The Canadian PressVANCOUVER – A judge in British Columbia has sentenced an Indigenous woman to four years in prison for manslaughter, but says it doesn’t seem right that incarceration was the best available option.Sadie Taniskishayinew was convicted last October of fatally stabbing 31-year-old Robert Boucher on a Vancouver street in November 2015.Her trial heard that she and Boucher had been drinking, but there seemed to be little motive for the stabbing and the woman left without calling for help, then tossed the butcher knife into an alley garbage can.Justice Susan Griffin said in a decision posted this week that Boucher’s death was senseless and addressed his family directly, noting the Indigenous man was killed before his daughter reached her first birthday.“Mr. Boucher was a valuable person and did not deserve to die, and I have taken into account the value of his life and the loss to his family,” she said. “Far too many Indigenous people die violent deaths in Canada. His life mattered.”Imposing a fit sentence in the case was a difficult task, considering the background of both the victim and the attacker, Griffin added.The decision said Taniskishayinew is a 25-year-old Indigenous woman who has experienced significant neglect, trauma and loss, including the death of one of her three children.A report prepared before the sentencing hearing noted her family had attended residential school, and she is suspected of having fetal alcohol spectrum disorder. The report also listed a number of extensive injuries she had suffered as the result of significant violence, including broken bones, concussions and slashes that required stitches.Griffin said Taniskishayinew admits to being addicted to alcohol, and that she was using methamphetamines and drinking heavily when Boucher was killed.“She feels that if she had been sober, the offence would never have happened,” she said.It’s not surprising that Taniskishayinew struggled with substance use or lashed out violently, the judge added.“Given her painful and harsh life, it is little wonder that Ms. Taniskishayinew reacts violently and impulsively and drowns her emotional pain with intoxicants. It does not seem right, as a society, that we do not have better options for her than jail.”She noted that the woman will need significant counselling “given the social problems caused to our Indigenous communities by Canadian historic injustices, and the need to avoid over-incarceration.”But Griffin said that Taniskishayinew’s violent history made her a risk to the public and it had to be noted that she had taken a life.With credit for time spent awaiting trial, she will serve a further year and a half in prison and then must complete three years probation.Griffin urged the woman to dedicate herself to mental health and trauma counselling, and told her that she must stay sober for the rest of her life.“Getting out of prison is only the first step,” she said.
Tamara PimentelAPTN NewsInteraction with police services has been one of the most critical topics at this week’s hearings of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls.“I’ve heard multiple examples of how police perceived to have failed and, in many cases, continue to fail Indigenous people in this country,” said Katrina Swan of the Saskatchewan Association of Chiefs of Police (SACP).Swan is the first of only a few parties with standing to represent police services in this week’s hearings in Calgary.Swan said the SACP, which represents 12 municipal police forces, has been taking note of issues arising within the inquiry.“Contact with the family is a critical part of the investigative process. I would love to stand before you today and say we get it right all the time,” she said.“But, as you’ve heard, as often as we get it right or think we get it right, we’re being told that we missed the mark. Police need to work harder at ensuring there is an open relationship and communication between the parties.”Charlene Belleau of the Esketemc First Nation in British Columbia represents the First Nations Health Council.She shared stories of missing and murdered women from her community and how cultural protocols are used as an alternative to the RCMP or justice system.“The victims of violence feel they lose their voice in the criminal justice system,” she said.“We wanted to be able to give them a voice through these protocols.”The traditional and ceremonial approach seems to be more effective, Belleau added.“When we have our healing circles they do acknowledge the behaviour, and they do acknowledge having perpetrated those crimes.”It also works faster.“We feel a responsibility that we can help these families that we don’t have to wait for the RCMP or police services or search and rescue,” Belleau said.“We can do things on our own and we should be doing what we can for these families.”Swan said while there are things police services need to work on, in Saskatchewan the SACP has been improving.“Police are involved in initiatives designed to address the root causes of vulnerability and marginalization of indigenous women and girls,” she said.“(They’re) becoming more involved in restorative justice efforts and are working collaboratively with community partners.”email@example.com@tamara_aptn
