Soul Care

first_imgIn an article entitled Soul Care written by Jane Riffe Ed.D., LICSW, LPC,  Dr. Riffe explains how we feel happier and at our best when we have a way to connect to our “Soul.” Dr. Riffe describes how reestablishing a sense of balance benefits your mental, emotional, and physical health. Through activities, exercises and better understanding, this article helps manage thoughts, stress and emotions which, in turn encourages a healthier and happier life. The article discusses:Why Struggling with Emotions Does Not WorkMindfulness as an AlternativeHow to Practice Mindful AwarenessHow to Change to the Mindfulness ChannelFor more information on practicing mindfulness to help reduce stress, control your present thoughts, and encourage a healthier and happier state of being, check out Dr. Riffe’s three-part caregiving audiocast series at ‘Reflect! Keep Calm and Carry On.’This MFLN-Military Caregiving concentration blog post was published February 5, 2016.last_img read more

Video Tutorials: Brainstorm in Adobe After Effects

first_imgWhat if you could visually see different effects before you apply them to your After Effects project?  Using Brainstorm in After Effects you can.Common scenario: You’re working with a video producer and they aren’t sold on the look you’ve given a graphic or video.  They don’t know what they want exactly, but they know they want something different.  This scenario happens quites often in video edits – you’ve got to come up with a new style or technique but don’t have a lot to go on.  Frusturation ensues.Luckily, Adobe After Effects has a built-in tool that will help you BRAINSTORM a range of options based on keyframable effects in AE.  First you’ll apply an effect to a piece of media in AE.  Then, using the After Effects Brainstorm tool you can dial in the amount of randomness you’d like to see in your results.  The higher the randomness, the more variation you’ll see in your Brainstorm.AE will dish out 9 effects variations based on the original effect.  With this you can apply one of the variations to a new or current compoisition or tell AE that you’d to brainstorm more results based off of one of the variations.  Keep repeating this process until you find the ‘perfect’ effect that satisfies your picky client’s needs.  After Effects Brainstorm will help you hone in on a unique look quickly and without having to manually modify keyframes and parameters to test the effect – huge timesaver.After Effects Brainstorm is an often under utilized feature, but it’s one that every AE user should be using!  In the video tutorials below (by three of the web’s biggest AE advocates) you’ll learn how to use After Effects brainstorm in your motion design and video editing projects:The Brainstorm Tool in After Effects CS6 from Angie TaylorAE Quick Tip – The Brainstorm Tool from Kevin McAuliffe for Creative COWThe Brainstorm Tool from John Dickinson for Motionworkslast_img read more

3 Free Video Editing Applications

first_imgPro video editing tools at a price everybody can afford – free!Although Final Cut Pro X and Premiere Pro are getting most of the love these days, there are a few other video editing options that provide a professional toolkit, but won’t cost you a dime. In this post we share 3 FREE video editing apps.As for paid professional apps, Adobe has been on top of the subscription model, including Premiere Pro in the Creative Cloud at a cost effective price of $49/mo. Final Cut Pro X costs a 1/3 of it’s previous price, now available from the Apple App Store for $299.99.  Lastly, Avid Media Composer will set you back $1,300 or $49/mo.So, how do the FREE alternatives hold up to their professional counterparts? Let’s take a look…DaVinci Resolve 11 LiteDaVinci Resolve started off as a color grading system, however that changed once Blackmagic Design purchased the system from JDS Uniphase Corporation in 2009. Since that time Blackmagic has been expanding the editing capabilities of the app with every release (along with more powerful color tools). Resolve 11 is the premiere color grading app it’s always been, but it also includes a comprehensive video editing toolset, similar to what you’d find in the paid NLEs we discussed above.DigitalTutors highlighted some of the recent video editing related additions to the app in their recent blog post:DR11 incorporates a updated edit index that can filter clips by flags and offline clips.A variety of different editing and trimming tools that increase the power and precision of editing clips.A new JKL trimming tool allows you to trim during playback, both forwards and reverse at different speeds.Transitions can be added through a drop down menu that’s accessible by right clicking between cuts within the timeline. The drop down menu contains preset options that can be changed by the user.The full version of Resolve 11 costs $995, however Blackmagic has made a free ‘Lite’ version of the application available with much of the same functionality as the paid version. In fact, all of the editing tools from the paid version are available in the Lite version (the biggest differences between the versions is missing 3D features and noise reduction).DaVinci Resolve Lite is available for both Mac and PC. Download at Blackmagic Design.Filmmaker Central has a detailed introduction to DaVinci Resolve Lite:EditShare’s LightworksLightworks is a professional video editing application created by Editshare. With the ability to edit 2K and 4K video, Lightworks has been used on several Oscar and Emmy Award winning productions such as Hugo, Mission Impossible, The Departed and Braveheart.While the functionality is impressive, Lightworks does have a steep learning curve. If you have no real experience with video editing applications then you’ll need to dive head first into the documentation and online tutorials (of which there are plenty).Lightworks is available on Windows, Linux and Mac. Download at LWKS.comHere is EditShare’s tutorial on creating a project in Lightworks:iMovieYou may be thinking “iMovie, really?”Yes, iMovie doesn’t have the toolset that Final Cut Pro X does. Yes, iMovie comes with EVERY Mac. Yes, iMovie has some really cheesy transitions and backgrounds! I hear what you’re saying! But iMovie’s interface and workflow is similar to just about every other professional non-linear video editing application. Successful video editing is, above all else, about storytelling and iMovie has everything you need to put together a story on a timeline base. Final Cut Pro X borrows some of it’s look and features from iMovie, so it’s a solid primer before you take the FCPX leap.iMovie is, and always will be, available on Mac only. It costs $14.99 as a stand alone app, but does come FREE with all new Macs.Which one of the FREE video editing apps do you like best? Do you know of other free solutions that did not make the list? Let us know in the comments below!last_img read more

