Always Wear Seat Belt

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Road Safety - seat belts - 2Several friends and family are visiting us these days to offer condolences on the demise of our father T Sachidanandan on Thursday, 17th August 2017.

Padmashree Peruvanam Kuttan Marar was one among them. He has a special place in my life as he was my mother’s colleague at CNN Boys High School, Cherpu, Thrissur District, Kerala. Long association with him and his family since my childhood made us always feel him as part of our own family.

He was leaving my home after spending time with us, particularly my mother and as his car started moving, I noticed something amiss. I asked the driver to stop the car and told them about the importance of road safety and in particular the advantage of wearing seat belts by all passengers. Immediately, he obliged and wore the seat belt and continued his journey with his pleasant smile.

That was the action by a very senior artist, a Padmashree award winner, a legend, a guru for many and someone who has thousands and thousands of fan following and the whole of Thrissur and musical world reverberate listening to the greatest percussion symphony in earth for Thrissur Pooram.

It is very important to follow road safety attitude of  people like him and their commitment when it comes to Road Safety. Wherever and whenever possible, all passengers should wear the Seat Belts. The roads are busier than ever, the vehicles are faster than ever and patience limit by the road users deteriorating day by day!.

Road Safety is not an individual’s responsibility. It is the responsibility of all. As a road user we do not know the mindset of other drivers who are on the road at the same time. As do their, vehicle condition or driving skills.

Always remember to #StartEarlyDriveCarefullyReachSafely.

Issued as a memorial tribute to my father, T Sachidananda Menon.

Partial Lunar Eclipse 7 August 2017 from Abu Dhabi

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Partial Lunar Eclipse 7 August 2017 – from Abu Dhabi

News U Wish To Read – 7 August 2017

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News U Wish to read - 6 August 2017


It’s a buyer’s market for LNG

The National

More liquefied natural gas (LNG) coming into the market will keep prices depressed despite an increase in demand from Asia, analysts said.

LNG producers are ramping up from Qatar to Australia and the United States, while Egypt is expected to emerge as a new export player.

Australia has increased its market share in the first half of the year to 20 per cent from 12 per cent last year, according to BMI Research, and  its exports are forecast to grow by 23 per cent over the financial year to the end of June, according to Australian energy advisory firm, EnergyQuest.

Published: 5 August 2017

Follow: https://www.thenational.ae/business/energy/it-s-a-buyer-s-market-for-lng-1.616942

Adnoc active on the debt front as it pushes ahead with transformation strategy

The National

The Abu Dhabi National Oil Company is studying a number of fund raising options at both group and asset level that will help unlock value and optimise the group’s balance sheet as it pushes ahead with its new approach to drive growth.

Adnoc is in discussions with banks for a club loan of approximately US$5 billion that will be used for ongoing corporate activities. It is also looking into financing options for select midstream infrastructure assets including potentially tapping debt capital markets via a bond issuance. Plans are at an early stage so the size and scope of any potential bond issuance has not been decided. The company said it has no intention to issue bonds at the holding or main operating company levels such as Adco, Adma-Opco and Zadco.

Published: 02 August 2017

Follow: https://www.thenational.ae/business/energy/adnoc-active-on-the-debt-front-as-it-pushes-ahead-with-transformation-strategy-1.616399

Total Ready to Make Acquisitions as Financial Strength Grows


Total SA said it’s ready and able to make acquisitions and pursue growth, shrugging off uncertainties about oil prices as its financial position strengthens.

Europe’s second-largest oil and gas company has the firepower to buy up fields on the cheap and press ahead with new developments, taking advantage of lower levels of debt, rising profit and surging cash flow, according to a statement Thursday.

“Total has a stronger balance sheet,” Chief Executive Officer Patrick Pouyanne said as the company reported second-quarter earnings that beat expectations. “The group has the flexibility to take advantage of the low-cost environment by being able to launch profitable projects and acquire resources under attractive conditions.”