TORONTO – Hudson’s Bay Co. is eyeing a joint venture in Europe with an Austrian department store heavyweight it previously rebuffed.The Canadian retailer said it is in talks with Signa Holding GmbH, a European company that made an unsolicited bid late last year for HBC’s German operations, but withdrew the offer earlier this year after it was rejected by the HBC board because it undervalued the business.A statement HBC released Friday said the pair recently signed a non-binding letter of intent “with respect to the exploration of a potential joint venture,” but noted that “there can be no assurance that any such discussions will ultimately lead to a transaction” and that any deal would still be subject to board approval and third-party consents that are out of HBC’s control.Signa owns Kardstadt, a department store that sells everything from apparel to household appliances, while HBC runs similar businesses overseas called Galeria Kaufhof and Galeria INNO.A potential deal between the two could pave the way for a German department store monopoly and signals that HBC still sees value in Kaufhof, despite its European operations seeing a 6.6. per cent decrease in overall comparable sales in the last quarter.HBC scooped up Kaufhof from German retailer Metro AG in 2015 for 3 billion euros ($4.5 billion CDN).HBC declined to make a representative available to discuss the potential deal it is eyeing, but said it released a statement Friday in an effort to quiet recent reports suggesting that it had signed a binding agreement to sell or combine business or properties.It said it publicized the exploration of a deal with Signa because it believes “it is prudent to advise stakeholders.”Some of those stakeholders have been tussling with HBC for years now, especially given the retailer’s rocky recent performance that included a $400-million loss in the first quarter of 2018, compared with a loss of $221 million a year ago.The most outspoken of the stakeholders has been Jonathan Litt, chief investment officer and founder of activist investor Land & Buildings Investment Management, who has repeatedly complained that HBC is really a real estate company, not a retailer, that has failed to outline a plan to unlock the “substantial real estate value trapped in the company.”Last month, he released a note saying HBC should look towards American department store chain Macy’s as HBC’s underperfomance “has become even more pronounced.”“Hudson’s Bay could learn a lot from the way Macy’s has built a credible real estate team to help drive its turnaround,” Litt wrote, at the time. “One could even reasonably ask whether the most logical course for HBC at this point would be an acquisition by Macy’s as opposed to trying to play catch up.”While Litt has been outspoken about the company’s real estate, a Lands & Building spokesperson declined to comment Friday about its take on HBC being in talks with Signa.Companies in this story: (TSX:HBC)
TORONTO – Five things to watch for in the Canadian business world in the coming week:Hydro havocHydro One Ltd. discusses second-quarter results on Tuesday. Ontario’s new Progressive Conservative government recently introduced legislation that would give it sweeping new powers over executive compensation at the partially privatized utility. Hydro One’s CEO retired in July and the board of directors resigned following a campaign pledge from Premier Doug Ford to fire them.Metro earningsMetro Inc. discusses third-quarter results on Wednesday. The Montreal-based grocery and pharmacy chain’s CEO recently told an audience that the $4.5-billion price tag it paid for competitor Jean Coutu Group was “not cheap”, but was justified due to the returns it will generate.Economic updateStatistics Canada releases the monthly survey of manufacturing for June on Thursday. The survey for May showed that Canadian manufacturing sales bounced back 1.4 per cent to $57.1 billion, beating economists’ expectations of 0.5 per cent.Pot for puppersCanopy Growth Corp. releases first quarter results on Tuesday. The Smiths Falls, Ont.-based cannabis giant is the latest medical marijuana company to enter the potentially lucrative pet market with its announcement last week that it will embark on a Health Canada-approved clinical trial to research the use of cannabis-based products to treat animal anxiety.Real estate updateA pair of reports will shed light on Canada’s real estate market next week. Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation will release a report on homeowners debt on Tuesday, and the Canadian Real Estate Association will have home sales activity for July on Wednesday.