Hands-on Review: Blackmagic URSA Mini Pro

first_imgWhat happens when a company listens to all of their customers’ feedback? We get the Blackmagic URSA Mini Pro.At their Press Conference in early March this year, Blackmagic Design announced an update to their extremely popular URSA Mini 4.6k camera called the URSA Mini Pro. In a lot of ways, such a comprehensive update was not necessarily expected — less so to be ready to ship within the next couple of weeks.Since then, the URSA Mini Pro has become an even more popular camera than its predecessor, and for good reason. The update is — on Blackmagic’s part — a perfect mix of listening to consumer feedback without cheapening the previous release and alienating early adopters (the original URSA Mini 4.6k still holds plenty of value and is one of the best cameras in its price range). The URSA Mini Pro has all the same great features (high-speed options, tons of recording formats, RAW, and many more) and a sensor that makes the URSA Mini 4.6k a great camera, just with a few alterations and updates that address literally all of the pain-points and complaints of users of the UM4.6.Now that the camera has been out for a few months, I’ve had a chance to spend some time working with the camera, and here are my thoughts on some of the key updates.The URSA Mini Pro Has So Many More ButtonsJust look at ’em. No, I’m serious, look at all those lovely buttons. As an original URSA Mini 4.6k owner myself, that is a beautiful sight to behold.One of the biggest issues with the original camera was the lack of buttons. The majority of the time, it’s not an issue — though it largely depends on the type of shooting that you do. In most single-camera, narrative-style applications, the original UM4.6 was completely fine despite its lack of buttons. Though, if you start shooting run-and-gun, doc-style, over-the-shoulder, or especially using a gimbal of any sort, the lack of buttons becomes quite troublesome.Perhaps the biggest complaint that I ever heard about the UM4.6 was the lack of a power button on the outside of the camera. Again, when on a gimbal, this was a big issue because you have to pull the entire camera off the gimbal to power it on or off in most scenarios. Now there’s a big shiny power switch right on the top of the camera.Also, you can alter just about any setting you’d like without flipping open the LCD screen (which is now just a bit smaller, by the way — but the difference is negligible). Alternatively, if you’re using the viewfinder along with the camera, all of the pertinent controls are right where you need them to alter settings while operating the camera. It only took me ten minutes or so to memorize the location of the ISO, shutter, and white balance controls while looking through the viewfinder.Built-In Neutral Density Filters + IR CutThe URSA Mini Pro has a built-in, four-position Neutral Density filter wheel as well. This is a huge addition to any camera in my opinion. If you’re not exactly sure what a neutral density filter does, check out this article to get an introduction.So now, not only does the URSA Mini Pro have its impressive fifteen stops of dynamic range, it also has built in ND filters — 2-stop, 4-stop, and 6-stop — making it a fantastic choice for harsh lighting conditions.Another significant upgrade for the Pro is the IR cut filter (to get rid of infrared pollution, which lends a slight magenta cast to the image) that is applied even when the ND filter wheel is set to the CLEAR position. It’s a fantastic move by Blackmagic, as that was another commonly mentioned issue with the previous camera (especially with cheaper ND filters in place). I generally never had any significant issues with it (on the UM4.6), and if I did, there’s a handy little tint control in the white balance section of the camera that you can use to push the image a little further into the green to correct it. However, in the case of the URSA Mini Pro, the IR pollution won’t be a problem as there is an IR cut filter always on the image — resulting in nice-and-clean colors at all times.SD and CFast Media OptionsThe URSA Mini Pro includes another significant update when it comes to recording media options. Now you can switch between SD cards and CFast cards, which allows you to use much more affordable media if necessary. Again, this is another example of Blackmagic hearing the cries of their users. With the UM4.6, a lot of people resorted to some pretty impractical solutions to recording media (example: CFast to SSD adapters) that, to me, were way more trouble than they were worth.I’ve always liked the CFast cards — they’re fast, reliable, and if you look around, you can find some for pretty reasonable prices. This addition, however, takes it to a whole new level. If you’ve already invested heavily into the CFast world, you can still use them with your new URSA Mini Pro — but now, in a pinch, you can throw in a nice, fast SD card and keep recording. Further, since most laptops have built in SD card readers, this eliminates the need for carrying around a good CFast card reader.For a list of compatible media for the URSA Mini Pro, check here.Swappable MountsOne of the biggest dilemmas for me when purchasing a camera is deciding what mount to get. As someone who is always hoping to up the game visually, I almost always want to try to use PL-mount cinema lenses for projects if the budget allows. However, it’s really hard to justify in a lot of situations. The majority of the shooting that I’ve done with my URSA Mini 4.6 is generally doc-style, one-man-band shooting, making canon EF mount lenses the most practical option. Unfortunately, there aren’t many good adapters out there for PL to EF mount. Even if there were, I always feel weird about doing that with PL lenses specifically. It feels like a lot of weight to throw on a piece of metal screwed into another piece of metal (even with a support).Yet another great addition for the URSA Mini Pro is swappable mounts. This way, you don’t have to be married to one mount or another. Also, the swappable mount options are extremely affordable, considering what other companies offering swappable mounts charge (looking at you, RED). They have a mount option for every type of shooter: Cinema (PL mount), Broadcast (B4 Mount), and EF Mount for your standard canon-mount option for general shooting and lower cost lenses.Best of all worlds.Bluetooth SupportThe URSA Mini Pro has also added a very interesting prospect: completely open API bluetooth support. This means that Blackmagic has opened the door for technically skilled users to create their own software for the various controls in the camera using bluetooth and mobile devices.For instance, you could create apps altering the metadata for each shot (scene, shot, take information). In the press release, Blackmagic even mentions the potential for integration with DaVinci resolve, allowing for live, on-set color correction.There is quite a bit of potential here, and I’m intrigued to see what people will come up with in the coming months. However, for now, Blackmagic has released the Blackmagic Camera Control app for iPad.Setting An ExampleIf you can’t already tell, I’m a very big fan of this camera. As I mentioned previously, I’m a UM4.6 owner myself — and since I bought it, that camera has solidified itself as my favorite camera in the sub-$10,000 price range.It’s the right camera for any situation (admittedly other than low-light). You can record at whatever bit-rate version of Apple Pro-res you like; if you’re shooting a four-hour conference, Pro-res LT or Proxy is going to look just fine. If you’re shooting a narrative-style short film, go ahead and hit up RAW or Pro-res 444. It can go decently high-speed for silky smooth slo-mo with the touch of a button. You can use a number of different accessories and powering options (pictured above with a Wooden Camera rosette handle, the Blackmagic shoulder kit, and Blackmagic viewfinder kit).Now, Blackmagic has taken a product that was already very solid and listened to all of the feedback and reviews to create something even more solid. The thing I think is most admirable about the URSA Mini Pro is that I’m not angry that I bought an URSA Mini 4.6 five months before it was announced. Most of the time, when a new camera comes out, it renders the old one pretty much worthless — and the value of the purchase drops sharply. This isn’t the case here really at all, which is very refreshing in this day of new cameras dropping every month or so.The original URSA Mini 4.6 is still a viable camera (currently priced at $4,995), but now you can get its appropriately updated bigger brother for a grand more ($5,995). You can still use all of the CFast cards you bought, as well as all of the same accessories.In my personal opinion, Blackmagic has listened to its consumers and treated us lower-budget filmmakers with respect and given us what we want — a true cinema camera for less than 7-grand. Not to mention fantastic features (ND filters, controls, recording formats), a very beautiful image (up to 4.6k and 15-stops of dynamic range), and a whole lot of versatility (swappable mounts, power options, media options, etc.).Do you have thoughts on the Blackmagic URSA Mini Pro? Let us know in the comments.last_img read more