Published: 27 July 2017

Follow: https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-07-27/total-ready-to-make-acquisitions-as-financial-strength-grows

Politics & Economy

Indian rupee to get stronger, NRIs should remit now

Khaleej Times

If you’re a non-resident Indian (NRI) and looking to remit a handsome amount back home or planning to buy a property or invest in any venture, the time is now.

Going by views of analysts and industry executives, the Indian currency is likely to strengthen further against the US dollar — thereby against the UAE dirham, because the Emirati currency is pegged to the greenback — in the wake of Reserve Bank of India’s (RBI) decision to cut interest rates last week, and may strengthen as much as 1.1 per cent.

Published: 7 August 2017

Follow: http://www.khaleejtimes.com/business/economy/indian-rupee-to-get-stronger-nris-should-remit-now

Looking for a job in UAE? Here’s the salary guide

Khaleej Times

Starting salaries for professional roles in finance and accounting, financial services, technology and administration in the UAE will grow by 2.5 per cent over the next year, according to the Robert Half 2017 Salary Guide.

The guide is the most comprehensive and authoritative resource on starting salaries and recruitment trends in finance and accounting, financial services, IT, legal, and HR and administration. The Salary Guide enables employers and employees to benchmark salaries for over 185 different permanent professional roles in the UAE.

According to the survey, competition for the best candidates is heating up in the UAE with 68 per cent of employers planning to attract new employees in 2017 and on an average, pay scales could increase by up to 5.8 per cent in comparison to 2016.

Published: 6 August 2017

Follow: http://www.khaleejtimes.com/news/general/looking-for-a-job-in-uae-heres-the-salary-guide

Community, Environment & Society

Year 2018 to celebrate Zayed’s vision

Gulf News

Abu Dhabi: President His Highness Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan has declared 2018 the “Year of Zayed” in the United Arab Emirates.

The year 2018 marks 100 years since the birth of the late founding father Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan, and yesterday’s announcement is coinciding with the anniversary of Shaikh Zayed’s Accession Day, the day he assumed leadership in Abu Dhabi on August 6, 1966, marking the start of a new epoch in the history of the country.

Published: 6 August 2017

Follow: http://gulfnews.com/news/uae/government/year-2018-to-celebrate-zayed-s-vision-1.2069463

Apply for UAE visa from comfort of your own home

Gulf News

You can now, from the comfort of your home, complete applications related to nationality, and residence, without having to visit typing offices or customer service centres.The Ministry of the Interior on Tuesday launched “E-channels”, a new system of smart services that lets nationals and residents apply for entry permits and residency visas within 10 minutes.

Published: 01st August 2017


Thousands of road-safety breaches by lorry drivers leads to police campaign

The National

More than 30,000 fines have been issued to lorry drivers in Dubai in the first six months of this year alone for not abiding by road safety rules.

Police on Tuesday launched a one-month lorry driver safety campaign in a bid to reduce the number serious accidents and deaths involving heavy-goods vehicles. So far this year there have been 14 serious accidents and 15 deaths involving HGVs on Dubai roads.

Published: 01 August 2017

Follow: https://www.thenational.ae/uae/transport/thousands-of-road-safety-breaches-by-lorry-drivers-leads-to-police-campaign-1.616104

Don’t come on visit visas for job hunting, Indians told

Gulf News

Indian Consulate asks expatriates to verify job offers and visas before arriving in the UAE. Indian jobseekers should not come to the UAE on visit visas and must authenticate their employment offers and entry permit visas before heading to the UAE, the Indian Consulate in Dubai has said. The advisory from the mission follows high numbers of calls and visits by Indian workers who have been duped by agents or employers on a regular basis. “We have got several cases of people falling into trouble when they come for employment or for looking for employment on visit visas. There are also cases of women being forced to work as maids etc by dubious agents who get them to the UAE on visit visas as well as sending them to Oman and other countries.”

Published: 02 August 2017

Follow: http://gulfnews.com/news/uae/society/don-t-come-on-visit-visas-for-job-hunting-indians-told-1.2067777


iPhones, Facebook and internet are sucking our time and making us miserable


In a past life, we served on our local council. Despite the impressive size of our gross budget, our free choice in spending was remarkably limited.

