Frailty may be more deadly in younger heart patients

The adjusted long-term frailty-related mortality risk was inversely proportional to age, meaning after taking other comorbidities into consideration, frailty had a higher impact on the survival of younger patients.

Frailty is often thought to be a syndrome of the elderly, which comes as a natural and inevitable side-effect of aging.

For clinicians, frailty is a concept which has long posed formidable challenges in perioperative medicine. For patients, frailty turns even the most routine operative procedures into complicated life or death undertakings.

A new study conducted by researchers at the University of Ottawa Heart Institute examined the prevalence of frailty and its association with long-term mortality in patients undergoing cardiac surgery at a younger age.

Researchers examined administrative healthcare data from the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Science (ICES) and the clinical registry data from Corhealth Ontario to support their findings.

The adjusted long-term frailty-related mortality risk was inversely proportional to age, meaning after taking other comorbidities into consideration, frailty had a higher impact on the survival of younger patients.

According to the study, frailty contributed to greater differences in the survival of patients between 40 and 74 years of age and smaller differences in the long-term survival of those 85 years or older.

“What the science is telling us is that frailty poses a higher risk of mortality in younger patients and has a lower impact on older ones,” said study’s principal investigator, Dr. Louise Sun.

Effective preoperative optimization programs such as cardiac rehabilitation, nutritional augmentation, and psychosocial support may improve outcomes especially in younger patients,” she added.

The full findings are present in the JAHA: Journal of the American Heart Association.

Cera Sanitaryware plans to increase turnover to Rs 1,400 crore in FY19

On expansions, Somany said Cera is looking for a few more joint venture partners (JVs) for manufacture of tiles and setting up more galleries (exclusive showrooms)

Sanitaryware Ltd is targeting a turnover of Rs 1,400 crore to Rs 1,500 crore in the current fiscal and will also start production from its new polymer plant this financial year, its Chairman and Managing Director, Vikram Somany said today.

“Our turnover was Rs 1,180 crore in 2017-18 financial year. We are expecting a turnover of around Rs 1,400 crore to Rs 1,500 crore in 2018-19 fiscal,” Somany, told reporters here after launching the company’s display showroom “CERA Style Studio.”

The company has a total of nine CERA Style Studios in the country and plans to more than double the same in the next two-three years, he said.

On the new polymer plant, Somany said “we have started construction of our polymer plant which will be making plastic toilet seat covers, flush systems, cisterns and allied products made of plastics. We are setting up the factory in Mehsana in Gujarat with an investment of around Rs 25 crore.”

“We should start production (from the upcoming polymer plant) within the current fiscal itself by January-February 2019,” he said.

On expansions, Somany said Cera Sanitaryware Ltd is looking for a few more joint venture partners (JVs) for manufacture of tiles and setting up more galleries (exclusive showrooms), adding “we are thinking for another JV for tiles. It will be operationalised in the next fiscal.”

The company achieved 15 per cent sales growth last financial year.

“The market still remains subdued. But, we are hopeful to grow 18 to 20 per cent this fiscal,” the company’s Executive Director, Atul Sanghavi, said.

Cera has sanitaryware and faucet plants at Kadi in Gujarat and one of the tiles plants is situated in Nellore in Andhra Pradesh.

Strike by Trucker’s costs India Rs 10,000 crore in 3 days

“It is high time the government steps in…and offers some practical solutions to redress our woes,” said Raman Khosla.

The losses due to the all-India transporters’ strike crossed Rs 2,000 crore in Maharashtra as lakhs of trucks stayed off the road for the third consecutive day on Sunday, said transporter associations. They pegged the nationwide losses due to the strike at Rs 10,000 crore. The Centre is likely to intervene on Monday and has called transporters for talks in a bid to end the crisis.

“It is high time the government steps in…and offers some practical solutions to redress our woes,” said Raman Khosla, president of the Maharashtra Rajya Truck, Tempo, Tankers, Bus Vahatuk Mahasangh. “The government should at least accept our demands in principle.”

He added that not a single truck transported manufacturing, industrial goods and other commodities on Sunday. “Trucks plying essentials like vegetables, fruits, medicine, milk are exempted from the strike,” Khosla said.

But a few leading transporter associations fear that if strike continues this week, even those supplying vegetables and fruits could ‘voluntarily’ stay off the road, which may escalate prices. “These truck owners have expressed their solidarity to the protest,” said Bal Malkit Singh of the All India Motor Transport Congress.

