MASSIVE WEEKEND MEDIA BOOST FOR TOUCH FOOTBALL AUSTRALIA TEAMS

first_imgTouch Football Australia (TFA) National Representative Teams and squads were involved in a series of camps and events around the Country on the weekend that led to widespread media coverage and massive promotional exposure for the code on a National scale.TFA fielded an Australian Women’s Invitational Team in the Harvey Norman Beach Footy Series at Sydney’s Maroubra beach on the 16-17 December 2006.The event featured six elite teams battling it out for $100,000 in prize money for their choosen charity.Four of the teams – The Blues, the Maroons, the Pacific Islanders, and the Young Guns comprised wall to wall National Rugby League superstars, whilst the Australian Women’s Invitational Beach Footy team, and a Celebrity Team headlined by Andrew Johns, and Anthony Mundine completed the stellar field.The event received massive media exposure in print, radio, and television mediums through broadcast partners Channel Nine, News Limited, and Nova FM, and the Women’s Beach Footy Team were featured prominantly.Among the media exposure TFA received was the front page story of a four page Beach Footy liftout in Sydney’s Daily Telegraph on Friday, live radio interviews with Women’s players and updates on Nova FM, and 2UE, exposure on several National network news bulletins, and Channel Ten’s Sports Tonight.Channel Nine taped the Beach Footy Series and it will be aired in late February/ early March in the lead-up to the NRL season kick-off.The Australian Men’s Open Team travelled to Rockhampton for their final training camp of their 2007 World Cup campaign and enjoyed saturation exposure from the local media.The Touch Football loving town rolled out the red carpet for Tony Trad’s men and the 3 game series against a Central Queensland combination that featured Rugby League superstar Benji Marshall turning out as an Invitational player for Central Queensland in the last game, received daily print and television coverage in the region.To cap off an exciting time promotionally for the sport, the Australian Open Women’s Team were featured on Channel Ten’s Sports Tonight program Sunday evening in an excellent piece on their record as arguably Australia’s most successful National Women’s sporting Team.The Aussie girls have won 45 World Cup games straight in a 19 year unblemished run in World Cup competition.A further piece on the Australian Men’s Open Team will be featured on Sports Tonight before all seven teams depart Australia’s shores bound for Stellenbosch, South Africa on January 13 2007.There will be media stories circulating in the lead-up to the World Cup on Australian representative players and Teams so keep your eyes peeled for World Cup stories around the nation in coming weeks.last_img read more

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TFA Seeking Event Volunteers

first_imgWith an exciting two year calendar of events approaching including the 2015 FIT Touch World Cup (2015 TWC), TFA is undertaking an initial internal expression of interest process seeking suitable Volunteer Event Staff personnel to contribute to the success of our events. If interesting in volunteering in any of the events, please complete the online Expression of Interest process via http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/Volunteer-Event-Staff-EOI by Wednesday, 22 January 2013.Further details are available in the attachment.Related Filesvolunteer_event_staff_-_expression_of_interest-pdfRelated LinksVolunteers Requiredlast_img read more

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Video: Iowa WR Tevaun Smith Breaks Odell Beckham’s World Record With 41 One-Handed Catches In A Minute

first_imgClose-up view of Iowa footballs.LINCOLN, NE – NOVEMBER 24: General view of footballs used by the Iowa Hawkeyes before the game against the Nebraska Cornhuskers at Memorial Stadium on November 24, 2017 in Lincoln, Nebraska. (Photo by Steven Branscombe/Getty Images)Your Guinness world record didn’t last very long, Odell Beckham. The New York Giants’ wide receiver set a world record on Thursday, catching 33 of New Orleans Saints’ quarterback Drew Brees’ passes in a minute with one hand on ESPN’s Super Bowl set in Scottsdale, Ariz. Iowa wide receiver Tevaun Smith one-upped the NFL star on Friday, snagging 41 passes using only one hand. .@TevaunSmith goes for @OBJ_3‘s one-handed catch world record and snags 41 in a minute! #GoHawks #Swarm2015 http://t.co/BnLBmRNutP— Hawkeye Football (@HawkeyeFootball) January 30, 2015Smith had two less catches in that one-minute video than he did during the entire 2014 season, during which he caught 43 passes for 596 yards and three touchdowns.last_img read more

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Louisville’s Facebook Account Screwed Up A Statistic, And Kentucky Fans Aren’t Letting It Slide

first_imgLouisville messes up stat in tweet.This past Sunday night, Louisville took down Northern Iowa to reach its fourth straight Sweet 16. Senior Wayne Blackshear also became the first Cardinals player in school history to play for four straight squads that reached the second weekend of the NCAA Tournament. Tuesday morning, the school attempted to celebrate the accomplishment by posting the statistic to its Facebook page. Unfortunately, they screwed up and named Blackshear as the only player in NCAA Division One history to accomplish the feat. That isn’t even close to true, as dozens of players in college basketball history to have reached the Sweet 16 four straight times.Kentucky fans, predictably, are having a field day, claiming that the school is perpetuating a “lie.”…. “And the lie detector test determined….THAT was a lie!” @KySportsRadio pic.twitter.com/D1uwIpmGoJ— Jeremy Kemble (@IAM4UKWILDCATS) March 24, 2015UL Athletics sends out a blatant lie today http://t.co/ZTni2u97L9— Matt Jones (@KySportsRadio) March 24, 2015University of Louisville claims Wayne Blackshear is the first to appear in four Sweet 16 games. Kentucky has had seven players do that.— UK Cat Facts (@UK_CatFacts) March 24, 2015Regardless, Blackshear’s feat is quite impressive. Can we get a Kentucky vs. Louisville national championship game please?last_img read more

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A Michigan Fan Got A Tattoo Of Jim Harbaugh On Saved By The Bell

first_imgJim Harbaugh speaks as he is introduced as the new Head Coach of the University of Michigan football team.ANN ARBOR, MI – DECEMBER 30: Jim Harbaugh speaks as he is introduced as the new Head Coach of the University of Michigan football team at the Junge Family Champions Center on December 30, 2014 in Ann Arbor, Michigan. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)Michigan fans are still pretty pumped about the hiring of former Wolverines quarterback Jim Harbaugh as head coach. One has chosen a rather interesting way to convey that excitement. A Twitter user who goes by the name of Mark the Nomad has gotten a tattoo that pays homage to Harbaugh’s 1994 appearance on the television show Saved By The Bell. No, really.Mark claims that he’s received the most negative feedback from Columbus, Ohio. That doesn’t surprise anyone.I have a very important announcement to make.— Mark (@MarktheNomad) April 4, 2015I want all of you to stop what you’re doing and look.— Mark (@MarktheNomad) April 4, 2015So, this just happened: #GoBlue pic.twitter.com/jqlqyDoFsM— Mark (@MarktheNomad) April 4, 2015A huge thanks to those who donated to the tattoo fund on GoFundMe. I certainly didn’t think it’d pick up traction the way it did.— Mark (@MarktheNomad) April 4, 2015I had the best tattoo artist, IMHO, on the planet. If you’re in the Sarasota area, hell if you’re in Florida, go see Caitlin at Trap Ink.— Mark (@MarktheNomad) April 4, 2015You may be shocked to learn that most of the negative feedback I’ve received is via Columbus, Ohio.— Mark (@MarktheNomad) April 4, 2015If we’re being honest, it’s actually some high-quality ink. That being said, he’s probably going to get tired of explaining it to everyone he ever meets.last_img read more

