Two for three as #Limerick city constituency enters tight race

first_imgNewsBreaking newsTwo for three as #Limerick city constituency enters tight raceBy Staff Reporter – February 27, 2016 684 Facebook Advertisement Print Twitter Sarah Jane Hennelly bows outAndrew [email protected] just a handful of counts likely to be left in both of the Limerick constituencies, the race for the Dail is hotting up as outgoing TD Jan O’Sullivan trails  Sinn Fein’s Maurice Quinlivan by less than 500 votes.Following the transfer of votes from the four excluded candidates; Denis Riordan (NP), Des Hayes (NP), Nora Bennis (CD) and James Gaffney (Green), Fine Gael’s Michael Noonan and Kieran O’Donnell are both short of the required quota with the Minister for Finance requiring an additional 1,132 to reach the magic 9,353.Deputy O’Donnell is seeking an additional 2,523 votes to reach the quota while Maurice Quinlivan sits on a total of 6,651, just 485 votes ahead of Labour Minister for Education and Skills.Sign up for the weekly Limerick Post newsletter Sign Up Social Democrat Sarah Jane Hennelly has been bowed out of the 2016 General Election having been eliminated on the third count.Her 3,620 votes are now being transferred amongst the remaining candidates.AAA candidate Cian Prendiville is now in the hunt for more than 3,800 votes to reach the quota and is likely to be eliminated at the next count.center_img Linkedin WhatsApp Email Previous articleFour eliminated in #Limerick county #GE16 constituencyNext articleSenator James Heffernan eliminated as county #Limerick race to Dail nears conclusion Staff Reporterhttp://www.limerickpost.ielast_img read more

Born to run, and run

first_imgNearly 80 runners gathered on the steps of the Malkin Athletic Center (MAC) Wednesday afternoon for a celebratory jog along the Charles River with authors and fitness authorities Scott Jurek and Christopher McDougall ’85, in an event coordinated by Harvard On The Move.Jurek is famous for dominating ultramarathons, endurance events that well exceed the traditional marathon distance of 26.2 miles. In 2010, at the 24-Hour World Championships in Brive-la-Gaillarde, Jurek ran 165.7 miles in 24 hours, setting a U.S. record. He is also author of the book “Eat and Run: My Unlikely Journey to Ultramarathon Greatness.”McDougall is the author of “Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen.” He rekindled his love of running after studying the seemingly superhuman running techniques of the reclusive Tarahumara Indians of Mexico’s Copper Canyons.After the run, the Harvard Book Store hosted a discussion featuring Jurek and McDougall at the Brattle Theatre.Standing outside the MAC earlier, McDougall pointed toward the Yard. “When I was at Harvard, I was in Winthrop House,” he said. “Part of what got me through school was just playing here in the Yard, chucking around a football, just having some playtime. Running’s like that; you just head out and play.”For Jurek, the gathering on National Running Day was an opportunity to celebrate such exercise as a social, community event. “I love to get out and run with other people,” he said. “I’ve run a lot of miles by myself, and people ask me why I come out for group runs. But we love that social aspect. When I’m running with others, I feed off their motivations and stories, how they got into running, and so on. It inspires me and keeps me going.”Obi Okobi, who just graduated from the Harvard Graduate School of Education with an Ed.M., said she came out to jump-start her commitment to running. “Harvard On The Move really is a fantastic entity,” she said. “It proves that the School is really looking to model wellness, not only for undergraduates, but also for members of the greater Boston community.”Jill Puleo, owner of Sugarbird Bakery in Rhode Island — which bakes “ultracookies,” a gluten-free treat for ultramarathoners — drove up just to participate in the event.Proving that running wasn’t just for students was 78-year-old Brookline resident Henry Wolstat. “I’ve been running for about 40 years,” he said. “It keeps me young, it keeps me alive, and I try to run every day — about 25 miles a week.”For Daniel Lieberman, Harvard professor and chair of human evolutionary biology and principal investigator for the Skeletal Bio Lab, the diversity of those attending spoke to the mission of Harvard On The Move. “We have runs and walks every week for people of every ability, speed, and distance. Running is a communal thing. People have been running together for millions of years. It’s just a way for people to get out and get moving.”As the group headed through the Winthrop House Gate toward the Charles, McDougall smiled. “Running’s playtime,” he said. “All the anxiety and the hectic things in your head, they just clear out. And you come back feeling relaxed and ready to tackle the next thing.”last_img read more

