Facebook's Libra cryptocurrency to launch in January 2021

News Network
November 27, 2020

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Facebook's Libra cryptocurrency is readying to launch as early as January, the Financial Times reported on Friday, citing three unidentified people involved in the project. The Geneva-based Libra Association that will issue and govern Libra plans to launch a single digital coin backed by the dollar, the FT said, citing one of the people.

The move would represent an even bigger scaling-back of the project's ambitions than that proposed in April in response to a regulatory and political backlash against the project. Libra, unveiled by Facebook Inc last year, was relaunched in slimmed-down form after regulators and central banks across the world raised concerns it could upset financial stability and erode mainstream power over money.

The Libra Association, of which Facebook is one of 27 members, is seeking the go-ahead from Switzerland's markets watchdog to issue a series of stablecoins backed by individual traditional currencies, as well as a token based on the currency-pegged stablecoins. Yet under the body's new plan, other coins backed by traditional currencies, as well as the composite, would be introduced at a later date, the FT said.

The Libra Association did not immediately reply to a request for comment. FINMA, the Swiss regulator, did not elaborate beyond a statement in April confirming receipt of Libra's application for a payments licence. Stablecoins are designed to avoid the volatility typical of cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin, making them in theory more suitable for payments and money transfers.

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News Network
November 27,2021

Dharward, Nov 27: A medical college in Karnataka's Dharwad has become a Covid hotspot with 99 more testing positive, taking the total number of cases to 281.

The SDM College of Medical Sciences, a tertiary care centre, is considered the medical hub of north Karnataka.

Fresh admissions to the hospital have been suspended. The entry and exit to the hospital has been blocked and of those admitted only the one who test negative will be discharged.

Most of the people infected at the college were fully vaccinated against coronavirus, officials said, adding that a recent freshers' party organised inside the campus led to the outbreak. The party continued for two-three days.

Chairman of Manipal Hospital and member of Covid task force team in Karnataka Dr Sudarshan Ballal said the Covid cluster is a cause of concern.

"There was a large cluster that has turned to be positive and all of them were at an event. This means the variant of this virus is infectious. Second concern, all the students were fully vaccinated which means there is an immune escape phenomena," he said.

Deputy commissioner Nitesh Patil said that testing has been intensified and throat swab samples of 1,500 people are being collected every day from 11 new counters opened. Results of 1,890 staff and patients at the medical college and hospital are awaited. They have been quarantined.

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News Network
November 30,2021

Riyadh, Nov 30: Saudi Arabia’s General Directorate of Passports (Jawazat) has announced that expatriates from 17 countries including India can benefit from the recent government decision to extend the validity of residency permit (iqama), exit and re-entry visas and visit visas without any fee.

The 17 countries are India, Indonesia, Pakistan, Turkey, Lebanon, Egypt, Brazil, Ethiopia, Vietnam, Afghanistan, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Mozambique, Botswana, Lesotho, and Eswatini (Swaziland).

The Jawazat has started automatically extending the validity of iqama and exit and re-entry visa until Jan. 31, 2022 without charging expatriate levy or any other fees. This is in line with implementation of the directives of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman.

The extension will not be applicable to expatriates who are fully vaccinated in the Kingdom before their departure abroad on exit and re-entry visa.

The King’s directive also includes extending the validity of visit visas issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for visitors who are outside the Kingdom and who are from countries facing travel ban as a result of the outbreak of coronavirus. The period of extension will be until Jan. 31.

This extension falls within the government’s continuing efforts to mitigate the financial and economic repercussions of COVID-19, and as part of precautionary measures and preventive protocols that ensure the safety of citizens and expatriates.

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News Network
November 26,2021

Mangaluru, Nov 27: Police have arrested a government health officer on charges of "flirting" with his female colleagues in Mangaluru, police said on Saturday.

The accused was identified as Ratnakar, a nodal officer in Leprosy Eradication Wing.

Ratnakar was arrested after a social activist lodged a complaint against him at Mangaluru Women's Police station.

The photos and videos of Ratnakar "flirting" with female colleagues at office have gone viral on social media.

Female colleagues alleged that if they did not cooperate with the accused, he targeted them. They also told police that he forcefully took them on tour and forced them to "pose" for photographs.

Mangaluru Commissioner N.A. Shashikumar said that Ratnakar has been taken into custody.

The Inspector of Women's police station has contacted the victims on the issue.

The victim colleagues told the police that they would come forward to cooperate with the police during the time of investigation. However, the victims said they do not want to lodge a complaint against accused over safety issues.

The statements of the victims will be recorded and necessary legal action would be initiated against the accused person, Shashikumar said.

Meanwhile, the Health department has suspended Ratnakar for his indecent behaviour with female colleagues.

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