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Oj Corner
Special column
by OJ George

Cheque facility won't be withdrawn, says the govt
It is a matter of relief that the Union Government has clarified that cheque facility won't be withdrawn.

There were stray reports that an overenthusiastic government favaouring total digitalisation may go in for banning the cheque books.


It is gratifying to note that the government won't proceed with the reforms this way.
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Massive earthquake hits Mexico; Tsunami warning
A massive magnitude-8.1 earthquake has hit off Mexico's southern coast, toppling houses in Chiapas state, causing at least five deaths and setting off a tsunami warning, officials said.



The earthquake was the biggest the country has seen in a century, Mexico's President said

At least five people have been killed in the southern state of Chipas

A tsunami is confirmed, with the largest wave at one metre above the tide level

The quake was so strong that it caused buildings to sway violently in Mexico's capital more than 1,000 kilometres away.

Residents fled buildings, many in their pyjamas, and gathered in frightened groups in the street. Some neighbourhoods remained in darkness after electricity was knocked out.

The US Geological Survey (USGS) said the quake struck at 11:49pm on Thursday local time and its epicentre was 165 kilometres west of Tapachula in Chiapas, not far from Guatemala. It had a depth of 69.7 kilometres.

Mexico's President Enrique Pena Nieto said the earthquake measured at 8.2, despite the USGS's official line, making it "the biggest magnitude to be recorded in our country in at least the last 100 years".

Mr Nieto said 1 million people were initially without power, though electricity had since been restored to 800,000 of them.

The US Tsunami Warning System said hazardous tsunami waves were possible on the Pacific coasts of several Central American countries, including Guatemala, El Salvador, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Panama and Honduras, within three hours.

A tsunami was also confirmed for Mexico, with the largest wave measuring one metre, according to the Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre.
   
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