Pak Sikh Community Urges India To Open Kartarpur Border For Pilgrims

Gurdwara Kartarpur Sahib is situated in Narowal district of Pakistan’s Punjab.


Pakistan’s Sikh community has urged the Indian government to open the Kartarpur border to help facilitate Sikh pilgrims’ visit to a historic gurdwara in this country, a media report said today.

Addressing a press conference in Karachi, patron-in-chief of Pakistan Sikh Council Sardar Ramesh Singh Khalsa said if opened, the border crossing will allow Indian pilgrims to visit Gurdwara Kartar Singh and Pakistanis to visit Dera Baba Nanak on the Indian side.

Mr Khalsa said it had been a long pending demand of the Sikhs to open the Kartarpur border for pilgrims, ‘The Express Tribune’ reported.

He also praised the new Imran Khan-led government for its announcement of opening the border for Sikh devotees on the 550th birth anniversary of Guru Nanak, the founder of Sikhism.

“The entire Sikh community is thankful to the Pakistan government for its noble gesture,” he said.

Pakistan’s information minister Fawad Chaudhry had said his government will soon open the Kartarpur border crossing with India for Sikh pilgrims to visit a historic gurdwara there without visas.

“Pakistan will soon open the border at Kartarpur for Sikh pilgrims and the pilgrims will be able to visit Gurdwara Darbar Sahib Kartarpur without visas,” he had said in an interview with BBC Urdu on September 7.

Gurdwara Kartarpur Sahib is situated in Narowal district of Pakistan’s Punjab. The Gurdwara is just four-and-half kilometers from the international border and is visible on a clear day from Dera Baba Nanak in India.

Devotees are unable to visit Pakistan converge at international border at Dera Baba Nanak and offer their prayers.

Mr Khalsa also strongly condemned the attacks against the cricketer-turned-politician Navjot Singh Sidhu for hugging Pakistan Army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa during his visit to Pakistan for the swearing-in ceremony of Prime Minister Imran Khan last month.

Mr Bajwa had spoken about the opening of the border in Kartarpur for the anniversary of Guru Nanak with Sidhu at Imran’s oath-taking ceremony.

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Cricket Australia Open To More Practice Matches Against India

Cricket Australia Open To More Practice Matches Against India

India will play a four-match Test series vs Australia starting December 6. © AFP

Cricket Australia has made it clear that they are open to more tour matches against India, as requested by Indian head coach Ravi Shastri. According to media reports, Shastri had demanded more warm-up games against Australia ahead of the four-match Test series commencing December 6. Responding to the same, a CA spokesperson said that they are willing to explore options, but are still waiting for an official notification from the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI).

“We are happy to discuss options with the BCCI, but we have not received any formal notification to increase the number of tour matches prior to their series commencing in Australia,” quoted CA spokesperson, as saying.

India are slated to tour Australia for three T20 internationals, four Test matches, and three ODIs from November 21 to January 18.

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Two Koreas Open Joint Liaison Office In North

The two Koreas tried to pursue joint projects since the April summit between Moon Jae In and Kim Jong Un

Kaesong, North Korea: 

North and South Korea opened a joint liaison office in the Northern city of Kaesong on Friday as they knit closer ties ahead of President Moon Jae-in’s visit to Pyongyang next week.

“A new chapter in history is open here today,” South Korean unification minister Cho Myoung-gyon told a ceremony, calling the office “another symbol of peace jointly created by the South and the North”.

The nuclear-armed North’s chief delegate Ri Son Gwon responded in kind, calling it a “substantial fruit nourished by the people of the north and south”.

The two Koreas have sought to pursue joint projects in multiple fields since the April summit between Moon and the North’s leader Kim Jong Un in the Demilitarized Zone that divides the peninsula, even as US efforts to secure concrete progress towards Pyongyang’s denuclearisation have stalled.

Moon is due in the North’s capital on Tuesday for a three-day visit, his third summit with Kim this year after he orchestrated a rapid diplomatic thaw on the peninsula and brokered June’s Singapore summit between the North Korean leader and US President Donald Trump.

There Kim backed denuclearisation of the “Korean peninsula”, but no details were agreed and Washington and Pyongyang have sparred since over what that means and how it will be achieved.