U.S. stocks declined in early trading Tuesday, giving up many of the market’s gains from a day earlier. Losses in banks, technology stocks and industrial companies outweighed gains elsewhere in the market. Homebuilders slumped on renewed concerns that the outlook for home sales is dimming. Bond prices rose, sending yields sharply lower.KEEPING SCORE: The S&P 500 index fell 17 points, or 0.6 per cent, to 2,772 as of 10:06 a.m. Eastern Time. The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 206 points, or 0.8 per cent, to 25,619. The Nasdaq composite lost 48 points, or 0.7 per cent, to 7,392. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks gave up 9 points, or 0.6 per cent, to 1,539.U.S. stock markets will be closed Wednesday in observance of a national day of mourning for former President George H.W. Bush.HOUSING HICCUP: Homebuilders traded lower after luxury homebuilder Toll Brothers reported fiscal fourth-quarter earnings that topped Wall Street’s forecasts, but also issued a cautious assessment of the housing market. Toll’s shares slumped 9.5 per cent to $30.33.TAKING A BITE: Apple fell 2.1 per cent to $180.94 after the consumer electronics giant was downgraded by HSBC analysts, citing the possibility that iPhone volume and value growth may moderate due to a saturated mobile phone market.DISAPPOINTING DOLLAR: Discount retail chain Dollar General slid 5.6 per cent to $105.50 after the company reported weak quarterly results.REVVED UP: AutoZone climbed 4.2 per cent to $859.11 after the auto parts retailer delivered third-quarter earnings that exceeded analysts’ forecasts.ENERGY: Oil prices headed higher ahead of an OPEC meeting on Thursday, where members are expected to agree to cut output in 2019. Benchmark U.S. crude rose 0.3 per cent to $53.13 per barrel in New York. Brent crude, the international standard, added 1 per cent to $62.28 per barrel in London.BOND YIELDS: Bond prices rose. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 2.95 per cent from 2.99 per cent late Monday. The slide in bond yields weighed on bank stocks. Citigroup fell 2.8 per cent to $63.36.CURRENCIES: The dollar weakened to 112.91 yen from 113.69 yen late Monday. The euro strengthened to $1.1393 from $1.1342. The British pound gained to $1.2746 from $1.2728 after a top official at the European Union’s highest court advised that Britain can unilaterally change its mind about leaving the EU as scheduled on March 29.MARKETS OVERSEAS: In Europe, Germany’s DAX fell 0.6 per cent, while France’s CAC 40 dropped 0.4 per cent. The FTSE 100 index of leading British shares slid 0.4 per cent. Major indexes in Asia finished mixed. Japan’s Nikkei 225 index gave up 2.4 per cent and the Kospi in South Korea lost 0.8 per cent. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng added 0.3 per cent. The S&P ASX/200 in Australia gave up 1 per cent.Alex Veiga, The Associated Press
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia — Former Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak has been charged with tampering with the final audit report into a defunct state investment fund, adding to a long list of corruption allegations against him since his ouster in May elections.Najib was charged along with Arul Kanda Kandasamy, the former head of the 1MDB fund, which is being investigated in the U.S. and other countries for alleged cross-border embezzlement and money laundering.Najib pleaded not guilty Wednesday to abusing power to order the modification of the report in February 2016 before it was presented to the Public Accounts Committee, in order to protect himself from disciplinary and legal action. Kandasamy also pleaded not guilty to abetting Najib.The auditor-general said last month some details had been removed from the 1MDB report.The Associated Press
BEIJING — China says the recent detention of a third Canadian is different than the earlier ones authorities have alleged involved security matters.Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said Thursday that the woman had received an administrative penalty for illegal employment. She did not provide further details.The detentions of two Canadian men last week appeared to be retaliation for Canada’s arrest of a Chinese telecommunications executive wanted in the United States.Hua said the most recent case is different, noting the two men have been taken in for endangering China’s national security, while the woman was given an administrative penalty.A Canadian lawmaker said Wednesday that the case involved visa irregularities for an Alberta woman who had been teaching in China.The Associated Press
