Fined by US for sloppy website, AI defence: our employee died

, by indianmilitaryveterans

Smita Aggarwal : New Delhi, Sat May 05 2012, 02:16 hrs
Air India has become the first airline to be penalised under new US rules enhancing protection for air travel consumers. By its own admission, that’s because it couldn’t update its website as the employee managing the site had died.

The US Transportation Department’s order dated May 3, imposing a $80,000 penalty on Air India, says the airline had failed to post contingency plans for lengthy tarmac delays and customer service plans, including fees for optional services, on its website on the date under consideration (August 23, 2011).

AI argued that it had uploaded its tarmac delay and customer service plans, but “these apparently did not properly appear due to a technical problem”.

The delay in “fixing” this was due to the “unfortunate and unexpected death of the employee responsible for making the changes”, AI argued during the mitigation proceedings.

The defence cut no ice with the US Transporation Department, which has directed the carrier to pay half of its $80,000 fine within a month.

Foreign carriers operating to the US with at least one aircraft of 30 or more seats are required to adopt contingency plans for lengthy tarmac delays as well as customer service plans, and to post these on their websites.

Ironically, AI has one of the world’s highest aircraft to manpower ratios of 1:230, against the norm of 1:115. It has also been grappling with problems of “rationalising” its staff that numbers over 38,000.

AI said it would seek “corrective” action by paying half the penalty and seeking a waiver on the rest. AI has 10 days to file a review petition.
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Circular No. 482 Dated:19.04.2012

, by indianmilitaryveterans

Implementation of Govt. decision on the recommendations of
the Cabinet Secretary’s Committee- Revision of Pension in
respect of PBOR discharged prior to 01.01.2006.

The revised rate of pension in respect of Pre-2006 retiree Hony. Sub
Lt of Navy and Hony. Flying Officer of Air Force wef 01.07.2009
shall also be stepped up. In respect of Pre-2006 retiree
Hony. Sub Lt of Navy and Hony Flying Officer of Air Force with
actual qualifying service of 28 yrs or
above shall be revised to Rs 13590/-per month w.e.f 01.07.2009.

Note; Hony Lt of Army is ommited


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Sukma Collector reaches home

, by indianmilitaryveterans

Sukma Collector reaches home
Man Mohan
Our Roving Editor
Collector Alex Paul Menon on his arrival at Sukma from Chintalnar on Friday. — PTI

Sukma (South Bastar), May 4
It was a joyous reunion between Sukma District Collector Alex Paul Menon and his wife Asha when he walked into his official residence as a free man this morning. Tears of happiness could be seen on pregnant wife’s cheeks. She welcomed him with a traditional “arti”.

The Maoists released Menon (32) in the Tadmelta forest, 85 km from here, on late Thursday evening. Because of darkness and bad road conditions, he spent that night at the Central Reserve Police Force base camp at Chintalnar, around 8 km from the spot where he was set free after his abduction by the rebels on April 21.

As per an agreement reached between the BJP-ruled Chhattisgarh Government on April 30 night, Menon was to be released within 48 hours, but that deadline was extended by one more day. The state administration had claimed that no Maoist would be set free for his release.

However, the Maoists issued a press statement on Friday, demanding “immediate release” of their three comrades and fast tracking the release of five others. The Maoists claimed that the Chhattisgarh Government had agreed to their demand.

There is a speculation in the corridors of power at Raipur whether any secret swap deal was worked out for Menon’s release.

The negotiators from the Maoists’ side, BD Sharma and Prof G Hargopal, said they had been given a list of five persons by the Naxalities. After five rounds of talks with the state government’s two representatives, Nirmala Buch and S Mishra, had agreed to release any three of them.

Meanwhile, Meena Chaudhary and Malti, two Naxalite women lodged in a jail, filed bail applications in the court today. The court rejected their bail petitions. They were among those whose release was demanded by the Maoists.

Asked whether the government was not going to oppose their bail, Chief Minister Raman Singh told the Press in New Delhi that “no assurance has been given other than the agreement reached with the Maoists…there is no secret deal with the Maoists”.

This morning, Menon flew from Chintalnar to Sukma. He was accompanied by the negotiators from the Maoists’ side. After landing, Menon went straight to his home where his family and some relatives were eagerly waiting for his arrival.

“I am okay,” Menon told a large contingent of television and print media assembled outside his house. Asked whether he would like to continue to work in Sukma, he said, “It depends on the state administration.” Thanking everybody for support, the 2006-batch IAS official Menon said, “I am fine.”

Asked to narrate his experience in the Maoists’ captivity, he said, “It was tough.” He refused to say more than this on the plea that “it was a bad experience and I do not want to talk about it again and again…I want to forget about it and move ahead in life”.

An agreement arrived at by the two mediators each of the Chhattisgarh Government and the Maoists during their fifth round of talks on April 30 night paved the way for Menon’s release.

Under the agreement, the state government had agreed to set up a high-powered committee under the chairmanship of Nirmala Buch to review the cases of all prisoners languishing in Chhattisgarh jails, including the cases demanded by the Maoists.