The North was “willing to denuclearise”, Moon said Thursday, while the US was willing to “end hostile relations” and provide security guarantees, “but there is a blockage as both sides are demanding each other to act first”.

Last month, Trump abruptly cancelled a planned visit by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to Pyongyang, after the North condemned “gangster-like” demands for what it called its unilateral disarmament.

But Kim has since sent Trump a letter seeking a second summit and held a military parade for his country’s 70th birthday without showing off any intercontinental ballistic missiles, prompting warm tweets from the US president and raising hopes of progress.

Easing Tensions

The liaison office stands in a city that was initially part of the South after Moscow and Washington divided Korea between them in the closing days of World War II, but found itself in the North after the 1950-53 Korean War, which ended in an armistice rather than a peace treaty.

The four-storey building includes separate Northern and Southern offices and a joint conference room, and Seoul’s unification ministry said it would become a “round-the-clock consultation and communication channel” for advancing inter-Korean relations, improving ties between the US and the North, and easing military tensions.

It will be manned by some 20 officials each from both sides, headed by a vice minister-level appointment.

But critics have questioned whether the supplies provided to set it up are a violation of the multiple sanctions imposed on the North over its nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programmes.

Around 50 people from each side attended the ceremony, reports said, including Southern businessmen who used to run companies in the now-shuttered Kaesong industrial zone.

The project, where South Korean firms employed Northern staff, opened in 2004, when it was hailed as a symbol of inter-Korean economic cooperation and exchanges.

But then conservative President Park Geun-hye’s government shuttered it in 2016 in response to the North’s nuclear and missile tests.

It was the first time the businessmen had set foot in Kaesong for more than two years, but the unification ministry said their presence did not mean Seoul was seeking to reopen the park as sanctions were still in effect.

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Maurizio Sarri Open To John Terry Return In Chelsea Coaching Role

Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri has opened the door for former captain John Terry to return to Stamford Bridge as part of his coaching staff. Terry left Stamford Bridge after 22 years’ service in June 2017 for a season-long stint with Aston Villa and rejected a move to Spartak Moscow this week. Sarri believes Terry, 37, still wants to play for another season, but insists he will always be welcome at his “home” back at Chelsea.

“The last time I spoke with him he told me that he wants to play for another season,” said Sarri on Friday.

“For sure he will be a point of reference for me, for everybody here.

“It’s up to him. If he wants to play for another season I think it’s right he tries to play. If he wants to help us, I’m very, very happy.”

Ahead of Saturday’s visit of Cardiff to Stamford Bridge, Sarri’s side sit joint top of the Premier League with four wins from the Italian’s first four games in charge.

However, he insists the Blues cannot yet be considered a serious threat to champions Manchester City or current leaders Liverpool after finishing 30 points off the pace in fifth last season.

“I can answer City or Liverpool, at the moment,” added Sarri on which sides are title contenders.

“We need another step, I think, to be the same level.

“I think so. I hope not. It’s very difficult. The gap was 30 points at the beginning of the season.”

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Xiaomi Mi A2 Now Available via Open Sale in India

Xiaomi launched the Mi A2 smartphone in India last month. Ever since the launch, the Chinese manufacturer has been hosting flash sales on Amazon India site and to sell the handset, but now it is available via open sale on both the platforms. This essentially means that you will no longer need to register and wait for a weekly flash sale to get a chance to purchase the Mi A2. The lone 4GB RAM variant is currently available for purchase and you can snag the smartphone till stocks last. Notably, the key features of the smartphone include the stock Android software, 3,000mAh battery with QuickCharge 4+ fast-charging, and dual rear camera setup.

In terms of pricing, the Mi A2 costs Rs. 16,999 in India. As mentioned, the smartphone comes in a 4GB RAM and 64GB inbuilt storage variant. Xiaomi had also launched a 6GB RAM and 128GB inbuilt storage variant, but it has not gone on sale yet. The smartphone comes in Black, Gold, Lake Blue, and Rose Gold colour options. Notably, Mi A2 buyers who purchase the handset via, can avail a 3-month subscription to Hungama Music and a cashback worth Rs. 2,200 and 4.5TB complimentary data from Reliance Jio. If you buy the handset via, you will get a 5 percent instant discount on HDFC Bank credit cards and no-cost EMIs on HDFC Bank debit and credit cards.

