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This happen in Lahore only

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It's easy to love a place where residents make efforts to feed the squirrels. In the Shalimar Garden, a few senior citizens party with the squirrels every morning.

When my friend Hussain Qazi who is naturalist and a photographer told me about people feeding birds and squirrels, I planned to skip my ‘ritual morning walks’ and decided to visit Shalimar Garden instead; hopping to find more about the party with the squirrels.

The care and feeding of squirrels in Shalimar Garden is a recent phenomenon. Long overshadowed by heritage talk (it is on UNESO’s world heritage list), Shalimar Garden is overcrowded during day. Whether or not Shalimar Garden ultimately can maintain its past glory - and with it, an influx of foreign and local tourists - it's a surprisingly satisfying open space during early hour of the day.

Every morning, two charismatic old men, loaded with biscuits, rice and pluses came to the waiting population of birds and squirrels in the Shalimar Garden. They sit on the same benches and start throwing grins to the birds. When this is happening, one can see squirrels coming down from nearby trees for their breakfast and then those gentlemen dig deep down their satchels and take out biscuits and start feeding the squirrels. The tiny winy animals are so use to those caring hands that they jump to take the first bite.

One of the old men Fazal Karim – a retired primary teacher who lives in nearby Daroge Wala – explained me this phenomenon and said, “I am coming here for my morning walk every day for a long time now. I feed the bird population and squirrels and find them very friendly. I miss them and look forward to meeting them every day. I think they miss me too.”

posted @ 3:29 PM, ,


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Readers at Light Within are familiar with the work of NGOs and how Thatta Kedona (and also SPARC) is making difference in a small village Thatta Ghulamka Dheroka situated on the bank of River Ravi near Gogera. Dr. Senta Siller (mother of dolls) and Dr. Norbert Centre (fondly called by village community as chaudhry sahib) keep toggling between Germany and the remote village with fresh ideas and people of the village keep making new products (dolls, tin toys and other decorative cultural mementos) keep travling from village to the entire world. Now the untiring couple has started another project in Cameroon. Heritage and Appropriate Technology Center is born in Cameroon.

Heritage and Appropriate Technology Center Cameroon is Bamenda - capital of North West Region in the Republic of Cameroon - based NGO. The NGO is focusing on development, presentation on exhibitions and promoting of appropriate technology. Do-it-yourself usage of appropriate technology gives a hope of independence from central technical infrastructure. And handmade dolls, dressed in traditional attires from the different provinces are a means of additional income generation in rural areas. Heritage and Appropriate Technology Center Cameroon involves men, women and also children in different initiatives.

Heritage and Appropriate Technology Center Cameroon has develop active cooperation with foreign NGOs like Technology Transfer and Training Centre in Pakistan, Institute for Planning and Consulting, German Society for the Development of Culture (DGFK) and Bamenda University of Science and Technology (B.U.S.T). This blog, in addition to useful information about Cameroon (one of the most diverse African countries that is called Africa in Miniature and its culture and people, will covers CAT initiatives and projects. [Via]


posted @ 8:15 PM, ,

Breezes All Inclusive Resorts

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Traveling for leisure and pleasure is a result of growing economic activities and prosperity, quality lifestyle, increasing awareness and above all wish to “be there and do that.” I travel whenever I can. When it comes to vacations, I like to find a good place to stay, that way no surprises like run down rooms, green swimming pools, or showers without hot water! As more and more people are traveling, and there are more and more places to choose from, it is important to spend some time finding a vacation package that is a good value and will not provide you with any nasty surprises. From what I have heard and read, one of the best places to have an ideal all inclusive vacation is at one of the Super Club Breezes Resorts.

Have a look at the Super Clubs properties in Jamaica, Curacao, Panama, The Bahamas and Brazil, and you will see that each is tailored to meet the specific needs and interests of a variety of people (for example surfers will love the Costa do Sauipe resort) while consistently delivering the high quality vacation, which has become synonymous with the Super Clubs - Inclusive product as a whole - and what Super Clubs' guests have come to expect. Breezes extend all of the amenities of Super- all inclusive vacations - at a price that is extremely good value, especially when you consider that this resort is generous with both the quantity and the quality of the food, drinks, and activities they provide. All of the items included in a Breezes package are clearly outlined on their website, and so no ugly surprises or hidden costs awaits a Breezes vacationer.