The Hustler’s Playbook: Success Is Not a Happy Accident

first_imgSuccess is not a happy accident. It isn’t something that one day just occurs. Whatever your definition, however you measure it, success is a matter of intentions and action.Success doesn’t come to those who wait. Those who are passive find themselves hoping, waiting, and wishing that some external force would confer success upon them. But, they wait in vain. Time slips by and, eventually, hope fades. Success cannot be compelled by outside forces. It cannot be wished into existence. It has to come from inside.There is no way to have success with your feet up watching YouTube videos. Success doesn’t come to those who lean back. It ignores those who coast, and it avoids those who avoid labor. A low capacity for hard work is repellent to success. Success is always auditing your effort. It requires a payment of sweat equity.Unless you are intentional about what you want, the success you seek doesn’t know how to find you. If you aren’t madly pursuing your version of success, the lack of intention makes you invisible to success. Everyone wants to be more than they are, but without developing themselves and growing big enough, success is a non-starter. Everyone wants to have more, especially more money. Success knows that money only follows one thing, and that thing is hustling to create value worth paying for. Whatever your scorecard, whether it is being more, having more, doing more, or contributing more, success follows your intentions and your actions, and nothing else.Success, although not a happy accident, is a natural occurrence. When your work tirelessly in pursuit of success, it invariably reveals itself to you. When you pay the price in full, success shows up, as certain as 2 follows 1. When you develop yourself personally and professionally, making the changes necessary to have success, it sprouts from the seeds you’ve planted, without fail. Get the Free eBook! Learn how to sell without a sales manager. Download my free eBook! You need to make sales. You need help now. We’ve got you covered. This eBook will help you Seize Your Sales Destiny, with or without a manager. Download Nowlast_img read more

You Don’t Need to Speak to the CEO

first_imgFor a long time, salespeople were taught to start their pursuit of their dream client as high up in the organization as possible. The idea was that by starting high in the organization, you could gain the support of “the authority,” and their support would allow you to create an opportunity with the people who work for that person. Somehow that advice turned into calling a C-level executive, particularly the CEO, the ultimate authority and one who can bind the organization to a deal.One of the common criticisms of cold outreach is that CEOs aren’t going to take your call or read your email. This is a very poor argument against proactively opening a relationship with your dream clients because it isn’t likely that you need to speak to the CEO to create or win a deal. The Chief Executive Officer of a company generally has people on their team they count on to make decisions in their areas of responsibility. If the CEO is running a small business, they aren’t going to be as difficult to reach or as well staffed as, say, Jamie Dimon, the CEO of JP Morgan Chase.The truth of the matter is, as I have written here before, a good starting point for developing a new relationship within your dream client’s company is what I call the CEO of the Problem, that person who is responsible for producing the outcomes with which you can help. That person may be the CEO in a small company, but as the size of your targets grow, that becomes less and less likely.The title for the person you need to speak with might be the Director of Operations of the Omaha facility. The best person for you to reach might be the Vice President of Human Resources or Marketing Operations or the IT Director or The Head of Sanitation in the Albuquerque plant. Even though you may not be thrilled about it, your best contact might be the Purchasing Officer over  in the Office Supplies category who is located in Duluth, Georgia.If you want to create an opportunity, your cold outreach needs to begin with the person who is deeply concerned with what you sell and may perceive you as a strategic partner and a source of competitive advantage. There are a few things that make cold outreach difficult, the first of which is the idea that you need to call on people with titles that indicate they would have very little to do with a decision to buy what you sell. The second challenge is having nothing of value to trade for the time you are asking the CEO of the Problem to give you.You make cold outreach easier and more powerful when you target the right contacts and when you have a professional pursuit plan that speaks to their challenges. 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 Nowlast_img read more