BUDAPEST, Hungary — Hungary*s president says he has signed into law disputed amendments to labour rules which greatly increase overtime hours employers can request from workers.President Janos Ader said Thursday in a statement that he had examined the law approved last week in Parliament and found it in-line with Hungary*s constitution and European standards. It doesn’t put workers* rights at risk, he added.Protests against the policy and other measures of Prime Minister Viktor Orban*s government have been taking place for over a week. There have been occasional clashes between protestors and police.Ader said any concerns about the changes to the labour code “cannot be a barrier to the workers* blessed Christmas, a peaceful time between the two holidays and a calm new year.”The Associated Press
SAN FRANCISCO — Mayor London Breed says a $550 million expansion of San Francisco’s convention centre will better meet the needs of tourism as the city battles entrenched problems of homelessness and drug addiction.Breed and other civic leaders toasted on Thursday the expansion of Moscone Center, which opened in 1981.The building is environmentally friendly with solar paneling and recovered water for landscaping and street cleaning. Officials showed off new terraces with breathtaking views and above-ground pedestrian bridges that connect its north and south sides.Breed says she is aware that the city’s livability issues deeply affect tourism, and said the expansion is an eye to the future.The convention centre is in San Francisco’s South of Market neighbourhood, a challenging part of the city riddled with used needles and other trash.The Associated Press
WASHINGTON — Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin (mih-NOO’-shin) is urging Republican senators to support the Trump administration’s decision to ease sanctions on companies linked to Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska.Mnuchin met privately with senators Tuesday before a vote on a resolution from Democrats. That measure would prevent the administration from lifting penalties against the aluminum manufacturing giant Rusal and two other companies connected to Deripaska.Speaking to reporters after the meeting, Mnuchin said, “We have been tougher on Russia with more sanctions than any other administration.” He said the sanctions “shouldn’t be a political issue.”The Treasury Department says the Russian companies have committed to separating from Deripaska. It also warns the sanctions could upset global aluminum markets.Democratic Senate leader Chuck Schumer protested what he called “sanctions relief for President Putin’s trusted agents.”The Associated Press
FORT NELSON, B.C. — The Alaska Highway has reopened between the Liard Hot Springs and the Yukon border after a fuel truck spill closed the road for most of the day yesterday.According to the B.C. Ministry of Environment, the transport truck carrying roughly 55,000 litres of fuel was involved in a single vehicle incident at around 1:00 on Wednesday morning at Mile 543. No leak was reported at the time of the crash, but in an update at 7:45 a.m., the RCMP confirmed that the load was leaking.The responding Environmental Emergency Response Officer attended the incident site and determined that a fuel compartment in one of the truck’s two trailers was punctured. The Ministry estimates that 4,500 litres of fuel spilled to the environment, and it appears to be contained to the soil surrounding the highway. During a flyover, the officer did not see any sheen on the Liard River. However, it was noted that there are only pockets of visible water on the river due most of it being covered in ice. A multi-agency conference call took take yesterday evening to discuss future response plans. The Ministry said it will provide another update when new information becomes available.
Bhubaneswar, Mar 11 (PTI) Biju Janata Dal president and Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik Monday claimed that his regional party will perform “very well” in the Lok Sabha and state Assembly elections. Stating that the process for selection of candidates for the the Lok Sabha and state Assembly elections was on, Patnaik said the list would be finalised very soon. BJD will field candidates in the all 147 Assembly seats and 21 Lok Sabha constituencies in Odisha. The regional party presently has 118 MLAs in the Assembly and 20 MPs in Lok Sabha. Also Read – How a psychopath killer hid behind the mask of a devout laity! On the ruling party’s poll preparations, the BJD chief said his party was fully prepared. “The BJD will perform very well in the Assembly and Lok Sabha elections,” he said. While replying to a question on the problem of plenty as a number of retired bureaucrats have joined the BJD, Patnaik said: “We will manage it well.” Meanwhile, the BJD president appointed former bureaucrat Gopabandhu Das as his political secretary. Das was earlier additional secretary in the Chief Ministers Office. Polling for the 21 Lok Sabha seats and 147 Assembly constituencies in Odisha will be held in four phases on April 11, 18, 23 and 29.