So now I am wondering what am I doing writing this when I should be booking one of Breezes all inclusive resorts right now.

posted @ 12:07 AM, ,

Gift Economy

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In a 'market' economy, the highest status belongs to those who have acquired the most. In a Gift Economy, the highest status belongs to those who have given the most. But important is that the gift must always move. This idea was recently popularized by the terrific little movie called Pay it Forward. Every gift is its own reward, but that reward is multiplied, without limit, when the gift, or any gift, is passed along to others. A story is a gift. Blogs are gifts. Ideas and insights and teaching and counsel are gifts. Conversations are gifts, Hugh MacLeod.

The concept of a giving and receiving gifts is as old as society itself. It has always been there in one form or the other. People in all civilizations have been has the pleasure of exchanging gifts in order to establish social relationships and strengthen existing ones or rulers would give away large amounts of goods to their followers (still do in some monarchies) or rich people give away things of value for the collective benefit of the public. Only the forms have kept changing over time.

When people give to one another, freely and without conditions, sharing their blessings with others and bearing each other's burdens, the giving multiplies and we receive far more than what was given. Even when there is no immediate prospect of return, Allah Almighty keeps accounts of all the giving, and in the end blessing will return to the giver, multiplied manifold. All religions advocate that humans should participate and give (back) some of what Allah the exalted has bestowed upon them, in what ever way possible. Have you heard the famous proverb, "Give till it hurts."

Another reason perpetuating giving is that human beings have an instinctive drive to vie for social status; it is wired in by our evolutionary history. For the major part of the history that ran before the invention of agriculture, our ancestors lived in small nomadic hunting-gathering communities. High status individuals, those who were more assertive and could persuade others to follow them, got the best of every thing, and provided more for the followers.

The drive for status expresses itself in different ways, depending largely on the degree of scarcity of goods. "Defining success by what one gives rather than what one has" is neither a new practice nor an overly idealistic view. It is rooted deep in history and human nature, and is more basic than wealth or money. Remember, in hunting societies of the past, the hunter's status was not determined by how much he killed or how much of that he consumed, but rather by what he brought back for others. Lewis Hyde in his book 'The Erotic Life of Property,' writes, "In a gift economy, status is accorded to those who vie and give the most to others."

This phenomena gives rise to a discipline called Gift Economy. As per the definition, "Gift economy is an economic system in which participants give away things of value to the shared benefit of the community." In the present era, the scientific research, intellectual and creative work and the Internet are practical forms of gift economy. A scientist produces research papers and gives them away to other scientists, through research journals and conferences. The other scientists freely refer to the earlier scientists' research findings. The more citations the scientist has, the more standing and respect he has. All of the scientists benefit from an accumulation in the body of knowledge anywhere in the world. Although research is being increasingly commercialised these days, giving away of findings still remains the most efficient method of solving common problems within a particular scientific discipline.

Similarly, intellectuals, philosophers, creative writers and artists spread their work across the world. Despite the obscurity of the modern version of the gift economy, every one benefits from the original work and the creators earn credence in return.

Coming onto the Internet, the open source software is best example of a gift economy in this cyber age; with information being one of a major resource. Programmers make their software as well as source code available to the end users and programming community and anyone can use it as well as modify and or improve the code. Individual programmers gain prestige and respect, and the community as a whole benefits from better software. The open source has been one important factor for the Internet to grow over about three decades. Now what millions of Internet users are doing? They are giving each other information and that is the nature of transaction on the Internet. The Internet is moving towards more than a new kind of marketplace and a new medium for exchanging money. The medium may lead to a radical change in the nature of money itself one day. Many researchers and economists have already predicted that money as we know today is due for a sweeping change. Concepts like alternative currencies and local money are being researched and propagated. Though some of these efforts predate the Internet, but modern Internet aficionados see the Internet as a vehicle for accelerating the changes that earlier have only been predicted as a fancy idea.

Gift economies co-exist with command economies, market economies and barter economies. Given the practices, next may be the move toward sustainable business and to make the business itself a gift to society. The first step toward a sustainable sense of success is taking pride in the value of contributions to others rather than taking pride in the value of personal possessions. This means striving for quality in the use of whatever power we have rather than working to get more power over others as an end in itself. In this view, economic profit and affluence may help us to contribute, but they do not themselves amount to be business success.