To recall some of the specifications, the Xiaomi Mi A2 is a dual-SIM (Nano) smartphone that runs stock Android 8.1 Oreo. The smartphone is a part of Google’s Android One programme. It sports a 5.99-inch full-HD+ (1080×2160 pixels) display with an 18:9 aspect ratio. It comes with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 660. In terms of optics, the Mi A2 bears a dual rear camera setup, with a 12-megapixel primary sensor and a 20-megapixel secondary sensor. The rear camera setup also comes with a flash module. The Mi A2 has a 20-megapixel sensor at the front.

Connectivity options in the Xiaomi Mi A2 include 4G VoLTE, Wi-Fi 802.11ac (dual-band, 2.4GHz and 5GHz), Bluetooth v5.0, GPS/ A-GPS, and a USB Type-C (v2.0) port. However, a 3.5mm headphone jack is missing on the phone. It comes with a fingerprint sensor at the back. Sensors on board the handset include an accelerometer, ambient light sensor, digital compass, gyroscope, and proximity sensor. The smartphone is fuelled by a 3,000mAh battery and comes with Quick Charge 4+ support. However, the smartphone will ship with a regular 10W charger in the box. In terms of dimensions, the Mi A2 measures 158.7×75.4×7.3mm, and weighs 168 grams.

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Ramkumar Ramanathan To Open India’s Campaign Against Serbia In World Group Play-Off

Davis Cup: Ramkumar Ramanathan To Open India

Ramkumar Ramanathan will open India’s campaign against Serbia. © AFP

Experienced campaigner Ramkumar Ramanathan will open India’s campaign against Serbia at the Davis Cup 2018, World Group Play-Off in Kraljevo, Serbia. Ranked 135th in the world, Ramanathan will face 86th ranked Laslo Djere in the opening rubber on Friday. Also, on the same day, Prajnesh Gunneswaran will come up against 56th ranked Dusan Lajovic in the second rubber. “Laslo Djere will look to earn his first #DavisCup win when he takes on @ramkumar1994 in the opening rubber of the World Group play-off in Kraljevo!,” the official Davis Cup account on Twitter announced on Thursday. 

On Saturday, India’s men’s doubles pair of Rohan Bopanna and N Sriram Balaji will clash with Nikola Milojevic and Danilo Petrovic in the third rubber.

Later on Sunday, Ramkumar Ramanathan will take on Dusan Lajovic in the fourth rubber while Prajnesh Gunneswaran will face Laslo Djere in the fifth and final rubber.

India’s top singles player Yuki Bhambri and Asian Games gold-medallist Divij Sharan had earlier pulled out of the Davis Cup World Group Play-off tie against Serbia due to injuries.

Sharan, who won the men’s doubles gold with Rohan Bopanna in Palembang, had suffered a tear in his shoulder and Bhambri’s knee injury flared up at the US Open, where he lost in the first round to Frenchman Pierre-Hugues Herbert.

(With PTI inputs)

Topics :

Ramkumar Ramanathan Tennis

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Poco F1 6GB RAM, 128GB Storage Variant to Go on Open Sale From Midnight Tonight

Poco F1 6GB RAM, 128GB Storage Variant to Go on Open Sale From Midnight Tonight

Poco F1 open sale will be conducted on as well as on Flipkart

Poco F1 is currently one of the most talked about smartphones in the Indian market thanks to its high-end, flagship-grade specifications at a competitive price point starting at just Rs. 20,999. Having held three successful flash sales since the phone’s launch, Xiaomi sub-brand Poco has now announced that the 6GB RAM/ 128GB storage variant of the Poco F1 will be available as part of an open sale starting 12am IST on September 14. The open sale will be conducted on as well as on Flipkart, where the variant will be widely available in all three Rosso Red, Steel Blue, and Graphite Black colour options.

In a short video posted to Poco India’s official Twitter account Thursday, Xiaomi India head Manu Kumar Jain and Poco India General Manager C Manmohan announced the latest development. The two added that apart from the 6GB/ 128GB storage variant, the other two – 4GB/ 64GB and 8GB/ 256GB – will be made available in an open sale “maybe sometime soon.” Let’s get into the details.