Two workers killed in ordnance factory explosion near Pune

first_imgTwo persons were killed after a blast ripped through the Ammunition Factory in Khadki on Thursday morning.The cause of the explosion, which occurred in the F2 section of the factory between 9.15 and 9.30 a.m., is being ascertained, said officials.The deceased, identified as Ashok Dubal (52) and Maria Rok (48) were both long-time workers in the factory. Both are believed to be residents of the city’s Rangehills area, sited near the Ordnance Factory.An official release issued by the Defence PRO said the incident happened at the time of shifting the explosives. “It was routine work which was being carried out. Two workers sustained burn injuries as a result of the explosion and died. Military explosives experts are on the site and an investigation is on. There is no damage to the buildings and the situation is under control,” said the release.Officials at the  Ordnance Factory said that a team would probe whether the blast was a result of human error or technical malfunction. The inquiry would also establish whether standard operating procedures (SOPs) were followed by the deceased, said authorities.last_img read more

Toy train service to resume from Oct. 25

first_imgServices of the heritage Darjeeling Himalayan Railway (DHR), popularly known as ‘toy train’, is all set to resume in the hills from October 25, after its suspension for 125 days due to the strike called by the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM).The indefinite strike in the Darjeeling hillswas lifted after 104 days ahead of Durga Puja. But the train service was restarted partially up to Sukna from October 15. “We have partially started the narrow-guage passenger train service up to Sukna from Siliguri in the plains,” North Frontier Railway (NFR) spokesperson Pranav Jyoti Sharma said.last_img read more

Sacked on wedding day, J&K teacher couple reinstated but won’t join

first_imgA teacher couple, sacked by a private school in Pulwama district of south Kashmir on their wedding day allegedly for being in a romantic relationship before their wedlock, were on Saturday reinstated after the district administration stepped in. However, the couple said they would not join as the school management “continued to humiliate” them. Tariq Bhat and Sumaya Bashir, both residents of Tral town in Pulwama, were working in boys and girls wings of Muslim Educational Institute Pampore respectively for the past several years. But their services were abruptly terminated by the school management on November 30, the day they got married. The school administration said the duo was relieved from their services as they were in a “romantic relationship” before marriage.“They were having romance and it is not good for the 2,000 students of the school and 200 staff members working there. This can adversely affect the students,” chairman of the school, Bashir Masoodi had said. However, the school was censured for the decision on social media and the State Human Rights Commission also took suo motu cognisance of the news reports about the issue. Justice Bilal Nazki, the chairperson of the Commission took serious note of the reports and asked the Director, School Education, Kashmir, and the school principal to file a report before the commission by December 18. Following the cognisance of the SHRC, the government on Saturday intervened in the matter after which the school reinstated the couple.“I called both the parties [the school management and the teachers] to my office today and the matter has been resolved.The school has withdrawn the order [of couple’s sacking] and they have been reinstated,” deputy commissioner, Pulwama, Ghulam Mohammad Dar told PTI. Mr. Dar said the school management has asked the couple to resume their duties forthwith. The couple, however, said they would not resume their duties as the school management humiliated them.“Once the meeting with the deputy commissioner [DC] was over, the school management once again humiliated me outside the DC’s office. There is no change in their behaviour and they said same things as they were saying before,” Mr. Bhat said. He said he was not sure how the school management would treat them if they return to the school.“They humiliated us just outside the DC office. What will they do once we are back in the school? So, we have decided to not join the school,” he said. The couple also claimed they had an arranged marriage.“Ours was an arranged marriage. We got engaged a few months ago and the entire school management knew about it as Sumaya hosted a party for the staff members soon after the engagement ceremony,” Mr. Bhat had said earlier.last_img read more

‘Congress not honouring poll promises’

first_imgAccusing the ruling Congress government in Punjab of betraying the people, especially farmers, by going back on its election promises, the Shiromani Akali Dal on Thursday announced that it will ‘gherao’ the State Assembly on March 20, when the budget session begins, in protest.‘Farmers hit hard’“We will protest because the Congress government has betrayed the people of Punjab by not fulfilling its poll promises. Farmers, peasants and the poorer sections of society have been hit the most,” said SAD senior vice-president Daljeet Singh Cheema.Mr. Cheema said the decision was taken by the party’s core committee and thousands of party workers accompanied by senior leaders would reach Chandigarh on protest day.last_img read more

