Prepare for paternity leave requests

first_imgOver the next few months, employers will start receiving requests for additional paternity leave. Should you get one, you have the right to demand proof of eligibility. But what information can an employee be asked to produce?As the law now stands, subject to qualifying conditions, the father, or mother’s partner, of a child born on, or after, 30 April 2011 can take:l two weeks’ ordinary paternity leave within 56 days of the child’s birth; andl a maximum of 26 weeks’ additional paternity leave (APL) in the first year of its life.APL may only commence:l once the child is 20 weeks old; andl provided the employee had a minimum 26 weeks’ continuous employment at the 15th week before the “expected week of childbirth”.If they don’t meet both these criteria, regardless of the day the child was born, they won’t be entitled to take APL. Please note: the latter criterion applies to ordinary paternity leave too.The legislation, rather short-sightedly, assumes that parents will truthfully self-certify their rights to APL (and Additional Paternity Pay where it is payable). In other words, there is no statutory requirement on you to make “official” checks on their entitlement. However, as some assurance, the powers that be have given you the right to request proof of eligibility.So, within 28 days of receiving an employee’s APL request form, you have the right to ask them to produce further information in support of their application.They must supply whatever you have asked for within 28 days. But exactly what information can you request? Well, as an absolute minimum, you can ask to see a copy of the birth certificate. This should confirm not only that the child does exist but the date it was born. Parents of babies born late March to early April 2011 may be tempted to alter the dates to their benefit.If, after seeing this document, you still have doubts about eligibility, you can demand that the employee provide you with the contact details for the mother’s employer. In your paternity policy, make it clear that you have the right to request this information and that it must be supplied to you within 28 days.Asking questionsHowever, if you do decide to contact the mother’s employer, remember that they have no statutory duty to co-operate. In fact, they may refuse to provide you with any information on the grounds of employee confidentiality. Equally, you don’t have to comply with any requests for information of this nature.While this could be problematic, the fact you are prepared to seek this information could, in itself, deter any fraudulent APL applications.l For a free sample of our APL request form, letter requesting eligibility of APL or Paternity Leave Policy, please contact the NAMB on 01920 468061.last_img read more

Macdonald’s Work with Horizons Program ‘a Joy’

