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  1. Drivers using phones while driving is still a major concern in many parts of the world. No matter how strict and efficient the law enforcers are, this still remains and will continue to remain a big issue. But the Australian police seem to have figured out a way to tackle the problem. AI Cameras! Yes, their solution is to use AI cameras to spot the drivers using mobile phones while driving. And it does it automatically, so it significantly eliminates the margin of error. The cameras being used by the New South Wales government uses AI to review photos for signs of phone use. It's the first time such a camera is being put to use to spot the lawbreakers. Once the camera flags a suspect, there are human reviewers to cross-check to prevent any false positives. For the first three times into the initiative, the drivers will get away with a warning. © Transport for NSW After that, however, they'll be imposed a hefty fine of $344 AUD which roughly translates to about Rs 17,000 and five demerit points. The fine can go up based on the zone in which you're breaking the law. The officials are pretty confident that this will lead to fewer incidents. They crunched some numbers from the test and noted that the initiative will prevent 100 fatal and serious injury crashes in the space of five years. Obviously, there's no way to tell if it'll bring down the fatalities for now. We'll know once the initiative picks up pace. That being said, we think it'll definitely keep the drivers in check. As it goes mainstream and the drivers get to know about it, they'll surely try to avoid getting caught paying the hefty fine. We really need a system like this in India where road accidents are still one of the primary reasons for a high death rate. Source: NSW Government View the full article
  2. Whatâs the ultimate purpose of education? Yes, it is to gain knowledge and skills, but for the most part it is a means to an end. An end that secures a comfortable existence for us on earth - one that demands we be active participants and contributors in running the society like a well-oiled machine. And how one is supposed to do that is by acquiring skill-sets that would deem us employable in the job market, thereby not only earn a living for our own sustenance, but in many ways add to the countryâs economy and growth as well. Indians especially swear by mass-production of individuals in this regard. From the moment we learn to hold our pencils, we are trained to recite our alphabets and multiplication tables in one breath. Thereâs literally no time to waste when it comes to knowing our grammar, understanding how Science works in the physical world or decipher the intricacies of Civics. The number game continues to grow stronger with every step we take to climb up the educational ladder. The hustle never stops. it doesnât spare the weak and continuous to crush a zillion dreams with every formula thatâs shoved down our throats and every 3-hour gimmick that decides our worth. Yet, despite giving close to 22-25 years of life trying to build a âstrong portfolioâ all with shit-expensive degrees and âextracurricularsâ to back us up, lakhs and lakhs of qualified Indian youths are sitting jobless at home. The situation in our home turf currently sucks so bad that recently 7,000 engineers and graduates applied for 549 posts of sanitary workers in the state Corporation. The three-day selection process for the job saw 7,000 applicants turning up for interviews, out of which a majority were engineers, post- graduates, graduates and diploma-holders. The sad reality of this situation is crushing. Imagine spending most of your early life slogging after those marks and degrees, spending not only precious time but hard-earned money of education that eventually fails to fetch you a decent job because âinflationâ, âmarket downâ, âglobal economic slowdownâ and what not. But no matter the excuse..err..reason, truth is that according to a recent Business Insider India report, the unemployment rate in October 2019 was highest in three years at 8.5 percent. And according to a survey by TechServe Alliance, engineering employment is declining on a month-on-month basis. Even then, none of this affects the mindset or priorities of desi masses who strongly believe in keeping the doctor-engineer-lawyer mass-production system up and running. Even as education in the country continues to become costlier, with average fees for professional courses standing at Rs 65,000, Indians continue to spend on high-end degrees in the hopes of a âsecure futureâ. Itâs sad to see that even as alternate careers and means of earning continue to come up and boom, we as a society have failed to let go of the traditional mindset and are holding back from embracing the change that could not only allow people to start their own enterprises but also generate employment for others at the same time. None of this is funny anymore - our education, the education system, our employment and possibilities for a better tomorrow. What are you going to do about it? View the full article
  3. Waste management is an issue of grave concern, not just in India but all over the world. Just the other day, I overheard someone call plastic the most fascinating, and yet the least destructive element ever to be found. It's produced in plenty and is not biodegradable, making it trash that'll always sit on the earth's floor, probably forever. Not just plastic, different non-biodegradable metals also pose a threat to waste management issues around the world. Our ocean beds are filling up with an innumerable amount of trash each day and while we sit and celebrate the next few steps to curb the problem, we have amidst us an artist who's already doing something relatably terrific. © CNBC 'Big Trash Animals' by Artur Bordalo is a series of artwork that aims to draw attention towards the waste management issue we're facing in the world today. His work focuses on the general lack of recycling single use plastic and metal items, which are found at landfills around the cities he works in, and creates some excellent animal sculptures from it. They stand out as installations in the shape of different animals, telling the world that we need to adopt healthy habits of disposing our waste intelligently, before it caves in and becomes a larger issue than it already is. The Portuguese artist has set up a range of his work in the USA, Estonia and Tahiti. His work phenomenally symbolises both the beauty of nature and the waste material that are a constant threat to it, everyday. Here are 20 of his sculptures, made from waste materials, across different cities. © Artur-Bordalo © Artur-Bordalo © Artur-Bordalo © Artur-Bordalo © Artur-Bordalo © Artur-Bordalo © Artur-Bordalo © Artur-Bordalo © Artur-Bordalo © Artur-Bordalo © Artur-Bordalo © Artur-Bordalo © Artur-Bordalo © Artur-Bordalo © Artur-Bordalo © Artur-Bordalo © Artur-Bordalo © Artur-Bordalo © Artur-Bordalo © Artur-Bordalo Maybe we can think of something as innovative to solve waste management issues in our country and take the load off of the overflowing landfills. View the full article
  4. If you're like me who grew up playing EA's original Need For Speed Most Wanted, then you already know that it's probably the best racing game of all time. Not only was it the best car racing game of its generation, but it's also been the best Need For Speed game all these years, even though we've seen an abundance of NFS racers. After a rather disappointing release of 2017's Need For Speed Payback, EA decided to drop the new Need For Speed Heat this year. Honestly, I wasn't really excited to play the new NFS game when I saw the trailer. It felt like just another futile attempt to recreate the franchise's glorious days. But now that I've spent a lot of hours with the game, I think it's safe to say that it's one of the best Need For Speed games I've played in a long time. 1. Gameplay © Ghost Games/Electronic Arts As soon as you'll start playing Heat, you'll quickly realise how much it resembles a lot of racing games out there. Not only does it combines the elements of some of the older Need For Speed games, it feels as though the developers have taken a lot of inspirations from titles like Forza Horizon. But the fact that they've packed it in a "Day" and "Night" format is just impressive. You get an option to race during the day when it's all about sanctioned street racing and cop-free tracks or take your whip out during the night which is all about illegal underground street racing. So if you want a thrilling cop chase, then you'd probably be better off driving at night. During the day, the game feels more like Forza Horizon. © Ghost Games/Electronic Arts The fact that you can choose to drive whenever you want and participate in whichever race you want, with or without cops' intervention, got me hooked. If I am in a mood to, say, sit back and have a relaxing time racing, then I'd pick the day. But racing during the night, trust me, is a lot more difficult than you think. Just like any other Need For Speed game, you have different 'Heat' levels in the game. Higher the heat level, the more aggressive the cops will become. Even with a Level 3 heat level, I wasn't able to outrun the cops and had to pay a hefty fine to get out. It becomes more difficult when you're in the middle of a campaign mission and cops start chasing you. I'd also like to point out that you can play the game both online or offline, but you'll make a decision before jumping into the game since there's no seamless transition between the two as found on some other games like Forza Horizon. 2. Graphics © Ghost Games/Electronic Arts Graphics hasn't really been an issue when it comes to the Need For Speed franchise. Well, the NFS Heat looks better than every other NFS game. Visually, I am a huge fan of the way the game looks at night. Palm City is just a different world at night, dripping with neon lights and signboards everywhere. It also rains a lot in the game, and makes the game look that much better with wet roads that reflect the neon lighting of the city. It's just fantastic. Palm City is inspired by Miami and I think it's perfect for street racing. The map itself is quite big and simply cruising along the roads, gazing at some cool spots like space center, an abandoned racing oval, etc. is a lot of fun. And if you're tired of that, just transition to night time and get into a cop chase to add more spice to your gameplay. © Ghost Games/Electronic Arts You can also customise the way your cars and even your character looks. Yes, you get to choose an avatar and fit him or her with cool merch courtesy of brands like adidas. It's just an added touch of fun and makes it a bit visually appealing as well. And you don't necessarily have to run the game to customise your car. You can download the Need For Speed Studio app on your phone and do it while killing some time. 3. Cars & Customisation As I mentioned, NFS Heat allows you to customise both the cars as well as the character. More than the character, obviously, the level of customisation which you can achieve with cars is simply amazing. As someone who likes to spend an equal amount of time customising the cars inside the garage as much as riding it outside, it's quite awesome. The game will also let you use the same car for all kinds of races, so you no longer need to have multiple cars in your garage just to get into races like drifting. You can simply go to the garage, add the necessary tires from your inventory and get going. The game's upgrade system is also a massive improvement from what we've been seeing all these years. © Ghost Games/Electronic Arts One of the biggest additions to the game is the ability to swap engines. It's quite an interesting thing because you can essentially increase the overall potential horsepower of the cars without having to settle for a mediocre number. Heck, you can also tune your exhaust and you bet I spent a lot of time playing around with it. 4. The Final Say So, is the Need For Speed Heat worth your time and money? Hell yeah! Look, it's not a perfect game by any means. In fact, it's not bringing any radically new to the table. Need For Speed Heat is all about combining different elements from different races and presenting it as one helluva package. Yes, the game's campaign could have been much better since the main story isn't the one that'll stay with you after you beat it. © Ghost Games/Electronic Arts Apart from that, I think the developer 'Ghost' has finally come up with a Need For Speed title that's much better than what I expected. If you ignore the mediocre storyline and the far-too limited soundtrack, I think the Need The Speed Heat is a kickass game. Not only do I think it's the best NFS game this generation, but it's also the one that I had the most fun playing after the original NFS Most Wanted. View the full article
  5. ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran said on Friday that there was no need for negotiations with the Azadi Marchers if his resignation was their only demand. The prime minister held separate meetings with Punjab Assembly Speaker Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi...