Marathi writer Gangadhar Pantawane dies

first_imgPune: Eminent Marathi man of letters Gangadhar Pantawane, whose crusading writings of more than half a century did much to usher marginalised voices into the literary mainstream, passed away in Aurangabad district early on Tuesday. He was 80.He had been ailing since January this year and was undergoing treatment in Aurangabad.His pioneering journal, Asmitadarsh, galvanised generations of Dalit writers and thinkers. Recently honoured with the Padma Shri, it was Pantawane’s trail-blazing efforts that single-handedly helped mould Dalit literature elevating it into a pulsating literary sub-genre.A multifaceted personality, his writings and research articles lucidly expounded the canon of Ambedkarite beliefs and progressive thought, influencing generations of intellectuals, writers and thinkers hailing from Dalit and tribal communities, like Namdeo Dhasal, Raja Dhale and Krishna Kirwale among others.Born in Nagpur in June 1937, Pantawane completed his primary and secondary education in the city before moving to Aurangabad in the early 1960s as a teacher in Milind College.But it is his pioneering literary journal Asmitadarsh, which he founded in 1968 and edited for nearly five decades, that will perhaps remain his most enduring and remarkable legacy.The journal gave voice to the bitter experiences of ostracised and helpedbring highlight Dalit experiences of Maharashtra’s rural hinterland like never before.But it went far beyond that, transforming rapidly as a unique rallying point for younger and unheralded writers, while serving as a vibrant forum for exchanging ideas and publishing the best in ‘socially conscious’ literature in the State — regardless of the writer’s caste, creed or gender.In helping awaken the dormant and explosive potential lying untapped within hitherto unsung writers from Maharashtra’s social margins, Asmitadarsh often acted as a mirror, reflecting prevalent social ills and seriously engaging with them. The importance of this journal can hardly be overstated. As the late American academic Eleanor Zelliot observed: “it is Gangadhar Pantawane, through Asmitadarsh, who has been making the roots of the revolutionary movement of Dalit literature strong.”Noted filmmaker Jabbar Patel described the journal as the “foundation of Dalit literature”.A dyed-in-wool adherent of the Shahu-Phule-Ambedkar brand of progressive thought, Pantawane transcended the straitjacket of a ‘Dalit writer’ through his prodigious writings and collections of trenchant literary criticism which included Dhammacharcha (1963, which he edited), Mulyavedha (1972) and Leni (1997).He effortlessly donned the roles of activist-thinker whilst being a superb stylist in the Marathi language, eschewing dogma and wearing his erudition lightly as evinced in his brilliant and highly readable biography of B.R. Ambedkar titled Mooknayak (1978).An adept groomer of budding literary talent, Pantawane’s activism often translated into pragmatic action, as he headed and chaired scores of institutions and committees with his tireless energy and cheerful mien.“He used to take me on his Lambretta scooter to literary and press meets. We are all in debt of his many personal kindnesses, his constant encouragement and the very fact that he gave us the opportunity to publish in his path-breaking journal,” said noted poet F.M. Shinde.In 2008, he was elected president of the first Marathi Vishwa Sahitya Sammelan that was held in the US.Besides research tours to universities in the UK and Thailand, Pantawane was especially active as a member in the Nagpur-based Chokhamele Girls’ Education Society, imbuing the institute with his passion for education of women in the marginalised communities.last_img read more

Ganja worth ₹1 crore seized; three nabbed

first_imgOver 1,000 kg. of ganja worth ₹1 crore was seized by the police in Odisha’s Malkangiri district on Saturday night while it was being smuggled to Chhattisgarh by couriers travelling on foot.According to police sources, security personnel in the Orkel police station area came across a group of 40 people who were carrying large packets on slings. Upon seeing the policemen, most people in the group escaped into the jungle leaving behind 66 large packets. Three of them were nabbed.The accused were found to be transporting marijuana to adjoining Chhattisgarh on foot. On April 8, a large quantity of marijuana was seized from a vehicle on which the smugglers had used a blue beacon to make it look like a police vehicle. On August 10, 2017, marijuana weighing 1,500 kg was seized from an empty tanker on the outskirts of Malkangiri town while it was being smuggled to Chhattisgarh. According to sources, illegal marijuana cultivation in remote pockets of Malkangiri district is financed by outsiders.last_img read more

Inspect child care centres within 2 months: HC

first_imgThe Punjab and Haryana High Court has directed the commissions for protection of child rights in Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh to prepare a list of all registered and unregistered child care institutions and get them inspected within two months.Justice Surya Kant, while hearing a petition filed by Bachpan Bachao Andolan, a movement campaigning for the rights of children, in his order on September 7, stated, “The Commission for both the States as well as Union Territory of Chandigarh shall prepare a list of all the registered and unregistered child care institutions, get the same inspected from the Child Welfare Committees and prepare a comprehensive status report with regard to the deficiencies, if any, noticed in the functioning of such institutions. The reports shall be submitted to the principal secretaries of respective State governments and advisor to the UT Administration, Chandigarh, within two months. (sic)”Advocate Anil Malhotra, assisting the High Court as amicus curiae, said that unregistered institutions and those with deficiencies would face strict action as all such registered institutions have to comply with the Juvenile Justice Act.Mr. Malhotra, referring to instances of child abuse reported in Punjab and Haryana, pleaded for remedial measures, saying that the commissions and committees were duty-bound to monitor child rights under various laws.The court order added that the State governments and Chandigarh (UT) shall be required to take immediate remedial measures and will take strict action.last_img read more

‘BJD to keep all options open’

first_imgAhead of the counting of votes on May 23, Odisha’s ruling Biju Janata Dal on Friday said that it will no more adhere to its policy of maintaining “equal distance” from both the BJP and the Congress. “We will not adopt the equal distance (from BJP and Congress) policy any more. The BJD will support any front which supports Odisha,” BJD vice-president and Minister S.N. Patro said. The BJD, which had a decade-long alliance with the BJP, had severed ties with the latter ahead of the 2009 elections over a dispute on seat sharing. A BJD-BJP coalition government existed in Odisha from 2000 to 2009.‘Communal, corrupt’ After severing ties with the BJP, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik had dubbed it as “communal” and the Congress as “corrupt”.However, the Chief Minister and the BJD chief has made his party’s stand clear that it will support any front — whether led by the BJP or the Congress, whichever protects Odisha’s interest. The party has been demanding special category status for Odisha and it was a major poll issue this time also.Mr. Patnaik also kept the BJD’s door open for the proposed third front which may stake claim for the government formation after results are declared on May 23. The BJD president, meanwhile, has received praise from Prime Minister Narendra Modi, BJP president Amit Shah and also an invitation from UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi, party sources said.‘Naveen for PM’ Replying to a question on possibility of installing Mr. Patnaik as the Prime Minister after polls, Mr. Patro said: “The people of India and Odisha want Naveen to be the Prime Minister of India. The people had earlier favoured legendary leader and Chief Minister Biju Patnaik as the Prime Minister of the country.”last_img read more

