Thousands of inmates were granted a royal pardon on HM the king’s birthday

On the auspicious occasion of His Majesty the King Maha Vajiralongkorn Phra Vajiraklaochaoyuhua’s 69th birthday on Wednesday, more than Two Lakh prisoners have been granted a royal pardon. This includes 35,000 inmates who will be released on parole.

According to the director-general of the Department of Corrections Aryut Sinthopphan, Royal Pardon Royal Decree imposed today under 2021, pardons will be granted within the next 120 days. Mr. Aryut said the 35,000 inmates who are allowed parole are now in 143 prisons across the nation. Those prisoners are eligible to be released under the new royal decree. This new royal pardon includes the well-known newscaster Sorrayuth Suthassanchinda who is now free but still wears an electronic monitoring device. A new royal pardon will allow him to remove the monitoring device immediately.

Next month, Jatuporn Prompan, chairman of the red-shirt United Front for Democracy Against Dictatorship will be released on the payroll. Jatuporn is also eligible for the new royal pardon because he has less than a year to serve in prison.

Prisoners with repeated crimes, misbehaved while serving, convicted in major drug cases, who face death sentences aren’t eligible to receive a royal pardon.

Israel’s green light to vaccinate children for COVID at-risk aged 5-11

Israeli health officials said on Wednesday the children between the ages of five and eleven at high risk of serious health complications can be vaccinated against Covid-19 as of August 1. The health ministry of Israel gave the green light for the vaccination.

The spokesperson of the ministry told AFP on Wednesday that this was a special authorization and each vaccination will be studied on a case-by-case basis. Children with brain, heart, lung, or severe immunosuppression, sickle cell anemia, pulmonary hypertension, and severe obesity will be included in this list. They will get vaccinated first.

The vaccine dose of 0.1 milliliters of Pfizer/ BioNTech will be given. This dose is three times less than the standard vaccine measures. The health officials also extended vaccination for children aged 12 to 16 last month. Nearly 55% of the country’s population has been double vaccinated with Pfizer-BioNTech. With an agreement with the pharmaceutical giant, the massive campaign launch in late December last year made it possible. This rollout of jab made Israel among the world’s fastest delivering two doses of the vaccine. The cases also dropped dramatically which led to ease in many restrictions in the country.

First Ethiopian winner of Caine Prize ‘in shock’

Author Meron Hadero has become the first Ethiopian author to win the prestigious AKO Caine Prize for African Writing. Her short story “The Street Sweep” was praised by the judges which had a clever twist.

Her winning story is about an Ethiopian boy called Getu, where he navigates the fraught power dynamics of NGOs and foreign aid in Addis Ababa. The story has an emotional side. He faces the pain of losing his ancestral home, and that’s the real driver of the story that makes him take charge and try to re-write that outcome that seems kind of inevitable. What impressed the judges the most was that it was utterly without self-pity which turned the lens away from the usual clichés.

The Ethiopian author Hadero was born in Ethiopia and raised in the US by parents who are medical doctors. She prefers stories of refugees, immigrants and those at risk of being displaced and thinks they are “entry-point emotionally” to her work.

After winning Hadero said in an interview that she is completely thrilled and in “shock” and consider it as an honour for even getting shortlisted. She will take home the prize money of £10,000 ($13,000).

China with new World Heritage Site with links to Hinduism, Tamil Nadu

Chinese President Xi Jinping and Indian Prime Minister Mr. Narendra Modi agreed to establish a “sister-state relationship” between Tamil Nadu and Fujian during the visit to Mamallapuram in October 2019. China got its new World Heritage Site with links to Hinduism, Tamil Nadu.

On Sunday nearly 22 sites in the southeastern Chinese city of Quanzhou including a temple with links to Hinduism were added to the UNESCO World Heritage List. “Quanzhou: Emporium of the World in Song-Yuan China” a new list is released by the world’s top cultural organization. A maritime silk road will boost the credentials of Chinese President Xi Jinping. The sea route is part of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) which aims to connect China with Asia and beyond through infrastructure projects on land and sea. China is trying to promote the route where multicultural communities including Tamil Nadu mingled a millennia ago. It strives to promote coastal province Fujian and the city of Quanzhou as an important ancient sea trade zone.