first_imgBy John BurtonRUMSON – When it comes to her work with the Horizons student enrichment program, Lore Macdonald just doesn’t talk the talk – she truly walks the walk.Macdonald, a Rumson resident, who co-founded the program at Rumson Country Day School 18 summers ago, previously served as the board president and is still a member of the board. She was associated with Hori­zons, a national program, in New Canaan, Conn., before it was established in Rumson. Last week, Macdonald was recognized for her dedication to the program when she was named a New Jersey Hero last week by first lady Mary Pat Christie.“It does give me profound joy,” Macdonald said of her involvement with the program. “It is something that I’ll leave this world knowing I did a little bit of good, I had some impact on the lives of a lot of people.”The Rumson Horizons program, one of 33 programs across the country and one of two in New Jersey, is a six-week program July through mid-August for at-risk children, primarily from Red Bank. Aimed at allowing the kids to continue their education and remain engaged, it is a fun, activities-filled way to learn while off from school.The idea, said Lori Hohenleitner, the program’s executive director, is to combat what educators have labeled “summer slide,” during which students out of the classroom for the summer lose educational ground. Studies show that it can be particularly true for low-income students, who haven’t the same opportunities as their wealthier counterparts to remain engaged when school is out.“It does help them go back to school without having lost much,” Macdonald said.The program has had about 2,000 children participate over the years, with 125 students enrolled this summer, according to Robin Schemen, president of Horizon’s Rumson board and a member of the program’s national board.The program is open to children who have completed kindergarten and allows them to be part of the program up until the summer after they complete eighth grade. Hori­zons, which costs $50 for the six weeks, is available to students who qualify for free or reduced cost lunch programs in their public schools.The program uses a hands-on approach to teaching, tying lessons with projects the children take on to realworld circumstances.“Everything is very hands on,” Schemen said.Along with that, kids have a chance to go to the Com­munity YMCA, 166 Maple Ave., Red Bank, where they get to swim or take swimming lessons just about every day.Swimming is not simply a recreational outlet, Hohen­leitner stressed. “We feel if kids learn confidence in the pool, not only is that a life skill, but they’re also able to translate that to the classroom.”For Macdonald, the program offers so much to the children and their families that is “so obviously successful … It really is a no-brainer.“This is wonderful for kids, because it’s a different kind of learning experience,” she said.Macdonald’s appreciation for what the program has meant to many and her experience goes back a long time. The Horizons program began in the 1970s at the New Canaan Country School, New Canaan, Conn., where Macdonald grew up and was a student. In the late ‘70s she spent a couple of summers working as a teacher for the program and began her firsthand experience with it. When the program was first proposed for the Rumson Country Day School, she strongly supported it and involved herself in establishing it, working with staff and students and serving as board president for 13 years.“I think I did a little bit of everything,” since the summer of 1996, when it started, she said.“She spearheaded the program,” said Chad Small, Rumson Country Day’s headmaster. “She remains its heart and soul.”Macdonald, who married just six days after graduating college and raised four children, all going to Rumson Country Day, sees the promise in the children who have been involved in the program. “It has been a rewarding experience for me,” she said. “Getting to know the children and the families, for me was huge.”It also has been a great experience for board members and those who have volunteered, she said. “They really take away a lot.”Another nice part is still having a chance to see some of the students – who go to high school and beyond – talk about their experiences and what it meant to them. “I’m just goofy enough that they remember me,” she joked about running into former students. But she added, “I love it. They always say hello and tell me what they’re up to. It’s a nice feeling for me.”The next chapter for Macdonald and others associated with the program is to continue it for the high school years. She believes the idea of extending education into the summer is something that goes beyond just the Hori­zons program and should be adopted by more schools and districts.“It’s just a smart thing to do,” she said.last_img read more

Moroney holds off field to capture Zone One Tour title Sunday at Balfour

first_imgMoroney and McKay posted identical 3-over-par 75s while Hoodicoff shot a 77.Braden McKay of Rossland/Trail and Shawn Ellard of Kaslo finished the first day with 82s.At Balfour the players battled throughout the day with Moroney needing to play well on all 18 holes to secure the victory.Ryan Fullerton took the honors for most improved in the 15 – 18 year division and Dugan McInnes from Nakusp won most improved in the 14 and under division. With his Tour Championships title Moroney earned Player of the Year honours.Hoodikoff was top player in the 17-18 year division while Tyler McKay bested the 15-16 year old division and Braden McKay the 14 and under category.EXTRA HOLE: MacKenzie Field of Christina Lake has accepted a scholarship to play golf next year at Simon Fraser University in Burnaby while Jordan Hoodikoff is slated to tee it up south of the border at a college in Scottsdale Arizona.  Many players will be representing the region in the summer games and other BCGA events as well as some events in the USA this summer.  Good luck to all the kids. Brenan Moroney of Rossland/Trail needed all 36 holes to squeak out a one-stroke victory to capture the Zone One West Kootenay Junior golf title Sunday at the Balfour course.Moroney shot a 4-over-par 76 to edge Tyler McKay of Rossland/Trail and Jordan Hoodikoff of Christina Lake for the crown at the Tour Championship tournament.Saturday golfers flocked to Kokanee Springs for day one of the 36-hole tourney.The trio of Hoodikoff, McKay and Moroney led the first 18-holes.last_img read more