ScienceShot: Scientist Creates Music From Voyager Space Probe Data

first_imgAs the Voyager space probes plunge into the inky cosmic void, each carries a golden record with 27 songs ranging from Mozart to Chuck Berry. Now, with help from a musical physicist, the twin space probes boast a song of their own. Each craft carries a cosmic ray detector snapping hourly measurements of the number of protons whirring past them. Over the last 37 years, the probes recorded more than 320,000 such measurements. Domenico Vicinanza, a musician with a Ph.D. in physics, mapped each value with a corresponding note on the musical range, with larger counts corresponding to higher notes. Stringing and mixing the notes together, Vicinanza assembled the spacecraft’s musical score. In the song, Voyager 1 plays the piano while Voyager 2 accompanies on the string instruments. Each overlapping note during the song corresponds to the spacecraft simultaneously measuring cosmic rays while soaring through space billions of miles apart. While Vicinanza admits he composed the musical arrangement purely as a fun way to present the Voyager mission data, he says transforming data sets into music in this way can help scientists recognize trends and patterns they might otherwise miss. And that makes for music that’s definitely out of this world.See more ScienceShots.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(*)last_img read more

First Step for FIRST Bill Exposes Party Differences

first_imgRepublicans in the U.S. House of Representatives today laid out their arguments for keeping the National Science Foundation (NSF) on a short leash. It was the latest salvo in a yearlong battle with Democrats over the nature of federal support for basic research.The setting was a markup of controversial legislation, H.R. 4186, by the research panel of the Committee on Science, Space, and Technology. The bill, called the Frontiers in Innovation, Research, Science, and Technology (FIRST) Act, would reauthorize research and education programs at NSF and the National Institute of Standards and Technology and provide greater oversight of federal efforts in science education. Science lobbyists and House Democrats have complained sharply about proposed changes to NSF’s peer-review process and a 40% reduction in authorized funding levels for the agency’s social science research programs in the bill. They also object to language relating to public access to government-funded research and cracking down on scientific misconduct.But Republicans largely dismissed those and other concerns in approving the bill on a straight party-line vote. In the course of the markup, the Republican majority rejected two Democratic amendments, one of which would have restored current funding levels for the social, behavioral, and economic (SBE) sciences and for the geosciences and the second given NSF more flexibility to allocate funding among its six research directorates. (The panel did accept a previously negotiated deal with Representative Dan Lipinski [D-IL], the top Democrat on the research panel, to restore almost half of the cuts to the social sciences.) The full science committee is expected to take up the legislation in early April.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(*)The real significance of today’s action, however, lay not in the actual votes. Rather, the 90-minute business meeting gave the panel’s chair, Representative Larry Bucshon (R-IN), a chance to explain why he and other Republicans think some NSF-supported disciplines are more important than others and why NSF needs to do a better job of spending tax dollars wisely.In drafting the bill, Bucshon said, “we have increased investments in research in the natural and physical sciences that are critical for stimulating new technologies, innovation, and economic growth. Those are our priorities.” Earlier in the hearing, he had explained that his opposition to the Democratic push for a rejuggling of accounts was based on his belief that the social and behavioral sciences and the geosciences “are areas for which the United States already has a wide lead among nations.”The stakes are high, according to Bucshon. “Our long-standing global leadership in science and technology is threatened, I think we would all agree,” he asserted. “Recent reports show that the United States is in danger of falling behind in technical R&D … and that China may overtake us in less than 10 years. … If we are complacent, we will lose that competition, and our children and their children will have less.”Democrats on the panel have a different perspective of that global competition. The best way to remain preeminent, argued Representative Zoe Lofgren (D-CA), is to maintain support for the full spectrum of basic research funded by NSF.“NSF is mandated to promote the progress of science, to advance the national welfare, and secure the national defense,” she noted, “and SBE and the geosciences are integral to each of these goals. To single them out for cuts in funding because of apparent concern about possible findings is unwarranted and counter to good policy and effective research. Setting disciplines against each other also runs counter to the principles in the COMPETES Act, and the need to maintain a strong research basis across all areas of science.”Lofgren and other Democrats believe that their Republican colleagues have another, baser reason for targeting certain disciplines. “For some reason, the majority seems to have a political vendetta against these important fields of research,” she asserted. “While research in the social and behavioral and geosciences areas may produce unexpected, controversial, or in some areas even unwanted findings, that’s no reason to single them out for disruptive and costly funding cuts.”The proposed changes to NSF’s peer-review practices, which generated a firestorm last spring among White House officials, scientists, and their professional organizations, received scant attention at today’s markup. Democrats make it clear they still don’t like the provision that NSF needs to explain how each grant “is worthy of federal funding” by demonstrating its contribution to economic growth or national defense. Representative Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-TX), the top Democrat on the full committee, described the language as “solutions in search of problems, in some cases with likely unintended consequences.”But Lipinski told ScienceInsider after the hearing that he and his Democratic colleagues feel that the current bill is a big improvement over the earlier draft. He says it tamps down expectations that every research grant must pay off in short-term, tangible societal benefits. He also believes that its provisions requiring NSF to explain why a particular project was funded are less onerous.“The biggest issue has been changing the way NSF evaluated and processed grant proposals,” he says. “And what we have in there now may be more work for NSF, but I don’t think it fundamentally changes how NSF operates. I worked very hard with Mr. [Lamar] Smith [(R-TX), chairman of the full committee] on this issue, and I think we’ve got it to a place we can live with.”last_img read more

