Petrol prices lowered by Rs 1.85 per litre

New Delhi: India's fuel retailers Tuesday cut petrol prices by Rs 1.85 per litre, excluding state taxes and levies, which should make its price cheaper by Rs 2.22 per litre in the national capital from midnight, bringing welcome relief to vehicle owners. The move comes against the backdrop of some allies of the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government and opposition parties alike criticising the move earlier this month by oil retailers to hike petrol prices by Rs 1.80 per litre.
However, IndianOil Corp (IOC), the largest of the three state-run oil marketing companies (OMCs), said a fall in global crude prices and the rupee remaining stable at 49.30 to a US dollar were the reasons it could bring down prices of petrol.
The last time prices were slashed was in January 2009.
Incidentally, in early November when OMCs announced a hike in petrol prices, the rupee was still hovering over 49 to a dollar.
"IndianOil reviews motor spirit prices on fortnightly basis and based on the review, fixes prices for the next fortnight. In keeping with this practice, IndianOil has reviewed the pricing cycle as prevalent in the last fortnight," the company said Tuesday.

"The review reveals that at the current prices, there will be an over-recovery of Rs.1.85 per litre. It has, therefore, been decided to revise the MS (motor spirit) prices downward by Rs.1.85 (excluding state taxes and levies) with effect from Nov 16," the company added.

The current and new petrol prices in the four metros are as under:
                           Old                New
New Delhi         Rs.68.64           Rs.66.42
Kolkata             Rs.73.15           Rs.70.84
Mumbai             Rs.73.81           Rs.71.47
Chennai            Rs.72.73           Rs.70.38

"This is some relief for the middle class. But petrol prices are still too high when you compare them to diesel. Government should bring it down further," said Ravi Ahuja, a 26-year-old sales executive with an FMCG firm.

OMCs, however, continue to incur under-recoveries on account of selling diesel, kerosene and cooking gas below their international prices. All the three fuels are still regulated by the government, compared to petrol which is sold at a de-regulated price.
"In case of diesel, the international prices have firmed up (a trend exactly opposite to petrol) during the fortnight and as a result, the under-recovery of the company on diesel has increased from Rs.8.58 to Rs.10.17 per litre," IOC said.
The under-recoveries on kerosene and cooking gas are Rs.25.66 per litre and Rs.260.50 per cylinder, respectively. The projected total under-recovery of IndianOil for 2011-12 (excluding petrol) is estimated to be over Rs.71,000 crore and for the OMCs together would be around Rs.1,30,000 crore.
However, economics notwithstanding,Trinamool Congress supreme and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee Tuesday Welcomed the decision to cut petrol prices by Rs.1.85 per litre as a "positive step", and said she was very much concerned about the prices of cooking gas and kerosene.
"It is a positive step. We are happy about it," Banerjee told reporters.
Earlier this month, Trinamool -- the second largest ally of Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) -- had threatened to pull out of the government over its dissatisfaction over repeated hike in petrol prices.
Giving a temporary reprieve to the Congress, Banerjee had then said her party would not stay with the central government if price of kerosene, diesel and cooking gas was raised yet again as the Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was non-committal on the issue of further hike in the prices of petroleum products.

