IS threat to blow up Mumbai Air cargo complex puts airport on high alert

The cargo terminal area has been evacuated and the Bomb Detection and Disposal Squad is at the spot

Threat to blow up Mumbai's Air Cargo Complex - two months in advance

Security officials went on high alert after a note was found warning of an ISIS attack on Mumbai Airport’s Air Cargo Complex (ACC) on Republic Day (January 26), or “anytime”, official sources said here on Wednesday.

The note was discovered in one of the toilets of the sprawling and bustling ACC building, located around 3.5 km away from the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport on the Sahar Road sometime on Wednesday afternoon. | Today’s Paper 

It read “attack the cargo on 26.01.18 or anytime – ISIS”.

Immediately the Central Industrial Security Force, Mumbai police and bomb squads got into action and started evacuating the entire cargo section, and launched a search. It was also decided that people will now be allowed inside only after thorough screening, said officials.

The cargo terminal area has been evacuated and the Bomb Detection and Disposal Squad (BDDS) is at the spot, an airport spokesperson said.

Though the threat note has been received two months in advance, the airport security agencies are not taking any chances.
The note looks like a hoax, sources said, adding anti- sabotage checks were being conducted in the cargo area.

“While the cargo area is not secured by the CISF, passenger checks and vigil has been enhanced in the main airport terminal area,” a senior CISF officer said.

In late January 2016, a telephonic threat was received warning that the CSMIA would be blown up within a fortnight, by February 2016.

Though the security agencies concluded it was a “non-specific threat”, all teams were on high alert to ward off any untoward incident.

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Sena questions Gopal Gandhi’s VP candidacy, says he opposed Yakub hanging

In July 2015, Gandhi had written to President to reconsider the rejection of Memon’s mercy plea

Gopalkrishna Gandhi

Today’s Paper : Shiv Sena leader and Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Raut on Monday questioned opposition parties for fielding Gopal krishna Gandhi for the vice-presidential election, saying the latter had been opposed to the death sentence of 1993 Mumbai bomb blasts convict Yakub Memon.

Raut said Gandhi was among those who had made appeals to the government to save Memon.

“Gandhi had used all his powers to save Yakub Memon. He even had written to the President. I want to ask (opposition) what kind of mindset is this,” he told reporters.

In July 2015, Gandhi had written to President Pranab Mukherjee to “reconsider” the rejection of Memon’s mercy plea.

 

 

Sachin: A Billion Dreams: A glorified account of an over-glorified celeb

Like his book, Tendulkar’s biopic is a nostalgic cruise through his career

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As I walked out of the cinema hall after watching Sachin: A Billion Dreams, I wondered: Would I have thought differently of this biopic had I not known anything about the person it is based on? James Erskine’s documentary on one of the most celebrated cricketers in the world – one who has achieved a near-deific status in India – went along expected lines.

But was that because I, like many Indians and cricket followers around the world, already knew so much about Sachin Tendulkar? How would someone living under a rock for the last quarter of a century, and did not know who Tendulkar was, have liked it?

Sachin: A Billion Dreams starts off rather nicely, showing us a naughty curly-haired boy of seven or eight years living in Mumbai’s Bandra suburb, getting up to the usual seven-or-eight-year-old boy things like annoying his neighbours with pranks. The boy then receives a cricket bat as a gift from his elder sister, and this is where the story that most Indians and cricket followers already know begins.

The same old path

Sachin: A Billion Dreams goes down the same path as the two other biopics on Indian cricketers that were released in the last year – MS Dhoni: An Untold Story, and Azhar. The only difference is that Sachin is a documentary which features the cricketer himself – he is not played by actors. Obviously backed by Tendulkar, just like the two other biopics were supported by the cricketers they were based on, Sachin: A Billion Dreams is a glorified account of an already over-glorified celebrity.

All in all, this biopic is a celluloid version of Tendulkar’s autobiography, Playing It My Way. What was one of the most awaited sports autobiographies of all time, the book turned out to be a damp squib. It just about managed to tell you a few stories you did not already know about India’s most popular cricketer, it briefly touched upon his personal relationships with his family and friends, but otherwise read like a recital of scorecards of the matches he played, and refrained from going too deep into controversial subjects.

Politically correct

Tendulkar has been so overtly politically correct throughout his public life that is was quite surprising to see him criticise the Indian cricket board in the movie for the way it handled his captaincy. “You can take my captaincy away, but you can’t take cricket away from me,” he says, adding to the many fluffy quotes dished out throughout the movie, not just by him but also some others who have been interviewed. Among the sappiest was commentator Harsha Bhogle saying something along the lines of: Sunil Gavaskar came from a fixed-deposit generation, but Sachin’s generation believed in investing in equity.

The two individuals who have been singled out for some criticism in the movie are former India captain Mohammad Azharuddin, and Greg Chappell, who had a rather forgettable tenure as India coach. But then, Tendulkar had always made his views on Chappell clear much before the movie was released. Azharuddin, on the other hand, was criticised not for his embroilment in the match-fixing scandal, but because Tendulkar felt the Hyderabadi did not take his being appointed captain too well. |READMORE…

IT job cuts: Up to 600,000 engineers likely to be laid off in next 3 years

McKinsey & Company report says half of IT workforce will be irrelevant over the next 3-4 years

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Executive search firm Head Hunters India said the job cuts in IT sector will be between 1.75 lakh and 2 lakh annually for next three years due to under-preparedness in adapting to newer technologies.

“Contrary to media reports of 56,000 IT professionals to lose jobs this year, the actual job cuts will be between 1.75 lakh and 2 lakh per year in next three years, due to under- preparedness in adapting to newer technologies,” Head Hunters India Founder-Chairman and MD K Lakshmikanth told PTI, analysing a report submitted by McKinsey & Company at the Nasscom India Leadership Forum on February 17.

McKinsey & Company report had said nearly half of the workforce in the IT services firms will be “irrelevant” over the next 3-4 years.

McKinsey India Managing Director Noshir Kaka had also said the bigger challenge ahead for the industry will be to retrain 50-60 per cent of the workforce as there will be a significant shift in technologies. The industry employs 3.9 million people and the majority of them have to be retrained.

“So, when we analyse these figures, it is clear that 30 to 40 per cent of the workforce cannot be retrained or re- skilled. So, assume that half of this workforce can continue to work on old skills, then balance will become redundant.

“So, the number of people who will become redundant in the next three years will be about five to six lakhs. This will workout to, on a average, between 1.75 lakh to 2 lakh per year for next three years,” Lakshmikanth explained.

However, he said job cuts will not take place in major cities like Mumbai or Bengaluru, but cities like Coimbatore or a few remote places, he said.

Lakshmikanth further said the IT services industry is passing through an uncertain time as the growth in digital technologies like cloud-based services is happening at a much faster pace and the companies are combining learning of some of the new technologies and reskilling.

“Because of the changing technology, the most affected will be the professionals aged 35 and above, for it would be very difficult for them to get jobs,” Lakhsmikanth said. | READMORE…

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