UPDATED: Kinrade, KHL Medvescak Zagreb must take long road at Spengler Cup

first_imgKHL Medvescak Zagreb now meets HC Salavat Yulaev Ufa in quarterfinal action at the 2015 Spengler Cup in Davos, Switzlerland after dropping a 1-0 decision to the host club Sunday in round robin action.The winner of the Monday contest advances to the semi final round.Kinrade, KHL Medvescak Zagreb drop 3-1 decision to Team Canada at Spengler CupTeam Canada scored twice in the first period to defeat KHL Medvescak Zagreb 3-1 in Spengler Cup action Saturday in Davos, Switzerland.Nelson Minor Hockey grad Geoff Kinrade plays defence for KHL Medvescak Zagreb.Bud Holloway, Stefano Giliati and Alexandre Giroux scored to give Team Canada a 3-0 lead after two periods.Pascal Pelletier scored the lone goal for KHL Medvescak Zagreb.KHL Medvescak Zagreb plays host HC Davos Sunday in the final round robin game. HC Davos opened the tournament with a 2-1 win over Team Canada.Kinrade’s squad needs to win to advance to the playoff round in the tournament.Nelson’s Geoff Kinrade back at Spengler CupNelson Minor Hockey grad Geoff Kinrade is back playing at the Spengler Cup in Davos, Switzerland.However, the six-foot, 195-pound Nelson Leafs product is not playing on Team Canada this time around.The smooth skating defenceman is anchoring the blueline for Medvescak Zagreb’s Bears. Kinrade, 28, signed this fall with Medvescak of the Russian Kontinental Hockey League after three seasons with SC Bern of the Swiss Nationaliga. This will be Zagreb’s Bears’ first time taking part in this tournament.First round opponents include Swiss A-leaguers and last year’s Cup winners HC Geneve-Servette and Team Canada, a team comprised heavily of Canadian players who play in Europe.On the other side of the draw is the KHL’s Salavat Yulaev from Ufa, Finland’s Jokerit Helsinki  and home team HC Davos.For Kinrade, this is the third time playing in the Spengler Cup — the first two for Team Canada.During his inaugural stint, Kinrade was part of the 2012 Spengler Cup Championship team.The former Kootenay International Junior Hockey League rearguard with the Nelson Leafs was one of the unsung defenders called upon by Hockey Canada due to a shortage of Canadian defencemen playing in Europe at that time.The team was bolstered by a huge NHL contingent of Jason Spezza, Patrice Bergeron, John Tavares, Tyler Seguin, Jonathan Bernier, Carlo Colaiacovo, Devan Dubnyk, Sam Gagner, Matt Duchene, Cam Barker and Captain Canada Ryan Smyth. The players were available due to the NHL lockout.Kinrade has enjoyed an illustrious career playing in Europe after spending two seasons in the American Hockey League with the Ottawa Senators farm team, Binghamton Sens, winning the Calder Cup in 2011.After graduating from college hockey at Michigan Tech, Kinrade played ten games with the Norfolk Admirals after signing a free agent contract and made his NHL debut on April 9, 2009 for Tampa against the Washington Capitals.The Spengler Cup is an international hockey tournament with a long tradition since 1923.Along with the Stanley Cup is the oldest championship in the world. The Cup is played for every year in Davos, Switzerland, in the time between Christmas and New Year. It is organized by A-leaguers Davos, and 2014 will see its 88th edition. Only teams that are invited can take part, and six teams fight for the trophy.Throughout all of the years of the Spengler Cup, which got its name from doctor Carl Spengler, numerous clubs from around the world have taken part, and the most wins go to the home team: Davos-15, followed b y Team Canada-12.Kinrade’s Zagreb’s Bears play the loser between HC Davos and Team Canada Saturday before meeting the winner Sunday.The top teams advance to the semi finals Tuesday with the final set New Years Eve.For more information check out the Spengler Cup website.last_img read more

Bartica businessman busted with unlicensed gun

first_imgA 45-year-old businessman of Bartica, Region Seven (Cuyuni-Mazaruni) was arrested after an unlicensed .32 pistol was found on his person during a search by the Police at Falls Top, Bartica on Wednesday around 23:00h.The unlicensed .32 pistol that was found on the businessmanPolice, in a statement, said that acting on information received, they went to a shop and conducted a search on the suspect which uncovered the pistol in his possession.The suspect is being processed for court.last_img