By the time our road grants were spent on roads, child care funding on child care, the indoor and outdoor staff paid and the rubbish collected, funds for truly discretionary spending were tight. According to Associate Professor Adam Alter, a psychologist at New York University, the days of our lives are just like that.

Published: 4 August 2017

Follow: http://www.afr.com/technology/mobiles-and-tablets/iphones-facebook-and-a-neverending-internet-are-sucking-our-time-and-making-us-miserable-20170803-gxom8o


Gatlin spoils Bolt’s farewell in 100m with remarkable gold

Khaleej Times

Usain Bolt was no longer stunning. He was just stunned.

At the end of a career in which he has dominated his sport for a decade, Bolt was beaten in his final 100-meter race by an American almost five years his senior – Justin Gatlin.

Calling it quits at the age of 30 and looking for a golden farewell in his last individual race at the world championships, Bolt lost to a man who produced a comeback not only on Saturday but also through a doping-tainted career.

Published: 6 August 2017

Follow: http://www.khaleejtimes.com/sport/athletics/gatlin-spoils-bolts-farewell-in-100m-with-remarkable-gold


A chance to live your childhood memories

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Abu Dhabi city is witnessing a lot of fitness enthusiasts these days. People are walking and cycling more than they used to do earlier. The recent hike in taxi fares may be one of the reason. The normal cheap taxi fares no more exist. The moment you hop into an Abu Dhabi taxi, the minimum charge applicable is AED 12/-. This has resulted in many taking up cycling as a more convenient option.

What do you do if you cannot afford to a costlier or bigger bicycle? You look at various online sites for secondhand bicycles being sold. Going for the cheaper ones, you end up buying even children bicycles. Modify it a bit and allow and standing stand for your partner to stand at the back, you are ready for your daily trips. This is what you are witnessing these days in the city.

It is hot, but it is enjoyable. Start early before the sun rises. Work late till it cools down. Cycle your way to office and back home. You are perfectly fit.
Of course, there is a big advantage. However, stressed you begin your journey, after a few minutes, you will forget and start enjoying the beauty around or even reliving your past…

Try it out and tell me if I am wrong. Happy and #SafeCycling #InAbuDhabi



Taste It – GingheeO rice

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05 August 2017 - GingheeO rice

Taste It recipe – GingheeO rice

I believe always “Cooking is an art”. Enjoy doing it whenever I get a chance. Although I do it regularly, it is long time I have shared a content to “Taste It” section of my site. Here it is today. Time to test it and taste it.

GingheeO rice (GingerGheeOnion Rice)

Items required:

  1. 2 cup of rice
  2. Fresh ginger cut into fine pieces
  3. Small Onion, nicely cut – 15
  4. Green chillee, cut into small pieces – 4
  5. Ghee – 3 teaspoon full
  6. Coconut oil – 3 teaspoon full
  7. Salt – add to taste

Keep on one burner the vessel to cook rice and start boiling water. Add the 2 cup of rice into it when the water boils. Continue to boil and when it is 3/4th ready add 1 spoon of ghee and then little salt into it. On a parallel burner keep the frying pan (preferably large with sufficient space and volume) and add coconut oil and remaining ghee to it. When it warms up to the required temperature, add nicely cut small onions into it. Fry it to a moderately good color and crispiness and then add the green chillies and little salt to it.

By this time the rice would have boiled to the required level. Add it to the pan and mix well with the fried items in the pan. Continue to simmer the process for a few more minutes. It should be ready by now. Garnish it with cloves and fresh small onions and close the pan with its lid to let it extract the qualities of the spices in the vaporized atmosphere created.

Time for lunch and enjoy GingheeO rice with sweet and natural aroma coming out of it. Good for children and adults alike. Quick, easy and tasty.

News U Wish to Read – 31 July 2017

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News U Wish to read - 31 July 2017Energy

Oil rises ahead of oil leaders’ meeting in Abu Dhabi

The National

Oil rose on Monday, putting July on track to become the strongest month this year, as news of a producers’ technical meeting next week added to bullish sentiment driven by the threat of US sanctions against the Opec member Venezuela.