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Video: Duke Dropped A Cool “Duke In The NBA” Graphic On Twitter

first_imgDuke alumni Kyrie Irving promotion.Duke KyrieDuke is just three days away from beginning its national title defense. The Blue Devils open up Friday night against Siena, but there are over a dozen former players currently in action in the NBA.Like other programs with a large number of NBA alumni, Duke does a good job of playing up its track record on social media. It did so again tonight with a quick “Duke in the NBA” graphic on Twitter. Pretty self-explanatory. There’s background music, as images of ex-Dukies in NBA gear appear and flow from one to the next. Duke forever. #DukeintheNBA #BannerHunters #TheBrotherhood #DukeFam pic.twitter.com/3DnvM2cVcF— Duke Basketball (@dukeblueplanet) November 11, 2015How many members of the 2015-16 Blue Devils will join these guys in the professional ranks next year?last_img read more

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PAJ Engages Stakeholders on Proposed Development of Goat Islands

first_img President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Port Authority of Jamaica (PAJ), Professor Gordon Shirley, on November 1, engaged several stakeholders at the Jamaica Conference Centre with a presentation and discussion surrounding the proposed development of the Goat Islands.The proposal made by the China Harbour Engineering Company (CHEC) is for the establishment of a transshipment port and an industrial commercial economic zone on the Goat Islands and on lands north of the Old Harbour Bay area, in St. Catherine, as part of the global logistics hub initiative.Professor Shirley, in putting the need for development in perspective, indicated that the rest of the world is moving in sync with the expansion of the shipping industry, which has seen ports along the east coast of the United States expanding, such as Miami, which recently added four new cranes.He emphasised that Jamaica must capitalize on its unique position of having the most favourable location in the region, particularly with the impending expansion of the Panama Canal.   “We must deepen our channel to stay in the game or the shipping lines will go away,” Professor Shirley warned.The President expressed the need to ensure that the ports operate at world class levels. “We have to move in a direction of adding greater value to the cargo which comes to Jamaica and at the moment this is the single largest opportunity to do so,” he added.Professor Shirley also mentioned the impending privatization of the Kingston Container Terminal under a concessionary arrangement which would span 35 years, noting that there are three pre-qualified players in the tender process. They are CMACGM China Merchant Marine, Singapore Port Authority and Dubai Port World. The process should be completed by mid 2014.A report on an Environmental Management Scoping Survey of the Portland Bight Area, in Clarendon,  of which the Goat Islands are a part,  was shared by Professor Shirley. It was undertaken on behalf of the PAJ by Conrad Douglas and Associates Ltd.The survey was intended to assess and monitor the proposed project area, undertake detailed environmental and feasibility studies and offer guidance to the Chinese investors about the required development processes and approvals, which must be followed.The President, who was in his first day on the job, made it clear that the Environmental Management Scoping Study was in no way intended to replace an Environmental Impact Assessment, which would be undertaken after a Framework Agreement had been done and the project submitted to Cabinet for approval.Professor Shirley said the proposed development is important to Jamaica, not just for employment creation, but also for development of the maritime sector.Stakeholders included residents of Old Harbour Bay, members of academia, environmentalists and representatives of the private sector.A summary of the key points of the Environmental Management Scoping Study report can be viewed on the PAJ’s website at: www.portjam.com. Professor Shirley says Jamaica must capitalize on its unique position in the region. Story Highlights Professor Shirley said the proposed development is important to Jamaica for development of the maritime sector. PAJ indicated that the rest of the world is moving in sync with the expansion of the shipping industry.last_img read more

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Pilots struggled to control plane that crashed in Indonesia

first_imgLion Air pilots struggled to maintain control of their Boeing jet as an automatic safety system in the Boeing jet repeatedly pushed the plane’s nose down, according to a draft of a preliminary report by Indonesian officials who are looking into last month’s deadly crash.The investigators are focusing on whether faulty information from sensors led the plane’s system to force the nose down.Indonesian authorities are expected to issue a report Wednesday, although it is unclear whether they will offer a probable cause for the Oct. 29 crash. The new Boeing 737 MAX 8 plunged into the Java Sea, killing all 189 people on board.Boeing did not immediately respond to an emailed request for comment.The Associated Presslast_img read more

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Alibaba heads remarks spark debate over China working hours

first_imgBeijing: Remarks by the head of Chinese online business giant Alibaba that young people should work 12-hour days, six days a week if they want financial success have prompted a public debate over work-life balance in the country. Jack Ma is one of China’s richest men and his comments last week brought both condemnation and support as China’s more mature economy enters a period of slower growth. Newspaper People’s Daily, the ruling Communist Party’s mouthpiece, issued an editorial, saying mandatory overtime reflects managerial arrogance and was also impractical and unfair to workers. Online complaints included blaming long work hours for a lower birth rate in the country. Ma has responded to the criticism by saying work should be a joy and also include time for study, reflection and self-improvement. (AP)last_img read more

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Celebrating UKBengal livingbridge

first_imgIn order to celebrate the living bridge of cricket between Bengal and Britain, British Deputy High Commission Kolkata hosted a UK-Kolkata Cricket Carnival at Spring Club, EM Bypass on May 18.The cricket carnival was in association with Travel Agents Federation of India (TAFI), Travel Agents Association of India (TAAI), SKAL International Kolkata, VFS Global and British Council. A team of 8 players (including men and women) from British Deputy High Commission Kolkata and all of these 5 different organisations went on to the pitch to play against each other to create some unforgettable and memorable cricket moments for the ‘City of Joy’. Also Read – The Puja carnivalBruce Bucknell, British Deputy High Commissioner Kolkata said: “I am delighted to join hands with the travel and tourism trade in Kolkata to celebrate the living bridge of cricket between Bengal and Britain. The World Cup in the UK will be the biggest cricket tournament to date. It is a chance to showcase the best of England and Wales on the global stage, and is a once in a generation chance for cricket fans in England and Wales to see the world’s greatest players in action.” Also Read – Wave City brings special offers this NavratraAnil Punjabi, Director, ARES Travels and Chairman East, Travel Agents Federation of India (TAFI) said: “History of Indian cricket has its major link to Britain. We have come close to each other to enhance our business and overall growth. As it’s often said – Alone we can do so little, together we can do so much. I wish UK-Kolkata Cricket Carnival a huge success. Such events will boost travel to Great Britain.” The player of the match in the finals won a return trip ticket (Kolkata to London) courtesy Sri Lankan Airlines. The Woman of the Tournament (highest score) won a return trip (domestic ticket in India) from Spice Jet. The cricket carnival was interspersed with cricket trivia and quizzes which included prizes and giveaways from the tourism and hospitality sector of Kolkata such as Novotel, Thai Airways, Country Road Resort, Vivada cruise, Pride Hotel, HHI hotel among others. Sanjeev Mehra, President, SKAL International Kolkata said: “The game of cricket is a great unifier in India and the British High Commission in Kolkata has chosen the right medium to connect with the tourism and travel trade. SKAL International Kolkata 127 welcomes this wonderfully inclusive initiative that brings together all our colleagues from the travel agencies, hotels, airlines, cruises and other spheres of this buzzing industry. We participated with gusto, played the game with the friendly spirit that underlines all SKAL activities, and see this as a precursor to a very exciting and successful ICC World Cup later this summer.” Indians travel to attend all sorts of sporting events. It is not just cricket, but other sports like football – the English Premier League, tennis at Wimbledon as well as cricket at Lords and the other main grounds in England and Wales. Estimates for the numbers planning to travel to the UK from India for CWC 2019 range from 50,000-80,000.last_img read more