Kolkata: Continuing with her penchant for bringing in silver screen personalities to politics, Trinamool Congress supremo Mamata Banerjee has fielded five film stars, including two greenhorns, for the coming Lok Sabha elections. In the 2014 general elections, Banerjee had fielded the same number of cinestars and all the five had won. It was Banerjee who had in 2009 started the practice of fielding people from the glamour world in West Bengal elections, which was considered to be the forte of southern states. Of the 42 Lok Sabha constituencies in West Bengal, the TMC had won 19 seats in 2009 and 34 in 2014. The party also adds a dash of colour to major public meetings, where celebrities from the film and television world assemble. Fielding of Mimi Chakraborty, a popular actress in Bengali cinema and a political greenhorn, from the prestigious Jadavpur constituency for the 2019 elections has come as a surprise to many. It was from this constituency in the city that Mamata Banerjee had burst into electoral politics in 1984 as a young Congress candidate, by handing a stunning defeat to incumbent and towering Somnath Chatterjee of the CPI(M). Sugata Bose, a professor of Oceanic History and Affairs at the Harvard University held the seat as a TMC MP in the outgoing 16th Lok Sabha. Reportedly, he has not been given permission by the university to contest the elections this time. Another political greenhorn and Bengali film actor Nusrat Jahan has been fielded from Basirhat in North 24 Parganas district, a seat now held by TMC’s Idris Ali. Banerjee has said Ali will contest in an Assembly by-election. Apart from these two, actors and sitting MPs Deepak Adhikari, popularly known as Dev, Satabdi Roy and Munmum Sen will also contest. While Dev and Roy would seek re-election from Ghatal and Birbhum seats respectively, Sen has been shifted from Bankura to Asansol, which was won by singer-turned-politician Babul Supriyo of the BJP. The TMC has dropped sitting MPs Tapas Pal and Sandhya Roy, well-known film stars of yesteryears. Pal had been arrested by the CBI in December 2016 in connection with the Rose Valley chitfund scam and is at present out on bail. Pal and Satabdi Roy are two-time MPs of the TMC, both having earlier won in the 2009 elections. The TMC supremo had also made Bollywood star Mithun Chakraborty a Rajya Sabha MP. But he had resigned in December 2016 citing ill health. The trend of cine stars joining electoral politics has been a regular affair in the southern states, with former Tamil Nadu chief minister M G Ramachandran as the pioneer and Rajnikanth and Kamal Haasan being the latest entrants. Andhra Pradesh is another state where film stars enjoy cult status and have made serious forays into politics, with N T Rama Rao having become chief minister of the state. In other parts of the country, film stars like Raj Babbar, Hema Malini, Vinod Khanna have been in politics and even mega star Amitabh Bachchan had a short tryst with it. Film stars have, however, generally stayed away from electoral politics in West Bengal, where it has traditionally been viewed as a forte of those who grow from the ranks, barring one or two exceptions. The so-called glass ceiling was broken in 2009 when Satabdi Roy and Tapas Pal, both of whom were doing films regularly then, were fielded by the TMC chief and won. The BJP has also brought in film personalities and those associated with it in West Bengal politics. Babul Supriyo, a playback singer who also dabbled in film acting, was one of the two BJP candidates who won in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections from West Bengal. He was also made a minister of state. Actor Roopa Ganguly, who achieved national fame for her portrayal of the role of Draupadi in mega teleserial Mahabharat, is a Rajya Sabha MP of the BJP.
Dubai: Ride-hailing giant Uber on Tuesday said it is acquiring the Dubai-based rival Careem for $3.1 billion, which will comprise $1.7 billion in convertible notes and $1.4 billion in cash. The acquisition, expected to complete in the first quarter of 2020, will allow Uber to run Careem’s mobility, delivery, and payments businesses across the greater Middle East region, ranging from Morocco to Pakistan. Uber said it would allow Careem to maintain an independent brand and operate separately even after the transaction closes. Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said in a statement, “After careful consideration, we decided that this framework has the advantage of letting us build new products and try new ideas across not one, but two, strong brands, with strong operators within each.” Careem will become a wholly-owned subsidiary of Uber, preserving its brand, Uber said. The two companies will continue to operate their respective regional services and independent brands. Careem co-founder and CEO Mudassir Sheikha will lead the Careem business and will report to its own board, made up of three representatives from Uber and two from Careem. “This is an important moment for Uber as we continue to expand the strength of our platform around the world,” Khosrowshahi said. Uber is expected to go for initial public offering (IPO) in April.
