Tuesday 15 November 2016

Indelible ink to prevent repeat withdrawals

demonetisation, indelible ink mark, bank ink mark, narendra modi, shaktikanta das, demonetisation policy, currency demonetised, currency notes, currency banned, rs 500 note, rs 1000 note, india news, indian express

A MYSORE company, the only recognised producer of indelible ink or voter’s ink in India, is scrambling to ramp up production “on a war footing” after the Centre Tuesday asked banks to start tagging those exchanging old Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes to prevent “unscrupulous elements” from sending people to exchange money multiple times at different branches.
Announcing the use of indelible ink, Economic Affairs Secretary Shaktikanta Das said: “We have received reports that certain unscrupulous elements, who are trying to convert black money into white, have organised groups of innocent people and are sending them from one branch to another to exchange notes and get Rs 4,500 each. As a result, what is happening is that the benefit of withdrawal of cash is getting restricted to a smaller number of people…to prevent such kind of misuse, the branches of banks will take recourse to the use of indelible ink marks for disbursement of cash.”
Tuesday’s announcement was described as a “sudden development” by C Harakumar, general manager, Mysore Paints and Varnish Ltd (MPVL), which is run by the Karnataka government and has been producing the indelible ink since 1962.
“Since this afternoon, several banks have approached us with queries about the ink, and about how many people can be marked with ink from one 5-ml bottle. It is a sudden development and we will have to stretch ourselves and work on a war-footing over the next few days,’’ Harakumar said.
However, the latest move in the government’s demonetisation drive — the daily cash limit per account holder for exchanging the old notes at banks is Rs 4,500 — was described by a top bank officers’ representative as equivalent to “burning the house to catch a rat”.
“The demonetisation drive has been proved as something that violates the fundamental right to life. Poor planning in rolling out this programme has ended up preventing lakhs of people from withdrawing money from their own accounts. The decision to mark fingers of all customers with indelible ink to prevent repeated money exchange is like burning the house to catch a rat. This is going to put the public in more difficulty now,” D Thomas Franco, vice president, All India Bank Officers Confederation, told The Indian Express in Chennai.
A government official in Delhi said the plan was to disburse the ink to banks from Tuesday night. He said that it would be applied on fingers of the right hand of customers to “ensure there was no confusion during the elections coming up in many parts”, when indelible ink would be applied on the forefinger of the left hand of voters.
“It is the same ink used by the Election Commission of India,” said the official. Finance Ministry officials, however, did not provide a clear answer on specific queries regarding how a person having the ink mark would be able to exchange currency notes on other days.
The indelible ink is manufactured and supplied by MPVL in association with the Election Commission, the National Physical Laboratory, which devised the chemical formula, and the National Research Development Corporation. The ink contains silver nitrate, which stains when exposed to ultraviolet light.
“We are expecting orders for 5-ml bottles of the ink from the banks. There will be a strain on our manufacturing capacity because we were not prepared. During elections, we have a lot of time and are well-prepared. Now we have to procure the raw material and start production immediately. We have to take stock as production progresses,’’ said Harakumar.
According to the MPVL official, banks approached the company under the assumption that there would be stocks readily available. “We are looking at starting production at 6 am on Wednesday. We have sought additional manpower. We will start dispatching the ink by tomorrow evening to the banks,’’ said Harakumar.
At least 77 per cent of the production at MPVL is of indelible ink but the company also earns revenues from coatings and primers. For the general elections in 2009, MPVL produced 20 lakh 10-ml bottles of the ink. In 2014, when the last general elections were held, MPVL produced 2.3 crore kg of indelible ink and reported an annual revenue of Rs 47 crore. Last year, the company sold 1.21 crore kg of ink to post a revenue of Rs 25 crore.
The ink has also been used in pulse polio programmes in India and other countries and is sometimes used in hospitals to mark cancer-affected parts of the body.
In Delhi, Economic Affairs Secretary Das also said that the government was keeping a “close watch” on deposits in Jan Dhan accounts as, in many cases, such accounts are being misused for deposit of black money. Many Jan Dhan accounts are reportedly getting deposits of Rs 49,000, against the limit of Rs 50,000.
In Chennai, bank officers’ representative Franco said that the Economic Affairs Secretary had no authority to take the decision on using indelible ink. “Such decisions should come either from the Reserve Bank of India or the finance secretary… How many marks would bank staff put on customers who exchange the limited amount in two or three stages?” said Franco.
A government official said that the department of financial services and a team of experts were preparing a draft standard operating procedure on usage of the ink. “This will be circulated hopefully by tonight. This should clarify how a person can exchange old currency multiple times,” he said.

According to the finance ministry, the government has also set up a high-powered group under the Cabinet Secretary to monitor the supply of essential goods on the lines of the task force to monitor circulation of fake currency notes in vulnerable areas.

Film and TV actress Rekha Mohan found dead in Thrissur home

Film and television actress Rekha Mohan was found dead in an apartment at the posh Sobha city complex in Thrissur, police said on Sunday.
The 45-year-old actor was staying alone in her flat as her businessman husband was away in Malaysia.
When Rekha failed to respond to his calls last night, he alerted his friends who informed the police.
Police reached the spot and found her dead inside the flat.
Only a postmortem will reveal the exact cause of her death, police said.
Rekha was known for her roles in films like ‘Udhyanapalakam’ ‘Ne Varuvolam’ and ‘Yathramozhi’.
She had acted in several television serials, including ‘Mayamma’.