Martian canyons may have been carved by wind

first_imgAncient canyons scar the surface of Mars, a relic from a time billions of years ago when rivers flowed on its surface. But water may not be the only factor that shaped these canyons—the wind whipping through them could be just as important, according to a new study of river canyons on Earth. Scientists studying chasms in the Andes mountains in northeast Chile have found that wind carves some canyons 10 times faster than water. The discovery may be significant for understanding how much water flowed on the surface of ancient Mars.“The rates at which valleys and canyons can be abraded by the wind has not been well understood, and I think that is where this paper makes a great contribution,” says planetary geologist Nathan Bridges of the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory in Laurel, Maryland.Even on Earth, it is usually difficult to disentangle the wind’s effect on a canyon from that of water. But geologist Jonathan Perkins of the University of California, Santa Cruz, and colleagues found a perfect “natural experiment” to tease out each force’s role: 36 canyons in northeast Chile, clustered into two groups. The type of rock and the climate were similar for all the canyons, but the first group was exposed to strong wind, and the second was shielded by a mountain.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(*)When researchers compared the two sets of canyons using satellite imagery, they found that the windswept canyons were longer, smoother, and had grown 10 times faster than the still canyons over the millions of years since the rock first formed, they report online today in Nature Geoscience. The windy canyons formed long gouges in the earth reminiscent of cat scratches, whereas the calmer canyons were stubby and shaped like amphitheaters. Apparently,­ abrasion caused by windblown sand had lengthened the canyons and polished out the kinks in their slopes.The canyons lie at the edge of the Atacama Desert, where the extremely dry, windy climate provides optimal conditions for the formation of wind-scoured canyons. Sandblasting wind gusts could shape canyons on the similarly parched surface of Mars as well, the researchers point out. Martian winds have shifted sand dunes and scoured bedrock, but when it comes to Mars’s canyons, scientists have usually assumed that water was the dominant shaping force. The new study indicates this might not be the case.On Mars, “it’s been dry for so long that the channels might have been modified by quite a lot” by wind, says geomorphologist Ken Ferrier of the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta, who was not involved with the study. But if scientists have been discounting this effect, “our attempts to estimate how much water used to be flowing on Mars … might be pretty strongly biased,” he says. If wind has expanded the canyons of Mars, scientists might overestimate how much water once flowed there if they neglect the effect of wind.Of course, Mars differs from Earth in its atmosphere, gravity, and type of rock, among other things, so more work is necessary to fully understand how those conditions might alter the wind’s ability to modify a canyon on that planet. “I don’t think it answers all the questions,” Bridges says, but the study still “provides us some good food for thought for trying to understand Mars.”last_img read more

Indian Population in Qatar Touches 691,000

first_imgThe number of Indian expatriates in the country has reached an all time high of 691,000, revealed the Indian envoy.Speaking at a function on the occasion of ‘Bharat Utsav – A Journey through Festive Celebrations of India’, Indian ambassador P Kumaran also thanked the government of Qatar for the great support extended to the community.Read it at Gulf Times Related Itemslast_img