Letterkenny council warned that someone will be hurt at town park outdoor gym

first_imgLetterkenny Municipal Council has been warned that somebody will be hurt if age restrictions and signage are not put on the new town park outdoor gymnasium.Cllr Jimmy Kavanagh appealed to the council to put up signs warning that the equipment should not be used by young people.“This equipment is not designed for use by children and a child will be hurt at some stage. I would actually ask how the council stand on this legally if someone is hurt,” he said. The motion was backed by Cllr Gerry McMonagle.He said that theme parks carry similar restrictions and warnings.“Youngsters could go on this apparatus which is not intended for them and they could sustain a fall,” he said.  Letterkenny council warned that someone will be hurt at town park outdoor gym was last modified: October 8th, 2019 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:dangerdonegalequipmentgymLetterkenny Town Parklast_img read more

NFC West playoff scenarios abound as Niners clinch playoff berth despite loss

first_imgThe Niners will also be the NFC’s top seed if they just win their remaining games.Their divisional rival, the Seahawks, also control their own fate in the NFC West.It’s looking … Click here if you’re unable to view video or photo gallery on your mobile device.Despite their strange last-second loss to the Falcons at Levi’s Stadium, the 49ers clinched a playoff berth Sunday.With the Rams’ loss to the Cowboys, San Francisco is ensured of its first playoff appearance in five years.last_img