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Fickell hopes students get better each and every week at games

There wasn’t much excitement swirling around Buckeye nation after the football team’s 24-6 loss in Miami on Sept. 17, but a change at the quarterback position followed by a win might have been just enough to get the fans back into it. The excitement began last Thursday, when coach Luke Fickell announced that true freshman Braxton Miller would be replacing redshirt senior Joe Bauserman as the starting quarterback. With his new responsibility, the young freshman impressed the crowd of more than 105,000 fans Saturday at Ohio Stadium as he earned his first career win as a starter, throwing two touchdowns to fellow freshman Devin Smith, while cruising to a 37-17 win over Colorado. Miller’s performance put a little swagger in the Buckeyes step and rallied the fans and his teammates. “His (Miller) stats are great, but the moves he was putting on guys, just making people look stupid — it was fun to watch,” said Kyle Morrison, a first-year in business. Fickell expressed his own excitement with Miller and his team. “We had to play with some emotion,” he said. “I think that’s what we wanted, to get back home and get that feel of emotion, get those guys on the sidelines, gets the students into it. And I think that’s what we saw out there today from the beginning of the game, really, to all the way to the end. We’re excited about those things.” And the students were into it. “It was electric,” Morrison said. “I thought they did a great job, the crowd was incredible.” For first-year Alex Allen, Saturday’s game marked his first visit to the ‘Shoe. “It was breathtaking,” Allen said. “It was overwhelming to see it all and realize I’m finally watching a game at The Ohio State University.” As for the intensity of the crowd, “It was crazy,” Allen added. “It’s Block ‘O’ so we had to be.” Fickell again mentioned the impact of the student body at home games in a press conference on Tuesday. “I think the one thing our guys enjoyed as much as I did is having students back on campus … Obviously the way we played is a boost, but it’s nice to have that behind you,” Fickell said. “Really want to thank them. Hopefully they continue to do the same things and get better each and every week.” That electric and crazy crowd will need to stick around Saturday as the Buckeyes play host to Michigan State (3-1), coming off of a blowout win against Central Michigan. “The crowd is going to be fantastic,” said Alex Grant, a second-year in actuarial science. “I know it’s going to be crowded like always.” But Buckeye fans are looking for more than positive energy in their first conference game. They’re looking for a win. “Hopefully we win,” said Andrew Scholl, a second-year in marketing. “It will be exciting. I mean, it’s Ohio State football, It’s always exciting.” And the Buckeyes have more excitement on the way. Not only does Big Ten play begin Saturday, it also marks a one-week countdown to the return of suspended key players, Dan “Boom” Herron, DeVier Posey, Solomon Thomas and Mike Adams. But it’s the return of another starter that has some fans excited for Saturday’s game. “Braxton Miller,” said Tyler Edwards, a first-year in exercise science. “We’re (students) going crazy about him.” read more

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Ter Stegen admits Mexico will challenge Germany

first_imgMarc-Andre ter Stegen has voiced his opinion that Mexico will be the main rivals of the Bundesteam in the FIFA World Cup group.Ahead of the beginning of the World Cup in Russia, ter Stegen has revealed he sees Marco Fabian and Carlos Salcedo’s Mexico challenge Germany in the group as they have already been announced. He said they should not be underestimated.“Every one of us wants to win the World Cup and to do this, we want to get into the tournament with good feelings and with a good result against Mexico,” ter Stegen said, according to the official website of the Bundesliga.“They are the strongest team in our group, together with us, and they’ve come a long way in recent years.”Marc-Andre ter Stegen, Lionel Messi, BarcelonaTer Stegen: Messi deserves to decide his Barca future Andrew Smyth – September 13, 2019 Marc-Andre ter Stegen insists Lionel Messi has earned the right to decide his Barcelona future amid fears he could leave next summer.“We’re going to prepare well in the coming week and we want to prove that we are the best team in the group.”He also went on to add that he is ready to do anything for the big prize.“It’s difficult for me, but I am giving all my support to the team so that we can win the World Cup, which is all that I want.”“It’s not just about quality, but also fortune and your form on the day that matter,” he continued. “There are many good nations, like Brazil and Spain, who are always up there, but we hope to start with a victory.”last_img read more

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UPDATE Britain Raises Terror Level After Concert Attack