Kabir Bedi

first_imgThree and a half decades after he made his spectacular debut in Showbiz – India’s very first poster boy model and red-hot stage luminary after Alyque Padamsee’s Tughlaq, Kabir Bedi, still retains his killer looks and amazingly sexy baritone. In the city on a personal visit,the guy who is still lionized in Europe and recognized in Hollywood, but largely ignored in Bollywood, spoke to Little India with rare wit, charm and candor about his life.BOLLYWOOD & I JUST DON’T GELL!First things first. I had never in my life ever aspired to be an actor. Direction was the area that interested me. When O.P. Ralhan, a big-shot filmmaker of the early seventies, signed me on, I was more bewildered than thrilled. Anyway, I decided to go with the flow. The film, Hulchul, turned out to be a disaster, as did most of the other films I worked in, with the exception of Raj Khosla’s Kuchhe Dhaage, which proved to be a big hit. I have often been asked why, despite having some kind of a presence and a decent voice, I couldn’t make it in an environment where others (much inferior in every way) were hitting target. Frankly, that’s not for me to say.. All I can say, in hindsight, is that it had to do with many things, first of which was my general discomfort with the Hindi language as a medium of communication. Sherwood, St. Stephens and the Mumbai Adbiz were pretty much English-specific, defining a very different sensibility than the one existing in the Bollywood of the ‘70s. Also, the fact that I didn’t exactly look like the boy next door and wasn’t wild about dancing around the trees — a must in those roop tera mastana times — didn’t sweep the polls in my favor! Kabir Bedi in Bold & Beautiful: “I have huge respect for the soap artists on account of the labor they put in and the craft they display day after day, week after week.”Looking back, I think it had largely to do with the fact that I was not really passionate enough about making the grade as a top-class Bollywood hero or else I certainly would have exercised damage control. My agenda was focused on being a director and I counted my acting stints as a huge learning experience towards reaching that objective. Of course Sandokan came and slung it out !HOLLYWOOD IS TOTALLY INCESTUOUSThe Italian production of Sandokan (which I signed on while struggling in Bollywood) was a monster hit, which flamboyantly showcased my strengths — drama, action, romance — in style. Overnight I became a demi-god in Europe, triggering the kind of hysteria globally revered pop stars receive. France, Germany, Spain, Italy — the film just exploded! I decided that Hollywood was the next stop and moved. Ashanti (co-starring Michael Caine and Peter Ustinov) and Octopussy (co-starring Roger Moore and a dozen dazzling babes) marked a good beginning, but with hardly any worthwhile encores.The reasons were simple. Hollywood is a totally incestuous and self-centered place, not remotely interested in anything beyond L.A. You can be the hottest ticket in Europe, Asia or wherever, but if you haven’t scored there, you are zero! It’s not about what you have done or can do, but who you are. Do you know that the Asian presence in America’s showbiz — Theatre, Television & Film — is less than one percent? They just don’t give a damn! After the dizzy heights reached with Sandokan, frankly, this was a huge humbling experience, but I got real, took it in my stride, made my peace with it and cottoned on to another segment, which was equally mind-blowing — Soaps.DO YOU KNOW BOLD & BEAUTIFUL IS THE SECOND MOST-WATCHED SOAP IN THE WORLD ?You have to be in the U.S. to understand the kind of impact soaps make on people. They attract an unbelievable groundswell and are a sub-culture all their own, with their very own star-system, magazines, fan-clubs, awards and insane following!Did you know that Bold & Beautiful is the second most-watched soap in the world, pipped at the post only by the Pam Anderson-powered Baywatch? I really had no idea about all this when I first got on board. Subsequently I did General Hospital, One Life to Live and of course Bold & Beautiful. The Bold & Beautiful was a fascinating experience, not only because I was paired with the astonishingly beautiful Hunter Tylo, with whom I had earlier done a TV series called Maharaja’s Daughter, but also because of the way the entire project moved. For one, it re-introduced me to large segments of the American audience. It is interesting that different people in different countries know me in different ways and whenever someone on the street stops me for an autograph, I invariably ask from which part of the world the person is. In India, I am a film star. The Italian, Spanish and German know me from Sandokan. In America, it is General Hospital. Amazing! The soaps are truly the hardest form of acting. It is like doing theatre with just one rehearsal! In terms of speed and footage canned, we are talking half an hour edited per day. In a film-set, three minutes is considered a good day!It’s all regimented. When you walk in at 8 a.m., you are given an hour and a half of basic blocking. Once you are through with that, you get into wardrobe, make-up and all of that with one proper rehearsal. There is a small break for lunch, after which its action all the way. You better have a super memory in terms of movement and lines, because if you blow your lines and there’s re-shooting, it costs the company that many thousand dollars. Too many re-takes means you are written-off from the script, cast and production. Kabir Bedi with his latest heartthrob Parveen Dusanj: “Okay, she may be close to my daughter’s age, but for me, in a relationship age is just a number.”I must have done something right, because I was contracted for three months and ended up staying one year, but the pressure of having to deliver, time after time, can be very taxing. This relentless schedule has taught the regulars to develop a near-photographic memory and yet appear cool, casual and comfortable in the scenes they appear, no easy task, I can assure you. I have huge respect for the soap artists on account of the labor they put in and the craft they display day after day, week after week. On a personal level, most actors immediately get into their “personal” mode when the shooting ends and like to keep their distance from their colleagues.I was both flattered and honored when not only the cast but also the producer of Bold & Beautiful invited me to their homes for parties and private functions. Somewhere I had managed to strike a personal equation with them. Oh, contrary to some rumors doing the rounds in India, I did not have an affair, or fling with Hunter Tylo. We were colleagues who got on rather well. Sad but true !LOVE IS A MANY SPLENDORED THING.Love is an extraordinary state to be in, no question about it. With age, however, a certain perspective enters which may be a good or bad thing, because cynicism (like it or not) comes in. At a personal level and as a battle-scarred veteran in the business (three marriages and umpteen fabulous relationships) its fascinating to have seen love used as a tool of manipulation in the man-woman connect. The Proclamation of “I love you” can be lethally turned around by your mate to, “If you really loved me, you would …!”I wish there was a way by which people in love could still retain their objectivity and focus. People often get married too quickly, for the wrong reasons and to the wrong person, leading to a lot of heartburn as they hobble along. I think caution should be exercised because two of the most crucial decisions in one’s life comprise: who one is marrying and what will be his chosen profession. There are no easy answers or solutions and one has to learn and re-learn as one moves along.One of the fascinating discoveries I’ve made is that loving together and living together is not necessarily the same thing. Living together is life beyond dating, in hard close-up, warts and all. Do I have any regrets? Sure, I do. Looking back, I would have liked to have not done a lot of things or done them differently. But then only hindsight teaches you that, because at that point in time you truly believed that’s the right decision you were making. It’s also amazing the course each relationship runs, each one truly unique and yet, somewhere making the same mistakes.For me, at the end of the day, if there has been more joy than pain or grief, the relationship has been worthwhile. C’mon, nobody is perfect! Take my first wife Protima and me. We were very young, madly in love and together. My work took me away a lot. She had her own ambitions and free-spirited as she was, her own individuality too. Problems arose in the marriage and we attempted to resolve them in a mature and open-minded manner. We even tried an “open” relationship, but at the end of the day, it doesn’t work.Marriage number two happened in America. I was young, eligible, successful, had lots of money, hitting the high spots and veering pretty much out of control. A part of me advised me to cool it, or else. Susan (my ex-wife) was an extremely warm, loving and rooted kind of person who symbolized security, hearth and home. She was perfect for me at that point, but I soon realized that it wouldn’t work because we were incompatible in most ways and therefore the relationship was unsustainable. I decided after this not to marry. I came to India, did Othello, met Niki, who played Desdemona, and in the process of strangling her each night, married her! I think in her, I found someone whom I could communicate with, share things with, laugh and generally connect at a mental and intellectual level as well. Oh, she’s a pocket-sized dynamo of individuality all right, extremely intolerant of a lot of things.Presently, I have moved on and found a new love in the vivacious, social researcher Parveen Dusanj. Okay, she may be close to my daughter’s age, but for me, in a relationship age is just a number.  Related Itemslast_img read more