East Moriches Rapist Gets 25 Years in Prison

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York An admitted rapist from East Moriches who tried to hire a hitman to kill his victim so that she couldn’t testify against him was sentenced Thursday to 25 years in prison.Patrick O’Sullivan had pleaded guilty in February at Suffolk County court to charges of first-degree rape, criminal sexual act, burglary, sexual abuse and conspiracy.Prosecutors said the 23-year-old man wore a mask and carried a loaded rifle when he entered the victim’s Stony Brook home through an unlocked door, fired his weapon twice and tied the victim up with duct tape before sexually assaulting her on the night of Nov. 20, 2012.After his arrest, he thought he could make the case go away by having the witnesses killed. While incarcerated in county jail, O’Sullivan tried hire a hit man to kill the victim and another person he believed would testify against him, authorities said. The fellow inmate contacted alerted investigators instead.last_img read more

District election recount set for Thursday

first_imgNORWALK – A recount is set for Thursday to determine a final winner in a tied election race for a seat on the Los Nietos School District board of trustees. Challenger Diana Villalba and incumbent Gloria Duran received 903 votes apiece in last month’s elections. Villalba requested the recount Monday from the Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder’s Office. Villalba has agreed to pay the $2,096 per-day rate for the recount. She said she will use money from her campaign fund. There were three open seats in the school board election. The first two went to Art Escobedo and Grisel Vasquez. Duran and Villalba tied for the third seat after a final vote count last week. Villalba said she requested the recount because she could not imagine having the tie broken “by lot,” a simple coin toss or the drawing of a slip of paper . However, a final decision might have to be made by chance, depending on the results. “I just couldn’t bear the thought of a tossed coin (being the deciding factor), something that would be over in two seconds,” Villalba said Tuesday. “Oh my God, no. I couldn’t imagine it.” County election officials said it was unclear how long the recount will take. However, Los Nietos is the smallest among Whittier area school districts, with just over 2,800 voters casting ballots in November’s elections. Once the recount is completed, the results should be available rather quickly, said Deborah Wright, executive liaison officer for the county clerk’s office. Duran, a 16-year school board veteran, said she was glad Villalba asked for the recount because she was not able to pay for it. “To me, (my) chances are still there,” Duran said. “Whether it’s a drawing by lot, there’s still a chance. One of us is going to get it.” Earlier Tuesday, however, a recount was nearly postponed after election officials debated whether they could conduct a recount when the district had not yet determined a winner. “A recount is something you do after a winner is declared,” Wright had said. However, after officials conferred with legal counsel, the decision to greenlight the recount was made. Villalba initially requested a recount of only three of the district’s four precincts, but county officials said a recount will change nothing unless every ballot is counted. “I’m sure we will remind candidates and their representatives at that time that it doesn’t count unless you do all the precincts,” Wright said. Villalba also requested that a manual tally and a computer tally of the ballots be conducted, which Wright characterized as an unusual request. If there was a discrepancy between the two tallies, Wright said current law does not specify which method would take precedence. recount [email protected] (562) 698-0955, Ext. 3051 AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREBlues bury Kings early with four first-period goals 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

Two-out mistakes haunt Giants, offense held scoreless for third time on road trip

first_imgClick here if you’re unable to view the photo gallery on your mobile device.LOS ANGELES — The disparity in talent between the Giants and Dodgers isn’t always so clear.There are games in which bullpen maestro Bruce Bochy showcases his classical talents; where his relievers hit all the right notes and his batters do just enough to create a soothing harmony.There are also games in which the Dodgers drown out the sound with thunderous home runs that leave no doubt which team will be taking …last_img read more