Oil traders also eyed the bullish impact from a production outage following a fire at Europe’s largest refinery and further signs that the US market is tightening after heavy inventory falls and slower new oil rig additions last week.

Published: 31st July 2017

Follow: https://www.thenational.ae/business/oil-rises-ahead-of-oil-leaders-meeting-in-abu-dhabi-1.615697

#TheNational #OilandGas #AbuDhabi

Dubai Ruler and Sheikh Mohammed visit Adnoc headquarters – in pictures

The National

Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Vice President and Ruler of Dubai, and Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, on Sunday visited the Abu Dhabi Natiinal Oil Company headquarters.

Their Highnesses expressed their pride in those in the UAE who adopted the values of leadership, excellence and innovation to promote the country’s international competitiveness.

They also stressed the importance of maintaining economic diversity based on the UAE’s strengths and experiences, especially in essential sectors such as energy.

Published: 30th July 2017

Follow: https://www.thenational.ae/uae/dubai-ruler-and-sheikh-mohammed-visit-adnoc-headquarters-in-pictures-1.615544


Adnoc charts strategic path that will strengthen links with global economy

The National

The Abu Dhabi National Oil Company is charting a course unlike many of its peers as it prepares to face a radically different energy future, said experts including Daniel Yergin yesterday. The company’s leadership made it clear in comments to The National on Monday that it will not be following the path that many national oil companies (NOCs) have – and which close neighbour Saudi Arabia plans – in selling off a piece of the parent company.

Published: 14th July 2017

Follow: https://www.thenational.ae/business/adnoc-charts-strategic-path-that-will-strengthen-links-with-global-economy-1.484108  


Adnoc on new expanded partnership approach

Gulf News

The Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc) recently announced the expansion of its strategic partnership model, as well as the more active management of its portfolio of assets. Following the launch of a new initiative to expand its strategic partnership model, Dr. Sultan Ahmad Al Jaber, UAE Minister of State and Group CEO of Adnoc, met last week with both potential and existing partners in China and Japan. These discussions focused on the new partnership and co-investment opportunities created through Adnoc’s new approach, as well as the deepening of UAE bilateral relations with both countries.

Published: 22nd July 2017

Follow: http://gulfnews.com/business/sectors/energy/adnoc-on-new-expanded-partnership-approach-1.2062662


Sheikh Mohammed lauds Adnoc’s new approach

The National

Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, said Adnoc’s new strategic approach, which includes expanding the types of partnerships it forms and spinning off some of its services businesses, will help the economy meet its key fiscal and employment goals.

Published: 15th July 2017

Follow: http://www.thenational.ae/business/energy/energy-majors-see-emphasis-on-gas


Kuwait sees oil inventories falling faster as Opec keeps cutting

Gulf News

Crude oil inventories will decline at a faster pace worldwide in the second half of the year as demand increases and Opec members comply better with a global agreement to cut output, Kuwait’s Opec Governor Haitham Al Ghais said.

Published: 15th July 2017

Follow: http://gulfnews.com/business/sectors/energy/kuwait-sees-oil-inventories-falling-faster-as-opec-keeps-cutting-1.2059269


Politics & Economy

UAE GDP to recover in 2018 on higher investments, global trade flows, says report

The National

The UAE economy will accelerate at a rate of 3.3 per cent in 2018, thanks to an increase in government investments, a rebound in world trade flows and an uptick in global tourism, according to a new report.

The forecast by consultancy Oxford Economics, in collaboration with accountancy and finance body ICAEW, is broadly in line with projections made earlier this month by  the IMF, which is predicting 3.4 per cent growth for next year.

