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Canada's Prime Minister Harper returns India's lost 'Parrot Lady' sculpture to PM Modi
18 April 2015 - An ancient Indian statue that turned up in Canada four years ago after it mysteriously vanished is being returned to the country of its origin. Prime Minister Stephen Harper presented his Indian counterpart, Narendra Modi, with the so-called 'Parrot Lady' sculpture during an event Wednesday on Parliament Hill. The life-sized statue, believed to be some 900 years old, depicts a dancing woman with a parrot resting on her head. (more)

Canada claiming 'special relationship' with India's Narendra Modi
17 April 2015 - Narendra Modi is the first world leader to visit Canada since the newly elected Barack Obama six years ago to be described as a 'rock star'. His scheduled landing in Ottawa on Tuesday will also be his first visit to Canada as India's Prime Minister, and yes, the first by anyone with that title since the 1970s. (more)

Electric dreams: Montreal Mayor Coderre wants to see 1,000 electric cars on the road by 2020
17 April 2015 - Montreal hopes to radically increase the number of electric cars on city streets within the next few years, as Mayor Denis Coderre unveiled plans to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the city by 30 per cent by 2020. (more)

Indian Prime Minister Modi arrives in Ottawa for start of landmark visit
17 April 2015 - Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi was met by Conservative MPs and fans from Ottawa's Indo-Canadian community Tuesday evening as he began a landmark visit that will take him to three Canadian cities. Mr. Modi's visit to Canada comes after stops in Germany and France. His trip to Canada this week marks the first bilateral visit by an Indian Prime Minister in more than 40 years. (more)

Narendra Modi, Indian PM, delivers major speech in Toronto (with 3 CBC News videos)
17 April 2015 - Thousands chanted 'Modi, Modi, Modi' as Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi took the stage to speak on Wednesday night in Toronto. Modi was welcomed to the Ricoh Coliseum stage by Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his wife, Laureen. The leader, who swept to power last May, thanks Canada for becoming a trade partner with India's Gujarat state, where he was chief minister at the time. He also praised the crowd, which he described as 'brothers and sisters' for their contributions to Canadian society. (more)

China to ban water-polluting paper mills, oil refineries
16 April 2015 - China will ban water-polluting paper mills, oil refineries, pesticide producers, and other industrial plants by the end of 2016, as it moves to tackle severe pollution of the country's water supply. The long-awaited plan comes as the central government steps up its 'war on pollution' after years of industrial development that have left one-third of China's major river basins and 60 percent of its underground water contaminated. (more)

French lawmakers OK health care bill targeting anorexia
15 April 2015 - France's Parliament is cracking down on too-thin models, too much drinking, and cigarette packaging in a sweeping bill designed to improve public health and trim public health costs -- while tackling unhealthy stereotypes along the way. (more)

President Obama to remove Cuba from state sponsor of terror list
14 April 2015 - President Barack Obama will remove Cuba from the list of state sponsors of terrorism, the White House announced Tuesday, a key step in his bid to normalize relations between the two countries. The terror designation has been a stain on Cuba's pride and a major stumbling block for efforts to mend ties between Washington and Havana. (more)

Canadian Prime Minister Harper embraces warmer relations with Cuba at Americas summit
12 April 2015 - With a handshake and a few conciliatory words, Prime Minister Stephen Harper is opening the door to vastly improved relations with communist Cuba, and the rest of Latin America and the Caribbean. Mr Harper abruptly ended his controversial policy of shunning Cuba, sitting down with the country's President, Raul Castro, for the first time over the weekend, just hours after US President Barack Obama did the same. (more)

Canadian Prime Minister Harper says it's time to end 'isolation' of Cuba (with video)
12 April 2015 - Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper says he is now convinced the best way to draw Cuba toward democracy is through 'engagement' with other western hemisphere nations -- not 'continued isolation'. Harper made the comment at a news conference Saturday at the end of the Summit of the Americas. It marks a dramatic shift from the Prime Minister's previous policy that decreed Cuba should be kept away from summits until it becomes a democracy. (more)

Success of Maharishi's Programmes
10 Short Summaries of Top Stories

Meditation sessions a hit in US Congress
25 October 2014 - The success of programmes for veterans and other at-risk groups has inspired a congressional leader to organize meditation sessions for people working in Washington, DC at the US Congress. Rep Tim Ryan began the meditation sessions, which he calls, 'Quiet Time Caucus' two years ago and the New York Post is calling the sessions 'wildly popular' with members of Congress and staffers.