New Delhi: Three leaders, including one from the Congress, joined the Delhi unit of the BJP on Saturday.Balbir Singh from the Congress, President of Uttrakhand Pravasiye Sangh Delhi Rakesh Singh Rawat and Pramod Sachdeva, who had contested assembly elections on a BSP ticket, joined the BJP, the saffron party said in a release. Delhi BJP chief Manoj Tiwari said, “I am happy that the trust of the people is increasing in the BJP due to the influence of the policy of ‘Sabka Saath Sabka Vikas’ by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.” Also Read – After eight years, businessman arrested for kidnap & murder”The Chief Minister of Delhi says that we divide the people but with these people joining the BJP, it is seen that the BJP unites people,” he said in the release. Balbir Singh said the way opposition parties are opposing the nationalistic ideology of the BJP “exposes their real character” before the people. Former BSP Leader Sachdeva said the opposition parties should oppose the government but they should not oppose the country.
Kolkata: Consul General of China in Kolkata Zha Liyou stressed the need of conducting joint training programmes in management and IT between Universities of China and West Bengal.”India aces in software production while China is one of the leading hardware technology manufacturers globally. We should work together in the field of Technology for mutual benefit and progress,” Liyou said. While addressing a Special Session on ‘A New Chapter of Sino-India Friendship: Strengthening Economic Ties Through State-Province Exchanges’ organised by Bharat Chamber of Commerce, Liyou highlighted several areas of mutual cooperation between the provinces of China and the State of West Bengal. He appreciated the rich cultural heritage of Bengal, with a special mention of Tagore’s verses and songs. He observed that every aspect of culture and society prevalent in China somehow have traces of their roots in India. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari PujaSpeaking on the possibility of business collaboration between West Bengal and other provinces of China, Liyou spoke about the famous China-South Asia Expo and Kunming Trade Fair where he expects participation from West Bengal. He also stated that his office would facilitate Chinese investors for making investments in the land at Haldia, owned by the Kolkata Port Trust and suitable for tea, rice and sea food. Answering to a question during the programme, Liyou said that large coal mining and infrastructure companies of China are willing to venture in and around Kolkata to extend their operations in India. Sitaram Sharma, President, Bharat Chamber of Commerce emphasised that the prospects of exchanges at the micro level between West Bengal and her sister Provinces in China should be identified.
Mumbai: With the lenders rejecting an lifeline of Rs 400 crore Wednesday Jet Airways, which has been on a wing and prayer since January, is left with no other option but to ground operations at least temporarily. Since the March 25 resolution to infuse Rs 1,500 crore into the airline is yet to fructify, the once leading airline has been defaulting on payments, forcing its lessors to retake almost all its planes and was operating just about six planes as of Tuesday. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss bank a/c details An official announcement of grounding of operations is expected anytime now as the Jet Airways board had Tuesday authorised chief executive Vinay Dube to make one last appeal to the SBI-led consortium to get a life-line of Rs 400 crore Wednesday, before taking a final call on the future. Jet will be the seventh airline to go down since May 2014 and the 13th one after East West was shuttered. During the past five years airlines like Air Pegasus, Air Costa, Air Carnival, Air Deccan, Air Odisha and Zoom Air have all gone belly up even as the government boasts of double-digits growth for more than four years in tow. Also Read – Tourists to be allowed in J&K from Thursday “The Jet Airways management’s request for Rs 400 crore emergency funds has been rejected,” banking sources told PTI. A source at the Jet Airways also said the airline was likely to shutter soon as the banks have not extended it the required financial support. “The airline has failed to garner the funds it was desperately looking for to continue operations,” he said. The airline is currently operating only five planes from 123 aircraft in the fleet till last December. According to sources, the government is maintaining distance from the Jet affairs citing the matter is a commercial decision of banks.