Poco F1 price in India, availability

The 6GB RAM/ 128GB storage model, which is supposed to be made available in India via open sale starting Midnight, September 14, and is priced at Rs. 23,999. The phone is also sold in three other variants – the base 6GB RAM/ 64GB storage model is priced at Rs. 20,999, the 8GB RAM/ 256GB inbuilt storage variant at Rs. 28,999, and a special Armoured Edition (8GB RAM/ 256GB storage) one at Rs. 29,999. These three variants will still be sold via weekly flash sales held simultaneously on and Flipkart.

Poco F1 specifications

The dual-SIM (Nano) Poco F1 runs MIUI on top of Android 8.1 Oreo, and sports a 6.18-inch full-HD+ display with an 18.7:9 aspect ratio. The handset is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 SoC, paired with 6GB/ 8GB of LPDD4X RAM and 64GB/ 128GB/ 256GB of onboard storage.

In the camera department, the Poco F1 bears a dual rear camera setup with a 12-megapixel primary sensor, with f/1.9 aperture, and a 5-megapixel secondary sensor with f/2.0 aperture. On the front, the handset bears a 20-megapixel front camera sensor with AI face recognition and AI portrait mode. There is a 4,000mAh battery under the hood, with support for Qualcomm Quick Charge 4.0 – a development that was recently announced by the brand.

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Amid NRC Debate, Bengal Minister To Visit Assam To Open Trinamool Congress Office


One of West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s senior-most ministers is flying to Guwahati on Thursday to inaugurate a Trinamool Congress office in the north-east city. The party said it will “stand by the suffering people of Assam who have been left out of the draft National Register of Citizens or NRC.”

The BJP has attacked Trinamool for vote bank politics over NRC at the risk of national security. 

West Bengal urban affairs minister Firhad Hakim, who is going to Guwahati, said, “We will not compromise on national security, but we will not tolerate oppression of common people in the name of national security.”

Mr Hakim’s visit to Guwahati comes 40 days after he went to Silchar with a team of other Trinamool lawmakers. All of them were detained at Silchar airport overnight and not allowed to go into town and hold a public meeting on NRC in that Assam town. They landed at Silchar on August 2. The next day, they were packed off to Kolkata.

Ms Banerjee was in Delhi just before the Silchar incident and met with top leaders, including Home Minister Rajnath Singh, to demand justice for the 40 lakh people left out of the draft NRC that was published on July 31.

“The way Mamata Banerjee has opposed the NRC, the way those 40 lakh people left out of the draft NRC are welcoming us, we have to stand by their side,” said Mr Hakim.

There are concerns Mr Hakim may be stopped at Guwahati like he was stopped in Silchar. “India is a democracy. Anyone can go anywhere. We want to stand by the people. We went to Silchar only for that. It is unfortunate that we were arrested. But we will not stop if we are resisted, we will fight,” Mr Hakim said.

Referring to a recent public meeting by BJP chief Amit Shah in Kolkata, Mr Hakim added, “Amit Shah comes to Bengal and says so many things about us; we give them support, security, police. This is a democracy. If I am stopped for moving in my country, then it is unfortunate, and I will hope that they will not make this mistake,” the Trinamool minister said.

Several top Trinamool leaders quit the party after Mamata Banerjee opposed the NRC. But Mr Hakim said many new entrants in Trinamool — including former legislators and parliamentarians from Assam — will be present at the inauguration of the party office on Thursday.

Subsequently, district offices will be opened at Garbeta, Karimganj and Silchar, the party said. “We were beside common people during the Bangladesh war; even today Mamata Banerjee is standing with the common people of Assam who are suffering,” Mr Hakim said.

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Shock for Navjot Singh Sidhu, Patiala road rage case will open in Supreme court again

नवजोत सिंह सिद्धू को झटका, पटियाला का रोड रेज केस सुप्रीम कोर्ट में फिर खुला

नवजोत सिंह सिद्धू (फाइल फोटो).