UNESCO World Heritage made the listing decision on Sunday during the committee’s 44th online session chaired from Fuzhou, the capital of Fujian. It is the same province where Quanzhou is located.

Sania Mirza – Third Indian to gets 10 years Dubai Golden Visa

Indian tennis star Sania Mirza becomes the third Indian to be granted the much-coveted 10-year UAE Golden Visa. Her husband Pakistani cricketer Shoaib Malik was also granted the Golden Visa.

The new long term residency visa system is the Golden Visa, created by the government of the United African States in 2019. It allows expatriates to live, work and study without a national sponsorship in the country. They also own 100% of their business on the UAE continent. These visas are automatically renewed for five or ten years.

Both, Sania and Shoaib, are delighted to spend time and experience the nation with their kid in the UAE. They want to build their own business in the sports industry, with Dubai as their first stop. On July 23, Mirza will compete in the Tokyo Olympics as part of the women’s doubles team alongside Ankita Raina.

So far, the Indians to be granted the Golden Visa include Bollywood stars Sanjay Dutt and Shah Rukh Khan. Footballers Christiano Ronaldo and Luis Figo and reigning world tennis champion, Novak Djokovic are also sports icons that are granted the golden visa.

Nelson Mandela Day

South Africa’s first democratically elected President, the symbol of equality remembered today.

18th July was declared as “Nelson Mandela International Day” by the UN General Assembly in 2009. His contribution towards the culture of peace and freedom cannot be sufficed into words.

AsiaOne News stated that this day celebrates the undying legacy of the former South African President Nelson Mandela for his work towards the South African community, as well as his head-on fight against white oppression which was unparalleled. Nelson was globally renowned and loved as an anti-apartheid revolutionary and a political leader.

In 1952 in Johannesburg, he established South Africa’s first Black law practices, specializing in cases resulting from the post-1948 apartheid legislation. He entrenched this work with his fellow ANC leader Oliver Tambo.

On 10th May in 1994 Mandela was sworn in as President of the country’s first multiethnic government and resigned in December 1997. On Nelson’s birthday, Mandela day was created to honor his legacy by promoting community service around the world, Asia One said.

This year’s theme for Mandela’s day is “Each 1 Feed 1”. For people’s contribution towards this cause, the official website of Mandela Day allows everyone to help as much as they can. This initiative is for people who are affected by the COVID-19. This is a call to all the people from South Africa to contribute to essential products and take part in food distribution.

Bangladeshi actress shines at Cannes

Bangladeshi actress Azmeri Haque was seen dazzling in a beige Dhakai Jamdani saree at the 74th Cannes Film Festival this year.

Azmeri opted to stick to her roots and wore a traditional assemblance. The saree was from a Bangladeshi brand Aarong which featured handwoven motifs which she teamed up with a halter-neck blouse whose belt was embellished with silver pieces. She completed her look with an accessorizing bracelet and matching emerald silver ear studs. The look was done with subtle make-up by kohl-rimmed eyes and a dab of matte mauve lipstick. Her tresses were tied to a centre-parted sleek bun which gave her a complete diva look.

As per the Asia News report, it was a proud movement as her film Rehana Maryam Noor which was screened at Cannes Film Festival received a standing ovation. Azmeri portrays the titular role in the same. The move highlights sexual assault and danger faced by women in Bangladesh. This was the first time that a Bangladeshi movie got selected for the ‘Un Certain Regard’ section.

While sharing her picture on instagram from the festival, the actress shared a thank you note for the entire team who have worked on her jewellery and saree. She even said that she loves Jamdani saree and never trusts any other brand over Aarong for the look. She specially thanked Asif Bhai for agreeing to her choice of attire.