first_imgSincerely wish I could have been in #Manchester for the vigil tonight. There’s strength and solidarity in numbers #StandTogether https://t.co/ZXYoTnP906— Natasha Calder (@tasha_calder) May 23, 2017Thousands of people have turned out for a vigil in Manchester, with the crowd holding a minute of silence to honor the victims of the concert attack.Lord Mayor Eddy Newman and the city’s police chief were among the speakers in front of city hall in Albert Square. Several people in the crowd held up signs with “I Love MCR,” an abbreviation for Manchester.A banner with a website for a Muslim group said “Love for all, Hatred for None.”The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for Monday night’s blast at the Ariana Grande concert at Manchester Arena that killed 22 people and wounded 59 others. Police have named the suspected bomber as 22-year-old Salman Abedi.___6 p.m.Pop group Take That has postponed its planned three shows at the Manchester Arena Thursday, Friday and Saturday.The band had already canceled its Tuesday show in nearby Liverpool following the deadly bomb attack at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester.The band said it was postponing the Sunday performance “out of respect to all of the people and their families that were affected by the horrific incident last night.”The band Blondie also canceled its Tuesday night concert in London “as a mark of respect for the victims of the terrible attack.”Lead singer Debbie Harry tweeted that the Round Chapel date will be rescheduled.Police say the attack in Manchester killed 22 people and injured 59, including many teenagers.___5:50 p.m.Manchester’s police chief has warned that while he understands that “feelings are very raw” after Monday’s concert attack, it is vital that the city’s diverse communities stand together and that hate will not be tolerated.Chief Constable Ian Hopkins also said that the priority for police Tuesday is to establish whether the suspected bomber, named as 22-year-old Salman Abedi, was acting alone or as part of a network.Police arrested an unidentified 23-year-old man in southern Manchester on Tuesday. They also raided the house where Abedi was registered as living, but witnesses say they did not see anyone arrested there.Monday’s bombing at an Ariana Grande concert killed 22 people and injured dozens others.Vigil for #ManchesterBombing victims…crowds listen to the city’s Lord Mayor pic.twitter.com/erzfLddiBZ— BBC Outside Source (@BBCOS) May 23, 2017___5:30 p.m.The chiefs of Italy’s police and intelligence forces, along with a British security official, have met to review anti-terrorism measures in light of the Manchester bomb blast, which occurred four days ahead of a G-7 summit in Sicily.Interior Minister Marco Minniti led the huddle Tuesday at his ministry, with a Rome-based British security official among the participants.The ministry says Italy’s level of threat for terrorism hasn’t changed after the concert bombing in England Monday night. But it said already-heightened security will be further strengthened to protect high-risk targets and places where crowds of people gather.___5:20 p.m.Official records show that Salman Abedi was registered as living at the Manchester house raided by armed police investigating Monday night’s deadly concert blast.The electoral register shows that 22-year-old Abedi — confirmed by British police as the suspect in the suicide bombing at an Ariana Grande concert — lived at the house in Fallowfield in southern Manchester where police carried out a controlled explosion Tuesday.Alan Kinsey, 52, who lives across the street from the raided house, filmed at least 20 heavily armed police in helmets and armor march down the street, surround the house and blast down the door before entering.He said he didn’t see anyone but police leave the house.He said a man in his 20s, whose name he didn’t know, lived there. In the past there had been other residents but for the last six months or more he had just seen the man.8 years old. Imagine her excitement. Dressing up for the concert. Holding her Mom’s hand. This is horrific. #ManchesterBombing R.I.P❤️ pic.twitter.com/ToZPeK9o3J— Mist ?? (@ZIIVRAHD) May 23, 2017___5 p.m.Ariana Grande’s tour has not been canceled or postponed despite reports online, a person close to the situation, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the person was not allowed to publicly talk about the topic, said.The person said that Grande and her team are more focused on the victims at the moment, not the tour.It was unclear if Grande’s next schedule show — Thursday in London — would take place.—By Mesfin Fekadu___4:40 p.m.Concert promoters at London’s O2 Arena, where Ariana Grande is scheduled to perform Thursday and Friday, say they are in contact with the singer’s team about her next steps.“We are shocked and deeply saddened by the terrible tragedy in Manchester. Our thoughts and prayers are with those affected and their families,” the arena said in a statement. “We are in contact with the promoters of Ariana Grande’s tour and will update as soon as we have further information regarding the planned dates at The O2.”Grande has yet to tell fans whether she will continue her European tour following the deadly blast at her concert in Manchester.___4:35 p.m.Officials in the United States say British authorities have identified the suspect in the Manchester suicide bombing attack as Salman Abedi.A U.S. official confirmed the identity Tuesday to The Associated Press. No additional details were immediately available.The bombing Monday night at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester killed 22 people and sparked a stampede of young concertgoers.The Islamic State claimed responsibility, but Dan Coats, the U.S. director of intelligence, says that connection has not yet been verified.#PrayForDWTManchester No more injuries! Please be safe. #ManchesterBombing pic.twitter.com/RWOUhoeupf— Huan Liu (@boaeric) May 23, 2017___4:25 p.m.The house where British police performed a controlled explosion as part of their investigation into the concert blast in Manchester is in an ethnically mixed suburb in the city.Police raided a modest red brick semi-detached house in Fallowfield in south Manchester on Tuesday, and forensics officers were coming and going into the house. Neighbors said they had heard the bomber lived there, but most said they knew little about the inhabitants of the house, except that several people lived in it.Neighbor Natalie Daley said she was frightened by a loud bang on Tuesday afternoon, then police yelling “get in your houses — get away from the windows!”She said she was shaken by how close to home it was. She said: “When it’s like two seconds from your house, when you walk past it every day, you do live in fear.”Police on Tuesday also raided another residential road, and arrested a 23-year-old man at a third location in Manchester.___4 p.m.Britain’s queen has marked a moment of silence to honor the victims of the Manchester suicide bombing.Accompanied by her husband Prince Philip, her son Prince Charles and his wife Camilla, the queen stood at the top of the steps leading down from Buckingham Palace into the grounds. The national anthem was then played.The queen was attending a garden party in the grounds of her palace Tuesday afternoon.___3:55 p.m.The U.N. Security Council has condemned “the atrocious terrorist attack” in Manchester “perpetrated against young innocent people.”Uruguay’s U.N. Ambassador Elbio Rosselli, the current council president, delivered the condemnation at the start of a meeting Tuesday on chemical weapons in Syria and asked for a moment of silence.The 15 council members and diplomats in the chamber of the U.N.’s most powerful body then stood in silent tribute to the victims.U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres also strongly condemned “the horrific terrorist attack in Manchester” and called for those responsible “for this unjustifiable violence” to be brought to justice, U.N. spokesman Stephane Dujarric said.___3:40 p.m.Poland’s Foreign Ministry says Poles are missing in Manchester following the concert suicide attack, but does not say how many.The ministry said on Twitter Tuesday that Polish consuls in Manchester are in “constant touch with the families of Polish citizens missing” in Manchester and have extended support to them.Many Poles live, work and study in Britain.___3:35 p.m.British police say they have raided two residential areas in Manchester and carried out a controlled explosion at one of them as part of an investigation into Monday’s suicide bombing attack at a concert in the city.At one of the scenes, where armed police raided an apartment Tuesday, heavily armed and helmeted police were guarding what neighbor Asghar Ali said was a “very, very quiet” area. Ali said: “Even if people throw rubbish outside, people complain – never mind this.”Plain-clothes officers wearing gloves removed bags from an apartment.The leafy residential road in south Manchester, populated by a group of tidy-looking buildings, is less than a mile from the supermarket where police reportedly arrested a 23-year-old man in connection with the attack.Neighbors said the complex of three buildings was a mixed area of students, singles and families, with a large south Asian population.___3:15 p.m.The rapper BIA, who opened for Ariana Grande at Monday’s concert in Manchester, says her heart is “broken.”“My heart is heavy today as I extend my prayers to the children and families affected by last night’s horrible tragedy in Manchester,” the artist says in a statement.