Monthly Archives: August 2019

Astra Rafael opens first Indian facility in Hyderabad

It is country’s first pvt sector manufacturer for defence communication systems

Minister G Kishan Reddy inaugurates the ARC facility on Tuesday (Photo |EPS)

Hyderabad :

Astra Rafael Communication System, a joint venture between Astra Microwave and Israel-based Rafael Advanced Defence Systems Ltd, on Tuesday inaugurated a state-of-the-art facility to manufacture tactical communications system (BNET) for the Indian Armed Forces. 

Set up at an investment of `35 crore at the Hardware Technology Park near Shamshabad Airport, the ARC would be India’s first private sector company to manufacture communication systems in multiple variants. The joint venture will start with $30 million order for providing software-defined radios for the Indian Air Force (IAF), Rafael’s CEO Yoav Har-Even told reporters.

The production facility would be manufacturing radio models such as BNET-V (Vehicular) Broadband IP Radio, BNET-AR (Air) Broadband IP Radio, BNET-MPS (Man-Pack System) Broadband Radio, BNET-HH (Handheld) Broadband Radio and C4I Connect —a secured tactical network.

Gurunatha Reddy, MD of Astra Microwave Products Ltd, said that as of now the joint venture would concentrate on manufacturing, but later would graduate towards design and development of equipment for defence communication. “We will also get into electronic warfare and signal intelligent systems as we go forward,” he added.

Meanwhile, Union Minister of State for Home G Kishan Reddy, who was the chief guest at the event, pointed out that the Centre has taken numerous steps to boost indigenous production as part of Make in India. He also said that the FDI was being encouraged in railways and defence. 

Also present at the inauguration was IT and Industries secretary Jayesh Ranjan, who hoped that Israeli companies would invest not only for manufacturing joint ventures but also in design JVs. “Just as Hyderabad is becoming the defence and aerospace capital of the country, we would like to play a significant role in the design ecosystem also. If we could get Rafael and other Israeli players in Hyderabad we would support it,” he said.

source: / The New Indian Express / Home> Cities> Hyderabad / by Express News Service / August 28th, 2019

P.V. Sindhu becomes first Indian to win Badminton World Championships gold

India’s Pusarla Sindhu in action during her final women’s singles match.   | Photo Credit: Reuters

The Badminton Association of India has announced a cash reward of ₹20 lakh for Sindhu and ₹5 lakh for B. Sai Praneeth who won a bronze in the BWF World Championship,

P.V. Sindhu on Sunday became the first Indian to win a Badminton World Championships gold by beating familiar rival Nozomi Okuhara of Japan in a lop-sided final here on Sunday.

The Indian won 21-7 21-7 in the summit clash that lasted just 38 minutes.

Two years after being robbed off the gold by Okuhara in an epic 110-minute final at Glasgow that went down as one of the greatest battles in badminton history, Sindhu finally exorcised the ghost of that heart-wrenching loss with a completely dominating win over the same opponent.

It was Sindhu’s fifth World Championships medal — joint most for a woman singles player with former Olympics and world champion Zhang Ning of China — to go with the two successive silvers and a couple of bronze medals.

Sindhu has also won an Olympic silver in 2016 Rio Games, a silver at Gold Coast Commonwealth Games, an Asian Games silver at Jakarta and the BWF World Tour Finals last year.

The fifth seeded Indian, who enjoyed a 8-7 head-to-head lead over third seeded Okuhara ahead of Sunday’s contest, was simply unstoppable as she dished out an attacking game right from the start to race to 8-1 lead.

The Indian targeted the deep corners and unleashed her big smashes to gather points at will.

A precise net shot helped Okuhara to snap Sindhu’s run of straight eight points but the Sindhu quickly got the control back when Okuhara went wide and then unleashed two good-looking smashes to enter the break with a massive 11-2 lead.

Okuhara tried to step up the pace but an alert Sindhu was up to the task. The Indian targeted Okuhara’s forehand corner to take two more points.

Sindhu used her height to produce those attacking clears which Okuhara could not negotiate. At 16-2, Sindhu committed a couple of unforced errors before again taking control of the match.

Sindhu eventually grabbed as many as 13 game points when Okuhara went long and she sealed the first game with a body blow which her rival sent out.

In the second game, Sindhu continued her rampaging form, grabbing two quick points before Okuhara earned a point with a cross court smash.

Okuhara had no answer to Sindhu’s razor sharp returns. The latter made Okuhara run to the deep corners with her acute angled returns and then swiftly followed them at the net to make life difficult for her opponent.