2021 celebrates World Emoji Day

17th July is chosen to be the World Emoji Day in 2014. The word “emoji” is a portmanteau that is made up of two different words in Japanese: ‘e’ stands for picture and ‘moji’ stands for the character. In today’s generation, emojis are often used to convey feelings and there’s a particular emoji for most of those emotions. Emoji is the outcome of the most recent evolution of human language as most people today communicate over electronic devices and via social media platforms. This flips the gap in the communication which happens virtually.

To celebrate these humble characters, the world celebrates Emoji Day. As per the Asia One News, the founder of Emojipedia Jeremy Burge, declared this day since the Calendar emoji displays July 17th. In 2014 it was celebrated first since then it became an annual feature. While this event is gaining popularity over the years, a lot of people and organizations have started tweeting to mark the day.

While celebrating this year emoji has some good for the users who have not yet found the right emoji to express themselves. For release in 2021-2022, Emojipedia has disclosed the list of emojis that are lined. The list might include a biting lip, saluting face, coral, and low battery emojis. The draft list also includes ‘heart hands’, consistent gender options for pregnancy and royalty, and 15 different types of handshake combinations.

ZHAO : 1st Asian Woman To Win Best Director Oscar

Filmmaker Chole Zhao, the first person of Chinese origin and the first Asian woman made history by winning the Best Director at the 93rd Academy Awards. She is also the only second woman ever to win the Best Director Award after Kathryn Bigelow who won it for the first time ever in the Academy Awards history in 2010 for a thriller film based on war. With this Zhao also become the second person from Asia to bag the coveted award, the first being given to director Ang Lee for his 2006 romantic drama film Brokeback Mountain.

The 39 year old filmmaker’s Nomadland is an American recession era drama of financially stretched van dwellers in which she featured real-life nomads alongside actress Frances McDormand, who is also a Co-Producer. The film was based on Jessica Bruder’s 2017 book, Nomadland: Surviving America in the Twenty-First Century. Her film also won the Best Picture and the Best Actress Oscar. The film show the lives of Americans who travel from one job to another and trying to scrape together a living.

Zhao was also nominated for the Best Film Editing and the Best Adapted Screenplay but didn’t win.

It was her third film which also won Golden Globe Awards, Directors Guild of America Award and BAFTA. “I am extremely lucky to be able to do what I love for a living, and if this means more people get to live their dreams, I’m extremely grateful,” she said backstage afterwards. However, the Chinese media regulators also decided in March not to air the Oscars live on its streaming platforms. The decision not to air the Oscars has raised concerns about dwindling freedoms in Hong Kong, which has taken an authoritarian path since China imposed a sweeping national security law last year.

BAFTA Awards: Nomadland Wins Four Prizes

Director Chole Zhao’s meditative drama depicted in her Hollywood movie ‘Nomadland’ emerged as a winner at the 74th British Academy Awards popularly known as BAFTA Film Awards 2021 by garnering four major awards, including the Best Film.

At the event Oscar equivalent in Britain, it was named as the best film beating the likes of ‘The trial of the Chicago 7’ by Aaron Sorkin and much acclaimed ‘Promising Young Woman’. Film maker Zhao was named as the Best Director and Frances McDormand won the Best Actress award. The Director was also only the second woman to get the felicitation after Kathryn Bigelow who won the award in 2010 for ‘The Hurt Locker’. The film, a tale of itinerant Americans, living in vans and moving through picturesque landscapes, seeking temporary jobs to make their ends meet, was highly acclaimed by critics for its delicate and incisive portray of a nomadic life of people. The film also took the award for Best Cinematography. The legendary octogenarian actor Anthony Hopkins won the Best Actor award for his iconic performance as a patient coping with dementia portrayed in ‘The Father’. Moreover, the award also paid tribute to Prince Philip who served the organization as its first president. By outplaying others and garnering four awards at the BAFTA, the film is consolidating its chances as the frontrunner at the Oscars.