outside. You are going to get me in trouble."The daily reported that in another tape, an unknown individual tells Otaibi: "If you want to live when you come to Saudi Arabia, be quiet!"Yeni Safak did not say how the tapes came into existence or how it obtained them.Otaibi left Istanbul on Tuesday for Riyadh ahead of a planned search of his residence as part of the official Turkish investigation into Khashoggi's disappearance.On Monday, CNN cited two sources as saying the Saudis are preparing a report that Khashoggi's death resulted from a botched interrogation.The U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Wednesday arrived in Ankara from Riyadh for negotiations with the Turkish leadership saying Saudi Arabia had promised a full probe into the case.-Sowmya Sangam

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Trump Administration Plans Major Changes in H-1B Visas October 18, 2018 07:11

The Trump administration on Wednesday has said it is planning to "revise" the definition of employment and specialty occupations under the H-1B visas. The move will have a damaging impact on Indian Information Technology companies and small and medium-sized contractual firms for the most part owned by Indian-Americans.The H-1B visa, much in demand among Indian IT professionals, is a non-immigrant visa that lets the United States companies hire foreign workers in specialty occupations that need technical or theoretical expertise.The technology companies depend on it to hire tens of thousands of employees each year from countries like India and China.The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) said that the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) plans to appear with its new proposal by January 2019.It will "propose to revise the definition of specialty occupation" to increase focus on obtaining the foremost and the brightest foreign nationals via the H-1B programme.It will as well "revise the definition" of employment and employer-employee relationship to "better protect" U.S. workers and wages, the DHS said.Additionally, the DHS will propose additional requirements designed to ensure employers pay appropriate wages to H-1B visa holders, the administration said.The DHS reiterated that it was proposing to remove from its regulations certain H-4 spouses of H-1B non-immigrants as a class of aliens suitable for employment authorization.The H-4 visas are issued by the USCIS to immediate family members (spouse and children under 21 years of age) of the H-1B visa holders.The DHS said it was also finalizing its interim regulation governing petitions filed on behalf of alien workers subject to the annual numerical limitations applicable to the H-1B non-immigrant classification.This rule prevents an individual from filing duplicate petitions on behalf of the same alien impermanent worker.The rule also makes accommodations for petitioners to create a more efficient filing process for H-1B petitions subject to the annual numerical limitation.Observing that the demand for H-1B visas has often exceeded the numerical limitation, the DHS said it was proposing to establish an electronic registration programme for such applications.This will let USCIS to more efficiently manage the intake and lottery process for these H-1B petitions, it said.The Trump administration is reconsidering the H-1B visa policy that it believes is being ill-used by companies to supplant American workers.The administration has said in public and likewise in its court filing that it wants to revoke work permits to H4 visa holders, a considerable majority of whom are Indian-Americans and women.The move will have a crucial effect on Indian women as they are the major beneficiary of the Obama-era rule.-Sowmya Sangam

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