Tue, May 15, 2018 - Page 7 News List

World News Quick Take

Agencies

CHINA

AG600 delivery set for 2022

State-owned Aviation Industry Corp of China (AVIC) expects to deliver its domestically developed AG600, the world’s largest amphibious aircraft, to customers by 2022, Xinhua news agency reported late on Sunday. “We are endeavoring to get the airworthiness certification from the civil aviation authorities by 2021, and deliver it to the customers by 2022,” Xinhua quoted AVIC chief designer Huang Lingcai as saying. China developed the AG600 as part of a drive to modernize its military, amid a more muscular approach to territorial disputes in places like the South China Sea that has rattled nerves in the Asia-Pacific region and the US. It made its maiden flight in China in December. Huang also said the aircraft would make more flights this year, including its first takeoff from water.

INDIA

Sleeves cut off for exams

A college has been banned from conducting examinations after it cut off the sleeves of female candidates for nursing tests to prevent cheating, officials said yesterday. Video shown on local TV showed staff at the school using scissors and razor blades to slash the women’s sleeves before allowing them into the exam building on Sunday. Many of the women can be seen carrying the ripped-off sleeves into the exam hall as dozens of police stand guard outside in the Muzaffarpur District of Bihar State. The act sparked protests outside other exam centres and a torrent of complaints on social media. District education officer Lalan Prasad Singh said the sleeves were cut to protect the candidates, but added that a probe has been launched to find who was responsible. “The school has been barred from holding exams,” he told reporters when confronted over the outcry. The eastern state is notorious for exam trickery and reports of mass cheating regularly make headlines.

THAILAND

Oxen predict good times

Palace astrologers yesterday predicted a strong harvest after a pair of sacred oxen munched on grass and drank water and liquor in an annual ritual that tests the omens for the kingdom. Thai King Maha Vajiralongkorn presided over the colorful annual “royal plowing ceremony,” which saw Brahmin priests head a procession of the white oxen around a field outside Bangkok’s Grand Palace. Royal soothsayers base their predictions on which foods the animals choose to eat after the plowing, when they are offered bowls of rice, maize, green beans, sesame, liquor, water and grass. “The royal prediction is that rice, fruit and food will be plentiful,” said Thanit Anekwit from the agriculture ministry. The liquor also “means communication and trade with foreign countries will be facilitated well,” he added.

AUSTRALIA

Lotto winner wins again

A stunned Sydney man who was celebrating a lottery windfall could not believe it when he won again less than a week later. The unidentified man, in his 40s and from the suburb of Bondi, on Monday last week picked up A$1,020,487 (US$770,000) and then scooped another A$1,457,834 on Saturday. “I just thought this is too good to be true,” he told NSW Lotteries yesterday after being informed of his good fortune. “The chances of winning twice in such a short period of time must be non-existent. I wish I had some advice to others on how to win the lottery, but I don’t.” Asked what he would do with the cash, he said: “I’m not going to be stupid with it.” He plans to invest in some Sydney real estate, buy a new car and “a holiday to Honolulu goes without saying.”

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