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Excerpts from UAE Dailies

Indian driver strikes it rich in Postcard promotion 
Dubai - Oct. 28: An Indian expatriate driver who won Dh100,000 in the Postcard Millionaire draw said he plans to start a car rental agency.

Chacko Varghese, 54, said he was at the wheel when he got a call about his win. "I pulled over to the side of the road to receive the call," he said.

He also plans to buy property for farming in Kerala.

Varghese, holder of winning ticket number 4563964686, had purchased his Postcard Millionaire pack from the Jumeirah Post Office, where he goes to check the company mailbox on a regular basis.

He said: "I have been participating in the Postcard Millionaire campaign since its launch in 2004 and will continue to purchase the Postcard Millionaire pack as I hope to win again."

His number was picked at the Wall Street Exchange, Bur Dubai Branch during the weekly Wednesday draw by a representative of The Millionaire Company.

Varghese, who has worked with his firm for 26 years, won Dh500 in the 2005 campaign, but happily emphasises that his present win eclipses all others.

Consumers from all over the UAE have a chance to win Dh30 million during the third edition of the Postcard Millionaire campaign. With purchase of a Postcard Millionaire pack for Dh30, participants are automatically eligible for entry into one weekly draw for Dh100,000 and into the upcoming quarterly draw for Dh200,000.

Prizes can be won through weekly and quarterly draws and instant scratch and win prizes, which include instant cash of up to Dh5,000, gift coupons and vouchers.


Man stabbed to death in restaurant

Dubai - Oct. 28: An Indian man was stabbed to death in a restaurant in Deira yesterday afternoon, the restaurant manager said. The murder took place at the Triveni Restaurant near the Fish Roundabout at 2.45pm, police said yesterday.

The victim, 36-year-old Manohar, was having lunch and talking to his sister's husband, Hari.

Suddenly the conversation turned into a heated argument, Ashokan, the restaurant manager, told Gulf News.

"Manohar had come to the restaurant to have his lunch. Hari was sitting near the cash counter. They struck up a conversation on family matters, and all of a sudden Hari grabbed a kitchen knife that was on the counter. Manohar was stabbed in the neck and midriff," said Ashokan, who is also related to the two.

The three relatives hail from Varkala town in Thiruvananthapuram district in the South Indian state of Kerala.

Hari, who works as a taxi driver, has been taken into police custody, according to an officer at the Naif Police Station.
Ashokan said he was standing outside when the commotion began.

He rushed into the restaurant but he was too late to save Manohar. "He was lying in a pool of blood near the kitchen. He was pleading for help. It was a horrible sight and I fainted," he said.

Manohar's body was taken to Rashid hospital. "I do not know who called the police. It must be one of the staff," Ashokan said.


Doctors reconstruct accident victim's smashed foot

Dubai - Oct.28: A man whose foot was almost destroyed in a freak accident is now fighting fit and enjoying playing football again.

Osama Kiwan, 35, suffered a crushed left foot in February when a four-wheel-drive vehicle smashed into a filling station shop while he was inside.

Three operations, and seven months on, he is on the road to recovery.

Kiwan said he was "devastated" when the accident happened and feared he would never be able to take part in the many sports he liked again.

""But, I am back to playing football, beach volleyball, swimming and probably doing more activities than before," said the sales manager.

The four-wheel-drive went straight over Kiwan's foot, crushing the tissue from the base of the toes to the ankle joint and "mashing" the bones, according to surgeon Dr Imran Tahir of the British Lasik and Cosmetic Surgery Centre in Dubai. Immediately after the accident, Dr Sami Tarabashi, an orthopaedic surgeon at the American Hospital in Dubai, put the damaged bones back into position before handing the patient over to Dr Tahir.

FFour days after the first operation, Dr Tahir carried out the first of two reconstructive surgery operations at the American Hospital Dubai.

He took a piece of Kiwan's calf muscle and pulled it downwards, keeping some of the arteries, veins and nerves attached, before positioning it on the top of the foot.

AA few weeks later he carried out a second reconstructive operation, removing some excess tissue from the damaged area so that Kiwan, a Canadian of Jordanian origin, would be able to put shoes on again. Skin was taken from his upper leg and grafted on further down.

"With the help of the physiotherapist Osama started going back from non weight bearing to full weight bearing on his foot and he improved from there."


Opening a new bank account

Dubai - Oct. 28: Opening a bank account is not a lengthy or complicated procedure, provided that you present all the required documents, which are more or less standard among most UAE banks.