  6. We all know that when it comes to wedding planning, grooms don't always make it to the top of the pecking order. Of course, in theory, it's their wedding, but in reality, they're ranked just below the bride, her parents, his parents, her siblings, his siblings, her BFFs (obviously), and maybe the planner, decorator and caterer! He's usually the semi-panicked man in the background, juggling emotions on both sides to make sure everything goes okay. Forget the celebrations, most gifts that you get are either household oriented or something bride-centric and that's exactly why every groom needs to insist on a gift registry, so the couple can get the gifts they both love, instead of a whole lot of jewellery, silver or saris! Here's why you need a wedding registry: 1. You'll actually get what you want: A gift registry lets the couple create a list of gifts, gift cards, holidays, cash or even charities they love, and share with their wedding guests. Most times, guests have no idea what the couple wants, and it's always harder to pick something for men! So here's your chance to let your loved ones know what's on your wishlist, so they don't wrack their brains and end up gifting something 'safe' like a lamp or silver Ganesha! 2. You're helping the world: We all know that a lot of money is spent every year on wedding gifts, and most of them end up being re-gifted or wasted as the couple rarely wants it. By letting your guests know what you want, you show them the respect of saying that their time, thought and money is valuable and should be spent on something you'll cherish. 3. It's a financially sound decision: Weddings are expensive. Setting up a home or going on a holiday after is even more so. Statistics show 80 percent Indian men go into debt post their wedding. By adding the things you need for your new home to your registry, you save substantial money and your guests have the satisfaction of knowing that their gift gave you precious memories or became a part of your new home! 4. You don't have to manage logistics: Weddings can be hectic affairs and managing your gifts is a serious pain. They get broken, stolen, lost and the works. Plus there is the added headache of carrying everything from the venue to your house and then packing and storing the gifts you don't want. With a registry on Wedding Wishlist, all your gifts get delivered to you post the wedding with a complete list of messages and contributions. You outsource the mundane, and receive the gifts when you are ready to unwrap them! 5. It's free to try out: To top it all, the Wedding Wishlist gift registry is entirely free! So even if you're apprehensive or unsure about creating one, give it a try among your close friends and family. The overwhelming response you receive from your guests, plus the joy you'll feel when you get the gifts you love will make you a true believer. View the full article
  7. Are you one of those slogging on a nice winter day just like us and handling all the work pressure at office? Then, I am sure you would need this piece of advice coming from a man who handles pressures on a daily basis in the industry which is quite known for it. MensXP got in touch with actor Sidharth Malhotra for our November cover edition and we asked him how does he handle the pressure of looking good all the time and always be aware of what's happening around in the industry. For Sidharth, the key is to balance things out. “Well absolutely, that's a very relevant question today. Mental health, not only in our profession - whether it's students or people working in corporate jobs, anything. I think all of us have become, as I was saying before, ambitious, but you need to learn how to balance it,” said the actor. “I mean, there are days and weeks I would not say that I'm not guilty of constantly thinking of work; I definitely am during release week or important outdoor sequences. But then there are weeks when I make sure, definitely, at the end of every year I don't work for 10 days - when there's family, on a holiday. I have to be in some part of the country - one family trip for sure because I don't stay with them,” added Sid. View this post on Instagram Don't call it a dream, call it a planâ A post shared by Sidharth Malhotra (@sidmalhotra) on Nov 4, 2019 at 4:47am PST He also said that we need to know how to manage our time because that's the most important factor to keep things in check. “I think that time, time management comes into play. I think now is when I realise the importance of having weekends off, or a Sunday off because you need that time to detox from your work as well. I personally feel - I might look like it, but I'm not so socially active in the Bollywood fraternity. It's not that you'll see me making plans every second day. Diwali may be or somebody's birthday or film success party, but not quite where I'd have dinner and have the same conversations, so I tend to make relationships outside, where we talk more about the other stuff which is happening,” said the actor. View this post on Instagram In between interviews! ðð»‍â Are you guys excited to watch #MarjaavaanOn15thNov? If yes, comment below with "Aye" A post shared by Sidharth Malhotra (@sidmalhotra) on Nov 1, 2019 at 4:58am PDT We totally relate to the idea of the weekends being off especially Sunday because you need one day to detox and rejuvenate for sure. Don't you think? On the work front, Sidharth Malhotra is all set to entice his fans with his upcoming movie, Marjaavaan. Stay tuned to MensXP for all the latest updates. View the full article
  8. Have you ever heard of an official impose a fine upon himself for wrongdoing? Well, it happened right here and we're quite taken aback TBH! The incident took place in Uttar Pradesh's Ghaziabad district, when the Ghaziabad District Magistrate imposed a fine on himself. While we may find humour in this situation, it actually speaks volumes on the true nature of humility and the understanding of conservation of our natural resources by a government official. © PTI Ghaziabad District Magistrate Ajay Shankar Pandey imposed a fine of Rs 10,000 on himself and other staff members after finding out that water was overflowing from an overhead tank of the collectorate building. While water conservation has become extremely important, Pandey obviously knows the long-term detriments of water scarcity in the city, before he imposed a hefty fine upon himself and his colleagues. He warned all the officers and the staff members that such wastage of water will not be tolerated or entertained in the future, since the country is heading towards depletion of the natural resource. A report by NITI Ayog says that by 2020, 21 cities in India including Delhi, Bengaluru, Chennai and Hyderabad will run out of groundwater, affecting around a 100-million people. So, it's our civil and social responsibility as responsible citizens to save the natural resource by any means. After the Ghaziabad DM entered his office, he heard the sound of overflowing water, falling behind his room and immediately the entire staff was 'held guilty' for water wastage. The fine will be shared between all the officers and staff, and would be deposited in the treasury. © BCCL We certainly need ardent leaders like Ajay Shankar Pandey who lead by example of selfless good deeds done to save, preserve and protect the environment and our natural resources. Kudos to you, sir! View the full article
  9. We see too many examples every day that makes us believe that humanity and generosity are just words and there's not much of those two left in the world anymore. But here's how we need to learn a great deal from this 70-year-old man, Sitaram Das Baba who is feeding 500-600 people food every day. Sitaram is a native of Gujarat who is now settled in the holy town of Rameswaram and has been providing free food to tourists and pilgrims. According to ANI, his day starts at 5 am when he starts cooking food for people coming to his Ashram. © BCCL He serves North Indian and South Indian food to pilgrims who visit him in his Ashram. In an interview, Sitaram told ANI, "From the past 36 years, I have been doing this service. Here we provide North Indian food as well as South Indian food. This Ashram is open to everyone and there is no discrimination based on their gender, caste or religion.” Well, we do need more humans like Sitaram who'd selflessly feed people. The ashram is located near the Ramanatha Swamy temple in the Keelavasal area. Sitaram can serve these many people with donations he receives from people who visit his ashram. He has a team of ten people who helps him in taking his initiative forward. This just makes us believe that age is just a number and you can make a huge impact with a budding thought. View the full article