These Are the Sponsors of the Real-Time Web Summit

first_imgThe ReadWrite Real-Time Web Summit is fast approaching! We hope you’ll register to join us at this exciting day-long event filled with participatory conversations among the leading innovators in real-time technology, media and financial services.If you can’t make it to Mountain View, California in eight days, get ready to watch selected sessions streamed live online (thanks to Justin.tv). This isn’t going to be talking-heads pushing their products on stage, this is going to be a high-value brainstorming, networking and collaborative learning. Check out the companies below; they are bringing financial support to this important gathering to talk together about the future of the internet.Sponsorship availability closes tomorrow, so if you’d like to offer your support for the Summit please contact [email protected] for more information. We’ve posted some of our highlighted participants here as well as a sample of real-world use cases for real-time web technology.Now check out these fabulous sponsors.EnterpriseTIBCOTIBCO’s technology digitized Wall Street in the ’80s with its event-driven “Information Bus” software, which helped make real-time business a strategic differentiator in the ’90s. Today, TIBCO’s infrastructure software gives customers the ability to constantly innovate by connecting applications and data in a service-oriented architecture, streamlining activities through business process management, and giving people the information and intelligence tools they need to make faster and smarter decisions.FilteringPostRankPostRank offers a website and developer tools that make sense of social engagement data on the web. Want to discover the bloggers with the most reader-engagement or the blog posts that are hottest, in any niche? PostRank will do that for you, in real time. Whether you’re a very large company or an individual blogger, PostRank can do things for you that no one else can. We at ReadWriteWeb like and use PostRank a lot.SearchFarooFaroo is a P2P real-time search engine that combines explicit and implicit data to power its indexing and ranking technologies. The company specializes in difficult real-time analysis of international content, like breaking up long strings of Chinese characters for text analysis.PublishingWordPressWordPress is one of the world’s leading blog publishing services and software. WordPress made free real-time updates from millions of blogs available last month.AggregationNomeeNomee is an application to manage the most important parts of your digital life. The Nomee desktop client aggregates activity updates from more than 120 different sites that your friends and favorite public figures are using, filters those streams and lets you view media in a beautiful interface.These sponsors have made an important move in supporting the Real-Time Web Summit so please check out their products. If you’re interested in sponsoring the event as well, it will be worth your while. Contact [email protected] for info.Please join us for this important conversation on October 15th in Mountain View, California and streaming live online. marshall kirkpatrick Related Posts Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai…center_img Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Tags:#Real-Time Web#web 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Marketlast_img read more