However, as the UAE has a large number of expatriates and tourists, strict steps are necessary for the sake of security.

Expatriate residents can open accounts in UAE banks with the correct documents, which for most major banks means the original passport containing a valid residence visa, as well as an additional piece of official identification, such as a labour card or driver's licence, and a salary certificate from your employer.

Salary transfer

Those who wish to open a salary transfer account will require a no-objection letter from the employer addressed to the appropriate branch. Most human resources departments would be aware of the requirement and have template letters.

Dependents on a husband's or father's visa who want to open accounts need their original passports which verify the sponsorship of the father or husband.

Banks will also be willing to offer accounts to those newcomers whose residence permits are under processing provided that they either provide a letter from an employer certifying their employment, or a letter of introduction or verification from a bank with which the applicant has an account in his or her home country.

You might also find advantages in banking with your employer's bank, such as fast salary transfers and quick loan approvals. Banks often offer special packages to those employed including the waiving of minimum balance requirements, special interest rates and free credit cards for the first year.

Internet banking

For security reasons, some banks will require you to visit your branch for even minor changes to your account details such as a phone number or address. Other banks, however, offer phone and internet banking.

The degree of functions of a phone or internet banking plan differ from bank to bank, so it would be wise to find out if you like processing your transactions over the phone or the internet.

Some banks only allow you to pay bills and transfer funds to other local banks or its different branches online or over the phone.

Foreign currency

Most major banks offer customers the option to open accounts in major currencies such as US dollars, British pounds, euros and even yen for some.

Expatriates who regularly send money home often prefer to have foreign currency accounts at local banks. Those who travel frequently or tend to shop on the internet tend to prefer US dollar credit card accounts.

Most UAE banks also accept cheques in major currencies, which usually has a charge starting at Dh100 and can take 30 to 45 days.

Enticing public

Those who have recently moved to the UAE might be surprised to find themselves being regularly contacted by banks offering loans and credit cards in their first months of employment.

Two of the popular types of loans are personal loans and auto loans. Personal loans can be taken out for ten to 27 times your salary, depending on how long you've been working at the company. Loans during probation periods, if approved, usually have a significantly lower maximum limit, of about ten times your salary.

Those seeking to buy a vehicle on credit can choose between an auto loan and personal loan. Auto loans, which have fewer requirements and are easier to approve, have lower interest rates, fewer requirements, and a lower maximum limit than personal loans. Vehicles purchased through auto loans are co-owned by the bank and cannot be exported until the entire loan amount is paid.

Requirements for car loans usually include a salary certificate from an employer and a blank check for insurance purposes and a security, or post-dated cheque if the applicant does not have an account at the bank.

Personal loans often require you to have an account at the bank you're applying for the loan at. Further, your employer must be 'listed' as an approved client of the bank for a personal loan application to be accepted.


Weather change cause of increase in flu cases

DUBAI/SHARJAH — Oct. 27:With the advent of winter, more and more people are falling prey to cold and cough. Doctors advise an ample intake of fluids and bed rest to get through the period.

"Since the changes in weather conditions last month, several people are turning up at the clinic. Lots of children and elderly people suffering from flu and cold complained of body ache and this time we noticed that the virus showed more severe symptoms and stayed for a prolonged period of up to 7-10 days," said Dr Mohammed Abdulla, a general practitioner.

Dr Abdulla said that in the UAE, weather changes led to lower humidity helping cold-causing viruses to thrive. "The humidity dries up the lining of the nasal passage making it more susceptible to infection," he added.

Paediatrician Dr Mohammed Rahatullah Khan from Hayat Medical Centre in Sharjah said, "Symptoms tend to be worse in infants and young children, who sometimes run temperatures of up to 102 degrees Fahrenheit. Cold symptoms usually last from two days to a week," he explained.

Signs of the flu include headache, dry cough and chills.

General practitioner Dr Salman Siddique from Al Barakat Clinic said, "So far there is no proven cure for colds or flu, except time. However, over-the-counter (OTC) medications are available to relieve the symptoms."

Dr Khan also said that the high rate of illness in children was due to their lack of a build-up resistance to infection and close contact with other kids in schools or day care centres. "The flu virus can linger in the air for as long as three hours. In closed surroundings, conditions are ripe for the spread of the virus. That explains why the highest incidence of the flu is in 5 to 14-year-olds, who spend most of their time in school in close contact with their classmates."

If, despite precautions, you do get a cold or flu, besides taking an OTC medication if needed and as directed, drink fluids and get plenty of bed rest, the doctors advised.



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