While the exchange economy may have been appropriate for the industrial and post industrial age, the gift economy is coming back as we proceed through the information age.


posted @ 11:41 AM, ,

Auto Insurance

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Insurance is important for everyone. One does not have to be an expert to see the advantages of insurance coverage. People buy insurance coverage wishing that they never have to use the coverage and as a security against unexpected and unaffordable losses that occur in life. Where they really win is in the assurance the insurance policy gives them. If the worst comes in life, insurance works to provide financial recovery and support. This awareness has increased the demand for insurance services in the last couple of decades.

I think buying insurance has to be an informed decision. One should do a little home work before buying a policy. Temecula Auto Insurance is one of the best places to start. Try them before buying insurance policy. Call them for car insurance and leave the rest to them.

They are a full-service Insurance Agency committed to helping customers protect all their assets. They are offering a wide range of Insurance products and services tailored to your individual and business needs. They are dedicated to developing lasting relationships with all their clients. Further, they believe in helping you assess your Insurance goals and participate in the management of your policies

posted @ 10:57 AM, ,

Fed Extends Crisis Policies as Outlook Downgraded

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THE US Federal Reserve yesterday took a symbolic first step to extend its crisis-era monetary policy regime, as it downgraded its view of the economic outlook amid rising fears that the US could face a "double-dip" recession. Meeting in Washington, the US central bank yesterday announced the extension of extraordinary policy measures in place since early in the financial crisis. These are aimed at preventing a stalling of that country's economy.

The policymakers agreed to begin reinvesting proceeds from expiring mortgage-backed securities in long-term Treasuries, thereby putting the shrinkage of the $2,300 billion ([euro]1,743 billion) balance sheet the US central bank built up during the recession on ice. The move signals a significant shift in thinking at the Fed, which only a few months ago was tilting towards tightening monetary policy in order to fend off inflation as the economic recovery gathered strength.

Fed officials significantly downgraded their economic outlook, saying the "pace of recovery in output and employment has slowed in recent months" and was likely to be "more modest" than anticipated in the near term. When the Federal Open Market Committee last met in June, it said the economic recovery was "proceeding" and was likely to advance at a "moderate" pace. Recent economic news from the US has pointed to renewed feebleness, with employment, housing and output measures weakening or falling below earlier expectations. Low and falling underlying inflation has added to concerns that the US could be at risk of becoming locked into a protracted, Japan-style period of deflation and stagnation.

These developments had prompted the Federal Reserve Bank to flag in recent weeks that it would act at its monthly scheduled meeting yesterday. The bank's head, Ben Bernanke, last month told a committee of the US federal parliament that the economy faced a period of "unusual uncertainty" and that he was prepared "to take further policy actions as needed".

In a 9-1 vote, the policy-making committee of the bank decided formally to suspend the gradual withdrawal of monetary stimulus via "quantitative easing", or QE. QE involves a central bank creating money by buying assets, such as bonds and shares. An increase in the supply of money drives down its price (the interest rate). Lower interest rates encourage spending and borrowing and discourage saving. Both stimulate economic activity in the short term.

The Fed will use the proceeds generated from maturing assets it bought when it began QE last year to buy others. It appeared to signal a shift in the types of assets it wishes to hold, with government bonds being mentioned as targets for new purchase. The US is Ireland's single most important economic partner when both exports and inward investment are considered. Any return to recession in the States would almost inevitably have serious repercussions for the Irish economy and its prospects for recovery. Although the continuation of the QE programme in the US is not without risks - all of which are difficult to measure - from an Irish perspective anything that halts a slide back into recession in the US lessens the chances of a further downward lurch in this economy.

The Fed kept interest rates at their current target range of 0- 0.25 per cent, and maintained its pledge to hold them there for an "extended period".- (Additional reporting Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2010)

Originally published by DAN O'BRIEN, Economics Editor.

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posted @ 10:03 AM, ,

Better Way To Straighten Teeth

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Last night I visited one of my friends place to have a dinner with other families. I was surprised to see his teeth which are looking very good. I asked him about this miracle as these were no as aligned as these were looking yesterday. Then he told me the whole story that how he used a new technology that is know as Invisalign that enabled him to align teeth and correct bites without the use of traditional braces. He further described that how this mode helped him to align teeth by using a series of clear plastic aligners that over time align the teeth in a more comfortable aesthetic way.