Jatinga, where hundreds of birds just drop out of the sky

first_imgThere is nothing to distinguish the hamlet of Jatinga from the hundreds of villages scattered about the rolling hills and ridges around Haflong, headquarters of the North Cachar Hills District of Assam. For most of the year, the 1,200 Jantia tribals of Jatinga live in obscurity, tending to their crops,There is nothing to distinguish the hamlet of Jatinga from the hundreds of villages scattered about the rolling hills and ridges around Haflong, headquarters of the North Cachar Hills District of Assam. For most of the year, the 1,200 Jantia tribals of Jatinga live in obscurity, tending to their crops on the slopes of the Jatinga ridge or raising poultry and livestock.Because of its remoteness, Jatinga has few visitors from the outside world, except for two crucial months – August and September. Those are the months when a curious and unexplained phenomenon envelops the area, a phenomenon that has now become the intense focus of international scientific attention. The phenomenon, popularly referred to as the “bird mystery of Jatinga”,has so far baffled scientists the world over and not without good reason since it has not occurred anywhere else in the world. During themoonless nights of August and September every year, hundreds of birdsconverge on Jatinga, drawn, quite literally, like moths to a flame. Thevillagers hang lantern lights on poles and the birds display anirresistable attraction for them.  A view of the village and a dazed bird about to be brought down by a bamboo poleHundreds of birds of all varieties merely flutter down around the lights in a complete daze and are picked up by the villagers.Others hover low above the village seemingly without any orientation and are knocked down to the ground by long bamboo poles. At least for those two months, the villagers of Jatinga eat well. advertisementUnique Occurrence: But exactly why the phenomenon takes place is an unexplained mystery that is unique to Jatinga alone. In some parts of the world, people have been known to lay bright lights in the path of migrating birds and capture some in this manner. But Jatinga is different. For one, these are no migrating birds. Studies have established that all the species of birds caught at Jatinga are local ones living within 10 or 15 kilometres of the village.What is puzzling is that almost all the birds are diurnal birds that are active by day and never move out of their nests at night. Studies have also established that whatever the mysterious force that compels the birds to plunge like lemmings to their death, it is a force that operates only at Jatinga and only on certain nights in August and September when a series of conditions are in force. There is, in fact, a village just two kilometres north of Jatinga which is completely ignored by the birds though villagers have tried to lure them by lights on numerous occasions.Surprisingly, the phenomenon has gone virtually unnoticed till only recently though reports of the mysterious birds of Jatinga first surfaced towards the end of the last century. Inhabitants of Jatinga recall their ancestors describing how a small settlement of Naga tribals lived in the area then. One moonless night, they set out with lighted flares to search for a missing buffalo. No sooner had they reached the Jatinga ridge when birds swoopfed down on them from the darkness. Terrified, the superstitious Nagas fled believing them to be evil spirits. They left the area and some years later, a group of Jantia tribals came looking for a place to settle. The Nagas pointed them in the direction of the ridge. The Jantias, however, were mainly Christian converts and faith in their new religion overcame superstitious beliefs.Requisite Conditions: By 1910, five years after they had settled there, the people of Jatinga had discovered that the birds only descended on the village between August and October and specific weather conditions had to exist for them to do so. They also discovered that lighting fires attracted the birds like magnets. Bird catching soon became an annual carnival with hundreds of birds being brought down or captured for sport as well as for food.Because of the remoteness of the village, the bird mystery remainedconfined to the village till as recently as 1957 when a British teaplanter and ornithologist E.P. Gee visited Jatinga and laid out hisfindings in his book, The Wildlife of India published in 1957.”The whole thing is extraordinary,” Gee wrote, “it does not take placeanywhere else except this spot. Lights have been put in other spots butwithout success. Several conditions are necessary for the birds to cometo Jatinga.”He then went on to list the conditions. “It must besometime between August 15 and October 31. September is the best month.It must be foggy, cloudy or misty. Slight rain is even better. The windmust be from south to the north, otherwise no birds will come. Theremust be no moon. It happens only on really dark nights.advertisement The lights mustbe bright and circular, not beamed like the light from an electric torch or a car headlight. An open space is preferred though under the aboveconditions birds even enter houses. The best time is between 7 and 10p.m. As many as 200 birds have been killed by one man during one night.”But even after Gee’s book was published, the Jatinga mystery remainedoutside any serious research efforts. It was only in 1977 that Dr Sudhin Sengupta, an expert on bird behaviour from the Zoological Survey ofIndia went to Jatinga and lived there between August and October. Itproved an illuminating experience. “Hundreds of birds just dropped outof the sky,” he says, “some even flew into my bedroom if the lights were on. All the birds were in a dazed condition. They rarely tried to escape when they were picked up and usually even the ones left alive refusedfood.” Sengupta immediately dashed off frantic letters to leadingornithologists in Europe, America and Japan.All the replies evincedkeen interest in the mystery but nobody could offer any logicalexplanation for what happened. Some of them also announced theirintention of coming to Jatinga to see the phenomenon but were preventedby the fact that Assam is out of bounds to foreigners.Sengupta remained undaunted and returned to Jatinga every year since then, meticulouslycollecting data and carrying out various experiments. His efforts,however, have been seriously hampered by the Zoological Survey itselfwhich has not taken any major steps to unravel the mystery or supportSengupta’s research adequately enough.Experiment: Twoyears ago, the Jatinga mystery caught the fancy of the Forest Department through their local Divisional Forest Officer H.P. Phukan. Thedepartment erected a high steel tower fitted with powerful electriclights at the lower end of the village. The idea behind the tower wasthat it would attract a majority of the birds which could then be setfree rather than being killed by the villagers. The experiment, however, has been a limited success. Some birds have been attracted by the tower lights but a majority still drop down in the main village. Tragically,most of the ones that were collected from around the tower did notsurvive because whatever the mysterious force that attracts them toJatinga, it also causes most of them to refuse food. Girls from the village holding a variety of birds which fell into their courtyard and villagers waiting for the birds to arriveIronically enough, the data collected by both Sengupta and Phukan has only succeeded in deepening the mystery. Their research has uncovered additional facts that have thrown up even more puzzles. For instance, it has been established that the birds are