  10. From spotting a rare talent from across the world to sharing inspirational and sometimes funny stories; Anand Mahindra and his Twitter account, never fail to impress us with his knack of spotting the best of the world. However, this time Mahindra asked some pertinent questions that most people wanted answers to, but never dared to ask and sparked a heated debate on social media in the process. The debate is on whether some people genuinely need wheelchairs at the airports or just fake it. Reuters Mahindra asked his followers if we Indians are more unfit, have more senior citizens who travel or just "jugaadus" who order wheelchairs to get faster access through queues. In his tweet, he wrote, "Only flights to & from India at most airports have so many wheelchairs pre-ordered. Trying to figure out why. 1) Do elderly Indians travel more than others? 2) Do we have more infirm/unfit people? 3) Are we just jugaadus who order wheelchairs to get faster access through queues!?" Only flights to&from India at most airports have so many wheelchairs pre-ordered. Trying to figure out why. 1) Do elderly Indians travel more than others? 2) Do we have more infirm/unfit people? 3) Are we just jugaadus who order wheelchairs to get faster access through queues!? pic.twitter.com/eyIm5O4KB1 — anand mahindra (@anandmahindra) November 2, 2019 Surprisingly, most people went with the option number three and revealed that most people ask for a wheelchair simply for convenience and to clear the security check faster. Some even gave instances where they saw people walking around the Duty Free stores and shopping and then later using wheelchairs to board the plane. One of the Twitter users said that international airline companies call it IAS - Indians Assisted Service. It's definitely the third! I've seen fairly fit looking people walking quite effortlessly during check in, switch to wheelchairs from security and immigration in mumbai. — Swathi Rishi (@Swathirishi) November 2, 2019 International airline companies jokingly call it IAS - Indians Assisted Service. Also common to see people walk around in duty free and then come back to their chairs. Genuine cases are rare. We are a laughing stock. — Chitra Subramaniam (@chitraSD) November 2, 2019 The last reason! — Kiran Mazumdar Shaw (@kiranshaw) November 2, 2019 Most of the wheel chairs are just scam. They don't really need it but take it as it is free. US airports charge even for a trolley may be charging wheel chairs in India will bring their usage down — Dr.P.S.VishnuVardhan (@drpsvvardhan) November 2, 2019 However, there were many who disagreed with Mahindra and mentioned how wheelchairs have actually been helpful and a boon for their elderly family members. This is a boon to my 83 year old father who uses it when he criss crosses our country thrice a year to visit me and my siblings in hyderabad, delhi and bengaluru. He has chronic arthritis and also suffered hip fracture a few months ago. — à°¶à±à°°à±à°¨à°¿à°µà°¾à°¸ ð®ð³ (@srinimv2004) November 2, 2019 Most of these are parents of folks settled in the west and many times are not well versed with navigating airports, their children hence ask for wheelchair assistance so that they don't miss connecting flights. It's opportunity for airlines to make money from what is complentary — Dimag Ki Batti (@batti_ki) November 2, 2019 U all are walking so you feel its easy to be in wheelchair. Just sit in a chair for a whole day. U will feel like dying. Those who all r teasing, seems u never faced it. Plz THANK God that u all r not facing.. I know because my son is wheelchair user from birth.. — Anchal verma (@Harshasheesh02) November 2, 2019 This lady on my flight last month was hale and hearty but needed a wheel chair because she could not read or understand English. So the wheel chair attendant managed her movement from departure gate to plane seat and then from plane seat to arrival gate where her son was waiting pic.twitter.com/IPkfyfvLJn — Amith (@amithpr) November 2, 2019 Sir, Tweet not in good taste. Please do not discourage such moves.#India has to go long way to achieve #DisabilityFriendly environment. #RPWD Act 2016 — Om Prakash, MD (Psychiatry) (@ompsychiatrist) November 2, 2019 View the full article
  11. "The problem is we have to show every three days that we are good," Zidane said earlier this month. Photo: AFPMADRID: Zinedine Zidane was hardly in a celebratory mood despite Real Madrid´s 5-0 thumping of Leganes on Wednesday which was their...
  12. Flying a drone in India has been a pain, thanks to the Drone laws in the country. It's now legal, but there's a lot that you need to do before your drone takes its first flight. This is exactly why we don't have companies like DJI selling drones officially in the country. Well, the only drones you can fly in India that don't need to go through the tedious registration process are the ones that come under 'Nano' category. So DJI just made a drone so small and so light that it doesn't need regulatory approval, even in India. Meet DJI Mavic Mini, a drone that only weighs 249g and fits in the palm of your hands when it's fully collapsed. Despite the small form factor, the DJI Mavic Mini packs pretty much everything that you'd find on a normal DJI drone like the Mavic Pro or DJI Spark. As for the optics, the DJI Mavic Mini sports a camera that can record 2.7K videos at 30fps and 1080p videos at 60fps. You can also capture 12MP photos if that's your thing. DJI also claims that the Mavic Mini can stay up in the air for 30 minutes, which is the longest flight time we've seen for a drone. You also get 4km of max signal range from Mavic Mini, which is also great. © DJI The DJI Mavic Mini has front and bottom-mounted proximity sensors, DJI's entire suite of creative shooting, fly modes and even the return to home safety feature. We haven't had the chance to fly one yet, so we can't exactly talk about the experience, but we think it'll be more or less similar to the current DJI drones that are available in the market. The DJI Mavic Mini will release on November 11 at a starting price of $399. Even though you can fly it in India without any registration, we doubt if it will go officially on sale here. View the full article
  13. Plastic has become the topic of discussion around the world as it's the most polluting component found on earth currently. Rationally so, the world has become more conscious of the adverse effects of it and working towards its complete demise is all we should be thinking of. While economies are rising and falling, creating a cause for concern every now and then, we have a bigger cause right in front of us that we need to pay heed to and progress towards tackling that cause. (c)The Independant While plastic is found everywhere, one place we wouldn't expect it to be would be our water bodies. Unfortunately, our oceans and rivers are filled with plastic remains which are a great hazard for the existing aquatic lives. Recently, a small sized sea turtle was found dead with 104 pieces of plastic in its body. That's the fate of our marine life and while we urge people to dispose their plastic waste off a little more consciously, there's an organisation which has taken a step forward and is doing its bit to preserve our oceans from getting polluted further. (c)Youtube The Ocean Cleanup is an organisation that has taken the initiative to clean up the oceans. Started by a Dutch inventor, Boyan Slat at the age of 18, The Ocean Cleanup has implemented a very efficient mechanism to clean up the oceans and rivers, without taking much time. They don't use conventional vessels and nets for the cleanup but in fact rely on buoyancy to go ahead with the clean up drive. "The system consists of a long floater that sits at the surface of the water and skirt that hangs beneath it. The floater provides buoyancy to the entire system, while the skirt prevents debris from escaping underneath and leads it into the retention system, or cod end. A cork line above the skirt prevents overtopping and keeps the skirt afloat," as stated on their website. (c)The Ocean Cleanup The organisation has now recently developed a foolproof system to clean up the river, with 'the Interceptor'. On an average, 2.4 million metric tonnes of plastic flows through the rivers, according to reports, and most of it come from cities and villages. In India, people use the river for multiple purposes, including disposing off their waste. The waste found in the ocean comes mainly through the river and if there's a viable solution to prevent plastic from polluting the rivers, the marine life could be saved. The Ocean Cleanup's aim is to tackle plastic in 1000 rivers by 2025, as per the reports. The Interceptor is installed to the river beds, away from the passing boats. The mechanism involves a large barrier that blocks floating plastic pieces in the river. All the plastic trapped by the barrier is later sent to waste management. If in case, some trash is missed by the barrier, another system helps rectify that. After a thorough clean up, the trash travels through a conveyor belt, before it's segregated further for disposal. The system is powered by solar energy. (c)The Ocean Cleanup "When we think about solutions, we obviously need to think holistically. First and foremost, we need to move all the way upstream and reduce consumption and production of single-use, unnecessary plastics, and we need to better collect and recycle plastics and ensure materials are getting back into the supply chain for a circular economy. But then for the materials that are still escaping and currently not making their way in that system, the last line of defence is cleanup," said Nick Malos, a senior director of the Trash Free Seas programme at The Oceans Cleanup. (c)The Ocean Cleanup Of course we desperately need this mechanism to come to India and help clean our river beds as well. The amount of plastic trash found in some of our major rivers seriously amounts to a deadly cost for our marine lives, in the long run. While beach cleanup drives are a good initiation, a more rigid and impactful clean up system needs to be installed and it's time we economise on environmental causes wisely and have this very efficient environmental non-profit working with our water bodies too. View the full article