Transporters complained they have been reeling under the impact of demonetization, rise in input costs along with fuel prices and high cost of GST among other challenges. They have demanded reduction in diesel prices, quarterly review of fuel prices, a toll-free India for seamless movement of goods, need for transparency, and reduction in third-party insurance premium..

There were peaceful rallies and protests at toll plazas and ports across the country. “Transportation services to and from the port, refineries, harbours and movement from petrochemical units, white goods, FMCG, steel, coal, cement, granite, and other industrial units have been stopped,” Singh said. “Till date, there are no reconciliatory talks or indication from the government to resolve the issues with immediate tangible results. The movement will intensify in the days to come.”

Apple faced deactivation of iPhones in India due to TRAI’s new rules

Apple and TRAI have been at loggerheads over allowing the government-backed DND app on iPhones. While the regulator believes the app will help consumers block pesky messages, Apple has declined the app citing users’ privacy.

 

The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India’s (TRAI) new rules to curb pesky messages may lead to deactivation of millions of iPhones in India.

The regulator earlier this week announced the ‘Telecom commercial communications customer preference regulations, 2018’ under which it has proposed to “derecognise” devices that bar installation of TRAI’s DND app, a platform that allows users to report and block pesky messages.

The application has been available on Android for quite some time but Apple hasn’t allowed on its iPhones, citing users’ privacy.

“Every Access Provider shall ensure that preferences recorded or modified by the subscriber are given effect to in near real time and in such a manner that no delivery of commercial communication is made or blocked in contravention to the subscribers’ preference after twenty-four hours or such time as the Authority may prescribe,” said TRAI in its report.

“Provided that where such devices do not permit functioning of such Apps as prescribed in regulations 6(2)(e) and regulations 23(2)(d), Access Providers shall, on the order or direction of the Authority, derecognize such devices from their telecom networks,” it added.

The regulator in section 6(2)(e) points out that every access provider has to set up “Customer Preference Registration Facility (CPRF)” and provide a “mobile app developed in this regard either by the Authority or by any other person or entity and approved by the Authority.”

The telecom regulator, however, has given six months’ time to device manufacturers to allow such applications.

“Every Access Provider shall ensure that all devices registered on its network shall support all permissions required for the functioning of such Apps as prescribed in the Regulations 7(2) and Regulations 24(2); Provided that such device manufacturer shall have six months’ time to implement such functionality, if not already available, with intimation to the Authority,” the regulatory said.

In simpler words, Apple has six months’ time to tweak its iOS to allow TRAI’s DND application or else the network providers will block radio (connectivity access) to the iPhones in the country.

Apple declined to comment on the new TRAI rules.

Apple vs TRAI
Apple and TRAI have been at loggerheads over the issue of allowing a DND app on iPhones for over two years. While the regulator has been asking the company to allow the application, Apple has declined to do so citing users’ privacy.

Back in November 2017, a Reuters report suggested that the two parties had come to an agreement over the issue and that the American smartphone company will help the government in building an anti-spam mobile application for the iOS platform.

Apple, however, had then admitted that the iOS platform did not allow some of the government requests such as allowing call logs data on the DND app.

Impact on users
If Apple and TRAI fail to come to an agreement, the move will impact millions of iPhone users in India.

The Indian Cellular Association (ICA) in response to the draft policy had criticised the regulator for asking service providers to block access to devices on failure to incorporate DND apps.

“Even though the ICA appreciates the intentions of TRAI in this regard, it is clear from the TRAI Act that the powers conferred to the Hon’ble Authority under the said Act are limited to regulating telecom service providers or licencees. There has been no precedent in the past wherein the TRAI has attempted to regulate device manufacturers, simply because the Authority realises that its powers in this regard are limited by the statute,” said the industry body pointing out that the regulator has no jurisdiction over device manufacturers.

The ICA also highlighted that the move could have “unintended consequences of placing millions of customers in harm’s way. This because the customers may simply not want to have such apps on their devices, or they may be on a platform that does not want the functionality in the manner in which TRAI is describing it.”

The Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI) , an industry body representing top telecom players, in its response had said that the telecom service providers have control over the network and that they cannot take responsibility of elements outside their network. It also pointed out that the service providers don’t have control on the applications (mostly OTTs) which a consumer is using on his/her handset.

Updated iOS and DND 2.0
Apple is building a new iteration of its operating system, the iOS 12. The latest update comes with a “spam reporting” feature. The implementation of the feature, however, is quite different from Android’s, as it will require users to enable the feature via the app extension.

The extension description reads:

“To report SMS messages and calls, the user must enable an Unwanted Communication extension in the Settings app. They can only enable one Unwanted Communication extension at a time.