not attracted to the entire Jatinga ridge but to a well-defined strip about 1.5 kilometres long and 200 metres wide. Outside this narrow strip, the phenomenon is virtually non-existent.advertisementFurther, the birds always fly in from the north and only when the wind is blowing from south to north. In other words, the birds fly in against the wind. Inexplicably, the environment and forest structure on both sides of the ridge are similar and an equal number of birds nest to the south of the village as in the north.But every time the birds come, it is only the ones from the north Phukan tried placing lights on the southern side of the ridge when conditions were favourable but as he says: “We waited in vain. Not a single bird was attracted to our lights even though villagers on the other side caught their usual quota. We only confirmed what the villagers already knew but I have no explanation.”Baffling Habits: Since Sengupta and Phukan started maintaining records, 38 bird species have been listed in the village’s catch including partridges, green pigeons, bitterns, emerald doves and waterbirds like egrets, moorhens and several types of kingfishers. And yet, there are certain species of birds that are seemingly able to resist the fatal siren call. Joseph Suchiang, 65, nephew of the founder of the village, says: “I have been catching birds since I was 13 and I can say that birds like grouse, hornbills and imperial pigeons which abound in the countryside around have never been caught in Jatinga” – yet another puzzle that nobody can explain. Even the commonest local birds like sparrows, mynas and thrushes which can be seen in their hundreds by day around the village never succumb to the phenomenon. There is no explanation but only certain clues that could help scientists some day to unravel the mystery. One such clue is the fact that the bird catch registered a sudden drop in 1951, the year of the great Assam earthquake in which thousands died. There is an active geological fault known as the Halflong-Disang fault which runs deep under the valley where the Jatinga ridge is situated. It is possible that there could be a link between the earth fault, the earthquake and the drop in the catch but if there is, nobody has discovered it as yet.Says Dr Salim Ali, India’s best-known ornithologist: “The most puzzling thing to me about this phenomenon is that so many species of diurnal resident (non-migratory) birds should be on the move at a time when, by definition, they should be fast asleep. The problem deserves deeper scientific study from various angles.”Perhaps the most baffling aspect of the Jatinga phenomenon is the behaviour of the affected birds. The moment they arrive over Jatinga, attracted by the lights, they become completely disoriented and confused.The birds that do not drop down in a daze simply hover aimlessly over the villages till they are brought down by the long bamboo sticks used by the villagers. Even though some species like green pigeons and teals normally have a powerful “flocking instinct” (flying in groups), over Jatinga, they appear to lose it completely.Sengupta believes that the explanation lies in the earth’s magnetism, the pull of gravity and electrical disturbances in the valley’satmosphere. The Jatinga ridge, he believes, has a high magnetic mineralcontent and the active earth fault under the valley could also becausing unusual changes in gravity and magnetism which are picked up bythe birds and affect their nervous system.He also believes that weather conditions like fog and variations in atmospheric pressure play theirpart in the mystery. He attaches considerable significance to the factthat the birds only come to Jatinga on moonless nights and the fact that the phenomenon occurs in August to October just after the monsoonrains. The water percolating through the rocks, he says, would raise the underground water level which in turn would affect the magnetic andelectrical characteristics of the ridge.This, he believes,possibly disturbs the birds sleeping in their nests and makes themrestless and take to flight and are attracted by the lights. Once overJatinga, the magnetic properties of the ridge come into effect and their internal compasses go haywire.Research: The theory,however, is nothing new. Dr Stephen Ellis and Dr William Keaton ofCornell University carried out interesting experiments with homingpigeons that has some relation to the Jatinga mystery. They attachedtiny bar magnets on the backs of some of the birds and bars ofnon-magnetic brass on others before releasing them.Under sunnyconditions, both groups performed equally well. But when released underovercast conditions, only the brass-attached birds flew normally. Thosewith magnets, unable to use their sun compasses, flew erratically. Sengupta reviving a kingfisher (left) and the farcical Jatinga seminar: Baffling phenomenaSengupta may be on the right track, but as he admits: “I have got only a few pieces of the jigsaw puzzle. It will need sustained studies by scientists of many disciplines – ornithologists, geologists, geophysicists, weather experts – to collect the other pieces. If we can do that, I feel that fascinating new vistas will open up. I am sure that if we can solve the Jatinga mystery we will also be able to solve some other problems of behaviour and migration now baffling scientists.”But given the Indian Government’s attitude, that does not seem possible. Recently, superficial and misleading reports appeared in some papers in Britain and here which talked about the “wanton destruction of birds by Jatinga inhabitants”. The reports said that the villagers killed the birds to sell to restaurants in big cities. No mention was made of the phenomenon or the mystery surrounding the birds, nor was it mentioned that Jatinga has no big city less than 200 kilometres away. The report was, however, sent to the Duke of Edinburgh, the president of the World Wildlife Fund, who wrote to Mrs Gandhi expressing concern at “the mass killings of birds in Jatinga”.Official invasion: This resulted in a flurry of activity and instructions went out to do something about the situation. Immediately, a seminar was held in Jatinga called “Save Jatinga Birds”. Hordes of pompous officials from Gauhati and Calcutta descended on the village to read out papers and lecture the villagers. Apart from Sengupta and Phukan, none had seen the actual bird catching before, yet they read out scientific papers and quoted statistics which were at variance with the facts.The villagers, naturally, resented the intrusion and the accusations and a climate of suspicion has been created which will take a long time to dissolve. Phukan had in fact, already started educating the villagers in his own fashion by setting up a birdwatchers club for the young people in the village. He would take them on outings and point out species and explain their peculiarities. Given time, he could probably have changed their attitude towards killing the birds. But after the seminar, his success is unlikely.The result is that there is, as yet, no systematic long-term plan to investigate the mystery. As Dr Salim Ali says: “It is difficult to tackle the problem for a visiting naturalist because of the unpredictable occurrence of the requisite meteorological conditions which are usually ephemeral and of a short duration. It can best be studied by someone based in Jatinga.”So far, however, there are no plans to set up a permanent unit where experts of different disciplines can take time to study the phenomenon in depth and come up with possible answers. Which can only mean that Jatinga will continue to remain one of the great unsolved mysteries of our time.last_img read more