  14. The 74th season of the National Basketball Association or the NBA is set to begin from October 22, and for the first time in a really long period, you do not see one particular “super team” winning the title. The big trades and free agencies in the off season, surprisingly good rookies, and the time to literally heal all the wounds have given the new season a sense of refreshing uncertainty. With the pre-season behind us, here is everything you need to know about the 2019-2020 season of the NBA: Summer Blockbusters: Iconic Trades and Free-Agency Signings: © Instagram - Brooklyn Nets Eight reigning All-Stars: Anthony Davis, Kevin Durant, Paul George, Kyrie Irving, Kawhi Leonard, D'Angelo Russell, Kemba Walker and Russell Westbrook have changed teams during the offseason. That's the most reigning All-Stars to ever change teams in a single NBA offseason out of which, Durant, Westbrook and Rose have been former 'Most Valuable Players' of the regular season and Durant, Leonard have been former Finals MVP. Three players who were All-Stars in 2018 but not in 2019 namely Jimmy Butler, DeMarcus Cousins and Al Horford too will be seen in colours different from the previous year. Dynamic Duos (players to look out for): © Reuters After an era of title-hungry all-star players coming together to form the so called “super-team” the league has finally moved on to a comparatively more interesting and competitive era, that of dynamic duos: â Los Angeles Lakers: Lebron James and Anthony Davis â Los Angeles Clippers: Paul George and Kawhi Leonard â Brooklyn Nets: Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving â Houston Rockets: Russell Westbrook and James Harden â Dallas Mavericks: Luka DonÄiÄ and Kristaps Porzingis Legacies To Follow: â Battle: Los Angeles Ever since the Los Angeles Clippers came into existence 50 years ago, they have been branded as “ that other LA team”, simply because of the legacy that the Lakers have had in the past 72 years. And then there's also the fact that the Lakers have won 16 titles while the Clippers have won none. © Reuters However, this off-season has made the Clippers relevant once again. The critics and basketball pundits from all over the world even believe that this “other LA Team” might just become “The LA Team” this season and win their maiden NBA title thanks to the inclusion of last season's MVP candidate Paul George and the 2019 NBA Finals MVP and Champion Kawhi Leonard. Also, we have the new and upgraded Lakers side led by the powerful duo of Lebron James and Anthony Davis. © Reuters Having been well rested for over 200 days after missing the playoffs for the first time in 14 years, a 34-year-old James looks to get back to his winning ways and win his fourth NBA title. A hungry Anthony Davis in his prime alongside a brilliant but highly underrated supporting roster led by Danny Green, would be crucial in this rivalry between the two LA teams. â Lebron James' Return To The Finals? © Reuters Albeit the 3-6 losing record in the NBA Finals, the mere fact that he Akron-born star made it to eight consecutive finals is impressive. So when during his first season in the Lakers' purple and gold, he missed out on making it to the playoffs, many believed that the King's reign is over. However with the time to recover after years and years of gruelling seasons during which the team would look up to him in the moment of need, James can finally give the driver's seat to Anthony Davis and focus more on ball distribution and play-making. With a comparatively young and more talented team as compared to his Cleveland days, Lebron's second season with the Lakers surely brings a great opportunity for the King to not only make it to the NBA Finals but win it all. â Steph Curry's MVP Campaign © Reuters One of the key ingredients behind winning the MVP award is narrative and Stephen Curry, the man who revolutionised the game of basketball with his ability to score from beyond the arc, has just the narrative to win him that trophy. With Kevin Durant and Andre Iguodala parting ways with the Golden State Warriors, Shaun Livingston retiring and Klay Thompson going down with a severe ACL tear during last season's finals and out of action for at least nine months, Curry will have to once again take charge a team which is not that “super” anymore. Sure he has Draymond Green and D'Angelo Russell by his side to begin the season with, but after losing the roster that helped him win three titles in an instant, has to have a major impact on the shooter's performance. If he somehow manages to make it to the top four of the Western Conference teams by the end of the regular season, the case for him becoming the MVP once again will improve vastly. Opening Day: The regular season's opening day will witness two matches: 1. Toronto Raptors Vs New Orleans Pelicans © Reuters As they celebrate their 25th season, the Raptors figure to embrace the “defending NBA champions as underdogs” perception. Being dismissed or discounted applies to many of the team's players, including the late-blooming Kyle Lowry, No. 27 pick Pascal Siakam, No. 48 pick Marc Gasol and the undrafted Fred VanVleet. © Reuters New Orleans is one of the NBA's most intriguing teams, thanks to a dramatic offseason overhaul. The offseason included the addition of No. 1 overall draft pick Zion Williamson who is one of the most highly anticipated NBA rookies in recent memory with names like Jrue Holiday, Brandon Ingram and Lonzo Ball by his side. 2. LA Clippers Vs LA Lakers © Reuters The Clippers have never reached the Conference Finals, but expectations are high with All-Stars Kawhi Leonard and Paul George joining several returning players from last season's 48-win team. However, George will miss the start of the season as he recovers from offseason surgery on both shoulders. © Reuters The Lakers are seen as a potential championship contender with Anthony Davis by their side. They have missed the playoffs in each of the last six seasons, tied for the NBA's third-longest active drought. Before this stretch, the Lakers had missed the playoffs five times in 65 seasons. Check out the entire NBA 2019-2020 schedule, here.
  15. Chris Hemsworth is not just one of the fittest people in Marvel, but also the entire Hollywood. I mean, that's like a pre-requisite for playing Thor in any movie other than Avengers: Endgame. He's a gym bro out and out, but not the cringey, annoying one, but the kind that would give anyone the motivation to actually start working out or maybe take their workouts to the next level. He, obviously, spends a good amount of time working out, so it's no surprise that every other thing he posts online is videos of him doing just that. But, what sets him apart is his content. Unlike the usual crowd, who post gym-mirror selfies and flaunt oiled abs at the same damn gym every time, Chris likes to mix it up and actually show all the crazy workouts he does. Well, if that's not inspiring, I don't know what is. I probably heard about 'underwater workout' for the first time because of Chris. View this post on Instagram Huge thanks to @marlow_warrington @xptlife @lairdhamiltonsurf for running us through some intense pool/breath/water training. Great to try something new, keep the body guessing. Train/Eat/Live well @centrfit ð¤ð¤ A post shared by Chris Hemsworth (@chrishemsworth) on Jul 18, 2019 at 2:30pm PDT His latest video on Instagram is also no different. He is so hot, oh wait, scratch that, it was so hot that his shirt apparently burst into flames. View this post on Instagram It was so hot my shirt literally burst into flames, luckily I was wearing my favourite pair of fire retardant shorts 𥵠give this circuit a go 6 times through @centrfit A post shared by Chris Hemsworth (@chrishemsworth) on Oct 17, 2019 at 8:50pm PDT Can one of my life goals be working out with Chris? View this post on Instagram Wrestling some iron with Jorge and Zoco while yelling loudly and playing dramatic music. Wanna see more of this madness? Check out @centrfit! (Link in bio) A post shared by Chris Hemsworth (@chrishemsworth) on Sep 22, 2019 at 6:56am PDT Is it just me or does that look fun? View this post on Instagram Punchy little circuit this one. 6 exercises, 6 reps, 6 rounds, no rest between individual exercises, 1 minute rest in between each round or just throw up and power through ðªð¤¢ð¥ check out @centrfit for more movement, nutrition, and mental fitness tips and techniques!!#thedevilsburn A post shared by Chris Hemsworth (@chrishemsworth) on Aug 7, 2019 at 7:18pm PDT Now, that's a workout with a view. View this post on Instagram Just crushed a workout from the @centrfit app. Launched about a month ago and the goal was to create a holistic all-encompassing approach to building the best version of yourself. The feedback so far has all been in that arena, so we couldn't be happier! Thanks to everyone who's on board. If you haven't checked it out, head to Centr.com or jump into the @Apple App Store and get involved! (link in bio) #CentrOwner ððªð¤ A post shared by Chris Hemsworth (@chrishemsworth) on Mar 23, 2019 at 1:00pm PDT Just wow. View this post on Instagram Mixing it up. Get creative. Keep moving. Variety is key! ðªðª @centrfit A post shared by Chris Hemsworth (@chrishemsworth) on Feb 13, 2019 at 4:48pm PST And, that obviously led to this hilarious video. View this post on Instagram The student has become the master. #Repost @jackblack ã»ã»ã» Mixing it up. Get creative. Keep moving. Variety is key! ðªðª Who did it better? #ThorWorkout @chrishemsworth âï¸ - @mrtaylorstephens A post shared by Chris Hemsworth (@chrishemsworth) on Feb 26, 2019 at 12:53pm PST There's never a boring workout. View this post on Instagram Trying to lock in on my workout spirit animal for 2019 @zocobodypro @da_rulk A post shared by Chris Hemsworth (@chrishemsworth) on Jan 11, 2019 at 7:11pm PST Something anyone can do at home. View this post on Instagram Try this 10 times through ð¤®Cheers to @da_rulk for giving us this little leg burner. No equipment needed, low impact and super functional. You'll feel like you're wearing a pair of concrete gum boots afterward ð¬ðª @zocobodypro A post shared by Chris Hemsworth (@chrishemsworth) on Dec 10, 2018 at 8:33am PST "Mixing it up." View this post on Instagram The character I'm playing at the moment is ex-military so I've been mixing up my training working with a few super humans with military backgrounds - the focus is on strength, speed, mobility and little to no rest to build endurance. Feeling goooooooood!Also been working on the sound I make after side kicking the heavy bag yeoooooooow ðªðªððð¤ð¤ðð #giveitacrack A post shared by Chris Hemsworth (@chrishemsworth) on Nov 13, 2018 at 8:04am PST That Thor glove, tho. View this post on Instagram Outdoor session in London for MIB!! Cheers to @zocobodypro for posing as an alien and letting me beat up on him. Sorry for the boot in the face ð¬ð #MenInBlack ð¥ @azzagrist A post shared by Chris Hemsworth (@chrishemsworth) on Jul 27, 2018 at 7:43am PDT Think you have it in you to get through these workouts?
