Fever claims nine lives in Kerala

dengueThiruvananthapuram, June 4 : Nine people have died of fever in Kerala and 14,000 new cases, including those of jaundice and dengue, have been reported from across the state, an official said Tuesday.

Thiruvananthapuram has reported the highest number of such cases. More than 2,000 fresh cases have been reported from the hilly district of Wayanad.

At least 91 people Monday tested positive for dengue. Nine people died Monday, and 14,000 new cases were reported, the official said.

Chandy to meet Sonia over cabinet berth for Chennithala

Oommen-ChandyThiruvananthapuram, May 31 : Unable to arrive at a consensus on the induction of state Congress president Ramesh Chennithala into the cabinet, the state Congress unit has sought the party high command's intervention.

Sources say Chief Minister Oommen Chandy has sought an appointment with Congress president Sonia Gandhi Tuesday.

The current impasse arose as Chennithala is expected to demit the office as the state Congress party chief, on completing eight years in that post.

Given his stature, his supporters within the party have demanded that he be made the state home minister, and possibly also the deputy chief minister.

Kerala court grants bail to Amway India head

Kerala court grants bail to Amway India headA court in the south Indian city of Kerala has granted bail to William S Pinckney, the chairman and Chief Executive Officer and two other senior directors of direct marketing firm Amway.

Microsoft challenge at Kochi Startup Village from May 29

Startup-Village-MicrosoftKochi, May 27 : Startup Village, country's first telecom technology incubator, here is set to host from May 29 the regional round of the prestigious BizSpark India Startup Challenge held by Microsoft, an organiser said Monday.

The event is aimed at searching for entrepreneurs with innovative ideas in cloud computing, mobile applications and Windows 8 business applications.

This is the first time that Kochi has been selected as one of 10 cities to host the challenge, said an organiser.

Media should show positives: Chandy

Oommen-Chandy1Thiruvananthapuram, May 27 : Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy Monday called upon the media in the state to highlight positive news.

Addressing the media here after delivering a speech on 'Current Politics and Kerala's Development', Chandy said the diaspora is the key to the state's progress.

"They (diaspora) see the developments that are taking place across the globe. They wish that similar development happens in their home state of Kerala. Here, the media can become more positive," said Chandy.

Ban on tobacco display leads to lower sales: Study

tobaccoThiruvananthapuram, May 20 : An international tobacco control survey has found that a ban on tobacco advertisements, especially where tobacco is sold, leads to lower sales of cigarettes.

The study was published in Oxford journal 'Health Education Research' earlier this month. It was conducted by the International Tobacco Control Evaluation Project, the first-ever international cohort study of tobacco use initiated to measure the psychosocial and behavioural impact of policies of WHO's Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC).

Kerala software engineer develops anti-piracy software

Kerala software engineer develops anti-piracy softwareThiruvananthapuram, May 19 : A Kerala-based software engineer has come up with an anti-piracy device to check recording of movies in theatres using sophisticated mobile phones or handycams.

Varghese Babu told IANS here that the product, which has gone for patent processing, was developed after three years of research.

Rahul Gandhi praises Chandy, slams Kerala CPI-M

rahul-gandhiThiruvananthapuram, May 18 : Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi Saturday praised Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy and asked the CPI-M to introspect and rethink its ideology.

Gandhi was addressing the valedictory function of a yatra by state Congress chief Ramesh Chennithala, who travelled across Lerala's 140 assembly constituencies.

Chandy all set to reshuffle cabinet

Oommen-ChandyThiruvananthapuram, May 18 :  Kerala Chief Minister Oomen Chandy is all set to reshuffle his cabinet, two years after assuming office this day.

"I am under tremendous pressure to join the cabinet. In the coming days, the top leadership of our party is going to sit down to discuss all possibilities," state Congress president Ramesh Chennithala told IANS.

Ayurveda experts develop online personalised health regimen

Cybele-Herbal-LaboratoriesKochi, May 16 : A group of ayurveda experts have launched a medical treatment package in cyberspace.

'NaturWell', which guarantees overall wellness to subscribers of the year-long programme being rolled out through homilies over the internet and medicines at doorstep, is essentially founded on the tenets mentioned in ancient texts of ayurveda, according to the conceivers, Cybele Herbal Laboratories.

Kerala to promote Neera as non-alcoholic health drink

neera-packetsThiruvananthapuram, May 15 : The Kerala government will promote the state's coconut water-based drink "Neera" as a non-alcoholic health drink, Excise Minister K. Babu said Wednesday.

An expert committee that studied the potential of "Neera" submitted a report to the minister, who said the government will certainly take a positive view of it.