Building a House of Hemp

first_imgTradical Hemcrete Savage says that he was motivated by Hurricane Katrina and a devastating earthquake in Haiti to start GreenBuilt LLC and promote the use of hemp in buildings. Both disasters caused widespread housing damage and shortages.“We searched for a healthy, durable, climate-resilient material that could provide high-quality permanent housing as well as temporary shelter,” the website says. “That’s how we found hempcrete.”By telephone, the 67-year-old Savage said that he is a former Wall Street analyst who once researched industrial and electronic supply chains. “I was looking at how do you create a new industry that will be efficient, that will be competitive and that can become a sustainable supply chain,” he said. “Where housing came into it was, one of the great desperate needs all over the world is healthy housing. It was largely driven by my desire to make a better world, rather than my desire to make a lot of money. Obviously, it would be nice to make some. Figuring out the next electronic gadget was not what I wanted to do. I really wanted to make a difference in people’s lives.” Another Use for Hemp: Home ConstructionHelping People With Multiple Chemical Sensitivity Are there any builders, architects, engineers, or homeowners interested in industrial hemp building? GREEN PRODUCT GUIDE How do you build a hemp house?Hempcrete construction looks a lot like straw-bale construction — you take a lot of minimally treated natural fiber and form it into relatively thick walls, then coat it inside and out with plaster.Because hempcrete isn’t a structural material, it’s formed around an inner frame made from wood or other load-bearing material, as a video at this website shows. Builders start with strands of the woody inner core of hemp stalks and mix it either by hand or with a power mixer with a lime binder and water. The resulting mix of hempcrete is tamped by hand into forms built around an inner structural wall and allowed to harden. Then, the forms can be moved up and repacked with a new layer of hempcrete.The Tiny+ house will probably be constructed this way, but Savage hopes prefabricated panels — a type of structural insulated panel (SIP) made from wood and hempcrete — may eventually be available. Griffin thinks that the roof of Tiny+ will most likely be insulated with cellulose rather than hempcrete, but those details, as well as the exterior finish, are still to be determined.As to cost, Savage says the prototype house will be more expensive than conventional construction, mainly because of design features like curved walls. Generally, he said, a hempcrete house would be 7% to 10% more expensive than conventional construction, adding, “Once we have panelization really perfected, and the manufacturing more efficient, and certainly once hemp is legal to grow, it will be no more expensive than other building materials.”As it looks now, the Kickstarter campaign will fall short of its $60,000 goal. “I don’t feel very positive about the money raised through Kickstarter,” he said. “You can see the fundraising is not going extremely well. But what’s happened is that we’ve gotten a great deal of interest from potential customers, from potential strategic partners, as a result of the Kickstarter campaign.“If we don’t raise the money from the Kickstarter campaign, we expect we will raise the money in other ways, possibly from a buyer of the house, in order to make this happen,” he continued. “Our intention is whether we raise the money from Kickstarter or not, we are going to build this house.” An upstate New York resident named Jim Savage has launched a web-based campaign to raise $60,000 and build a demonstration house with walls of hemp, lime, and water, advancing what Savage calls “the next step in green building.”In a Kickstarter campaign that so far has attracted more than 90 donors, Savage lays out the case for choosing hemp over more conventional building materials, a technique he says has been used successfully in Europe for 25 years.Hempcrete is a non-structural mix of shredded hemp (not marijuana) stalks, lime, and water. It can be packed into forms around structural framing to make walls, or can be used as insulation in conventionally framed buildings. Savage claims that the vapor-permeable material has an R-value of roughly 2.5 per inch, and is resistant to mold, insects, and rodents. It’s also non-toxic.