  16. With the rising levels of pollution in the capital, the Delhi government has decided to implement the long gone odd-even scheme once again. It's also done to curb the traffic situation post festivities in the city and lord knows we need it, especially right now. Last time the odd-even scheme had a certain effect on the traffic and the air when it was implemented and this time around we hope it works even better. The scheme will be implanted from November 4 to November 15, 2019. © BCCL The first implementation of the scheme was in January 2016, and it was re-implemented again in April 2016 by the Aam Aadmi Party. Although the basic crux of the scheme remains the same, there are a few changes here and there you should know about before it comes into action from 8am to 8pm, every day. (1) Two-Wheelers Will Be Exempted All two-wheelers will be exempted from the rule, but only during peak hours - 8am to 11am and then again from 5pm to 8pm. Beyond these timings, the odd-even rule will be applied to two-wheelers too. So, if you commute by a two-wheeler on most days, make sure to do so during peak hours. © india Today (2) Women & People With Disabilities Exempted Women drivers, women driving with kids in their cars who are less than 12 YO, cars with all women occupants and people with disabilities are exempted from this scheme too. Maybe it's unfair for some of you, but that's the law! © New York Times (3) Private CNG Vehicles Will Not Be Exempted Unlike 2016, this time, private CNG vehicles will not be exempted from the odd-even scheme. © The Hindu (4) Vehicles From Outside Delhi Will Not Be Exempted Any car or even two-wheeler coming from outside Delhi, i.e. even Haryana and U.P. will not be exempted. Once you enter the city, the rules apply to any and every private vehicle. © BCCL (5) Vehicles Carrying School Kids Will Be Exempted Vehicles ferrying kids from schools will be exempted from the rule because kids are our future, so why not! © BCCL (6) Increase Of Violation Fine The New Motor Vehicle Act has stated that those not adhering to the new odd-even scheme will be fined INR 4,000, double of what was fined back in 2016. © Delhi Traffic Police Lastly, a good piece of news for frequent cab commuters, the cab aggregator Uber has decided to do away with surge pricing during the time the odd-even scheme is applicable! So, go crazy over booking an Uber and ditch your cars for a while.
  17. When it comes to Bollywood's 'Sultan' Salman Khan, everything needs to be larger than life, and away from the mainstream. But when you begin to wonder how that can be incorporated in every aspect of his life, Sallu Bhai will show you just how that can be done. Let's take for instance that one constant that has been a part of Salman's life throughout these years. That has to be his love for fitness and bodybuilding, right? And as if that's not all, every now and then Salman keeps giving us a glimpse of his fitness regimen which is nothing less than motivating. © Twitter Hours ago, Salman shared another such video which is motivating us to get onto the path of fitness. Donning his fitness gear and recorded in his gym, the video takes “leg day” to new heights. Check out this super cool video that Salman shared on his official Instagram feed and you will know what we mean. View this post on Instagram After experiencing the highs and lows my security has finally realised how secure they are wid me .. ha ha A post shared by Salman Khan (@beingsalmankhan) on Jun 17, 2019 at 10:33am PDT As you can see, for his leg workout, Salman can be seen lifting two of his heavyweight bodyguards instead of regular weights. If that isn't turning the beast mode on, we wonder what is! Salman captioned the video saying, “After experiencing the highs and lows my security has finally realised how secure they are wid me .. ha ha” © Facebook Not sure about his security personnel, but we are sure as hell impressed with Salman's strength. Let's take this video as all the inspiration we need to get on with our new year's resolution and get fit and ripped at the gym.
  18. It's a known fact that stress rules our lives. We're always stressed because of work, family issues, relationships not working out or anything else minor or major under the sun. It's like stress has become an inherent part of our lifestyle and there is no way to do away with it, unless, of course, there is a proper outlet to release it. © Pintrest More often than not, physical exercise is the best way to release any latent stress that's inbuilt. It's a tried and tested way to take out one's aggression, sadness or even anxiety and most youth, on a daily basis, are more oriented towards a healthy lifestyle with adequate physical work. Sometimes though, our work hours don't permit us to engage in physical exercises, by heading to the gym or joining any other activity and we learn to cut our losses and figure out another way to release stress. © BoxFit But New York City believes that you don't really need to join a gym or a boxing class to release your stress and they've got you covered to release every ounce of aggression you may have garnered through the day. How, you ask? Well, Manhattan district of New York have installed punching bags on the road for frustrated, stressed out commuters and it's certainly doing them a world of good. dtttww public punching bag at NYCxDESIGN from designboom on Vimeo. Many times, the city noises, pollution, traffic and crowd add to our stress and make us frustrated with the slow progression of city life. If you don't have an outlet to release it, New York has given you a fair chance to do so, without feeling guilty for anything! It's a perfect venting space, and you can punch that yellow bag, without being judged, as many times as you wish! This quirky initiative was launched by the Savannah, Georgia based studio called 'donttakethisthewrongway', and it was a part of the NYCxDESIGN or the New York Design Week 2019 and it was launched as a public initiative as catharsis, to release any pent up frustration and stress. © Pintrest View this post on Instagram A design concept for the public that explores designing common spaces for the frustrations we all face. Frustrations that go beyond designed systems and happen, well, because we are human. The public punching bag offers an outlet for these emotions as a means to maybe develop a healthier way to address personal and collective issues in a public setting. (may 15 -21, 2019) #nycdesignweek A post shared by donttakethisthewrongway (@studio_dtttww) on May 16, 2019 at 12:54pm PDT Now, you may wonder why am I talking about something that's happening halfway across the world. Well, maybe because we can, through this article, ask some likeminded people to initiate this form of catharsis for us, here! With the terrible pollution and the crowd, work stress and, of course, traffic, all over our cities, we need these punching bags to make our lives and lifestyles a bit more bearable. Of course, they should be installed in places where they can't be tampered with, like near office buildings. Since not everyone can afford a gym membership or boxing classes, these yellow boxing boards can come in handy quite majorly in the metropolitan cities of India and become a haven for a healthy outlet! Worth a thought, don't you think? © Pintrest For now, I am sure most New Yorkers are practising safe stress-release, by boxing their frustrations away!
