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Qatar Airways boss sorry for anti-women jibe

Qatar Airways says 44 per cent of its workforce are female. Al Baker said he supports efforts to bring a woman in to lead Air Italy, in which the Middle Eastern carrier owns a stake.

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Qatar Airways, anti-women jibe

Sydney, June 7 (IANS) Qatar Airways’s board Chairman has apologized for his remark that a woman could not run his airline, saying his comment was taken out of context, media reports said.

Akbar Al Baker made the initial remark at an annual meeting in Sydney of the International Air Transport Association, an industry group made up of major airlines including big US carriers, Efe reported.

“Of course it has to be led by a man, because it is a very challenging position,” Al Baker said, in an audio recording of the Tuesday press conference that was posted to Twitter.

He apologized but said the media took the comment out of context.

Al Baker is the group’s new board Chairman and the meeting in Sydney attracted some 1,000 attendees.

On Wednesday, at a separate conference in Sydney run by market-intelligence firm Centre for Aviation, Al Baker said he didn’t mean he “would discourage any woman to come and take my position.”

He said, “It was just a joke, everybody laughed and I thought that was the end of the story.”

Qatar Airways says 44 per cent of its workforce are female. Al Baker said he supports efforts to bring a woman in to lead Air Italy, in which the Middle Eastern carrier owns a stake.

But many parts of the aviation industry are still dominated by men. The International Society of Women Airline Pilots says not even 5 per cent of airline aviators are women.

A 2015 Centre for Aviation study found 94 per cent of airlines are led by men. The new 31-member governing board of IATA has just two female members.

Some airline executives at the Wednesday event agreed with Al Baker that his comments were blown out of proportion, but said they recognized the need for more women to get involved in the industry.

Martin Gauss, Chief Executive of Latvian airline airBaltic, said the industry must make it clear to young women that having a career as a pilot is a possibility.

Still, no women spoke on a half-day of panels at the Centre for Aviation event on Wednesday, a report in Dow Jones said.

Travel

Nepal-The Roof of the World

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Nepal is a landlocked country in South Asia and mainly located in the Himalayas and has a diverse geography including fertile plains, highest point on earth – Mount Everest and that’s why backpackers gave a nickname to Nepal as, “The Roof of the World”. Nepal is a trekker’s paradise and offers a combination of charming hill villages to jungle wildlife to beautiful temples.

Nepal attracts various types of traveller’s from backpacker to Luxury travel. The country is still recovering from the Twin Earthquakes which shattered the Himalayan Kingdom in the year 2015. After a sharp decline in visitors post-earthquake, the numbers are slowly recovering and now it is a great time to go to the mighty mountains.

Kathmandu – Capital city of Nepal also serves as the gateway to the country. Kathmandu is an interesting city to visit, however, tourists will face the crazy traffic of Nepal and poor road conditions. Monuments located at the Durbar Square in Kathmandu were severely damaged or completely ruined during the earthquakes of 2015.

Chitwan National Park is one of the World Heritage listed reserves that protects over 932 sq. km of forests, marshlands and grasslands. The park is considered to be one of the best parks for viewing wildlife in Asia. One-horned rhinos, deer, monkeys and over 500 species of birds are regularly spotted. If you are lucky, you may spot a leopard, wild elephant or sloth bear and if your luck prevails, you may also spot the majestic royal Bengal tiger.

Pokhara offers spectacular scenery, adventure activities and is the getaway for treks to the Annapurna range. The Lakeside of Pokhara is a chilled out version of Kathmandu’s busy Thamel area. From the Lakeside as well from a lot of hotels one can enjoy the spectacular panoramic view of the snow-capped mountains. Pokhara boasts a booming adventure sports industry and is one of the best paragliding venues on the globes.

Annapurna region has been considered one of the best treks in Nepal and known for the world’s classic walks. The walk follows the marsyangdi valley to the north of the main Himalayan range and crosses a 5416 m pass to descend into the upper Kali Gandaki valley. The walk offers spectacular views of the numerous 7000 meters plus Annapurna peaks and boasts some of the great trekking lodges of Nepal.