“HempHome Tiny+,” the house Savage and his colleagues would like to build in Catskill, New York, is a contemporary two-level design. Chief designer for the 400-square-foot house is Christina Griffin, an architect and Certified Passive House Consultant. Others working on the project include a North Carolina based hemp-lime design consultant, the head of the New York Hemp Industries Association, and Ken Levenson, chief operating officer of 475 High Performance Building Supply and co-president of the North American Passive House Network. RELATED ARTICLES Performance characteristics not so clearA key consideration in using hempcrete in a high-performance building is how effective it is as a thermal insulator, and how airtight a hempcrete wall would be. The plans for the prototype house in New York call for walls 12 inches thick with an R-value of about 30 or R-2.5 per inch, according to Savage.Where does that value come from? Extensive testing in Europe, Savage says. At its website, American Hemp says that hempcrete has an R-value of 2.08 per inch (or R-25 for a 12-inch-thick wall). It cites as its source the British Board of Agreement (BBA), the equivalent of the International Code Council, which evaluates building materials in the U.S. through the ICC-Evaluation Service.Tim Callahan, chief designer at Alembic Studio, an Asheville, North Carolina, firm that has completed three hemp-lime houses, says hempcrete walls typically have an R-value of 2.4 per inch, although that varies depending on the density of the material. He bases that value on testing conducted in Europe and offered a BBA report on a “tradical hemcrete wall system” submitted by a company called Lhoist UK Ltd. The BBA reported a 300 mm thick wall (11.8 inches) had an R-value of 15.4, while a 500 mm thick wall (19.7 inches) had an R-value of 25. That’s 1.26 to 1.3 per inch.Callahan said that the R-2.4/inch value he uses in his energy calculations came from a company called Lime Technology UK, and that the Lhoist hempcrete was much denser, explaining its lower R-value. Callahan used the Lime Technology blend on a hempcrete house he built six years ago in Asheville, North Carolina, whose energy performance since then suggests that the 2.4 R-value is correct.That house, which has 16-inch-thick walls, tested at 0.62 air changes per hour at a pressure difference of 50 pascals — barely missing the Passivhaus standard of 0.6 ach50. He said the monolithic nature of the walls is inherently less leaky than conventional wood-framed buildings because there are fewer potential joints between different building materials.A search of the BBA website, and a follow-up phone call, didn’t turn up any references to “hemp” or “hempcrete.”As to the performance specs on the Tiny+ project, Griffin has not yet done any energy modeling.“We just haven’t gotten to that point,” she said, adding that specific performance numbers given for the project seemed a little “arbitrary.” Hemp has attractive characteristicsThere are a couple of things about hemp that make it an excellent choice for sustainable building, according to its boosters. For one, it grows very quickly — if you can grow it legally. Savage says that industrial hemp can grow almost a foot per week, and that enough hemp can be produced on a few acres of land in a single growing season to produce a 1,500-square-foot house.HempHome Tiny+ was designed by Christina Griffin, an architect and Passive House consultant. It’s her first project using hempcrete.Growing hemp is an effective way of sequestering carbon from the atmosphere. And because it’s non-toxic, it can be allowed to decompose without any environmental consequences. Hempcrete is vapor-permeable, won’t hold moisture and because of the lime binder, also is resistant to the growth of mold.“It forms up almost like concrete,” Griffin said by telephone. “It has so many wonderful qualities because it’s vapor-permeable, so that if any moisture gets in it can come out. That, combined with the rapidly renewable aspect, makes it very attractive as a sustainable material.”Because of extremely low levels of THC, the psychoactive component of marijuana, industrial hemp won’t give anyone a buzz. Still, Savage says, it’s considered a Schedule 1 controlled substance under federal law. It can legally be raised in scores of other countries, including Canada, and imported into the U.S. An agriculture bill signed into law in 2014 gives limited rights to land-grant universities and state agriculture departments to grow industrial hemp, and with the gradual loosening of marijuana laws around the country hemp’s wide scale acceptance may just be a matter of time. For now, Savage will import hemp from Europe.He says that industrial hemp is used to make many products, including textiles and food, with $600 million worth of hemp products imported into the U.S. last year. Hemp-based bio-plastic parts are found in the doors of some Mercedes and BMW vehicles, and enthusiasts also are happy to point out that hemp fibers were in the paper on which the Declaration of Independence is printed and in the flag that Betsy Ross sewed together.last_img read more