Guardian Liberty Voice: Research shows group meditation can reduce crime rates
11 April 2014 - A recent article in the US publication Guardian Liberty Voice took an in-depth look into scientific research on the coherence-creating effect of group meditation, detailing how it 'was not only able to reduce the crime rate, but also can save cities millions of dollars'. Noting more than 50 research studies on this phenomenon, known as the Maharishi Effect, the article explains that it is produced by a specific form of meditation--the Transcendental Meditation Sidhi Programme, an advanced practice of Transcendental Meditation. In one study in Merseyside, England, 'During periods when a meditating group slightly larger than the square root of one percent of the population held sessions the monthly data showed a 13.4 percent drop in crime. This was very significant in contrast to the national crime rate, which had actually increased by 45 percent.' (more)

Belgium: Peace Assemblies in Brussels create harmonious atmosphere for EU leaders' summits
10 March 2014 - European Union Summit meetings bring together heads of state in Brussels, Belgium, every few months to make important decisions for the whole EU. Brussels is also the seat of the European Commission, European Council, and European Parliament. A few hundred metres away, special Peace Assemblies of advanced Transcendental Meditation practitioners have been held coinciding with the summits, with the aim of creating a coherent, harmonious atmosphere for EU leaders' deliberations, so that they will have the most life-supporting effect for all of Europe. (more)

Hundreds in Albania and Kosovo learn Transcendental Meditation
9 September 2013 - Dr Bevan Morris, President of Maharishi University of Management in Iowa, USA, toured Kosovo and Albania in the past year to present the latest developments and research regarding the Transcendental Meditation programme around the world. At the time of Dr Morris's visit, for the past few months a foundation started by a wealthy businessman had sponsored about 700 people to learn Transcendental Meditation in Albania and Kosovo. Because of this, several officials and educators Dr Morris met with had already heard of the technique. (more)

Fiji receives a visit from President of Maharishi University of Management
20 July 2013 - Dr Bevan Morris, President of Maharishi University of Management in the USA, visited Fiji this year, meeting with government and education officials, presenting the wide range of scientifically verified applications of the Transcendental Meditation programme to improve all areas of society. (more)

US: Senator supports MUM's substantive research on cardiovascular health
12 July 2013 - In a recent review of the past year's developments, Dr Bevan Morris, President of Maharishi University of Management, described the appreciation, help and support given to the university through the years by Senator Tom Harkin of Iowa, the home state of MUM in the USA. Senator Harkin, a member of the United States Senate for 28 years, gave the 2013 commencement address at the MUM graduation ceremonies last spring. He has assisted the university particularly in the area of its substantive research on alternative approaches to treating and preventing heart disease. (more)

Study at military academy finds Transcendental Meditation improves cadets' resilience
23 April 2013 - In a study conducted at Norwich University, America's first private military college, researchers found that practising Transcendental Meditation quickly increased resilience among cadets in training. 'Very quickly we saw a huge shift in increase in resilience,' said Marguerite Meyer, Ed.D. Dr Meyer is the director of the Academic Achievement Center at Norwich University. (more)

US Senator Harkin to deliver 2013 commencement address at Maharishi University of Management
3 April 2013 - Senator Tom Harkin of Iowa, who has served in the United States Senate since 1985 and in the House of Representatives from 1975-1985, will deliver the 2013 commencement address at Maharishi University of Management in Fairfield, Iowa, on 25 May. Known for his strong interest in alternative medicine and sustainability, Senator Harkin has visited the MUM campus twice. In 2004, when he was working on health care legislation, he came to learn more about the university's prevention-oriented wellness programme and the National Institutes of Health-funded research in natural medicine. He also visited the new Sustainable Living Center last August.

Coherence-creating conference of advanced meditators convenes in Brussels 'to support unity and stability in Europe' during EU summit
6 March 2013 - A four-day conference of advanced Transcendental Meditation practitioners is in progress in Brussels, Belgium--'to support unity and stability in Europe' during the current summit of European Union leaders, organizers said. Scientific research has found that large groups practising these advanced technologies of consciousness reduce social stress and create a measurable influence of coherence and harmony in the surroundings. Similar conferences held during EU summits last year had 'remarkable' effects, said Dr Stijn van den Bosch, director of the Transcendental Meditation programme in Belgium. The first was held in June during an important EU summit meeting about the financial crisis. 'Although expectations for a good outcome were very low, heads of state came to an agreement on the first day.' A news article commented, 'After 20 failed EU summits, here is finally one that has some good results.' (more)

Belgium: Transcendental Meditation group established to create coherence, harmony for EU
21 January 2013 - In Brussels, Belgium, where many key institutions of the European Union are based, a group of advanced Transcendental Meditation practitioners dedicated to supporting unity and stability in Europe has been established nearby in two adjacent, dignified city-centre buildings. The group's purpose is to create through their daily meditation practice an influence of coherence and harmony in the collective consciousness of Europe--one of many initiatives of Maharishi's Invincible Defence programmes in Belgium and other countries around the world. (more)