  19. Sudan has seen a lot of turmoil and instability since June 2019, when the military first ousted the long-term ruling president Omar-Al-Bashir. It all started way back in December 2018, when the ruling president's government imposed emergency austerity methods in order to do away with an inevitable economic collapse. © BBC This led to a severe political crisis, which in turn made the security forces open fire on pro-democracy protestors in Khartoum. While the protest was peacefully handled, according to the New York Times, as many as 100 people have been killed and about 326 injured. At least 100 peaceful protesters were killed during a military crackdown in Sudan — now the country is at a standstill pic.twitter.com/AK0mPNkG8U — NowThis (@nowthisnews) 12 June 2019 The protestors are demanding a civilian-led interim government and since then, representatives of the protests have been in talks with the military, determining who takes control of authority. But the situation has bled for way too long now and according to the Central Committee of Sudan Doctors, at least 40 bodies were recovered from the river Nile. But How Did It All Begin? Well, the protests started in December 2018 to overthrow the President. Cuts were made to bread and fuel subsidies which sparked protests in the east over the standard of living and ultimately, they reached to the capital Khartoum. The protestors obviously demanded Bashir's government to be thrown out, who had been in power for 30 years. The protests finally reached a conclusion on April 6, when people occupied the square in front of the military headquarters and demanded that the army fight the president out of his rule. Almost 5 days later, the military announced the president was no longer in power. © BBC Women played a main role in the protests, with 22-year-old Alaa Saleh leading the group. Even though a woman was the face of the protestors, as many as 70 women were raped by the police and the paramilitary forces during an attack at the protest camp, while some protestors were shot at, on June 3rd. #SudanMassacre What is happening in Sudan? This is so bad. pic.twitter.com/fMvdiKlUB3 — jafar badi (@BadiJafar) 13 June 2019 So, Now Who Is In Charge? A council of generals took over on April 11 but there was a lot of struggle for the country to regain normalcy, in every sense of the word. The seven-member Transitional Military Council is led by Lt-Gen Abdel Fattah Abdelrahman Burhan and they insist they need to be in charge to bring everything back to normalcy again. But unfortunately, the army is not a unified force in the country and a lot of paramilitary organisations and Islamic militia have also taken up authority there. For now, the streets of Sudan are deserted with a complete Internet blackout in the country. The United Nations has condemned the attacks and The Human Rights Council has been called about to probe an inquiry into the Human Rights violations committed by the military in Sudan. Schools, hospitals and health centres in #Sudan have been targeted, looted and destroyed. Health workers have been attacked simply for doing their job. To save children's lives, the violence must stop. #ChildrenUnderAttack pic.twitter.com/A6VbGI6aGo — UNICEF (@UNICEF) 13 June 2019 Who Exactly Is The Opposition? Even though the economic collapse brought the Sudanese from all walks of life to the streets, the demonstration organisation was taken over by The Sudanese Professionals Association, a collaboration of doctors, lawyers and health workers. The protestors are local people across all age groups but most of them are young people, fighting for their rights. When the military finally took power in April, the protestors stood outside Military Headquarters demanding the authority to be given to a civilian administration. The civilian group of protestors and the ruling generals, who come under the umbrella group 'Alliance For Freedom and Change', eventually came to an agreement. © Twitter What Did They Agree On? Both the Civilian Administration and the Military decided on a three-year-transition period to civilian rule. An agreement was reached on May 15, 2019. The protestors claim that Bashir's regime is so deeply planted and implemented that a long transition is needed to completely uproot his political network and allow fair democratic elections again. The two sides also agreed on a new government, including a sovereign council, a cabinet and a legislative body. © Twitter But unfortunately, the military leaders didn't stick to their decisions and scrapped the agreements reached to set up a fresh elections mandate within nine months. The TMC head decided to stop negotiating with the Alliance For Freedom and Change and cancel whatever had been agreed on. In the wake of this fresh agreement, the pro-democracy leaders said they were cutting all contacts with the TMC and called for a 'total civil disobedience' and a general strike. While the strikes were called off on June 11, which almost brought Khartoum to a standstill, most African and Western countries have backed the protestors. Saudi Arabia has urged discussion on both sides but not condemned the military. © Twitter After the strikes have been pulled away, protest leaders are willing to resume power-sharing talks with the ruling military council. “The Alliance for Freedom and Change agreed to end the civil disobedience from today. Both sides have also agreed to resume talks soon." Mahmoud Drir, the official mediator made a statement about the situation. We just hope both the parties reach a common consensus and peace is restored in Sudan, especially in Khartoum, really soon.
  20. Yes, we know plastic is big 'No No' and a bigger issue than anything else right now. While the landfills are cluttered with heaps of plastic and cows are ingesting it and falling sick every day, we have to think of more probable solutions to reuse and recycle plastic, so that it doesn't assemble in places and cause more danger to our surroundings. But, even now, we fight with shop keepers to give us bags to carry our stuff in, and more often than not, the bags are obviously plastic! © Pinterest Canada, for that very reason, has developed a smart and funny way to get rid of this problem once and for all. While it's advisable to bring your own cloth bags for shopping, most people don't really bother with that and end up demanding plastic bags at most superstores. But this one superstore in Vancouver outdid most people who asked for plastic bags and we wish someone did the same here in India as well. We all know we need to cut down our use on plastic, but sometimes, we need a little nudge in the right direction, and here's what Canada is doing. The people who want to use plastic bags from the Independent Grocery store in East West Market, will get plastic bags with some really embarrassing things written on them, so the world can see what their plastic bag says while they carry it home! It's hilarious yet so important! © Pinterest The plastic bags say things like 'Into The Weird Adult Video Emporium' and 'The Colon Care Co-op', making it impossible for shoppers to carry around these plastic bags and opt for reusable bags instead or maybe carry their own shopping bags from home! "The message is, we should make a conscious effort to save our planet one step at a time, [Plastic bags] are a big problem, and every step helps." -David Lee Kwen, the owner of East West Market told an international publication. © Pinterest © Pinterest It's time we start campaigning against the use of plastic bags, because clearly there is an issue with the immense plastic usage in most cities and we will sooner than later pay the price for that. For now, let's hope someone catches on to this funny message and adopts something similar in most consumer stores around cities, so that consumers are compelled to use reusable plastic bags or something more sustainable.
  21. In what has proved to be one of the most exciting and competitive seasons, the 2018-19 edition of the UEFA Champions League is now poised for a scintillating finale as rampant Liverpool lock horns with spirited Tottenham Hotspur at the Wanda Metropolitano stadium in Madrid on 1st June. Both Liverpool and Spurs turned around their deficits from the first-leg against Barcelona and Ajax to script memorable comebacks in the second-leg ties. While a Lucas Moura hat-trick proved to be Spurs saviour, braces by Divock Origi and Georginio Wijnaldum got the Reds over the line. Going purely by form, Liverpool undoubtedly have an upper hand over Spurs and are rightly labelled as favourites to break their Champions League jinx this year. From boasting one of the best defenders in the world to deploying one of the most lethal attacking trio in Europe, Liverpool surely have it all. But, the most important ingredient in their title charge has been their pragmatic manager Jurgen Klopp. © Reuters Roped in after the sacking of Brendan Rodgers in 2015, Klopp has undeniably taken Liverpool to new heights in club football. From reaching the Champions League final last season to almost pipping Manchester City to the Premier League trophy this year, the impact and philosophy of the German tactician has been nothing short of sensational for the Reds. But, as the Anfield loyalists chase the dreams of European domination, Klopp's harrowing record in major finals poses a major cause of worry for Liverpool's title dreams. The last time Klopp won a major final as manager was with Borussia Dortmund in the 2012 German Cup final. But, since then, it has been downslide for the German. Going into this year's final, the Liverpool boss will be eager to end a six-match losing run in finals of major tournaments. Champions League Final (2013) After getting the better of Jose Mourinho's Real Madrid in the last four, Klopp powered Borussia Dortmund to the Champions League final as they aimed to become champions of Europe for a second time. But, their Bundesliga rivals Bayern Munich had