Oxford Economics and ICAEW forecast that the UAE’s growth will slow this year to 1.7 per cent, a more bullish estimate than the IMF’s 1.3 per cent estimation. The country’s economy grew 3 per cent last year, according to the Central Bank.Published: 25th July 2017

Read more: https://www.thenational.ae/business/uae-gdp-to-recover-in-2018-on-higher-investments-global-trade-flows-says-report-1.614043


Business environment and confidence in Dubai to pick up in Q3, a new survey shows

The National

Business confidence and conditions in Dubai are forecast to strengthen in the third quarter, with small and mediums-sized companies expressing more optimism than large corporations, according a survey from the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

The growing confidence comes “in line with an increase in the number of new companies” expected to join the chamber in the third quarter, which is an indicator of business activity in the emirate, said Hamad Buamim, President and chief executive of Dubai Chamber.

Published: 25th July 2017

Read more: https://www.thenational.ae/business/business-environment-and-confidence-in-dubai-to-pick-up-in-q3-a-new-survey-shows-1.614162  


Etihad submits non-binding offer for Alitalia

The National

Etihad Airways has emerged as one of around 10 bidders interested in acquiring a partial or full stake in the Italian airline Alitalia, suggesting the Abu Dhabi-based carrier remains committed to its investment in the troubled airline.  The non-binding bid, submitted ahead of a deadline on Friday, also suggests that Etihad may not be ready to reverse course on its international investment strategy, despite last week selling off its stake in Switzerland’s Darwin Airline following a strategic review launched last year.

Published: 22nd July 2017

Read more: https://www.thenational.ae/business/aviation/etihad-submits-non-binding-offer-for-alitalia-1.613209


France aims to be ‘facilitator’ in Gulf crisis talks

Gulf News

DOHA: French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said in Doha on Saturday that Paris wants to assist Kuwait-led mediation talks on the crisis between Qatar and four other Arab states. “France should be a facilitator in the mediation” led by Kuwait, Le Drian told reporters following talks with his Qatari counterpart Shaikh Mohammad Bin Abdul Rahman Al Thani.

Published: 15th July 2017.

Read more: http://gulfnews.com/news/gulf/qatar/france-aims-to-be-facilitator-in-gulf-crisis-talks-1.2059346


UAE wants resolution, not alleviation of Qatar problem

The National

The UAE said efforts to ease tensions rather than directly address the problem between Qatar and the Arab countries isolating it will only lead to worse crises in future. “We believe that there are two ways of dealing with things, whether to try and ease tension or try to address a problem,” Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, said on Thursday. “We do not believe that an attempt to ease the tension will address the matter, but will lead to delaying the problem, which will lead to a doubling of the situation in the future.”

Published: 13th July 2017.

Read more: https://www.thenational.ae/world/gcc/uae-wants-resolution-not-alleviation-of-qatar-problem-1.568763  


Community, Environment & Society

Get ready for 80% humidity in UAE

Gulf News

The weather across the UAE is expected to get stickier as humidity levels are expected to rise by Monday night and into Tuesday morning.

The National Centre of Meteorology and Seismology (NCMS) said the weather will become “very hot and hazy” over the next two days, especially over coastal areas.

The highest temperature recorded on Sunday was 51.8 degrees Celsius in Mezaira, at 3pm.

Temperatures on Monday are expected to reach 44C in coastal areas and 47C in internal areas, with humidity levels to reach up to 80 per cent.

Published: 31st July 2017.

Read more: http://gulfnews.com/news/uae/weather/get-ready-for-80-humidity-in-uae-1.2066646


Oman announces E-visa for international tourists

Gulf News

Tourists planning to visit Oman can apply online for visas by submitting their applications at https://evisa.rop.gov.om/. The first stage comprises non-sponsored tourist visas for people from 67 countries as well as GCC residents employed in 116 professions

Published: 26th July 2017.

Read more: http://gulfnews.com/news/gulf/oman/oman-announces-e-visa-for-international-tourists-1.2064527


Ras Al Khaimah Fine Arts Festival puts call out for artist submissions

The National

The Annual Ras Al Khaimah Fine Arts Festival has announced submission dates for this year’s competition.  Entries will be taken from August 20 and close on October 20, 2017 in four categories, film, photography, visual arts, and student work. New this year, there is a recycled art sub-category within Visual Arts, where participants are required to use recyclable materials from Ras Al Khaimah, or focus on the story of recycling in order to enter.

Published: 23rd July 2017.