10 Short Summaries of Top Stories

US: EPA expands areas of approved use for Dow's Enlist Duo herbicide
1 April 2015 - The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on Wednesday more than doubled the number of U.S. states where Dow AgroSciences' controversial new herbicide can be used. Enlist Duo was developed by Dow AgroSciences, a unit of Dow Chemical, as an answer to severe weed resistance problems that are limiting crop production around the country. More than 84 million acres of farmland are infested with glyphosate-resistant weeds, and the problem continues to climb each year. (more)

Boko Haram kills 41, prevents hundreds voting in Nigeria
28 March 2015 - Boko Haram extremists killed 41 people, including a legislator, and scared hundreds of people from polling stations in the northeast, but millions voted across Nigeria Saturday in the most closely contested presidential race in the nation's history. All the Boko Haram attacks took place in northeastern Nigeria, where the military Friday announced it had cleared the Islamic extremists from all major centers, including the headquarters of their so-called Islamic caliphate. (more)

Mental health vetting of pilots ineffective, US experts say
27 March 2015 - There is little effective, real-world screening of airline pilots for mental problems despite regulations in the U.S., Europe, and elsewhere that say mental health should be part of their regular medical exams, pilots and safety experts said. A negative mental health evaluation would likely cause the FAA (U.S. Federal Aviation Administration) to withdraw the pilot's medical certificate, which means the pilot would no longer be able to fly. Pilots who suffer mild to moderate depression, for which there are many therapies and medications, risk jeopardizing their careers if they seek treatment and that becomes known to the FAA or their airline, said Doug Moss, a Boeing 777 pilot for a major airline. (more)

Museum attack in Tunisian capital kills 19; 2 gunmen slain
18 March 2015 - Foreign tourists scrambled in panic Wednesday after militants stormed a museum in Tunisia's capital and killed 19 people, 'shooting at anything that moved,' a witness said. At least 44 people were wounded. It was the deadliest attack on civilians in the North African country in 13 years. Tunisians overthrew their dictator in 2011 and kicked off the Arab Spring that spread across the region. While the uprising built a new democracy, the country has also struggled with economic problems and attacks by extremists. (more)

Europe swamped with crush of migrants arriving by land, sea
5 March 2015 - The European Union is immersed in a full-fledged migration crisis. Some officials are even floating the idea of a multinational border guard to deal with the hundreds of thousands arriving from war-torn countries like Syria, poor nations in Africa, and non-EU neighbors like Kosovo. Here's a look at Europe's migration crisis: (more)

Beijing residents gasp for fresh air in the city of smog (with Reuters video)
4 March 2015 - Millions of Chinese are paying the price for decades of red-hot economic growth that have lifted hundreds of millions out of poverty, but have taken a toll on the environment due to rapid industrialization. Over the past seven years, levels of particulate matter in Beijing's air smaller than 2.5 micrometers in diameter (PM2.5) averaged nearly five times the recommended daily level set by the World Health Organization, according to data from a monitoring station at the US embassy. The medical implications of sustained exposure are sobering. (more)

One year on, China's 'war on pollution' still to be won (Reuters video)
3 March 2015 - Millions of Chinese are paying the price for decades of red-hot economic growth. In the face of increasing public anger at the state of China's battered environment last year the government 'declared war' on pollution at its key National People's Congress meeting. With this year's National People's Congress about to start, many are hoping the government's words will translate into cleaner skies. (more)

Russia: Nemtsov a possible 'sacrificial victim,' investigators say
28 February 2015 - Maybe it was Islamic extremists who killed Boris Nemtsov. Or someone offended by his love life. Or agents of a Western power that will stop at nothing to disfigure President Vladimir Putin's image and drive him from power. Russian investigators, politicians, and political commentators on state television on Saturday covered much ground in looking for the reason Nemtsov was gunned down in the heart of Moscow, but they sidestepped one possibility -- that he was murdered for his relentless opposition to Putin. Nemtsov, a charismatic Russian opposition leader and sharp critic of President Putin, was gunned down Saturday near the Kremlin. (more)

Russia: Nemtsov killing follows slaying of other Kremlin critics
28 February 2015 - Prominent Russian opposition figure Boris Nemtsov's killing follows the slaying over the past decade of several other high-profile critics of President Vladimir Putin and his policies. Here is a look at some of the best-known cases. (more)

US approves first biotech apple that resists browning
13 February 2015 - US regulators on Friday approved what would be the first commercialized biotech apple, rejecting efforts by the organic industry and other GMO critics to block the new fruit. The US Department of Agriculture's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) approved two genetically engineered apple varieties designed to resist browning that have been developed by the Canadian company Okanagan Specialty Fruits Inc. (more)

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