“We are sending our love to all of Manchester during this incredibly difficult time. We ask each one of you to join us in keeping all who are suffering in your thoughts and prayers.”BIA, whose real name is Bianca Landrau, was, along with Victoria Monet, part of Grande’s support act for her “Dangerous Woman Tour.”On Twitter, Monet wrote: “I wish I could say that I am OK, but I am not. Safe? Yes, but heartbroken that loved ones who came to have the night of their lives ended up losing them.”___3:05 p.m.The United States’ top intelligence official says the U.S. government has not yet verified that the Islamic State group is responsible for the Manchester attack.Dan Coats, the director of national intelligence, told Congress that the extremist group frequently claims responsibility for terror attacks.The Islamic State group says one of its members planted bomb in crowds in the suicide attack at an Ariana Grande show Monday night that left 22 people dead. The group warned in a statement on social media that more attacks are to come.Testifying Tuesday before the Senate Armed Services Committee, Coats says though he was aware of the IS claim of responsibility, U.S. authorities hadn’t yet verified that.He says the Manchester attack is a reminder the terrorist threat is real. He says, “It’s not going away and it needs significant attention.”___2:50 p.m.Pop group Take That says it is canceling its show in Liverpool, northern England a day after the deadly bomb attack at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester.The band says it is postponing the performance “out of respect to all of the people and their families that were affected by the horrific incident last night.”The band was scheduled to play at Manchester Arena, the site of Monday’s attack, from Thursday to Saturday. Their representatives say there is no official word yet on whether those shows will go ahead.Police say the attack killed 22 people and injured 59, including many teenagers.___1:55 p.m.British authorities say an 8-year-old girl, Saffie Roussos, was among the 22 people killed in the Manchester bombing. And an ambulance official says 12 children under the age of 16 were among 59 injured in the attack as people left a pop concert.___1:30 p.m.German Chancellor Angela Merkel and her conservative ally in Bavaria have called off a pre-election event at a beer tent in Munich following the Manchester attack.Merkel and Bavarian governor Horst Seehofer had planned to make a joint appearance on Tuesday evening. But Seehofer’s Christian Social Union party said the event was postponed out of “respect for the victims” of the attack on an Ariana Grande concert in England.The event was scheduled as the pair display rediscovered unity after they fell out over Merkel’s welcoming approach to refugees in 2015. Germany holds a general election in September.Police in Manchester say a lone bomber with an improvised device died in the attack. The Islamic State group has claimed responsibility and that several bombs were involved.___1:25 p.m.Pope Francis has expressed profound dismay over the “barbaric” attack at a concert in Manchester, England.A condolence telegram sent in his name says he was “mindful in a particular way” of the many children and young people who perished, as well as their grieving families. He prayed for “God’s blessings of peace, healing and strength” upon Britain.The telegram said Francis expressed “heartfelt solidarity with all those affected by this senseless act of violence” and commended the “generous efforts” of emergency and security personnel.Authorities in Manchester say the bomber was killed in blast. The Islamic State group has claimed one of its “soldiers” was responsible.___12:55 p.m.The Islamic State group says one of its members planted bombs in the middle of crowds in Manchester, England, where 22 people died in an explosion.Police, however, have spoken only of “an improvised device” used in the attack.IS says “a soldier of the caliphate planted bombs in the middle of Crusaders gatherings” then detonated them. It did not say whether the attacker was killed.The group claimed that “30 Crusaders were killed and 70 others were wounded,” higher than the totals confirmed by authorities in Manchester.___12:45 p.m.A school in northern England has identified one of the victims in the Manchester concert bombing as Georgina Callander, a former pupil.Peter Rawlinson, deputy of the Bishop Rawstorne Church of England Academy in Croston, northwest of Manchester, told The Associated Press that the school confirmed Callander’s death with members of her family.Rawlinson says “she was academically a very gifted student, very hard-working. Just lovely to speak to.”The school posted a photo of Georgina on its website, smiling and look smart in her school uniform. It said she died of injuries from the attack and described her as “a lovely young student who was very popular with her peers and the staff.”12:35 p.m.U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson says the U.S. is working closely with the British government as it investigates the bombing at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester.Tillerson released a statement Tuesday saying that “our hearts go out to the families of those who have lost loved ones and to those injured in the attack.”He says: “While it is too early to determine those responsible for this atrocity, we are working closely with the British government and supporting their efforts to investigate and respond to this attack.”___12:25 p.m.Queen Elizabeth II has expressed her “deepest sympathy” to all those affected by Monday’s bomb attack at a Manchester pop concert, where 22 people were killed.In a statement issued Tuesday, the monarch said “the whole nation has been shocked by the death and injury”.She thanked police and the emergency services, and expressed admiration for the way the people of Manchester have responded to the attack: “With humanity and compassion to this act of barbarity.”Police say they have arrested a 23-year-old man in connection with the attack. Police say they have arrested a 23-year-old man in connection with the attack.___12:01 p.m.Greater Manchester Police say they have arrested a 23-year-old man in connection with the apparent suicide bombing at an Ariana Grande concert in the city.Police say the man was arrested in south Manchester Tuesday, a day after the explosion killed 22 people and injured 59, many of them teenagers.They did not provide details.Police also said officials arrested a man at the Arndale shopping center in central Manchester — but that the arrest is not believed to be connected to Monday night’s attack.___11:50 a.m.Italian Premier Paolo Gentiloni says efforts are underway so that this week’s G-7 summit in Sicily will yield a stronger, common anti-terrorism commitment.Condemning the bombing that killed 22 people in Manchester, England, Gentiloni told reporters Tuesday in Rome that the summit on Friday and Saturday provides the opportunity to insist that “the cowardliness that snuffs out the lives of young people won’t get the better of our freedom.”He said Italians can count on the “dedication and professionalism” of their nation’s security forces to ensure international events are carried out safely.He says he planned to call British Prime Minister Theresa May to express “closeness, solidarity” to Britons.___11:45 a.m.Police have evacuated a large shopping center in Manchester, England. Police declined to comment on media reports that they have arrested a man there.July McKenzie, who was shopping when the Arndale shopping center, said: “We were just in the shop and could hear people screaming and security guards telling everybody to get out.”Some people left the scene in tears, while others waited outside the mall.The Arndale center was rebuilt after an IRA bombing in 1996.___11:35 a.m.Turkish officials say they “strongly condemn” the attack in Manchester and promised to work together with the United Kingdom against terror. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says that Turkey “shares the pain of the state of England and the English people” in the attack that killed 22 people.Turkey has been hit by a string of attacks blamed on the Islamic State group and Kurdish militants since 2015, killing at least 550 people.___11:15 a.m.British Prime Minister Theresa May says that it is “beyond doubt” that Britain and the city of Manchester have fallen victim to “a callous terrorist attack.”Speaking outside her offices in London, she says “Although it is not the first time Manchester has suffered in this way, it is the worst attack the city has experienced, and the worst ever to hit the north of England.”May says police believe they know the attacker’s name but are not disclosing it immediately.___11:10 a.m.British Prime Minister Theresa May says police and security staff in Manchester believe they know identity of the apparent suicide bomber who attacked people leaving an Ariana Grande concert Monday night, but they are not revealing the name for the time being.Speaking in London, May said: “This attack stands out for its appalling, sickening cowardice.”She says the attack, in which 22 people died, was one of the worst the nation had suffered.___11:00 a.m.Harun Khan, the secretary general of the Muslim Council of Britain, has joined the condemnations of the Manchester attack.In a statement, Khan says: “This is horrific, this is criminal. May the perpetrators face the full weight of justice both in this life and the next.”He adds: “I urge all those in the region and around the country to pool together to support those affected.”