Maruti Suzuki Raid De Himalaya being conducted in first part of October 2014

first_imgMaruti Suzuki Raid-De-HimalayaThe Raid-De-Himalaya, sponsored by Maruti Suzuki is now in its 16th year. The rally, one of the toughest in the world, will get off to a flying start in Himachal Pradesh on October 4th, as the ceremonial flag off will be in Shimla.Participants of the 16th Maruti Suzuki Raid De Himalaya will traverse across the most picturesque but challenging terrains from Himachal Pradesh to Jammu and Kashmir, to finish in Manali on October 11. The travel from Shimla to Manali will see participants tackling terrains made of 10 per cent tarmac and 90 per cent dirt in the first leg. The second leg will see them traverse via Kunzum La and Spiti Valley to take a halt at Kaza, where they will need to contend with low oxygen levels besides sharp turns and steep slopes.For the third leg which begins at Kaza, teams will cross monasteries of Komik, Dhankar, Ki and Tabo, following which they will have to travel through Gramphoo, Darcha and Sarchu in the fourth. Through the fifth and sixth leg, teams in the Raid De Himalaya will cover Debring, Daat and Sarchu to reach Patseo, Keylong and Zanskar before making a final halt in Manali.Rules of the 16th Maruti Suzuki Raid De Himalaya will be in line with the International Sporting Code of FIA, National Competition Rules as well as General Prescriptions of the FMSCI. Over 150 teams will be participating in this year’s event.The following are the various categories:Category Types of vehicles  Xtreme 4X4 cars and trucks Xtreme  Bikes and scooters Adventure 4X4 cars and trucks Adventure Bikes and scooters advertisementlast_img read more