Some one there also endorsed my friend’s opinion that these aligners are easy to wear and are removable to allow them to eat and clean normally. It allows every one to make corrections to his or her bite while not drawing any attention to the treatment process. It is also more comfortable than traditional appliances because it does not use braces or wires that can cause irritation to the gums and cheeks.

Visit the neatly laid out site of Invisalign Austin and see what they are offering and how they have invisible way to a give you new smile.

posted @ 5:30 PM, ,

Economic and Business Updates From August 2 to 8, 2010

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• PAKISTAN pays a staggering $5.6 billion as debt servicing during FY 200910 which is 43 per cent of the country’s official foreign exchange reserves. 

• COTTON yarn prices move up slightly over the past few days as its production dips and phutti arrivals are disrupted due to devastating floods in the cotton growing areas. 

• THE provisional revenue collection in July 2010 reached Rs82 billion against the target of Rs90.1 billion, reflecting a shortfall of Rs8.1 billion. 

• THE country’s domestic debts surge by Rs792 billion to Rs4.6 trillion in FY 2009-10 due to significant rise in fiscal deficit and revenue shortfall. 

• A Chinese firm has signed an agreement for the setting up of the refinery in Karachi with a capacity of 203,000 barrels per day.

• EXPORT orders worth millions of dollars are stuck at different stages of supply chain for the last three days as the port city of Karachi remains tense and volatile owing to breakdown in law and order. 

• ESSENTIAL items will be available at reduced rate at the utility stores under a Rs4 billion Ramazan relief package. The package includes a direct government subsidy of Rs2 billion. 

• ABOUT 77 million people go hungry in Pakistan while 36 per cent of the population are afflicted by poverty, says the Woodrow Wilson International Centre report. 

• PAKISTAN signs a contract agreement with a Chinese firm the China Machinery Import and Export Corporation amounting to $134.45 million for procurement of 202 passenger coaches. 

• THE Federal Board of Revenue communicates to the SBP and the Pakistan Banking Council to deduct 0.3 per cent as advance tax on transactions under a new section through Finance Act 2010. 

• THE Competition Commission of Pakistan issues show cause notices to five companies for prima facie collusive bidding in Peshawar Electric Supply Company’s tender for the supply of high tension and low tension pre-stressed concrete poles. 

• THE Trading Corporation of Pakistan seeksRs22 billion from the ministry of finance to open two letters of credit for import of 0.32 million tons of refined sugar.

• THE PPP-led government increases power tariff by 63.6 per cent during the last two and a half years. 

• THE Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan, so far this year, issues warning letters to 27 brokers of the KSE and seven of LSE for possible violations of blank sales, wash sales, circular trading, cross trades, broker misconduct etc.

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posted @ 5:15 PM, ,

Business Lawyers

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Most people are very much aware of the fact that a law firm is a business entity formed by one or more lawyers to engage in the practice of law. The primary service provided by a law firm is to advise clients including individuals and corporations about their legal rights and responsibilities, and to represent their clients in civil or criminal cases, business transactions, and other matters in which legal advice and other assistance are sought.

These days there are numbers of law firms emerged in the market which are claiming to provide business litigation services to different sectors including construction, banking, retail, media and many more. However, I personally found Business Litigation Lawyer Austin one of the best among all.

From a litigation viewpoint, their lawyers handle millions of dollars of disputes on an annual basis, ranging in diversity from business fraud to non-compete disputes and trade secret infringement. They also focus on commercial litigation. They are selective in the clients they represent. This, however, enables them the flexibility to deliver the distinguished attention to detail we are known for. Visit the neatly laid of out site and see what they are offering and how they can support you to resolve your litigation matters.

posted @ 11:36 AM, ,

RBS fined for breach of money laundering checks

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Royal Bank of Scotland has been fined Pounds 5.6m after lax controls put the banking group at risk of laundering money for terrorists. The Financial Services Authority (FSA) said part-nationalised RBS and its NatWest, Ulster Bank and Coutts arms all failed to screen their customers and payments against the UK financial sanctions list between December 2007 and December 2008.