different plans for their old foes at Wembley. Mario Mandzukic opened the scoring in the 60th minute to put Bayern ahead. But Bayern's lead was nullified by Ilkay Gundogan who levelled the scoring for Dortmund with a clean penalty eight minutes later. The game went right down to the wire and it was Arjen Robben whose finish in 89th minute sealed a 2-1 win for Bayern and broke the hearts of Dortmund fans. German Cup Final (2014) Another season and another final for Klopp and Dortmund. But, just like last season, Dortmund and their manager were in for another heartbreak at the hands of Bayern, only this time it was Pep Guardiola in place of Jupp Heynckes. In a tight game that saw Bayern and Dortmund failing to break the deadlock in regulation time, the 2014 DFB-Pokal final reached extra time. With fatigue taking a toll on players from both sides, it all boiled down to will and hunger - something that tilted the tide in Bayern's favour. Arjen Robben got Bayern in front in 107th minute and it was Thomas Muller's finish (120+3') that sealed a 2-0 win for Guardiola's side. German Cup Final (2015) After seven years in charge, Klopp's tenure at Dortmund was finally coming to an end, but not before one last hurdle - the 2015 German Cup final. With Wolfsburg making their way into the 2015 DFB-Pokal final, Klopp must have been hoping for one last hurrah before travelling all the way to England to join Liverpool. But, contrary to popular perception, Klopp's misery at major finals continued as Wolfsburg stunned Dortmund with a 3-1 win to clinch the title. Dortmund got off to a roaring start as Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang got them in front in the fifth minute, but the likes of Luiz Gustavo (22'), Kevin De Bruyne (33') and Bas Dost (38') ran riot and washed away the hopes of Klopp whose farewell was marred with a major defeat. League Cup Final (2016) Four months into his stint at Anfield, Klopp would've been eager to make amends for his 2013 Champions League final defeat at Wembley when Liverpool reached the League Cup final in 2016. But, another heartbreak awaited Klopp as the Reds geared up for a record 12th League Cup final. Taking on Manuel Pellegrini's Manchester City, Liverpool found themselves trailing early in the second half. Fernandinho opened the scoring for City with a low shot from a tight angle on the right side of the box, beating Simon Mignolet in the 49th minute. Raheem Sterling had a crucial chance to double the lead for City but his shot it wide. The 83rd minute brought the much-needed goal for Liverpool as Philippe Coutinho scored from 12 yards out. As the match finished 1-1, it all boiled down to the penalty shootout where City held their nerves to seal a 3-1 win. Europa League Final (2016) The same year presented an opportunity to Klopp to salvage some silverware when Liverpool reached the Europa League final. Three months after finishing runners-up in the League Cup, the Reds were hoping to get their hands around the Europa League trophy when they locked horns with Sevilla at St-Jakob Park in Basel. For a team that had brushed past Klopp's former team Borussia Dortmund with a 5-4 (on aggregate) win in the quarterfinals, Liverpool fans were confident that they will finally have something to cheer for. But, going by Klopp's record at major finals, there could've only been one outcome: another heartbreak. Despite taking the lead through Daniel Sturridge (35'), the Reds were outplayed by Sevilla - courtesy Kevin Gameiro (46') and Coke (64', 70') - in a 3-1 defeat. Champions League Final (2018) While Manchester City won the Premier League title with a record 100 points, Liverpool could only manage a fourth-place finish with 75 points for their showing in 2018. But, their fans weren't really concerned, after all, their team was vying for a bigger prize: Champions League trophy. On the back of consistent performances, Liverpool did reach the Champions League final but beating European giants of the might of Real Madrid was going to take some doing. In what began as a disastrous final, Liverpool lost star-striker Mohamed Salah to a nasty injury in the first-half. But, that was least of their worries. A massive blunder by goalkeeper Loris Karius saw Karim Benzema opening the scoring for Madrid in the 51st minute. While Sadio Mane found the equaliser in the 55th minute, twin strikes from Gareth Bale sealed the fate of Liverpool as Madrid romped to a 3-1 win.
  22. They say ideas come to life if there is team work involved and sometimes they become successful when work is done in tandem in order to build an idea that can change lives. We came across a couple, who've really challenged their intellect and established something wonderful, that can probably change the landscape of lateral thinking in India. © Akshar Forum Parmita Sarma and her husband Mazin Mukhtar in 2016 established Askhar Forum, a school in Assam run to serve the needs of children in poverty. The solemn goal of the school is to provide education that encourages children to take higher moralistic social stance and combat poverty and the effects it has in their own communities. The education here is very lateral and unconventional. The school focuses on the children enhancing their own creativity and learning things of social significance, to better the society at large. Apart from basic education, the school teaches children how to make a living, start a business, initiate development work in their own communities and work for the welfare of the environment. © Akshar Forum The school is certainly very different from any other government school, in its beliefs, applications and implications. Firstly, they fight child labour by using child labour. Which means, their older students, who've been with the school since a while teach and tutor the young ones and are there for them for any help that's required. The kids are also employed as social workers, and are paid based on their skills and knowledge. Their wages increase with teaching skill and empathy for younger students. Students are strongly incentivised to be caring and to behave like model students. "By teaching others, they learn how to teach themselves, and they can subsequently accelerate through their own self-paced curriculum. Also, by employing teens as teaching assistants, we can ensure young children receive daily one-on-one attention, the kind of attention privileged children get from their educated parents, private tutors, and private school teachers." - Mazin Mukhtar, founder. © Akshar Forum Although the school is entirely free and has been since they first started in 2016, they have developed a rather interesting campaign, for and with the kids. "We started our campus recycling centre last year, designed to employ at-risk teens so they can earn enough to not be compelled by their families to drop out, and serve their community at the same time. The kids did well, making "Eco-bricks" out of mostly non-recyclable plastic, but parents were not cooperating. They were not sending plastic, and they continued to burn plastic at home, for warmth, but mostly for convenience." © Akshar Forum So, instead these guys did something fun and tactical. They told the parents that the school is not free anymore and their fees is all the dry plastic waste from home! And guess what, plastic started coming in to school. The kids usually use the non-recyclable plastic from their homes to build 'eco-bricks'. The kids actually have to bring about 25 packets of waste per week. "The accounting is not very strict, and now families are in the habit of segregating plastic waste and sending it to school every couple of days. We figured, the school bus is already making rounds, might as well carry clean recyclables. Now we collect about 10,000 plastic packets per month. The teens make Eco-bricks which we use for small construction projects, like this small tree planter below, which uses about 200 bottles and 4,000 plastic packets." © Akshar Forum This is such a fantastic way to reduce waste and make good use of it through recyclable means. If our schools emphasised on these activities a bit more aggressively, city waste wouldn't be cluttering our landfills today. © Akshar Forum Although it's difficult to get kids to join the Askhar Forum, because most parents emphasise on earning a living than education and start forcing their kids aged 12-13 to find jobs. Akshar's model does help kids make a living. Kids earn INR 50 per day for teaching and another INR 50, after school for working in the recycling centre but that's not enough compared to what the kids make working at the stone quarry, which is easily around INR 200-300 per day. But even so, they convince the parents that their kids will be in good hands and learn a skill that can help them make a living in the future. "We tell them(parents)- Send your kids to our school, and yes, they will earn less -- for now. But their earnings will keep increasing month after month, year after year, as they learn more. But if you send them to the quarry, they will earn 200 rupees per day for the rest of their lives." © Akshar Forum For most parents this works, as parents think of the future, but some of them are happy sending their kids to the quarry to work and Akshar really can't do anything about that. But even so, Askhar Forum has always been different. It doesn't restrict students to follow a similar pattern of curriculum and helps guide them towards vocational skills, saving the environment and teaching techniques that help them become better human beings. © Akshar Forum Establishing such schools within our own cities should be the practical manifesto because most people take the environment for granted around where they live. Here the children are taught from scratch to be independent and self-sufficient and of course aware of how to be sustainably efficient. This small school in a village in Assam is bringing about heaps of change and it's definitely making a difference!