Washington DC: The US on Thursday placed India on its ‘Priority Watch List’ alleging lack of “sufficient measurable improvements” to its Intellectual Property (IP) framework on long-standing and new challenges that have negatively affected American right holders over the past year. “Over the past year, India took steps to address intellectual property challenges and promote IP protection and enforcement. However, many of the actions have not yet translated into concrete benefits for innovators and creators, and long-standing deficiencies persist. India remains one of the world’s most challenging major economies with respect to protection and enforcement of IP,” an official US report said. Also Read – Thermal coal import may surpass 200 MT this fiscalThe US Trade Representatives (USTR) in its report identified 11 countries, including India, in its ‘Priority Watch List’. China, Indonesia, Russia, Saudi Arabia and Venezuela are among others. It has also placed 25 countries, including Pakistan and Turkey, on the Watch List. In the report, the US said that these countries will be the subject of increased bilateral engagement with the USTR to address IP concerns. Specifically, over the coming weeks, the USTR will review the developments against the benchmarks established in the Special 301 action plans for countries that have been on the ‘Priority Watch List’ for multiple years. For such countries that fail to address US’ concerns, the USTR will take appropriate actions, such as enforcement actions under Section 301 of the Trade Act or pursuant to World Trade Organisation or other trade agreement dispute settlement procedures, necessary to combat unfair trade practices and to ensure that trading partners follow through with their international commitments, it said. Also Read – Food grain output seen at 140.57 mt in current fiscal on monsoon boostIn its India section of the report, the USTR said that long-standing IP challenges facing US businesses in India include those which make it difficult for innovators to receive and maintain patents in that country, particularly for pharmaceuticals, insufficient enforcement actions, copyright policies that do not properly incentivise the creation and commercialisation of content, and an outdated and insufficient trade secrets legal framework. In addition to these long-standing concerns, India also further restricted the transparency of information provided on state-issued pharmaceutical manufacturing licenses, and expanded the application of patentability exceptions to reject pharmaceutical patents, it alleged. India also missed an opportunity to establish an effective system for protecting against the unfair commercial use, as well as the unauthorised disclosure, of undisclosed test or other data generated to obtain marketing approval for certain agricultural chemical products, the report alleged. According to the USTR, last year it engaged with India to secure meaningful IP reforms on long-standing issues, including patentability criteria, criteria for compulsory licensing, and protection against unfair commercial use, as well as unauthorised disclosure, of test or other data generated to obtain marketing approval for pharmaceutical products. In a warning to India and various other countries, the USTR said that to maintain the integrity and predictability of IP systems, governments should use compulsory licenses only in extremely limited circumstances and after making every effort to obtain authorisation from the patent owner on reasonable commercial terms and conditions. “Such licenses should not be used as a tool to implement industrial policy, including providing advantages to domestic companies, or as undue leverage in pricing negotiations between governments and right holders,” it said. As such, it is also critical that foreign governments ensure transparency and due process in any actions related to compulsory licenses, it said. The US will continue to monitor developments and to engage, as appropriate, with trading partners, including India, the report said. In India, rulings by government agencies are attempting to extend the scope of mandatory collective management of rights and statutory license fees for certain types of digital music services, it said. Also, the collection and distribution of royalties to US and other right holders should be carried out on a national treatment basis, it added. At the same time, the report also notes some of the best practices by India in the IP sector last year. For instance, India’s Cell for Intellectual Property Rights Promotion and Management (CIPAM) organises and spearheads the government’s efforts to simplify and streamline IP processes, increase IP awareness, promote commercialization, and enhance enforcement.