"We are very much concerned about the prices of domestic gas, kerosene and diesel," said Banerjee Tuesday.
The party meanwhile dubbed the decision to bring down the prices as the victory of the party supreme Mamata Banerjee.
"It is definitely a success for Trinamool and party chief Mamata Banerjee who had time again protested against the price rise of petrol. We welcome the decision as it will bring some relief to the masses who are reeling under the bane of inflation," Trinamool MP Kakoli Ghosh Dastidar told IANS.
The cut in petrol prices, by Rs.1.85 per litre, evoked mixed political response elsewhere in West Bengal with the Left Front describing it as a ploy to woo the masses before the Uttar Pradesh assembly polls.
"We have seen this ploy earlier also just before the 2009 Lok Sabha polls when the oil prices came down and were increased just after the polls. As the UP assembly polls are knocking at the door so it has been decreased to appease the masses," said Mohammed Salim, central committee member of the Communist Party of India-Marxist.
"They were under tremendous pressure both from their alliance partners and opposition parties. The UP assembly election is near so they had to put up a pro-public image, so the prices have come down," said Kshiti Goswami, state secretary, Revolutionary Socialist Party.
"The petrol prices have been increased 11 times (in 12 months) and this is the first time the oil prices have come down. So it needs to be calculated first how much has increased and how much the price has come down," said Manju Kumar Majumdar, state secretary, Communist Party of India.
The NCP Tuesday hailed the slash in petrol prices, noting that the move showed that the government has come to "some sense".
In his reaction to the cut party General Secretary DP Tripathi said, "This shows that the government has come to some sense. Therefore, I welcome the decision."
The Sharad Pawar-led NCP, an ally of the UPA, had asked the government to devise some mechanism to keep fuel prices in check after state-owned oil companies effected a steep hike of Rs 1.80 per litre on November 3.
Source: IANS/PTI

Rebuild Your Vision 10-10-10 Rule

Use a simple way you can reduce near point stress associated with reading, watching television, and computer use.
Every time you are performing close vision work for over 10 consecutive minutes, look up and focus on anything that is at least 10 feet away, for at least 10seconds. 10-10-10…
Incorporate this into everything you do up close. This technique, along with a few more simple ones just like it can help to save your vision for years to come!

Do You Use A Computer At Work?

Many of us sit in front of the magic box all day!
If you’ve experienced any of the 14 symptoms listed below, you’ll want to read on for information on how to combat CVS.

The American Optometric Association’s 14 Symptoms of Computer Vision Syndrome

• tired eyes
• eyestrain
• periodic blurred near vision
• occasional blurred distance vision
• headaches
• dry eyes
• slowness in changing the focus of your eyes
• burning eyes
• contact lens discomfort
• changes in color perception
• glare sensitivity
• excessive tearing
• sore eyes
• red eyes

Obviously, the easiest way to prevent CVS is to stop using the computer! But, as that is simply not an option for the millions of us who make a living performing computer-related tasks, here are 6 tips to help you monitor your natural monitors: your eyes.

1. Make sure your workstation, whether on the job or at home, is set up ergonomically

“Ergonomics” is just a fancy way of saying “Being kind to your body.” But as we know, being good to your body every day will benefit you in the long run. Repositioning your monitor is an easy and effective way to avoid awkward head or eye movements. As Dr. Ergo (aka Dr. James Sheedy) notes on his Web site,“Because the eyes lead the body, your body will assume whatever position is required to enable your eyes to see comfortably. A poorly located computer screen causes awkward body positions.” He notes that a viewing distance of 18-28 inches is most common.
He also says that the center of the computer screen should be 4-9 inches below your eyes, because your eyes work best with a slight downward gaze. Your computer screen and other work (and your phone, if that’s part of your office)should be located straight in front of you so that you don’t have to look sideways or twist your body or neck to see them.

2. Eliminate glare in your work area

Glare is an all-too-common cause of eyestrain and eye fatigue. Modifying your office lighting will eliminate glare and harsh reflections. First, find the source of the glare: Is it coming from a window, task light, or the screen itself (see #3 below)?
If possible, remove the offending source of light. Adjust blinds or curtains to minimize sunlight. Turn down overhead lights so that the brightness of the screen and the surrounding room are balanced. Do not, however, work in the dark: the contrast between computer-generated light and lack of background light strains the eyes.
Task lights should be positioned to provide direct light for reading and other office work, but should not shine directly on the computer or in your eyes. You may need to use a low-wattage bulb.
You may also need to move your desk so that bright overhead lights or windows are not in your field of view. The best position for your desk is directly to the side of a window/overhead light. That way you can still enjoy some natural light without glare (caused by brightness in front of your field of vision) or reflections(caused by brightness behind you).
Another option is to use a monitor glare hood, or better yet, a screen. Look for anti-reflection screens that have been approved by the American Optometric Association.