नई दिल्ली:


सन 1988 में पंजाब के पटियाला में रोड रेज केस में पंजाब के मंत्री नवजोत सिंह सिद्घू को झटका लगा है. सुप्रीम कोर्ट ने इस मामले पर फिर से परीक्षण करने का फैसला किया है. सुप्रीम कोर्ट तय करेगा कि सिद्धू को जेल की सजा दी जाए या नहीं.

शिकायककर्ता की पुनर्विचार याचिका पर सुप्रीम कोर्ट सजा पर विचार करने को तैयार हो गया. सुप्रीम कोर्ट ने सिद्घू को नोटिस जारी कर जवाब मांगा है.

सुप्रीम कोर्ट में जस्टिस एएम खानविलकर और जस्टिस संजय किशन कौल की बेंच ने इस मामले में निर्देश जारी किया है. 15 मई को सुप्रीम कोर्ट में जस्टिस जे चेलामेश्वर की बेंच ने सिद्धू को एक हजार रुपये के जुर्माने की सजा सुनाई थी.  कोर्ट ने कहा था कि गुरनाम सिंह की मौत के लिए सिद्धू को दोषी नहीं ठहरा सकते. मामला 30 साल पुराना 1988 का है. सिद्धू की गुरनाम से कोई पुरानी दुश्मनी नहीं थी. घटना में कोई हथियार इस्तेमाल नहीं हुआ. इस आधार पर हम मानते हैं कि एक हजार रुपये का जुर्माना न्याय देने के लिए ठीक होगा.

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WTA Chief Backs Serena Williams As Row Grows Over US Open ‘Sexism’

The American superstar claimed that chair umpire Carlos Ramos meted out penalties for infractions that male players could have gotten away with, specifically a violation for verbal abuse after she called him a “thief” and a “liar” for warning her for coaching from her players’ box, then docking her a point when a racquet abuse violation followed.

Eventually she was docked a game — putting Osaka on the brink of victory.

Simon said the affair brought to the forefront the question of whether different standards are applied to men and women in the officiating of matches.

“The WTA believes that there should be no difference in the standards of tolerance provided to the emotions expressed by men vs women and is committed to working with the sport to ensure that all players are treated the same,” he said.

“We do not believe that this was done last night.”

Serena Williams was most incensed by the first code violation she received — for coaching from her box.

It’s not clear if she even saw the hand gestures by coach Patrick Mouratoglou sitting her box, although he admitted in an interview with ESPN that he was trying to advise her — and said all coaches do it.

Coaching ‘hypocrisy’

“Yes, I was coaching just like everybody else. We have to stop this hypocrisy. Furthermore, Serena didn’t even see my gestures. She felt humiliated by the warning,” said the Frenchman.

Simon said the sport as a whole should examine the rules on coaching, noting that the WTA already allows on-court coaching during regular tour events — if a player requests it.

US great Billie Jean King addressed both issues, also seeing things Serena’s way.

“When a woman is emotional, she’s ‘hysterical’ and she’s penalized for it,” King tweeted. “When a man does the same, he’s ‘outspoken’ & and there are no repercussions. Thank you, @serenawilliams, for calling out this double standard. More voices are needed to do the same.”

National Organization of Women president Toni Van Pelt weighed in with a statement calling for the USTA to sever any ties to Ramos for “a blatantly racist and sexist move”.

Serena Williams’s pleas to referee Brian Earley and a Grand Slam supervisor — called to the court after she failed to get satisfaction from Ramos — were to no avail.

The USTA said in a statement after the match that the decision to hand out the final code violation and game penalty was “not reviewable”.

“Because I’m a woman you’re going to do this to me,” she fumed on court and after the match Williams didn’t walk back that charge.

“I’ve seen other men call other umpires several things,” she said. “I’m here fighting for women’s rights and for women’s equality and for all kinds of stuff.”

Men’s champion Novak Djokovic treaded warily when asked to weigh in on matter.

Djokovic noted that it was an “awkward situation” for both competitors and “tough” for the umpire.

“I have my personal opinion that maybe the chair umpire should not have pushed Serena to the limit, especially in a Grand Slam final,” he said.

“He did change the course of the match. It was, in my opinion, maybe unnecessary. We all go through our emotions, especially when you’re fighting for a Grand Slam trophy.

However, he said he wasn’t sure sexism was at the root of Ramos’s decisions.

“It’s hard to generalize things,” he said.

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