  23. For a team that upstaged the mighty Australians in the final to win the 1996 World Cup, Sri Lanka has, sadly, failed to follow it up at the major ICC events. The Lankan brigade came mighty close to securing their second World title in 2011, only to suffer a brutal heartbreak at the hands of Team India in the final. Since then, a lot has changed, but, sadly for Sri Lanka, not for the greater good. With their decorated cricketers calling time on their respective careers, needless to mention the deep infighting and disharmony, the Lankans have struggled for experience, with the young guns in desperate need for guidance and experience. Having lost the ODI and T20I series against England in October 2018, the Lankans were forced to endure whitewash defeats in New Zealand (3-0) and South Africa (5-0) which pretty much sums up their sorry state of affairs. Going into the World Cup, the Lankan fans will have bare minimum hopes (on realistic grounds) as this squad looks far from Arjuna Ranatunga's champion side from the 1996 edition. While getting their players acclimatised to the English conditions will be the first of the many hurdles they'll face, Sri Lanka will surely need the following players to step up big time if they intend to challenge stronger teams at the World Cup: Lasith Malinga © Reuters For a man who has 322 wickets in 218 ODIs, Lasith Malinga needs no introduction to seam bowling. The 35-year-old has been one of the impactful players for Sri Lanka over the years. And, going into the World Cup this year, the Lankans will desperately need the veteran to once again deliver the goods to pin down the opposition. Age might be catching up with the right-arm bowler, but Malinga's searing inswinging yorkers from his peculiar round-arm action are as destructive and distinctive as they were in the past. His cunning variations and lengths are one of the reasons why he still holds the record for most wickets in consecutive deliveries at the World Cup - something he achieved against South Africa at the 2007 edition. Angelo Mathews © Reuters One of the highly-rated players in the Lankan squad, Angelo Mathews has had his share of ups and downs in the recent past. In 2018, he was stripped of his captaincy owing to Sri Lanka's disastrous campaign at the 2018 Asia Cup. Since then, Mathews has claimed that he was made a "scapegoat" for his side's dismal show and continues to have his differences with coach Chandika Hathurusingha. But, despite his troubles, Mathews remains a vital cog in the Lankan set-up, especially at the coveted World Cup. His presence in the squad not only provides the much-needed solidarity to the otherwise brittle middle-order but also bolsters their bowling attack. Given his recent rifts with the management, Mathews should use the World Cup as an opportunity to reaffirm his credentials as a vital player. Dimuth Karunaratne © Reuters With Malinga struggling to keep the team together and Mathews unable to strike a chord with the team management, the Sri Lankan selectors were left with no choice but to appoint a total outsider - DimuthKarunaratne (coach Hobson's preferred choice) - as the captain of their World Cup side. Returning to ODI cricket after four years, Karunaratne began his captaincy stint on a positive note. During their ODI match against Scotland earlier this month, the left-hander led from the front scoring 77 runs in Sri Lanka's 35-run triumph (D/L) - a victory after eight straight defeats. He might not have been around as much as one would've liked, but Lanka will surely need Karunaratne's leadership skills to bolster their chances at the ICC mega event. Thisara Perera © Reuters Another veteran in the Lankan brigade, Thisara Perera has rediscovered his form to become a key player in recent times. While bowling is ostensibly Perera's major skill, often deployed in the middle-order, he is also capable of delivering furious finishes to an innings. Perera will need to deliver the goods with both bat and ball as an inexperienced side like Sri Lanka could surely use his all-round abilities to stay afloat in the tournament. Kusal Perera © Reuters Making his debut in 2013, Kusal Perera was immediately likened to batting great Sanath Jayasuriya for his style of play. Forging his career with aggression and reliability in equal parts, the left-handed batsman established himself as one of Sri Lanka's go-to openers in limited-overs cricket. Battling injuries in the recent past has surely affected Perera's form, but the strokeplay, the range of shots and the power-hitting style that he possesses will surely be crucial for Sri Lanka in England &Wales. Opening the innings, the Lankan fans will hope Perera rediscovers his form quickly to get them off to flying starts in the tournament.
  24. How often do you witness road safety hazards around you and do something about it in order to save lives? It could be asking someone to buckle up and wear their seat belt or their helmets, or forewarning someone about a dupatta that can create a mighty accident or even ask someone to slow down because they're going way beyond their speed limit. Whatever it is, road safety is a growing concern in most cities in India and it needs to be tackled immediately. © Instagram/Thrikkannan In India, more than 150,000 people are killed in road accidents each year and most of the cases are due to their own callousness. Either they are negligent while driving, or are doing something they're definitely not supposed to be doing, while they lose their lives. Fortunately, a young boy from Kerala understood the purpose and the volatility of this situation and decided to do something bigger and better to spread awareness about road safety in his state first, through photographs. Yes, you read that right. A 19-year-old photographer from Kerala has taken upon himself to spread awareness of how gruesome road accidents can be, through his photographs and people are actually taking adequate caution, thanks to him. © Instagram/Thrikkannan Hafiz Sanjeev, a student pursuing VFX and animation at an animation and visual effects institute in Kochi loves photography and has decided to use it as a means to create social awareness. We may hear and see a thousand campaigns on social awareness but if they do not impact us, we will seldom do much about them. Except of course if a visual medium is used creatively to determine a particular idea, we will pay attention to it, more than anything else, because we are visual beings and that's what Hafiz believes in as well. View this post on Instagram Full hand held shots ðð¼ ð¯ Story of my latest post ðð¤ . . For more follow me ð @thrikkannan . . . Special thanks bro @the_a_k_4_7 ð . . . . . In frame @anas.haneef @hasifsadar @the_a_k_4_7 . . . . . . . . . #thrikkannan ___________________________________ #teamcamholders #indianphotography #photooftheday #worldphotography #photography #photo #nikonpictures #canon #picoftheday #naturepics #ilovelandscapes #moodygrams #indiaphotoproject #f4fofficial #travel #vsco #instagood #naturephotography#photooftheday #landscape #landscapephotography #photoshop #model #streetphotography #wanderlust #visualambassadors #india #travel #vscoindia #vscokerala #moodygram_kerala A post shared by Muhammed Hafiz S (@thrikkannan) on May 12, 2019 at 8:36pm PDT We caught up with the young lad in an exclusive interview and he had a lot to say about this campaign! "Since childhood, I used to love capturing photos on my mobile phone. From class 10th, I started borrowing my friend's camera for photography... But after 12th my dream came true…my Pappa bought me my first camera. Now I'm 19 and I create frames from my point of view. I started observing small things happening in our daily life, that are simply ignored by people. I decided to capture those moments and show people how much that impact our daily life. And from this, I earned satisfaction to." View this post on Instagram à´à´°àµ നലàµà´²à´¤àµà´¨àµà´¨à´¾à´²àµà´à´³àµà´ à´àµà´µà´¨àµà´±àµ à´¤àµà´à´¿à´ªàµà´ªàµà´à´³à´¾à´£àµð stay safe ð . . . . . . . Special thanks @the__lonerider__ ð»ðð . . For more follow me ð@thrikkannan @hafiz_sajeev . . . . . . . In frame @anas.haneef @hasnappi ⤠. . . . . . . . #thrikkannan ___________________________________ #teamcamholders #indianphotography #photooftheday #worldphotography #photography #photo #nikonpictures #canon #picoftheday #naturepics #ilovelandscapes #moodygrams #indiaphotoproject #f4fofficial #travel #vsco #instagood #naturephotography#photooftheday #landscape #landscapephotography #photoshop #model #streetphotography #wanderlust #visualambassadors #india #travel #vscoindia #vscokerala #moodygram_kerala ____________________________________________ @moodygram_kerala @teamcamholders @moody_nature @naturegra @natures @moody_tones @_keralagram_ @moodygram_kerala @mobile__clickz @mobile__photography___ @mobile_clickzzz_kerala @kerala_godsowncountry @keralaphotos @wondering_kerala @visualmobs @globe_visuals @kerala360 @moody.film @vsco.kerala.co @vscoseries.co @lightroom.india @lightroommasters @lightroom_kerala_co A post shared by Muhammed Hafiz S (@thrikkannan) on Apr 7, 2019 at 4:30am PDT When it came to road safety, Hafiz felt very strongly about the topic. "According to the last year survey, there were around 40,000+ accidents and 4000+ deaths reported. This is the reason why I came up with this “road safety” campaign. When I was travelling on a bike with my friend, I met with a car accident, the driver opened the door carelessly. That day, I understood how necessary it is to make others aware about road safety " © Instagram/Thrikkannan He created an Instagram account with a catchy username 'Thrikkannan', meaning 'the third eye man', which was suggested to him by his girlfriend. Through this account, Hafiz shared his work on this campaign. "A flying dupatta is a 'small thing', but this very 'thing' has the potential of taking not just one life, but also many in the resultant accident. Another common practice that I'd observed was how people who'd parked their cars on the wrong side would open their doors with little regard to the flowing traffic behind them. Not only are they endangering their own lives, but their actions could also prove detrimental to the innocent riders". © Instagram/Thrikkannan The two people he worked closely with to give this campaign its meaning was his friend Anas, an aspiring actor and his sister Hasna who also loves to act. The pictures bring out an important emotional element, to depict how crucial and impactful this campaign really is and every little detail counts in order to practice safe measures. "My favourite photograph from this campaign is "scarf accident” because we invested a lot of efforts and hard work on it and the feedbacks were satisfying to". © Instagram/Thrikkannan Hafiz's campaign hit a popularity mark when it reached Instagram. Obviously, people loved the way he emoted topics of grave significance through emotionally portrayed photographs, that do make a difference. Hafiz plans to continue doing such socially relevant campaigns through photography, while pursuing his degree. Honestly, we need more kids like Hafiz who understand the relevance of the time we're living in and do something through creative means to make a significant difference in society. Here's wishing we see more such campaigns form this 19-year-old genius! Follow him on Instagram here
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