___10:55 a.m.Finance ministers from the 28 European Union countries, including Britain’s Philip Hammond, observed a minute’s silence in memory of those killed and injured in the attack at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester.Ahead of the regular EU meeting of finance ministers, Hammond expressed his condolences to the victims and their families of “this barbaric attack” in Manchester.“It is, as far as we know, a terrorist incident,” he said. “We are treating it as such.”Hammond, who was due to speak at a panel in Brussels, is to return to London at the meeting’s conclusion instead.Flags are also flying at half-staff outside the European Commission in the heart of the Belgian capital.___10:40 a.m.France’s interior minister says the government will be issuing instructions Tuesday to regional administrators on working with event organizers on how to secure public spaces.After a high-level security meeting in Paris Tuesday, Interior Minister Gerard Collomb said organizers of sports events, concerts and other performances already had a series of instructions on how to secure their venues. Collomb said France’s airports have also been secured.France has been on heightened alert since the Nov. 13, 2015, attacks that struck a concert, the national stadium and cafes and bars.Early Tuesday, the Paris mayor’s office said all shows and concerts scheduled in coming days are going ahead as planned. Ariana Grande is scheduled to perform in Paris on June 7.___10:30 a.m.President Vladimir Putin says Russia is ready to boost anti-terror cooperation with Britain in the wake of a deadly explosion at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, England.In Tuesday’s telegram to British Prime Minister Theresa May, Putin offered condolences over what he called a “cynical, inhuman crime” and wishes for a quick recovery of all those hurt.Putin reaffirmed Russia’s readiness to “expand anti-terror cooperation with British partners, both on bilateral level and within the framework of broad international efforts.”Britain and other NATO allies have cut cooperation with Moscow on fighting terrorism over Russia’s annexation of Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula and support for a pro-Russia insurgency in eastern Ukraine.Manchester police say an apparent suicide bomber set off an explosive device at the end of the concert, killing 22 people.___10:15 a.m.Former Manchester United soccer star David Beckham posted on Facebook: “As a father & a human what has happened truly saddens me. My thoughts are with all of those that have been affected by this tragedy.”In targeting Manchester, the attacker struck at one of Britain’s cultural hearts. The once gritty industrial city, with London and Liverpool, has been one of the main cultural influences on modern Britain, with its iconic Manchester United football team, its cross-city rival City and chart-toppers Oasis, The Smiths and other globally famous bands. Oasis singer Liam Gallagher tweeted that he is “in total shock and absolutely devastated.”Peter Hook of Manchester bands New Order and Joy Division tweeted that his daughter “made it home safe” from the Ariana Grande concert and added: My heart goes out to all parents & those involved. Manchester stay strong.”___10:05 a.m.Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has denounced the “ugly terrorist attack” in Manchester, speaking after a West Bank meeting with President Donald Trump. Abbas says he is sending his condolences to the British prime minister, the British people and the families of the victims.Both Trump and the Palestinian leader opened their remarks with a condemnation of the attack in which 22 people were killed by a bomb blast during a concert in the city in northern England.___9:15 a.m.President Donald Trump is expressing solidarity with the United Kingdom in the wake of a deadly explosion at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, England, condemning the “evil losers” behind the blast.Trump spoke Tuesday after a meeting in Bethlehem with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas (mahk-MOOD’ ah-BAHS’).Manchester police say an apparent suicide bomber set off an improvised explosive device at the end of the concert, killing 22 people.Trump says the attack preyed on “innocent children.” He says this “wicked ideology must be obliterated. And I mean completely obliterated.”Manchester police so far have said nothing about the attacker’s identity or possible motivation.___9:00 a.m.Social media users are helping the desperate hunt for people missing in the Manchester concert bombing by circulating names and photos with the MissingInManchester hashtag.The city’s regional government and its mayor, Andy Burnham, were among scores of Twitter users that circulated the hashtag to help people seeking missing family members and friends.Those named as missing included Olivia Campbell. Her mother, Charlotte Campbell, said the 15-year-old attended the Ariana Grande concert with a friend from school who has since been found and is being treated in a hospital. But Olivia is missing, having last called home just before the concert, the mother told ITV television’s Good Morning Britain breakfast show.She says: “I’ve called the hospitals. I’ve called all the places, the hotels where people said that children have been taken and I’ve called the police. If anyone sees Olivia, lend her your phone, she knows my number.”___8:45 a.m.A Czech woman who was at the Ariana Grande concert in Manchester says that “there was almost no security check, rather zero. They let us get in without any check if we have anything with us.”Nikola Trochtova told the Czech public radio that “the only thing they were interested in was if we had any bottles of water with us. They almost didn’t check our bags, they didn’t take a look.”She says she was leaving the venue when she heard an explosion at the entrance, but learned the details only after returning to her hotel.___8:35 a.m.German Chancellor Angela Merkel says it’s “incomprehensible” that someone would target a pop concert to kill and wound people.Merkel said in a statement Tuesday that the attack at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester “will only strengthen our determination to keep acting together with our British friends against those who plan and carry out such inhuman deeds.”She added: “I assure people in Britain that Germany stands beside you.” Video Playerhttps://cdn.hpm.io/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/23121254/UK-Arena-Blast-CR1.mp400:0000:0001:45Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.The Latest on the blast at an Ariana Grande concert in northern England (all times local):9:55 p.m.Prime Minister Theresa May says Britain’s threat level from terrorism has been raised to critical — meaning an attack may be imminent.May says Salman Abadi, the suicide bomber who killed 22 people at a concert in Manchester, may have been part of a bigger network.She said Abadi was born and raised in Britain.The level previously stood at the second-highest rung of “severe” for several years.May said critical status means armed soldiers may be deployed instead of police at public events such as sports matches._____7:30 p.m.Survivors of the suicide bombing that killed 22 people at a Manchester concert hall say security screening ahead of the Ariana Grande show was haphazard.Nikola Trochtova said she was leaving the venue when she heard the explosion. She told Czech radio that there was almost no security screening ahead of the concert.It is still unclear how the bomber was able to enter the area undetected. The blast happened right after Grande left the stage and the arena lights went back up.Most of the 130 people killed in the November 2015 attacks on multiple Paris venues were attending a show at the Bataclan concert hall.Pre-event security protocols vary country by country and according to venues. Security experts say one protective measure that could have been taken was extending the security perimeter around the Manchester arena._____6:59 p.m.Former U.N. secretary-general Kofi Annan says the world must stand together against “the extremists and terrorists” responsible for the attack in Manchester and similar senseless violence elsewhere.Annan told The Associated Press on Tuesday that all countries need to work together and share information to deny extremists “their opportunities” and bring those who commit crimes to justice.Annan now leads the group of former world leaders founded by Nelson Mandela called The Elders.Speaking on behalf of the group, he said it’s “tragic that young people who have gone to listen to music and dance should be cut down so brutally and senselessly.”Annan said: “Terrorists have been around, but they’ve always lost, and they will lose this time, too. It may take time, but they will lose.”___6:55 p.m.European soccer’s ruling body says there will be a minute’s silence before Manchester United plays Ajax in the Europa League final on Wednesday as a mark of respect for victims of the bombing in Manchester.UEFA says “the opening ceremony will also be considerably reduced” in Stockholm after Monday’s attack. At least 22 people were killed when a suicide bomber attacked an Ariana Grande concert as the performance ended.Manchester United players observed a minute’s silence for the victims at a morning training session on Tuesday before flying to Sweden.Ajax coach Peter Bosz says the final doesn’t have this glow that it should have” because of the attack.Bosz said: “Tomorrow evening should be a feast. But because of the events in Manchester, we are all affected.”___6:40 p.m. Sharelast_img read more