Read more: https://www.thenational.ae/arts-culture/art/ras-al-khaimah-fine-arts-festival-puts-call-out-for-artist-submissions-1.613321


Drivers welcome move to buckle up in the back seat

The National

UAE residents have welcomed the introduction of new traffic laws that fine anyone without a seatbelt on in the back of a car and are pleased to hear it’s being enforced.  Any back-seat passenger seen by police without a seatbelt on could end up landing their driver with a Dh400 fine and four black points, and children under 4 must be in a child car seat. Before July 1 the law only dictated that people in the front seats must buckle up.

Published: 15th July 2017

Read more: https://www.thenational.ae/uae/drivers-welcome-move-to-buckle-up-in-the-back-seat-1.609055


Dubai to host conference on sustainability, green technologies


The key challenges facing the environment will be the underlying theme at the 19th edition of the Water, Energy,Technology and Environment Exhibition to be organised in Dubai on October 23rd-25th.The event, organised by Dubai Electricity and Water Authority, DEWA, for the 4th year running, will shed extensive light on the headwinds facing the water, energy and environment sectors in the region, with the participants to seek to come up with innovative eco-friendly solutions that support economic growth while preserving natural resources and protecting the environment.

Published: 04th July 2017

Read more: http://wam.ae/en/details/1395302621501



Sebastian Vettel overcomes steering problem to win Hungarian GP

Gulf News

Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel overcame steering difficulties to win a tense Hungarian Grand Prix on Sunday and extend his championship lead over rival Lewis Hamilton to 14 points heading into the summer break.The four-time Formula One champion made a decent start from pole position, crucially holding off teammate Kimi Raikkonen on the long straight into Turn 1.

Published: 30th July 2017

Read more: http://gulfnews.com/sport/motorsport/sebastian-vettel-overcomes-steering-problem-to-win-hungarian-gp-1.2066579



AaDhaar – NRIs new fear! To or not to apply for Aadhaar?

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Mind Speaks - Aadhaar 26 July 2017ccTo news reports published in prominent newspapers Khaleej Times and Gulf News have created lot of confusion and fear among NRIs based in UAE.

On 24th July 2017, Khaleej Times came out with the news below:

NRIs urged to apply for Aadhaar Card


Filed on July 24, 2017 | Last updated on July 24, 2017 at 08.29 am

KT Aadhar

Non-resident Indians (NRIs) are advised to apply for the Aaadhar card to avail of state benefits and for hassle-free transactions in future.

According to a manager of the NRI section of State Bank of India (SBI), the government has not exempted Indian expats from the Aadhaar card.

Jose GL, NRI section manager at SBI’s Varkala branch, Kerala, told Khaleej Times:

“My advice to NRIs is to apply for Aadhar Card, as there is a chance for the government to make it mandatory for expats as well. Without an announcement, the government has now asked everyone to link their Permanent Account Number (Pan) with Aadhaar, for income tax returns. There is no doubt that Aadhaar will become compulsory and beneficial for several transactions in the coming years.”


Today, 26th July 2017 Gulf News have come out with a totally contradictory version of it:

‘NRIs not eligible for Aadhaar ID card’


Published: 14:32 July 26, 2017

Binsal Abdul Kader, Senior Reporter

aadhar gn

If banks, or any Indian institutions, demand that Non-Resident Indians (NRIs) produce Aadhaar for official transactions, simply inform them that NRIs are not eligible for the identity card issued to residents of India, a top Indian official told Gulf News on Tuesday.

“Just tell them that we [NRIs] are not eligible for Aadhaar, therefore, don’t force us to produce it,” Dr Ajay Bhushan Pandey, CEO, Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), said in a telephone interview from New Delhi.






Whether to apply for an Aadhaar, the thought has now become aa dar (upcoming fear) for expatriates here.

Who to follow and what to do is very important and appreciate responsible newspapers should do necessary homework before publishing such important formation of high importance.

Appreciate to have a clarification from the Indian Embassy authorities on which of these reports are to be followed by all.

Ramesh Menon, Abu Dhabi

26th July 2017