3. Adjust your screen

Dr. Ergo notes, “Optimal contrast and visibility are attained with black characters on a white background. However, other combinations can be comfortable so long as the brightness contrast between the characters and the background is high. It is best to avoid dark backgrounds.”
You can also adjust your brightness/contrast controls, and use a larger text size, as display legibility is an important factor in visual performance. For most, the size of the text should be three times the size of the smallest text you can read.
An article on “Flat-Panel Monitors Versus CRTs” in the magazine PC World says that “flat panel (LCD) displays have visual advantages compared to cathode ray tube (CRT) displays. They do not flicker and the contrast is typically higher.” And because CRTs deteriorate gradually over time, you may not even realize that the picture you are looking at today is not the same one you were looking at five years ago when you bought the monitor-although this deterioration may be causing your CVS symptoms. Consider an upgrade.

4. Take a break

It’s easy to lose track of time at the computer. Always remember the 10-10-10 rule and at the minimum take a break at least once an hour for about 10 minutes and blink frequently — video display use is associated with a decreased frequency of blinking. (And a computer break is a perfect excuse to perform your Rebuild Your Vision eye exercises.) Computer use can also cause an increased rate of tear evaporation.

5. Stay healthy

Although you can relieve dry, itchy eyes with artificial tears from the drugstore or supermarket, it’s best not to rely on them. A better way to prevent dryness is to stay hydrated with good old-fashioned H2O. Of course, eating your beta-carotine-rich foods is always good for maintaining eye health, and a Japanese study suggests that supplementation with the amino acid taurine appears to alleviate vision fatigue. Contact lens wearers may want to switch to glasses during PC work, as contact lenses themselves can cause dry eyes.

6. Rest Your Eyes

A nice cold washcloth, or a soothing, camomile- or lavender-filled eye pillow-or even closing your eyes for 10 minutes! (does wonders for sore eyes after a long day’s work)

And a great reminder for taking breaks… Follow the 10-10-10 rule!

Top 10 Blackberry Apps

If holding a Blackberry phone in the hand gives a feel of pride, on the other hand apps can excite you and help you. If you are very busy and couldn’t able to send emails on time Blackberry helps you. If you are a business traveler and struggling hard to build and manage your itinerary then Blackberry is the solution for you. You might be wondering that how a phone could be helpful in such a tricky situation. Whether you believe it or not Blackberry Apps are helpful for millions of people in many ways.

Here are the top 10 Blackberry Apps.

Soy: Not A Healthy Alternative

Soy is the latest food fad to sweep the country. But is it really good for you?

One of the longest and best-conducted studies on the effects of soy consumption — involving annual CT brain scans of subjects — found that those who ate the most soy foods had a dramatically higher incidence of brain shrinkage and dementia compared to those who ate the least or none at all.
It has been shown that soybeans naturally have high levels of glutamate, manganese, fluoride, and aluminum, all of which are brain toxins. Yet because of massive propaganda campaigns by so-called health authorities, women, in particular, are consuming large amounts of soy-containing foods and drinks.
These women think that they are reducing their risk of breast cancer. In fact, studies have shown that in women who have had breast cancer or are currently fighting the disease, soy increases the growth of their cancers.
Of special concern is the high manganese content in soy products, particularly soy milk and baby formula. In babies, manganese can cause damage to critical areas of the developing brain. In older adults, it can worsen damage to the parts of the brain responsible for Parkinson’s disease.
The fluoride and aluminum in soy combine to form a compound that damages brain cells and other organs — especially the thyroid. Dr. Anna Strunecka, a friend and colleague of mine from the Czech Republic, has conducted extensive research on the toxicity of aluminofluoride.
In addition, more than 80 percent of all soybeans used for manufacturing foods are GMO (genetically modified). Genetic modifications cause the plant to produce abnormal proteins as well as to overproduce toxins normally produced by the plant.

So, ignore the hype: Soy is not a healthy alternative.

Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) exempted various service providers

Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) today exempted various service providers, including the dealers of telecom operators, e-ticketing agencies and social networking sites, from the new limit of one

Following concerns raised by telecom lobby COAI on limiting the SMS entitlement to 100 per day, TRAI today exempted various service providers, including the dealers of telecom operators, e-ticketing agencies and social networking sites, from the new limit of one hundred SMSes per day per SIM

New Delhi: Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) today exempted various service providers, including the dealers of telecom operators, e-ticketing agencies and social networking sites, from the new limit of one hundred SMSes per day per SIM, which was imposed to block pesky calls and messages, reports PTI.
On 5th September, after much delay, TRAI had come out with recommendations to stop pesky calls and text messages from 27th September, ordering that no access provider (operators) shall permit thetransmission of more than 100 SMSes per day per SIM.
“… Hereby directs all access providers to exclude the following persons from the limit of one hundred SMS per day per SIM-dealers of the telecom service providers and DTH operators for sending request for electronic recharge on mobile numbers,” TRAI said in a statement.
The directive from the regulator had come in the wake of concerns raised by telecom lobby COAI on limiting the SMS entitlement per SIM to 100 per day.
It will also exempt e-ticketing agencies for responding to e-ticketing request made by its customers, SMSes from social networking sites Facebook, Twitter, Orkut, LinkedIn and GooglePlus to their members in connection to activities relating to their accounts, based on verifiable options; and agencies providing directory services, such as Justdial, Zatse, Callezee, Getit and Askme, TRAI added.
Earlier, COAI had asked TRAI to reconsider its recommendation to limit the number of SMSes per SIM to 100 per day, saying that such a regulation may pose a potential challenge to the ‘fundamental rights’ of an ordinary user.
There are several instances where SMSes are an important mode of communication. There could be a situation where a customer has exhausted the limit and suddenly some emergency occurs, COAI had said.
Further, this limit will not also be applicable on ‘blackout days’ (festive occasions), when the customer is free to send as many messages he wants.
In the case of post-paid telephone numbers, the access provider shall not permit more than 3,000 SMSes per SIM per month, the TRAI recommendations had said.
However, TRAI said, “The access provider shall, before excluding the persons, obtain an undertaking from such person that he shall not use the said facility in any manner for sending commercial communications.”
Subscribers have the option of choosing to be under the ‘Fully Blocked’ category, which is akin to the ‘Do Not Call Registry’. If a user selects the ‘Partially Blocked’ category, he/she will receive SMSes in categories chosen.

For registering under the fully blocked list, a customer has to SMS `START 0' to 1909.

No more pesky calls and SMSs

New Delhi: Millions of mobile subscribers across the country are likely to get relief from pesky commercial calls and messages with the regulations preventing such communications coming into effect Tuesday, the 27th
To avail the service, the customers will have to get themselves registered with the National Customer Preference Registry, earlier known as “National Do Not Call Registry”. The regulations include fines ranging from Rs.25,000 to Rs.250,000 for the defaulting companies.
According to reports, while the number of pesky calls has come down lately, the messages still remained a menace. On an average, as many as 47,454 complaints per month are being registered in this regard.
Communications Minister Kapil Sibal will Tuesday announce the implementation of the regulations — The Telecom Commercial Communications Customer Preference Regulation — thus laying down strict penalties for violators.
Although over 130 million mobile subscribers had registered with the National Do Not Call registry till Aug 25, consumers are still pestered with unwanted commercial calls and messages.
The telecom watchdog had announced a set of new measures last year to curb such unsolicited commercial communications which were to be implemented from Jan 1, but it kept repeatedly postponing the implementation sate.
The department of telecom (DoT) has provided ’140′ number series to be allocated to telemarketers for a fixed line network. Access providers have to make relevant provisions in their network before allocation of resources to telemarketers using ’140′ numbering series from fixed line network.
Unlike the previous regulation that asked customers to register their numbers in “Do Not Call” list, the new regulations allows customers to choose from different categories like “Fully blocked” or “Partially blocked”.
TRAI has disconnected over 72,000 telephone connections of registered telemarketers and over 118,000 of unregistered telemarketing companies for breaching guidelines related to commercial calls and messages up to May 2011.Source: IANS