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No 4 Louisville Notches 122 Win Over No 20 Connecticut

first_imgUConn (1-1) gifted UofL a run on the next batter when the Huskies dropped Zach Britton’s pop up allowing Wyatt to cross the plate. Listen Live After totaling just two runs in Friday’s opener, the Cardinals (1-1) rebounded with a strong offensive showing on Saturday for their first win of the season. The Cardinals added another crooked number to the board in the second started by consecutive singles from Lucas Dunn and Tyler Fitzgerald to lead off the frame. Ethan Stringer brought home Dunn with a groundout to stretch the lead to four, and Britton blew the game open with a long 3-run homer over the wall in right. Next Game: vs. Connecticut 2/17/2019 | 12:30 PM Five different Cardinals had multi-hit days at the plate as part of the 12-hit attack. Wyatt was 2-for-2 with the triple to go along with three walks and three runs scored. Campbell and Dunn were each 2-for-3, while Davis (2-for-4) and Fitzgerald (2-for-5) also had a pair of knocks. Full Schedule Roster Louisville used the long ball again in the third, getting back-to-back blasts from Dunn and Fitzgerald to push the lead out to 10-0 after three innings. LAKELAND, Fla. – The fourth-ranked Louisville baseball team pounded out 12 runs on 12 hits in a 12-2 victory over No. 20 Connecticut on Saturday. The second game of the series was played at Joker Marchant Stadium.center_img Connecticut plated its first run in its half of the third, but the Cardinals responded with their fourth straight multi-run inning to begin the game. Drew Campbell doubled home Wyatt with two away in the fourth and Henry Davis followed with his first career RBI singling home Campbell. Preview The offense got rolling in the very first inning as a hit by pitch and single put runners on the corners with one out. All-American first baseman Logan Wyatt then drove a ball off the wall in right-centerfield to plate both runners are put the Cardinals on the board first. Nick Bennett allowed just two hits over his five innings of work to tally his 14th victory in his Louisville career. The southpaw struck out four and surrendered just two unearned runs on the day. Meanwhile, Bennett settled in on the mound before turning the game over to the bullpen in the sixth. Freshman Jack Perkins had a strong showing in his collegiate debut, notching six strikeouts over three scoreless innings before freshman Garrett Schmeltz closed things out with a scoreless ninth. Live Stats The rubber game of the series is scheduled for Sunday, with first pitch moved up to 12:30 p.m. Print Friendly Versionlast_img read more