Kolkata: Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) captain Dinesh Karthik has heaped praise on Andre Russell, saying it is great to see him grow as a player and get matured. Riding on Russell’s unbeaten 40-ball 80, KKR kept their playoffs hope alive as they defeated Mumbai Indians (MI) by 34-run win despite Hardik Pandya’s fireworks in an Indian Premier League (IPL) clash at the Eden Gardens here on Sunday. “Russell is a great player, he’s a special player and it’s good to see him grow as a player. The maturity he’s showing is great to see,” said Karthik in the post-match presentation ceremony. Also Read – We will push hard for Kabaddi”s inclusion in 2024 Olympics: RijijuPrior to Sunday’s game, Russell had expressed his displeasure towards the decision-making in the team. Russell had said that it’s not the batting that’s been struggling, but the bowling. “We get to totals we should defend,” he had said at the press conference before the game. He had spoken about how he had talked to the coach about his batting order, and about how, despite being among the runs, he had not left the room in days because he was not feeling good about the losses. Also Read – Djokovic to debut against Shapovalov at Shanghai MastersHowever, batting first on Sunday, KKR amassed 232-2 riding on the back of half-centuries from their top order, after which their bowlers restricted the visitors to 198-7. The win ended KKR’s six-match losing streak in IPL 2019, and also brought to an end MI’s streak of eight consecutive wins against them. “I think at the end of the day you should make sure your process is right. It might sound cliche but it’s a high pressure sport. You gotta make sure everybody is in great space as it’s such a high octane tournament,” said Karthik.
Do rabbits make good pets? Rabbits have strikingly distinctive personalities. They can be as playful and silly as puppies or kittens, as independent and fascinating as cats, or as loyal and openly affectionate as dogs. And long-time rabbit owners claim that domestic rabbits are, in their own way, every bit as smart as cats and dogs. Are rabbits low-maintenance pets? Although they don’t need to be walked like dogs, rabbits are anything but low-maintenance. Their quarters need daily leaning. Alongside, fresh food and water must be offered daily, including a salad of leafy vegetables. Certain rabbit health problems can become chronic, requiring regular veterinary treatment. Unfortunately, veterinarians skilled in rabbit medicine are hard to find. Also Read – Feel what you fear What is the average life span of a rabbit? Well cared-for indoor rabbits can live 7-10 years, and some live into their teens. This is approximately the same life span as some breeds of dogs and requires the same long-term commitment. How often should I take them to the vet? Companion rabbits should be spayed/neutered by veterinarians with experience in rabbit surgery. This not only reduces hormone-driven behaviour such as lunging, mounting, spraying and boxing, but also protects females from the risk of uterine cancer, the incidence of which can exceed 50 per cent as rabbits grow older. Also Read – Homecoming Do rabbits love cuddling and getting picked up very often? Although some rabbits tolerate handling quite well, many do not like to be picked up and carried. If rabbits are mishandled, they will learn to nip to protect themselves. If they feel insecure when carried, they may scratch to get down. Unsprayed/unneutered rabbits often exhibit territorial behaviour such as boxing or nipping when their territory is invaded by the owner. What should I feed to the rabbits? The single most vital component of a rabbit’s diet is grass hay, which should be provided daily. Rabbit pellets should be given only in very limited quantities. Can I leave the rabbit unattended for a day or two? Rabbits need daily monitoring. Problems that are relatively minor in some species (e.g., a day or two of anorexia) may be life-threatening in rabbits and may require immediate veterinary attention. How frequently and how much should I feed my rabbit? A rabbit should ideally be fed twice a day, morning and evening, with a balanced diet consisting of unlimited access to hay or grass, a small amount of fruits and fresh leafy vegetables. In addition, a small quantity of good quality rabbit mix or pellets can be added to the diet to make it more nutritional and healthy. These pellets should be given in the ratio of 25 g per kg in ratio to your rabbit’s weight. You can give your rabbits treats but not too frequently or it will spoil dietary habits. Your rabbit should be fed according to its weight, keep a track of his/her food intake and weight to ensure he/she does not get over or underweight. If unsure or ever in doubt, it is best to consult your vet for more detailed information in regard to the best diet for your rabbit and to find out which plants or food items are safe to consume for these little beings. (Views expressed and information provided are personal. Send your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org)