In order to report calls, the user swipes left on an item in the Recents list and selects Report. For SMS messages, they press the Report Messages button when it appears in the Messages transcript. Users can also select messages by long-pressing a message and selecting additional messages, then selecting Report Messages.

When the user reports an SMS message or call, the system launches your Unwanted Communication extension. Your extension gathers additional information from the user, before deciding whether to report or block the number, as shown in Figure 1.”

It is yet to be seen whether the TRAI will accept the extension as the replacement for the DND app.

The regulator in the meanwhile has updated its DND application. The latest version (v2.0) is said to be built from ground up and comes with “intelligent feature”. The updated app comes with “an intelligent spam detection engine (for SMS only) to assist the subscriber in reporting” and “crowdsourcing of data about offending messages and calls to speed up detection of unregistered telemarketers”.

“TRAI has already explored, with encouraging results, the use of machine learning technologies to classify messages in its DND 2.0 App. These regulations would enable development of newer tools based on Artificial Intelligence or other technologies for an easier subscriber experience in setting preferences, governing consent and reporting violations. As a result of the platform approach espoused by TRAI, where functions are unbundled and access to information controlled based on permissions, all such solutions would henceforth be possible for third parties to develop. And they would be able to demonstrate the efficacy and security of their solutions in the controlled environment of the Regulatory Sandbox, before products are released for wider use,” said the body in a release.

Government to create economic offenders list for better crackdown on financial fraud

The move comes against the backdrop of an increase in number of bank frauds, investment scams, and other such misdemeanors. In some of these cases, the offenders fled the country.

The government wants to create a master list of all economic offenders in the country so as to sharpen its response to such offences, and to also prevent flight, and has asked all federal investigative and enforcement agencies to work together to create one, according to three officials in these agencies.

The move comes against the backdrop of an increase in number of bank frauds, investment scams, and other such misdemeanors. In some of these cases, the offenders fled the country.

The Central Economic Intelligence Bureau (CEIB) has been entrusted with the job, with agencies such as the Enforcement Directorate and CBI , capital markets regulator SEBI, the tax department, the customs department, and the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence providing inputs.

“This will be the first step towards identifying those committing multiple economic offences and could be a potential fugitive. This will lead to a coordinated and focused investigation in case a big scam is unearthed,” said an official in the tax department who asked not to be identified.

A threshold has been set for each agency and cases registered that involve amounts above that limit will be reported to CEIB. For example, customs will report cases registered for duty evasion of above Rs 1 crore. In the case of the tax department only raids conducted or authorised by the Central Board of Direct Taxes will be taken into account by CEIB.

“Most of our probe and enforcement agencies work in silos. So if a particular agency is investigating someone, a comprehensive list of economic offenders will help it know if the person on any other agency’s radar,” said an official in one of the enforcement agencies who asked not to be identified.

DRI and the tax department were already probing Nirav Modi since 2014 and 2017, respectively, this person added. “Access to this information by all investigation agencies could have further sharpened our response to Nirav Modi once he fled the country before the filing of an FIR by CBI,” said another official who also works in an enforcement agency, and who too did not wish to be identified. .

The list of offences that make a person an economic offender include violations of laws such as the Central Excise Act, Customs Act, Prevention of Money Laundering Act, Negotiable Instruments Act, the Reserve Bank of India Act, Prohibition of Benami Property Transactions Act and, of course, provisions of the Indian Penal Code.

“Improved coordination is always welcome but what is important is that information is passed on at the right time and timely action is taken against an offender. Otherwise the offender might be on the run even before enforcement action has began against him. For example, evasion of income tax will not lead to arresting the accused, but if there is information about other economic offences committed by the same accused, he can be arrested and the risk of his leaving the country does not arise ,” said MM Joshi, former chairman of Central Board of Direct Taxes.

5 remedies to cure hair loss and get stronger hair

Using the right comb, cutting down on stress levels and eating healthy are some of the ways to get healthy hair and stop hair fall.

If you are afflicted with a receding hairline or happen to see strands falling off with every scalp massage, it’s time you tackled your hair loss problem head on.

Hair loss, also called alopecia, is more common among men than women. Although it occurs with increasing age, hair loss has become common among the youth as well these days.

“Some reasons for hair loss are an unhealthy lifestyle and deficiency of essential nutrients. While it can be genetic, other factors include certain medical conditions and medication, emotional trauma, stress, protein deprivation (during strict dieting), scalp infections and hormonal changes during pregnancy, puberty and menopause. Overuse of styling products can also lead to this problem,” says Dr Vinay Singh, a Delhi-based dermatologist associated with the medical app, Lybrate.