Don’t wait for CWG OC, deploy forces, Home Sec tells Delhi Police

first_imgWorkers put up a hoarding for the Commonwealth Games 2010 near the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in New Delhi on Sunday. PTI PhotoExasperated at not being able to take over Commonwealth Games venues due to ongoing work, Union Home Ministry on Sunday asked Delhi Police not to wait for the Organising Committee to hand it over to them and start deploying forces at the earliest.The direction to Delhi Police, the nodal agency for Games security, came from Union Home Secretary G K Pillai at a review meeting held in New Delhi on Sunday evening to take stock of the preparations of security agencies for the event, sources said.”Don’t wait for the OC to hand over the venues to you. The work is still on but don’t compromise on security. Start deploying forces and tighten security at the venues. Have a standby arrangement,” a senior police official who attended the meeting summed up Pillai’s direction to Delhi Police.CLICK HERE FOR MORESnake charmers to keep Village safeCWG situation sad, says AdvaniCWG Village: From filthy to five-starSuresh Kalmadi: In the eye of a stormPillai is also understood to have asked Delhi Police to prepare a “standby” security plan as the work was undergoing in Games Village as well as Jawaharlal Nehru stadium.Police are yet to ensure a complete lockdown of the Jawaharlal Nehru stadium, missing five deadlines set by the Home Ministry due to ongoing construction works.In the meeting, sources said, Pillai was also apprised about the difficulties faced by personnel in using the TETRA network for communication.advertisementWhen asked by Pillai for a feedback on TETRA (Terrestrial Trunked Radio), sources said, the senior officials informed him that connectivity was a “problem” and effective communication was affected due to this.Sources indicated that Delhi Police may go back to its TM (Top Management) Network for communication. “Most probably, we may go back to TM Network,” a senior police official said.After the meeting with Delhi Police Commissioner Y S Dadwal, NSG Director General R K Medhekar, senior police officials, Games venue commanders and district police heads, Pillai said he was satisfied with the security arrangements for the Games.PM Manmohan Singh inaugurates a sports injury centre at the Safdurjung hospital in New Delhi. PTI Photo”We had a complete review of security arrangements, looking at various issues and anticipating what type of threats could arise. We are trying to make sure that we are fully prepared to meet any eventuality,” Pillai told reporters after the 90-minute meeting.He said the review meet was held to ask the officials to be alert as it is a major task for Delhi Police to ensure security “not just for athletes and Games venues but for the entire city itself”.”The aim of the review was to ensure that the whole of Delhi is safe and not just the Games venues which of course has received special attention,” the top official said.File photo of CGF CEO Mike Hooper talking on the phone at the Games Village in New Delhi. Hooper said the developers of the venues did not hand them over to the OC on time and this has led to the current crisis. PTI PhotoHooper says CGF also responsible for CWG messTaking a U-turn, CGF CEO Mike Hooper on Sunday owned up the responsibility for the mess around the Commonwealth Games after blaming India’s central and state governments for all the problems.Hooper told New Zealand media that the Commonwealth Games Federation cannot be held responsible for the Organising Committee’s failure to meet deadlines but later said the apex sport body also has “the same responsibility as any other stakeholder”.CGF boss Mike Fennell had on Saturday admitted that they will have to share the blame for the shoddy preparations of the mega event.Team officials give thumbs-up to CWG VillageIn what would be music to ears of Commonwealth Games Organising Committee, officials accompanying the various teams on Sunday gave a thumbs-up to the Games Village, which was a few days back dubbed “filthy and unlivable” by foreign delegates.Officials from Jersey, Cameroon and Trinidad and Tobago seemed satisfied with the condition of their respective residential towers and said things are getting better and better with every passing day.”We are happy with our residential block. It’s good and there are no hygiene or cleanliness related issues. Things are getting better every day with officials working round the clock,” Moundi Bouba, Medical Personnel, Cameroon told PTI.advertisement”Good arrangements have been made by the organisers. 16 athletes and four team officials from Cameroon are staying at the Games village at present. We have not found anything to complain about,” said Michel Nkolo, another team official from Cameroon.Severe delays in the completion of work in the Village forced Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) president Michael Fennell to contact the Indian authorities and urge them to finish work on accommodation.Fennell said advance parties from the international Commonwealth Games Associations had been impressed with the international zone and main dining area within the village, but the condition of the residential zone shocked the majority of them.Dianne Huddlestone, wife of Jersey’s chef de mission Paul Huddlestone and staying at the village as an accompanying guest, said security arrangements, dining, cleaning of the residential complexes, all have been taken care of by the organisers.”We are staying at tower number 7 and occupying nine flats. We moved here four days back and I’m enjoying every minute of my stay. Organisers have offered big living area to us. Security has also been taken due care by the concerned officials. It’s just amazing to be here.”Food is of excellent quality. I’m gorging on fish curry, vegetable curry and naan bread. It’s just great. We are five people staying at the village at present and 52 athletes will arrive here on Wednesday,” Huddlestone said.Paul Newallo, team official, Trinidad and Tobago, said condition at the village is getting better and the organisers are trying their best to meet the deadlines.”We are satisfied with the efforts organisers are putting in to get certain things done on time. Although our living area is still incomplete they are trying their best. In 2-3 days, our second batch of athletes are likely to arrive in India and then we all move in here,” Newallo said. MORE      At present, 25 Trinidad and Tobago athletes, including team officials, are staying at Hotel Ashok. Cycling, boxing, archery and shooting teams have arrived and two hockey teams, netball, track and field teams are scheduled to arrive here by Wednesday.”Our athletes are enjoying dal and rice very much including some good vegetable curries. Hopefully, India will shine as a host nation and we are looking forward to the start of the Games,” Newallo added.The build-up to the Games has been plagued by problems with construction of venues and infrastructure falling behind schedule, allegations of wide-scale corruption in awarding contracts and foreign delegates raising doubts over security and safety of the athletes.With inputs from PTIlast_img read more