The breaches of money laundering regulations resulted in an "unacceptable" risk that the group could have carried out transactions involving sanctions targets, the FSA said. Margaret Cole, the watchdog's director of enforcement and financial crime, said: "The involvement of UK financial institutions in providing funds, economic resources or financial services to designated persons on the sanctions list undermines the integrity of the UK's financial services sector.

"By failing to screen relevant customers and payments against the HM Treasury sanctions list, RBS left itself open to the risk that it was facilitating terrorist financing." The risks were flagged up with the regulator by the new management after the bank was bailed out by the taxpayer in the autumn of 2008. The group was the UK's largest processor of foreign payments during 2007 but it failed to screen any incoming payments to customers from overseas during the period.

It only screened outgoing sterling payments to US institutions and failed to screen any euro payments until June 2008. Under the rules, banks must block all payments made to people on the Treasury financial sanctions list and inform its asset freezing unit. The FSA's enforcement notice said a bank's failure to comply with its obligations can lead to "serious consequences".

"A breach of the regime may result in a criminal offence being committed, as well as leading to reputation damage to firms. "In addition it carries the risk of criminal penalties being sought by the Government against the firm and, in certain circumstances, against the management of the firm."

A RBS spokesman said the FSA probe "confirmed the deficiencies we had identified" although it added that the regulator did not consider the bank's misconduct "deliberate or reckless". He added: "We have taken appropriate action to remedy these issues and continue to enhance our control environment with a view to ensuring a more robust sanctions compliance framework and ultimately that our detection and prevention capabilities are in line with best practice in the market.

posted @ 10:20 AM, ,

Printer Cartridges

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Through the advent of computing, printing has made easier. Everyone seems to be having and using printers with great convenience. Driven by demand there are many types of printers available in market. Problem comes with printer cartridges; which cartridge is to be used with a particular printer and from where to buy the best? 

Printer Cartidges - the Web site that provides office and computer supplies cross reference information at your fingertips - is one of the best solutions. They offer printer cartridge cross reference, and ink & toner cross reference and printer supply cross reference. What is more, they have introduced a new revenue stream in the form of a widget that gives their readers a price comparison tool for Office and Computer Supplies. Explore the site and find the best price that suites your printer. There's no reason to run from store to store to find the perfect printer cartridges to fit your machine. Further, they make shopping online for ink refill kits, laser printer cartridge models and more easy, convenient and highly affordable. 

Visit the neatly laid out site to get one of the best printer ink cartridges and to see what more they are offering and how? I suggest everyone get best available information to make informed office and computer supplies decisions. It's simply their pleasure to provide you with the best products, prices and service available. 

posted @ 1:46 PM, ,

Minimum wage set at Rs.7,000 in Labour Policy 2010

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Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani on Saturday announced a minimum Rs 7,000 salary for laborers and a policy that aims at transforming the lives of working class for a better future.

Addressing a large gathering here at the Convention Centre Prime Minister Gilani apprised the large gathering of workers from across the country about the features of the new labour policy that was given an approval at a special cabinet meeting convened earlier in the day.

He said the Cabinet approved the Labour Policy 2010 that was reflective of the vision of Shaheed Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto and was an attempt to implement it practically. He said the policy would benefit around 50 million labours who were playing a key role in the progress and development of the country.


posted @ 10:46 PM, ,

Luxury Lodges

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Although a large number of people go up to the Lake District to visit the lakes, there is an equally large number of people who go there to go walking in the incredible countryside. If you’re one of those people who like to embark on lengthy countryside walks, or even if you just love visiting the area, have you considered buying or staying luxury lodges at countryside, yours to visit whenever you like?

Hoseasons lodges are spread all over the country in beautifully scenic areas and regions of special interest. The wide choice of lodges on offer from Hoseasons ranges from small log cabins ideal for couples to luxury lodges complete with private hot tubs. Whether travelling for romance or with the family their lodge holidays are the ideal way to unwind and relax immersed in stunning natural beauty. Currently they are able to offer over 200 holiday lodge locations meaning that no matter where in the UK you would like to stay, you are bound to find high quality, comfortable lodges.

They provide an easy resource for all travelers visiting the country on holiday and business purposes, find high-quality, cheap rooms from Inns and bed & Breakfasts all over the country. Get great info and deals through them today.

posted @ 1:41 PM, ,

Light Within

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