Okuhara seemed clueless as she ended up hitting the nets or missing the lines to allow Sindhu grab 11-4 lead at the interval.

At 16-4, Sindhu made a couple of rare errors when she hit long but that did not matter as she pounced on a weak return from Okuhara and sent it to the backline and then left her rival stranded with another powerful smash.

Sindhu grabbed the match point when Okuhara went long again and sealed the title when another superb return before throwing her hands in the air in celebration.

With Sindhu’s gold and Praneeth’s bronze in this edition, Indian shuttlers also continued the six-year streak of winning at least one medal in the prestigious event.

Watch | P.V. Sindhu’s journey to victory

BAI announces cash reward for Sindhu, Praneeth

Badminton Association of India on Sunday announced a cash reward of Rs 20 lakh and Rs 5 lakh for PV Sindhu and Sai Praneeth for their historic feats in the World Championships in Basel, Switzerland.

“BAI President @himantabiswa announces cash award of ₹20 lakh for World Champion @Pvsindhu1 and ₹5 lakh for @saiprneeth92 for their historic performance at the #bwfworldchampionship2019,” tweeted BAI.

While Sindhu became the first Indian to win a World Championships gold, Praneeth ended a 36-year wait after Prakash Padukone’s feat to secure a bronze for the country in men’s singles.

source: / The Hindu / Home> Sport> Other Sports / by PTI / Basel – August 25th, 2019

Nagarjuna and Amala announce Film Heritage Foundation’s Film Preservation & Restoration Workshop

Sudhanshu Vats, the group CEO and MD of Viacom18, Shivendra Singh Dungarpur, Nagarjuna and Amala Akkineni   | Photo Credit:  Nagara Gopal

Announcing the Film Preservation and Restoration Workshop 2019 in Hyderabad, actors Nagarjuna and Amala underline the importance of film preservation

Hyderabad is home to one of the largest film industries in India. But how many of the old film negatives or contemporary films shot in digital mode, are being preserved for posterity? “My father (Akkineni Nageswara Rao) acted in more than 200 films but many of his films have not been preserved. I have acted in more than 90 films and realised that none of them have also been preserved well,” says Akkineni Nagarjuna, speaking on the sidelines of the announcement of the week-long Film Preservation and Restoration Workshop to be held in December in Hyderabad.

The actor admits that he wasn’t aware of film preservation methods, not only of the older ones shot on film negatives, also of the fickle nature of digital data, “We assume that since digital data is safe since it’s stored on hard disks, but we risk losing it if there’s a virus attack or a hard disk crash. Digital data needs upgradation to keep pace with technological advancements. We have lost all records of silent films and the earliest Telugu talkie. I’ve heard my father talk about silent films and how there would be narrators as the films were screened. We can at least do something to preserve what we have.”

Making preservation and conservation of film and allied material possible is the Film Heritage Foundation (FHF), founded by Shivendra Singh Dungarpur. From December 8 to 15, the FHF in partnership with Martin Scorsese’s The Film Foundation (TFF), the International Federation of Film Archives (FIAF), Viacom18 and Tata Trusts, will conduct a workshop in Hyderabad. The faculty will include film conservation and archival experts from institutes across the world.

The workshop will be held at Annapurna Studios in classrooms of the Annapurna International School of Film and Media (AISFM). Extending her support, Amala Akkineni, the director of the institute added, “We look forward to hosting the hands-on sessions during the week-long workshop in 20 of our classrooms.”

In its previous editions, the film restoration workshops have been held in Pune, Mumbai, Chennai and Kolkata. Shivendra Singh Dungarpur recalled how Mani Ratnam entrusted the FHF to preserve all his recent films. “But sadly, his films from the 80s and even Roja are in bad shape,” he shares.

Leading up to the announcement of the workshop, Shivendra had been in touch with directors, studios, producers and film labs in Hyderabad. Amitabh Bachchan, who is a strong support to FHF, sent out a video message to the Telugu film fraternity urging their support to preserve cinema.

The FHF’s workshop in Mumbai had the support of director Christopher Nolan and a one-of-its-kind round table featuring some of the most prominent members of Hindi cinema, to discuss film preservation. Taking a cue, Nagarjuna stated that he is keen to have a similar round table in Hyderabad.

The event witnessed the support of Sudhanshu Vats, Group CEO and MD, Viacom18 and Jayesh Ranjan, Principal Secretary, Government of Telangana.

Applications for the workshop will be available from August 25, on www. and

source: / The Hindu / Home> Entertainment> Movies / by Sangeetha Devi Dundoo / August 22nd, 2019