The secret world of Sathya Sai Baba’s Rs 40,000 cr empire

first_imgDevotees of Sri Sathya Sai Baba Assemble For Darshan at the Hill View Stadium in Puttaparthi in 2000.As India’s most famous godman, Sri Sathya Sai Baba, 84, recovers from a health scare in Puttaparthi, Andhra Pradesh, the framework for transition is already in place. The all-powerful caucus, the Sri Sathya,Devotees of Sri Sathya Sai Baba Assemble For Darshan at the Hill View Stadium in Puttaparthi in 2000.As India’s most famous godman, Sri Sathya Sai Baba, 84, recovers from a health scare in Puttaparthi, Andhra Pradesh, the framework for transition is already in place. The all-powerful caucus, the Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust (SSSCT), established in 1972 to direct the management of his gargantuan empire, will call the shots after the spiritual guru ceases to be around as its chairman.The SSSCT supervises how the functioning of the welfare entities, including educational and health facilities, are to be run and controls the purse strings of several trusts with a team of sharp auditors. But the SSSCT is tightlipped when it comes to the fabulous wealth of the Sathya Sai Baba network, estimated to add up to over a staggering Rs 40,000 crore, including movable and immovable assets in India, besides those in 165 other countries.The Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Medical Sciences at Puttaparthi where Sathya Sai Baba is being treated.Much of it is invested in schools, colleges, hospitals and other health facilities. Donations from his six million active devotees-another 31 million are intermittent followers-pour in, adding to the already full coffers of the trusts. All donations to the sssct are exempt from tax. Besides, what keeps the money coming in is a quid pro quo between the influential among the faithful. The network helps them strike business deals and they, in turn, make a donation to the Sai Baba’s activities.The SSSCT has steadfastly refused to divulge details, covering itself under a cloak of secrecy. Such is its clout that even presidents and prime ministers, among other high and mighty, are forced to drop protocol during their visits to pay respects to the Sathya Sai Baba.advertisementSri Sathya Sai BabaLack of transparency may have fuelled speculation about the exact size of the wealth and apprehensions about funds being misused, but the SSSCT does have an elaborate system of checks and balances in place to rein in siphoning of what the devout have contributed to Sathya Sai Baba’s multifarious charities. The credit for this largely goes to two individuals: the SSSCT secretary K. Chakravarthi, a former district collector of Anantapur (Puttaparthi is part of it) who quit the IAS to work for Sathya Sai Baba, beginning as the registrar of the Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning in 1981, and S.V. Giri, a former IAS officer of the Andhra Pradesh cadre who resigned as chief vigilance commissioner in 1998 to become the sixth vice-chancellor of the Sri Sathya Sai University and built a network of educational institutions. They have turned the entire gamut of activities into a single mammoth non-governmental organisation.The SSSCT runs the Sathya Sai University complex, the 220-bed Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Medical Sciences, where he was rushed when he fell ill; a world religion museum, Chaitanya Jyoti; a planetarium; a railway station; a hill view stadium; a music college; an administrative building; an airport and an indoor sports stadium in Puttaparthi. It also runs a general and specialty hospital in Bangalore, several other hospitals, including two for eye care, and a network of dispensaries. The trust has also commissioned and funded several drinking water projects, including one for 731 villages in Anantapur district, and helped in lining the sides of the Kandaleru-Poondi canal to take Krishna water to Chennai.While Prashanti Nilayam is the Sathya Sai Baba’s headquarters in Puttaparthi, Brindavan at Whitefield on the outskirts of Bangalore and Sai Shruti Ashram in Kodaikanal are the ones he goes to during summers. There are also 1,300-odd Sathya Sai Baba centres across the world which run schools, health and cultural centres. Sathya Sai Baba’s Educare programme has founded schools in 33 countries. There is also the digital radio network-Radio Sai Global Harmony. The well-entrenched Sathya Sai network will use all these facilities as his legacy to propagate his teachings.The godman has institutionalised all the activities with help from trusted professionals, including eminent jurists like ex-chief justice of India P.N. Bhagwati and, in earlier years, Supreme Court judges V.R. Krishna Iyer and V. Balakrishna Eradi, retired Andhra Pradesh High Court judge Y.V. Anjaneyulu, besides politicians of all hues and bureaucrats.With foresight, he has stalled all attempts by relatives to corner the trusts and the corpus as a family inheritance. There are nearly 200 relatives in the extended family who have opened restaurants and lodges in Puttaparthi itself or turned professional, banking on his influence and cashing in on his recommendations. The only one among them active on the SSSCT was his brother, R.V. Janakiram, until his death in 2005.advertisementAlienated, some of Sathya Sai Baba’s relatives joined atheists and other non-believers to denounce the welfare activities as well as the godman’s legendary magical powers. Janakiram’s son, R.J. Ratnakar, was inducted as a member of the SSSCT late last year but does not wield much clout. It is expected that some members of the family will, after he is gone, try and expose the odd failing in the running of some Sathya Sai institutions. On this, the opaque SSSCT has poor defence. It will perhaps have to accept a generational change in management. Differences may crop up but are expected to be sorted out as all concerned are apprehensive of the Andhra Pradesh government effecting a takeover, invoking the Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Act, 1959.Unquestioning faith and devotion is the hallmark of a Sathya Sai devotee. It has been ingrained so deeply in followers over the past seven decades that anyone raising doubts is spurned, if not turned away. This is why devotees will wait out the transition-after Sai Baba’s death at the age of 96-for his successor who, according to his prophecy, will come in the year 2030 from Gunaparthi village in Karnataka’s Mandya district. This is also why, after the initial pressing of panic buttons on learning he was critical, life was soon back to normal in Puttaparthi.As a collective leadership, the SSSCT may not find it a daunting task to pursue the goals set by the godman. There are funds and systems aplenty. With his devotees keeping a constant vigil against any degeneration and decay, things can go awry only if the personal whims and fancies of those managing the institutions override the larger public interest. If things do spin out of control, the Andhra Pradesh government will be forced to step in. Perspective planning has transformed the individual into an institution. All that remains is to immortalise him.last_img read more