Breakfast at Everest base camp – This is a new private concept for affluent traveller’s where one can do a short excursion from Kathmandu and enjoy the breakfast near the Mt. Everest base camp with the fascinating Everest in the backdrop.

Travel Tips for Traveller’s to Nepal:

– Avoid drinking tap water, use bottled water

– Where possible avoid intercity road journeys and use local flights. The roads in Nepal are narrow and have traffic; a 200 km journey may take 7-8 hrs.

– Local flights are substantially dependent on weather conditions and there may be delays, so plan accordingly

– If you are doing any trek, do ensure that you have necessary permits to trek in the region

– Indian National enjoy special rates at hotels and for trekking permit at most trekking routes, NRI’s or Foreign nationals will have to pay the regular foreigner rate for the permits

– Be sure to ensure the Nepalese currency prior to leaving, one cannot exchange Nepali currency outside of Nepal

– Indian Nationals can use denominations of Rs 100 or lower very easily. Higher denominations are legally not accepted.

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Business

ICPA seeks ‘one rank one pay’ for AI pilots

According to ICPA, from October 2017, the Air India management had started paying a section of wide-body pilots an ad-hoc amount at par with the new proposal which is yet to be approved by the ministry.

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Air India

New Delhi, Oct 17 ; The Indian Commercial Pilots’ Association (ICPA) on Tuesday sought ‘one rank one pay’ for all the pilots of the national passenger carrier Air India.

In a letter to Civil Aviation Minister Suresh Prabhu, ICPA urged the ministry to address the pilots’ pay parity issue which is the legacy of Air India-Indian Airlines merger that took place more than a decade ago.

According to ICPA, from October 2017, the Air India management had started paying a section of wide-body pilots an ad-hoc amount at par with the new proposal which is yet to be approved by the ministry.

The letter alleges that half of the flying allowance paid to wide-body pilots is still being paid in fixed US dollar exchange rate of Rs 45.50, while the present US dollar exchange rate has reached an all time high of Rs 74.

As per the letter, while majority of Air India pilots are paid international layover subsistence allowance on actual international night stops ($200), a section of wide body pilots continue to receive a fixed monthly international layover allowance irrespective of number of international night stops undertaken.

“We fail to understand as to why the top management has turned a blind eye to this issue which is bleeding the national carrier of high value foreign exchange,” the October 16 letter said.

“In spite of being in the know of the US dollars being paid to these pilots at an exchange rate of INR 45.50, the Director (Operations) has taken no initiative to correct the wrong for reasons best known to him,” it said.

IANS

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Cities

Pink Line’s Trilokpuri-Shiv Vihar section to open

Anand Vihar (Blue Line), Karkardooma (Blue Line) and Welcome (Red Line) will be the three interchange stations on the stretch.

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Delhi Metro's Pink Line

New Delhi, Oct 15 : Delhi Metro’s Pink Line section connecting Shiv Vihar and Trilokpuri in east Delhi is likely to open soon.

“The Commissioner for Metro Rail Safety will inspect the 17.86 km-long Shiv Vihar-Trilokpuri Sanjay Lake Metro section” on Saturday, the Delhi Metro Rail Corp (DMRC) said on Monday.

The section has 15 stations, all elevated: Trilokpuri Sanjay Lake, East Vinod Nagar (Mayur Vihar-II), West Vinod Nagar (Mandawali), I.P. Extension, Anand Vihar ISBT, Karkardooma, Karkardooma Court, Krishna Nagar, East Azad Nagar, Welcome, Jaffrabad, Maujpur (Babarpur), Gokulpuri, Johri Enclave and Shiv Vihar.

Anand Vihar (Blue Line), Karkardooma (Blue Line) and Welcome (Red Line) will be the three interchange stations on the stretch.

Once fully operational, the 59-km line (Majlis Park-Shiv Vihar) will be the longest on the network. After the opening of this particular section, Delhi Metro network will become 314 km-long.

IANS

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