A combination of lifestyle changes and natural remedies can help prevent hair loss. Here are a few tips:

Eat healthy

“Increase your intake of fruits and vegetables, and most importantly, water. Avoid fatty foods and fizzy drinks, and cut down on your intake of carbs too. A protein-rich diet is essential for increased hair growth. While you are at it, cut back on smoking and caffeine too,” says Dr Rajat Kandari, a dermatologist from Delhi.

Fight stress

It is important to practice relaxation techniques such as yoga and meditation. A calm mind gives rise to a healthier body and scalp. Yoga can do wonders in bringing the mind, body and soul together. Practising yoga improves blood circulation, which helps in hair maintenance, and prevents hairfall. Anulom vilom, kapalbhati and surya namaskar are some yoga exercises that should help.

Choose the right comb

A wide-toothed comb is ideal for prevention of hair loss. Cheap combs might be easy on your pocket, but as they are usually made of plastic mould, they could cause strands to get snagged between their teeth – breaking them in the process. Extra wide tooth combs are a sensible choice for handling wet hair and providing a pain-free detangle.

Avoid over styling

“Don’t use too many chemical products on your hair. Use hair dryers sparingly and towel-dry your hair as far as possible. Do not use towels vigorously as this can lead to breakage. Avoid hairstyles like tight ponytails, pigtails or braids daily. Using elastic bands to pull back hair tightly can also cause hair fall,” advises Dr Kandari.

Medical treatment

In case there is thinning or excessive hair-fall, medical treatment from a certified dermatologist would become necessary. Treatments include topical solutions such as minoxidil, peptides and oral supplementation of biotin. Procedural treatment such as platelet rich plasma, stem cells and hit transplant can help in severe cases.

Nationwide truckers strike commences from today

Unionised truckers claim over 9.3 million members and the strike was announced on May 17.

Millions of truckers from across the country are set to go on an indefinite strike from today, demanding a slew of actions from government, including lowering diesel prices and toll fees, a union leader said today.

Unionised truckers claim over 9.3 million members and the strike was announced on May 17.

Government is engaged in last ditch efforts to persuade truckers in the highly road transport concentrated economy not to go ahead with their call, officials said.

“We held a meeting with Union transport minister Nitin Gadkaritoday but that was inconclusive. We are meeting finance minister Piyush Goyal at 2130 hrs today,” Bal Malkit Singh, chairman of the All-India Motor Transport Congress core committee, told over phone.

He, however, sounded sceptical if any solution can be found during the late night meeting and added that the strike will go on as announced.

Singh said truckers will stop rolling from 0600 hrs tomorrow and pegged the likely daily loss at Rs 4,000 crore for them.

Truckers key demands include reduction in Central and state taxes by getting diesel under the GST so that price of the deregulated commodity can be reduced, he said.

Singh said truckers are also against the “flawed and non-transparent” toll collection system that favours road concessioners, and alleged that the time and fuel loss goes up to Rs 1.5 trillion annually on account of it.

Truckers are also miffed at high insurance premia and want a reduction in third-party premium, exemption on third- party premia from GST, he said.

Apart from this, they are also pressing for exemptions and abolitions in direct taxes, national permits for all buses and trucks and also doing away with the direct port delivery tendering system, he said.

When contacted, an official close to Gadkari’s office said during the meeting, transporters were told that instant solutions cannot be found to their demands but assured them the government is looking at all the demands sensitively.

“We are very open to look into all their issues and hope that better sense prevails,” the ministry official said.

Meanwhile, the School Bus and Company Bus Owners Association of Maharashtra extended their support to the trcukers strike.

The association runs around 8,000 buses in Mumbai and 40,000 buses across the state. “All these buses will be off the road tomorrow,” Anil Garg, association president told .

He said although truckers are planning an indefinite strike his association will off the road for only a day, to show solidarity.

Established in 1936, the All-India Motor Transport Congress and calls itself as the apex body of transporters representing over 93 lakh truckers and around 50 lakh buses, tourist taxi and cab operators.

Filing and tracking complaints to become easier with MahaRERA

From August 1, filing and tracking real estate complaints is ste to become much simpler, with the Maharashtra Real Estate Regulatory Authority streamlining the process.

From August 1, filing and tracking real estate complaints is to become much simpler, with the Maharashtra Real Estate Regulatory Authority streamlining the process. 