Kylian Mbappe scores 14th of Ligue 1 in PSG’s 3-0 win at Amiens

first_imgTrending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss The win moved PSG 13 points clear of second-place Lille , having played two games less.Edinson Cavani put PSG ahead from the penalty spot after 57 minutes and, after Mbappe struck in the 70th, center half Marquinhos completed the scoring in the 79th.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSUrgent reply from Philippine ‍football chiefSPORTSWin or don’t eat: the Philippines’ poverty-driven, world-beating pool starsIt was a return to winning ways after the humiliating home defeat to struggler Guingamp in the League Cup on Wednesday.Amiens almost caught PSG with a perfect sucker-punch seconds before halftime, when a PSG free kick was cleared and Colombian Stiven Mendoza sprinted down the field before crossing into the penalty area. The ball fell to midfielder Eddy Gnahore, whose shot was kicked away by goalkeeper Alphonse Areola. View comments MOST READ SEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completion Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting It was a reprieve for PSG, which was missing Brazil star Neymar. He was rested by coach Thomas Tuchel after taking a minor knock to his knee against Guingamp.“There was a clash of knees and he felt some pain in the knee. He wasn’t free in his movements,” Tuchel said after the Amiens game. “It was too risky (to play him). It’s more important he’s not injured so he can be with us in Doha.”Qatar-owned PSG is flying to Doha on Sunday for a four-day training camp.Amiens looked in control until midfielder Alexis Blin slid to block a shot from Angel Di Maria with his arm. In the absence of Neymar, Cavani took the penalty and converted it confidently for his 11th league goal.Midway through the second half, Amiens went down to 10 men when left back Khaled Adenon was sent off for a second yellow card after pulling back Mbappe.ADVERTISEMENT Moments later, Mbappe swept in a fine cross from Cavani following a counterattack quickly launched by midfielder Julian Draxler, who dribbled his way into the area to set up Marquinhos.OTHER MATCHESTunisia forward Wahbi Khazri’s deflected free kick helped Saint-Etienne win at Guingamp 1-0 to move up to fourth place.It was Khazri’s career-best 10th league goal.Former France and Arsenal great Patrick Vieira’s Nice side is up to sixth after beating Bordeaux 1-0 at home.Allan Saint-Maximin’s penalty after 16 minutes was enough for victory.SUNDAY’S GAMESIn the pick of Sunday’s games, midfielder Cesc Fabrergas could make his debut for 19th-place Monaco at Marseille.Elsewhere, Montpellier is at relegation battler Dijon. Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next TS Kammuri to enter PAR possibly a day after SEA Games opening SEA Games hosting troubles anger Duterte PSG’s Kylian Mbappe celebrates after scoring his side’s second goal during the French League One soccer match between Amiens and Paris-Saint-Germain at the Stade de la Licorne stadium in Amiens, France, Saturday, Jan. 12, 2019. (AP Photo/Christophe Ena)PARIS — Kylian Mbappe struck his French league-leading 14th goal as Paris Saint-Germain won at Amiens 3-0 on Saturday.The 20-year-old Mbappe has 14 goals in only 13 games, compared to 13 in 27 matches last season for PSG. France’s World Cup star is well on course to eclipse his best tally of 15 in 2017, when he was a rising star of world soccer and won the title with Monaco.ADVERTISEMENT Katie Ledecky wins 4 events at Swim Series meet Is Luis Manzano planning to propose to Jessy Mendiola? LATEST STORIES SEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completion LOOK: Joyce Pring goes public with engagement to Juancho Triviño Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. LOOK: Joyce Pring goes public with engagement to Juancho Triviñolast_img read more