India imposes curfew in Kashmir ahead of clampdown anniversary

first_imgIncreased security Authorities have been tightening restrictions across the Kashmir valley since the weekend of August 1.Early Monday morning, new razor-wire and steel barricades were used to block the city’s main roads.Residents in other major towns and many villages told AFP that police also ordered them not to venture out of their homes until Thursday.The curfew is similar to the one introduced just before Kashmir’s semi-autonomy was stripped on August 5.A total communications blackout was imposed, with phone and internet lines cut and tens of thousands of fresh troops moved into the valley in one of the world’s most militarized regions.”Police went around in jeeps ordering everyone not to leave their homes just like this time last year,” a resident in the southern Kashmir valley region of Kulgam, who asked to remain anonymous, told AFP.The curfew came as Kashmiris called for August 5 to be observed as a “black day”.Anger across Muslim-majority Kashmir against India’s Hindu-nationalist government has been growing since last year, particularly over the granting of rights — once reserved for Kashmiris — to tens of thousands of people from outside of the region to buy land.Kashmir has waged a three-decade-long armed rebellion against Indian rule with tens of thousands of lives, mostly civilians, lost in the conflict. A “full curfew” means people can only move around with an official pass, usually reserved for essential services like police and medical professionals. The Himalayan region is already subject to restrictions to reduce the spread of the novel coronavirus amid a jump in infections, with most economic activities limited and public movement curtailed.The order said the separate virus lockdown would be extended until August 8.Police vehicles fitted with megaphones patrolled Srinagar after dark, with officers ordering residents to remain indoors for the next two days. A curfew has been imposed across Indian Kashmir just two days before the first anniversary of New Delhi’s abolition of the restive region’s semi-autonomy, officials said late Monday, citing intelligence reports of looming protests.”These restrictions shall come into force with immediate effect and shall remain in force on 4th and 5th August,” stated the government order issued for the main city of Srinagar.”Full curfew will be enforced in all Kashmir districts,” a senior police officer, who asked to remain anonymous, told AFP.center_img Topics :last_img read more

Funding levels recovering steadily at Swiss pension funds

first_imgPositive market developments and rising discount rates helped Swiss Pensionskassen improve their funding levels by approximately 300 basis points, consultancies estimated.PKSBB, the CHF15bn (€12bn) pension fund of Swiss federal railways SBB, fared particularly well, reporting a funding level just above the 100%-mark for the first time in more than a decade.Its 101.8% funding level marked an increase of 270bps year on year and means that, for 2014, its participants will not have to pay any additional contributions as part of a recovery plan.Meanwhile, average funding levels at Swiss pension funds improved to 102.9% for pension funds in general, according to Towers Watson, or even to as high as 110.8% for private pension funds, according to Swisscanto. The Towers Watson Pension Index calculated that the funding level increased by 400bps quarter on quarter from 99.1% as reported per end-September 2013, while Swisscanto worked out an improvement of 320bps for private pension funds and 270bps for public pension funds to 102.7% year on year.A slight increase in the discount rate also helped lower liabilities and improve funding levels in turn.Within the Towers Watson sample, the discount rate improved by 16bps, while liabilities shrank by 2%.Swisscanto reported a 6.1% average rate of return for its sample, similar to the one published by Towers Watson at 6.2%.UBS calculated a similar average return at 5.89%, but the Credit Suisse index showed a slightly lower average return at 5.75%.The PKSBB is at the lower end of the spectrum, with a return of 5.4% for 2013.In a statement, the pension fund stressed that, despite the recent improvement of its funding levels, its financial buffers were still wanting.The PKSBB is one of the funds currently looking to introduce variable pensions for future pensioners to ensure sustainable, long-term financing.last_img read more

Chicken nuggets recalled due to possible foreign matter

first_imgWashington D.C. — Tyson Foods, Inc., a Sedalia, Mo. establishment, is recalling approximately 36,420 pounds of chicken nugget products that may be contaminated with extraneous materials, specifically rubber, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced today.The panko chicken nugget items were produced on Nov. 26, 2018. The following products are subject to recall: [View Labels (PDF only)]5-lb. plastic packages of “Tyson WHITE MEAT PANKO CHICKEN NUGGETS” with a “BEST IF USED BY” date of “NOV 26 2019,” case code “3308SDL03” and time stamps 23:00 through 01:59 (inclusive).The products subject to recall bear establishment number “P-13556” inside the USDA mark of inspection. These items were shipped to retail locations nationwide.The problem was discovered when the establishment received consumer complaints of extraneous material in purchased Panko Chicken Nugget products. FSIS was notified on Jan. 29, 2019.There have been no confirmed reports of adverse reactions due to consumption of these products. Anyone concerned about an injury or illness should contact a healthcare provider.FSIS is concerned that some product may be frozen and in consumers’ freezers. Consumers who have purchased these products are urged not to consume them. These products should be thrown away or returned to the place of purchase.last_img read more