Under the new system, complaints can be filed and tracked right on the MahaRERA website itself. Furthermore, there will be no need to submit hard copies of the necessary documents.

Once a complaint has been registered, the individual can upload the documents on the website and subsequently, track the progress of the complaint’s redressal.

Meanwhile, complaints being registered as “source complaints against unregistered projects” can also be tracked in a similar manner. The informant’s mobile number will be verified after the complaint is registered on a simple form. Earlier, such complaints were received through e-mail.

According to MahaRERA officials, it was decided to incorporate these changes after a year-long discussions in this regard with all the stakeholders involved.

“The 60-day time frame of redressal of the complaint will commence the moment an individual registers the complaint on the website and uploads the documents. There will no further requirement of hard copies of the documents as was the case earlier. This would mean the complaints will be addressed faster. Earlier, the 60-day period began only after the hard copy of the complaint was received and the notice served to the opponent,” MahaRERA secretary Vasant Prabhu said while speaking to TOI of the changes being incorporated as per the new order.

Even builders, who would need to be sent notices earlier, will now get the notice on their mobile number registered with the MahaRERA, Prabhu said, adding that this would save a lot of time as they will now not have to physically issue a notice on the registration of the complaint.

While in case of unregistered projects, instead of the earlier e-mail that a citizen would send out to MahaRERA with heavy documents attached highlighting the irregularities, a simple form will have to filled up by the complainant with a registered mobile number. “The complainant would be send an OTP and from there on they could track their complaint redressal,’’added Prabhu. Over the last one year over 7000 such complaints were registered on their website.

The point of the change is to make the process simpler for both the developer and the complainant. A standard operating procedure for handling complaints had become essential as the number of projects to be registered will increase in coming days, Prabhu said.

The procedure for source information on projects has been implemented with immediate effect. “Under the new system, informants can also view the status of their applications through their mobile number or the information reference number,” he added.

So far, more than 17,000 projects and 15,000 real estate brokers are registered under MahaRERA. The regulator has received 3,000 complaints, of which 2,000 were resolved.

Instagram will now show green dot when you’re active

The green dot will be shown in addition to the activity status messages displayed next to the username on Instagram.

Instagram’s been a busy bee with a new feature rolling out every other week. The photo-sharing platform will now show a green dot next to users’ profile to make it prominent that they’re active. This update has been announced by Instagram but it hasn’t arrived as yet.

Instagram’s activity status is shown in the ‘Direct’ inbox of the app which can be found under the paper airplane icon. Here, you’ll find all single and group conversations you have on Instagram. These include messages sent directly to another user, or replies to someone’s story on the platform.

Instagram’s activity status was first rolled out earlier this year in January. Activity statuses are shown as ‘Active Now’, ‘Active 42m ago’, ‘Active 2h ago’, or ‘Active today’. The new update will simply add a green dot next to the username and display picture. The status messages will still be shown in addition to the green dot. This is quite similar to the active status on Facebook and Messenger

As with every feature on Instagram, you can choose to hide or show your activity status. Under the settings menu you will see an option for activity status. Toggle it off if you wish to hide your activity status from your followers. Note that if you turn your activity status off then you won’t be able to see the same on other users.

Instagram has been actively rolling out new features on its platform. The most recent one was Facebook-like emoji reactions for ‘Stories’. Users can choose among six emojis to react on stories. The viewer list for stories will show who reacted with which emoji. Also, when an emoji is selected the entire screen is showered with it.

Some more notable features announced by the Facebook-owned platform were a new product called ‘IGTV’. Instagram stories also got a bunch of new features like the emoji slider , question sticker and music tracks. 

 

 

Kotak Mahindra Bank Q1 profit rises by 12.3%

Net profit was Rs 1025 crore ($148.84 million) for the three months ended June 30, compared with Rs 9.13 billion a year ago, the lender, led by Asia’s richest banker Uday Kotak, said in a statement.

Kotak Mahindra Bank Ltd on Thursday reported a 12.3% rise in first-quarter net profit, but fell short of market expectations.

Net profit was Rs 1025 crore ($148.84 million) for the three months ended June 30, compared with Rs 9.13 billion a year ago, the lender, led by Asia’s richest banker Uday Kotak, said in a statement.

Analysts had on average expected a net profit of Rs 11.67 billion for the second most valuable listed lender in India, with a market capitalisation of about $39 billion.

Gross bad loans as a percentage of total loans fell to 2.17% at end-June, compared with 2.22% in the preceding quarter and 2.58% a year ago.