The three-member committee also include the Chief Secretary and the Director General of Police. The committee has started examining the issue of delay in cases of undertrials lodged in different jails in the state.

The CM said, “Kidnapping is a national problem. There is a need for a unified national policy on such issues. We will take up the issue with the Prime Minister.”

He said the Chhattisgarh Government would be putting up its views on the revised NCTC draft at the chief ministers’ meeting in New Delhi on Saturday.


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Samsung Galaxy S III India launch in first week of June

, by indianmilitaryveterans

Samsung Galaxy S III India launch in first week of June
NDTV Correspondent, May 4, 2012,

The big news is here, directly from Samsung Galaxy S III launch event in London. The Korean manufacturer has stated that India is in the first list of countries getting their hands on the all new Galaxy S III.

The smartphone will be launched in the first week of June, just after the May 29 debut in Europe. Coming to another important detail, Galaxy S III will be priced at Rs. 38,000 (MRP), while the street price is expected to be around Rs. 34,000. The pricing is in-line with recently launch quad core Android 'One X' from Taiwanese manufacturer HTC.

Announced late yesterday at a press event, Samsung Galaxy S III features a 4.8-inch Super AMOLED display, 1.4GHz Exynos 4 Quad processor and 8MP primary camera. Company has also revealed a new version of Touchwiz for the smartphone, and will be known as Nature UX. It adds host of new functionalities to Android 4.0 in the smartphone.

Key Specifications
4.8 inch HD Super AMOLED (1280x720) display
Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich)
8MP Auto Focus rear camera with Flash & Zero Shutter Lag, BSI
1.9MP front camera, HD recording @30fps with Zero Shutter Lag, BSI
Recording & Playback: Full HD (1080p)
Burst shot & Best photo, Recording snapshot, HDR
Wi-Fi a/b/g/n, WiFi HT40, GPS/GLONASS
NFC, Bluetooth 4.0(LE)
16/ 32GB User memory (64GB available soon) + microSD slot (up to 64GB)
Dimensions: 136.6 x 70.6 x 8.6 mm, 133g
Battery: 2,100 mAh


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Paper General Singh spoke with claims PM and next Chief are kin

, by indianmilitaryveterans

The Prime Minister’s Office today denied a report in Hindi weekly Chauthi Duniya that there is a relationship between the Prime Minister or his family members and the next Army chief Lt General Bikram Singh or his wife.

The denial came in response to a news report in the weekly, “Senadhyaksha Umra Vivad: Pradhanmantri Unki Patni Unki Saali” (General’s Age Row: PM, his Wife and Sister-in-Law), alleging that Army Chief General V K Singh got a raw deal in his date-of-birth controversy because the wife of next Army Chief Lt General Bikram Singh is the sister-in-law of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

“The allegation that General Bikram Singh or his wife is related to the Prime Minister or any member of his family is completely untrue. This is a scurrilous, irresponsible and mischievous statement,” said a communique issued by the PMO today.

Incidentally, it was in an interview to Chauthi Duniya editor Santosh Bhartiya that General V K Singh had alleged that he was offered a bribe by an officer (Lt Gen Tejinder Singh) via an “indirect method.”

Bhartiya, when asked about the PMO’s denial, said: “I have not seen the denial. We will speak through the paper, Chauthi Duniya.”

The Chauthi Duniya report alleged: “Manmohan Singh ki patni Gursharan Kaur aur Bikram Singh ki patni Surjeet Kaur mauseri behnein hain. Is natey Bikram Singh ki patni Surjeet Kaur Pradhanmantri Manmohan Singh ki saali huin. General VK Singh se juda yeh saara prapanch Pradhanmantri ki saali ko khush karne ke liye hua.” (Manmohan Singh’s wife and Bikram Singh’s wife are cousins. This makes Bikram Singh’s wife the PM’s sister-in-law. The plot against General V K Singh was hatched to favour the PM’s sister-in-law.”

This is the second consecutive denial by the government to the Chauthi Duniya in as many days. The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) yesterday denied its report where it had alleged that the MHA was tapping the phones of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Congress President Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi, Priyanka Gandhi, A K Antony, and Pranab Mukherjee among others with the help of top officials of IB and Defence Intelligence.

“The allegations that telephones were bugged at the instance of the Home Minister or the Ministry of Home Affairs is an outrageous lie,” the Ministry of Home Affairs said in a press communique on Thursday. “The Government reserves its right to take appropriate action against the offending newspaper,” the MHA communique added.

With less than a month to go before General Singh retires, Chauthi Duniya alleged that Home Minister P Chidambaram and HRD Minister Kapil Sibal — on behalf of the PM — approached Chief Justice of India Justice S H Kapadia ahead of the court’s verdict on General V K Singh’s age-row case to caution that a verdict against the government would create a Constitutional crisis.

“P Chidambaram and Sibal as an envoy to the PM met (CJI) Kapadia and said if the government’s stand goes wrong and General wins, then a Constitutional crisis will be created...On the day of verdict, February 10, people were expecting the victory of General but things turned upside down. The apex court rather providing with the judgment acted as an advisor,” the report said.
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