Vivo V5 Launched in India: Price, Release Date, Specifications, and More

Vivo India on Tuesday launched the V5 selfie-focused smartphone in India. The smartphone will be available for pre-order in 22 cities from Wednesday, and go on sale on November 26. It has been priced at Rs. 17,980. The company also unveiled the Vivo V5 Plus at the event, but did not specify when the smartphone with its dual front camera will go on sale beyond a "coming soon" timeline. The Vivo V5 will be available in Crown Gold and Grey colour variants.
The highlight feature of the Vivo V5 is the 20-megapixel selfie camera that is accompanied by a front facing 'Moonlight Glow' flash meant to improve low-light photography. It bears an f/2.0 aperture, a Sony IMX376 sensor, and a 5P lens. The smartphone also comes preloaded with the Face Beauty 6.0 app. It sports a metal unibody design, supports dual-SIM cards, and runs on Funtouch 2.6 OS that's based on Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow.
The dual-SIM (hybrid dual-SIM configuration) Vivo V5 smartphone bears an HD (720x1280 pixels) IPS display, and is powered by a 1.5GHz octa-core MediaTek MT6750 SoC coupled with 4GB of RAM. Apart from the 20-megapixel front camera, the Vivo V5 bears a 13-megapixel rear camera with a single-LED flash and PDAF. The smartphone bears 32GB of inbuilt storage that's expandable via microSD card (up to 128GB). It comes with a water-resistant fingerprint sensor that is embedded below the home button, said to take as little as 0.2 seconds to unlock. The smartphone is powered by a 3000mAh battery, and bears the standard connectivity options including 4G (with support for Indian LTE bands), FM radio, GPS, and Bluetooth. It offers an accelerometer, ambient light sensor, proximity sensor, and digital compass.
The V5 also comes with Hi-Fi audio support (using the 32-bit AKM AK4376 DAC), and the company is touting a Smart Split 2.0 feature that lets users use two apps side-by-side. Also touted is an Eye Protection Mode that filters blue light.

OnePlus 3T Launch Today: Price, Specifications, and Other Rumoured Details

OnePlus 3T Launch Today: Price, Specifications, and Other Rumoured DetailsOnePlus is all set to launch its new OnePlus 3T smartphone which is widely expected to be an upgraded variant of the OnePlus 3. The upcoming OnePlus 3T smartphone will be unveiled at 1pm ET (11.30pm IST) on Tuesday via a Facebook Live video. Ahead of the official launch, a couple of leaks have made it to the Internet revealing some more details. A tipster on Weibo has posted an image claimed to be of the OnePlus 3T alongside sharing some details of the specifications. As per the leaked image shared by Weibo tipster (first picked up by Trendy Techz), the OnePlus 3T looks identical to the already available OnePlus 3. 

 The Chinese company has shared some teasers on Twitter for the upcoming OnePlus 3T which claim the handset will sport "more precision", "more power", and "more never settle". Some of the innards details shared by tipster include Snapdragon 821 processor, which has been already confirmed by the Chinese company. OnePlus, earlier this month, teased that the upcoming OnePlus 3T will be powered by a Snapdragon 821 processor clocked at 2.35GHz. In terms of memory, OnePlus 3T is expected to carry the same 6GB of RAM same as the original model. 

The handset is also said to come in 64GB and 128GB storage models while will pack 3300mAh battery. It is also said to sport f/1.7 aperture compared to f/2.0 aperture seen on the OnePlus 3. In a separate leak, the unannounced OnePlus 3T smartphone has been listed by Oppomart. The listing appears to be a placeholder for the online retailer and features specifications that have been rumoured for the handset for weeks. The Oppomart listing pegs a price tag of $499 (roughly Rs. 34,000) which is more than the original OnePlus 3 that was launched at Rs. 27,999 in India. The handset has already been leaked in several benchmarks suggesting some innards. Based on preliminary leaks, the OnePlus 3T is said to run Android 7.0 Nougat-based OxygenOS which is likely to bring performance improvements. 

 Another enhancement rumoured is in the display panel, the Chinese company is said to go from the Optic AMOLED of OnePlus 3 to LCD in OnePlus 3T. However, this may not pan out, since CEO Carl Pei recently said that OnePlus will continue to use the Optic AMOLED in the anticipated future. One the camera front, the OnePlus 3T is rumoured to ship with a 16-megapixel Sony IMX398 sensor on the rear, instead of the 16-megapixel Sony IMX298 sensor present on the OnePlus 3.

Beauty and the Beast US Official Trailer

Beauty and the Beast (French: La Belle et la Bête) is a traditional fairy tale written by French novelist Gabrielle-Suzanne Barbot de Villeneuve and published in 1740 in La Jeune Américaine et les contes marins (The young American and Marine Tales). Her lengthy version was abridged, rewritten, and published by Jeanne-Marie Leprince de Beaumont in 1756 in Magasin des enfants (Shop of children) to produce the version most commonly retold. It was influenced by some earlier stories, such as Cupid and Psyche, written by Lucius Apuleius Madaurensi in The Golden Ass in the 2nd century AD, and The Pig King, an Italian fairytale published by Giovanni Francesco Straparola in The Facetious Nights of Straparola.

Variants of the tale are known across Europe. In France, for example, Zémire and Azor is an operatic version of the story, written by Marmontel and composed by Grétry in 1771, which had enormous success well into the 19th century; it is based on the second version of the tale. Amour pour amour (Love for love), by Nivelle de la Chaussée, is a 1742 play based on Gabrielle-Suzanne Barbot de Villeneuve's version. According to researchers at universities in Durham and Lisbon, the story originated around 4,000 years ago.