Neera has a lot of body-building proteins and, despite being sweet, can be consumed even by diabetics. Neera turns into toddy after it is fermented four hours after being taken from the coconut tree and has an alcohol content of five to eight percent.

Rahul Gandhi way above Modi: Congress

Rahul-Narendra-ModiKottayam (Kerala), May 8 : Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi is no match for Rahul Gandhi, a Kerala state Congress leader said here Wednesday after the BJP was routed in the May 5 Karnataka assembly polls.

"Oh no, please do not make a comparison between Rahul and Modi as the former is far ahead of the latter, so it's pointless to make a comparison in the electoral battle in Karnataka. Rahul has won," said a pleased state Congress president Ramesh Chennithala after the BJP was voted out of power in Karnataka.

Giving nod to Kudankulam n-plant unfortunate: Achuthanandan

VS-AchuthanandanThiruvananthapuram, May 6 : Former Kerala chief minister V. S. Achuthanandan Monday termed as unfortunate the sanction accorded by the apex court to operationalise the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant in Tamil Nadu.

"It is common knowledge that the plant's security aspects are not fool-proof and there's a general fear on this aspect. The people there are on a protest with just one demand that they should be safe," the veteran Communist leader said in a statement.

Keralites corner glory in civil service exams

civil-service-examsThiruvananthapuram, May 3 : For the first time since 1991, a Keralite has come first in the Civil Services Examinations while the second and fourth positions have also been bagged by people from the state.

Haritha V. Kumar secured the first rank in the joint examinations.

V. Sriram came second while a doctor, Alby John Varghese, came fourth in the all-India ranking.

This was Haritha Kumar's fourth and last attempt.

No Tamil Nadu spy in Kerala secretariat: Chandy

Oommen-ChandyThiruvananthapuram, April 30 : Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy Tuesday rubbished media reports about a Tamil Nadu government employee acting as a spy in the state secretariat and passing on vital documents on the water sharing dispute between the two states.

"Media reports are wrong. I have read the intelligence report. It says that no vital documents or any information was passed on to Tamil Nadu," Chandy told reporters after the weekly cabinet meeting here.

Kerala signs MoU with South Korean firm for solar panels project

Kerala signs MoU with South Korean firm for solar panels projectThe Kerala State Industrial Development Corporation has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Jusung Engineering from South Korea for the production of solar panels in the state.

Ernst & Young opens new facility in Kerala

Ernst-and-YoungThiruvananthapuram, April 25 : Ernst & Young Global Services (EYGS) Thursday opened its third Kerala facility at the KINFRA Film and Video Park here.

The facility was inaugurated by Chief Minister Oommen Chandy along with Minister for Home and Vigilance Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan, and Minister for IT and Industries P. K. Kunhalikutty.

The new Global Shared Services (GSS) and Innovation Center would help EY enhance service delivery and provide quality support to internal clients beyond borders. It will accommodate about 1,000 employees.

Kerala has nothing to learn from Gujarat: Chandy

Oommen-ChandyThiruvananthapuram, April 24 : Chief Minister Oommen Chandy Wednesday said Kerala has nothing to learn from Gujarat, as the state has its own "model of development". The comment came while Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi is visiting the state.

"The Kerala model of development is one that is accepted worldwide and we do not have anything to learn from Gujarat. Just look at our standards of public health and the education standards that we have achieved," Chandy said, while speaking to reporters after the weekly cabinet meeting.

Modi likely to meet Catholic cardinal on Kerala visit

Narendra-Modi_Thiruvananthapuram, April 22 : Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi's proposed visit here has already kicked up a row in Kerala, but it could become more "colourful" as he may meet a cardinal of the Catholic Church while here.

There are reports that Modi might meet 53-year-old Rev. Moran Mar Baselios Cleemis Catholicos, head of the capital-city headquartered Syro Malankara Catholic Church, in the state capital.

The cardinal was ordained at the Vatican November 24 last year, and became the youngest cardinal in the Catholic Church.

He was also part of the conclave that elected Pope Francis.

Now, mobile phone to tell if your drive will be smooth

Blockout-TrafficKochi, April 11 : Start-up firm AmidRay Technologies, based here, has launched a community Android application "Blockout Traffic", which informs people of choked traffic within a 25-30 km radius, the creators of the programme said Thursday.

This is being billed as the country's "first free-and-easy traffic mobile application" for those on the move.

AmidRay Technologies is a start-up firm incubated at Technopark and Startup Village, Kochi, by four youngsters.

The application will display the name of the roads and locations in the users' area, indicating where there is a traffic block.

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