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Ensuring insurance for every Indian

first_imgThe insurance industry in India is looking at ways of reinventing itself in a positive light in the economy following fruitful discussions held at the 16th annual insurance conference —In Pursuit of Productivity, Sustainability and Progress—in Mumbai recently. Bouncing cheques, income tax frauds, lack of  penetration into rural and social sectors, are some of the problems bugging this industry in India which is struggling to maintain its equilibrium after opening up to the private sector from the monopoly of the Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) of India in 1999. Also Read – Revolutionising Indian agricultureThe Indian insurance industry is now reeling further with the central government Insurance Bill, which seeks to increase FDI in this sector from the existing 26 pr cent to 49 per cent. Adding to its misery are frauds and overseas figures being an eye-opener, where statistics showed that every hour, 15 fraudulent insurance claims were reported in the UK.HDFC Standard Life Insurance Co. Ltd  MD and CEO Amitabh Chaudhry noted that bouncing cheques and other problems led to insurance companies suffering 40 per cent losses in business every year, besides the insurance business drawing a lot of negative coverage in the past.  Noting that LIC had the monopoly in the past, Insurance Regulatory and Development authority (IRDA),  Insurance Regulatory and Development authority (IRDA) Chairman T S Vijayan said the insurance industry opened up to private players from 1999 but did very little to benefit the rural and social sectors of India, besides the economy of the country. Stating that 3.9 per cent penetration of India was not enough, he said this industry had much potential after viewing the demography chart where 2.5 crore people would be joining the job market within the next 20 years which offered a prospective climate for the insurance sector. Also Read – BLACK FIBREIn the non-life insurance sector, about one million scooters coming out yearly meant an equal number of insurance opportunities, he said while urging for viewing the number of assets being added yearly including hospital treatment. “When India opened up to private insurance players, the industry lost focus of customers and did not address the real needs. While the speed of clearing insurance claims is not bad, the focus should be on which products are bringing the premium for them. They have to be clear on which innovations they are bringing to the market so that the tag of mis-selling and the gap of misunderstanding is removed. The product should be transparent and easily understood. Insurance products should be positioned as a separate brand itself individually.” “We should tell the Prime Minister to bring out a Jan Bima Yojna. Distribution costs of insurance products being very high is a misconception but statistics don’t substantiate this. If a company is mature and strong, then this wont be so. The insurance company can be put on even keel if the top line can go up to match fixed costs. While the policy holders’ money have to be protected, the agent too has to be protected with some remuneration being given on a monthly basis instead of commission, thus ensuring that the company too has done its social responsibility.’Vijayan also criticized the use of paper in the present digital age of the insurance industry. “I joined the Insurance industry in 1977 and even today, people are still using paper. We need to come out of this mindset of paper use where, instead, the ease of selling insurance should happen in a jiffy. In India, things are already in place such as Aadhar card, Internet, mobile etc and the future belongs to this type of solution that is not complex but simple. An integrated solution should be given to customers that includes even after-sale services including settling claims in time. Health re-insurance is also in the picture. All metros should have re-Insurance. Innovation happens when the distribution system gets improved.” Vijayan also noted that mis-selling made money for the insurance persons and remained a fact whether the government understood it or not. Noting that frauds are still happening, he said how far some people could go could be seen from the fact that some crooks even tried selling RBI (Reserve Bank of India) cards – when there are no such cards actually. But “gullible” people still bought them, he said, adding that this had to be tackled by the awareness authority. Highlighting “digitization” in an insurance processing perspective, he said “In Hyderabad, we started a bureau for collecting data on all vehicles insurance and found that 1.5 lakh vehicles were not insured. This data crunch alone can create a reduction in the third party premiums.” ICICI Lombard General Insurance Co Ltd MD and CEO Bhargav Dasgupta said the Insurance industry growth is between Rs 12,000 crore to Rs 17,000 crore at a CAGR of 17 per cent and is expected to grow to Rs 4.80 lakh crore by 2027. Alongside the vast opportunity including new penetration of 0.2 per cent in rural markets, there are 30 crore homes in the country which represent a Rs 30,000 crore opportunity, he said. The industry honchos agreed on the fact that penetration levels needed to be increased  across segments, asset classes and geographies to accelerate growth — alongside the 60 per cent awareness in the health insurance sector — besides SMEs, rural sector and homes offering significant opportunities and yet to be penetrated. In the rural sector, tractors segment penetration was at 30 per cent while being benchmarked at 85 per cent, while in SMEs, employees’ group health is at 10 per cent and benchmarked at 75 per cent. The industry’s performance is driven by interplay of various factors. It would need to take continued action to accelerate growth and further improve profitability.  The union of all the industry captains at one place found that human capital development, technology and utilities are several areas for the insurance industry to collaborate in this regard. Highlighting “human capital” in the Indian insurance industry, New India Assurance Co Ltd CMD G Srinivasan said there is a huge challenge of skills in this industry which needs not just more people alongside its growth, but also the right type of people as “today the Industry is run by people without insurance qualifications.” But if insurance sector is seen as an attractive proposition and career to freshers and youngsters coming out of colleges, was his question. “Earlier, we had to walk a long way to get business.  Even today, we are picking up general graduates and then training them. Also, we do not do enough research & development and hence have to keep trying out talent wherever we can get it. Although insurance is very complex, I can pick up someone from the market and train him in three months time,” he added.“Hospitals don’t realize they are committing a fraud in the system. This can’t go on indefinitely and the situation has reached the extent that the fraud costs are being borne by the customer. The problem of frauds in India is huge as customers do not know they are committing a fraud. When we detect a fraud, we can only reject the claim. So there is need for a legal framework and mechanism to deal with these frauds as there is no way you can discourage them. There is a need for setting up a separate fraud bureau (by looking also abroad into frauds and solutions) to detect and prevent them from happening. The biggest issue online insurance industry is facing is frauds, not underwriting claims,” he said.General Insurance Council Secretary General R Chandrasekaran outlined the need to build the insurance industry’s image as insurance is part of mismanagement. “There is a need to lay down qualifications for candidates entering this industry. Draw up a pyramid of skills needed for the expertise, and draw up an action plan. Where frauds were concerned, one case involving a Schengen Visa had come to us through a travel agent. What we did was to make a portal that worked successfully and led to almost nil travel fraud. Years ago, we never spoke about frauds, but today we are talking openly about it.” ICICI Lombard General Insurance’s Bhargava Dasgupta said that the depth of understanding required to be successful in the insurance industry is higher than in other sectors. “We need to attract talent and find ways of positioning our industry better, besides going to campuses to recruit them. Increasing the attractiveness quotient is the need of the hour,” he said while noting that where technology is concerned, the opportunity is huge. “Mobiles are being used to generate business and ease of operations. Technology is great, but also a huge threat for us if we don’t collaborate well.”Dasgupta also narrated a case where his company discovered a racket operating in the health insurance sector. This was being done in a very randomized manner but still ended up getting exposed, he said while emphasizing “We still need to have an element of collaboration as criminals are getting smarter and the insurance industry cannot catch all frauds. There are even hospitals defrauding the insurance industry.”G Srinivasan intervened to add that “There is a need for collaboration as technology is critical, especially for building up data for the entire country which is needed. Technology is also important to get into the rural markets, besides playing an important role in the industry taking important decisions on such as natural calamities like those that occurred in Kashmir, Andhra Pradesh – especially since India is exposed to natural calamities. There is no scientific model to deal with this and you can see companies failing in this regard.”“Frauds are taking place. I was at a conference in Zimbabwe where the chief of the Insurance Fraud Bureau narrated a case of identity theft where 30 people had their identity stolen. The fraud syndicate responsible for this made just one mistake that was identified by the IFB who tracked them down and brought them to justice. So this is one area needing collaboration in tracking frauds,” he noted.Experian Credit Information Company of India Pvt. Ltd MD Mohan Jayaraman said:  “While India is having the largest bureau in the world and 150 million consumers, the definition and way we view technology is changing today.  There is now availability of technology and infrastructure while redefining and jumping to the next level. We should make use of the small capsules of data that we have, such as the ones we are now doing in the vehicles sector. When we draw the data, we can put it in an easy-to-access portal — that can be also viewed by customers – in a transparent and beneficial way while avoiding frauds also. In the UK, there are fraud repositories today where people can go and identify cases to prevent frauds. But there is a need to bring in a well-paid person to detect such frauds.”Jayaraman said 30 per cent of NPAs in banks had been identified as being frauds and that, in India, large scale private players came together and started sharing information about such frauds, thus saving Rs 468 crore in the process. KGFS head (Unit of IFMR Rural Channels and services Private Limited) Ravi K A said rural households owned movable assets such as tractors and bikes. “Cash flow mismatch is one of the key challenges faced by the rural sector and insurance helps them in this regard,” he said.  Oriental Insurance Co Ltd Director & GM Kuldip Singh said that while there is insurance awareness in the rural areas, their psychology in general insurance was that they felt they were not deriving any benefits of the insurance policy over the insurance period. “Insurance in the health sector is going up as people are getting benefits there. People in rural areas are more  shy and require an insurance distribution channel among them where they can approach even at midnight. Also, there is a rural class which can afford insurance and these need to be approached in cases like Uttaranchal, Jammu and Kashmir, Andhra Pradesh incidents etc.”KEC International and RPG Group (Insurance) General Manager P Chandrasekar highlighted the need to simplify and rejig the insurance process so that indemnification could be done easily. FINO PayTech Ltd Founder Member and Executive Director Rishi Gupta called for greater awareness, higher commissions, training and technology as digitization would address a lot of these challenges. HDFC ERGO General Insurance Co Ltd MD and CEO Ritesh Kumar said rural penetration could be done through schemes involving NGOs and third party distribution channels could service this sector in a better way than any brick-and-mortar office could. However, more insurance products were needed in the rural areas for the small kiosks there, he said.last_img read more

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