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Munnar (Kerala), Dec 10, 2016: Call it a demonetization pain eased by a fine example of hospitality in the God’s Own Country. A 40-year-old foreigner ate at a restaurant here and didn’t pay because he was cashless. He was caught but let off because the eatery staff realised their guest had no other option.

Khader Kunju, a restaurant owner here since 1989, said the incident occurred on Friday at the eatery near his joint.

Kunju told IANS that the tourist had before ordering food asked if the restaurant accepted credit cards. He was told the facility wasn’t available.


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But he still “went and had lunch and after washing his hands, he ran away”, Kunju said.

“He was caught by the hotel staff, but let off when he said he has money but there was no way he could withdraw it as the ATM’s did not have cash.”

Kunju said it was not a one-off incident of inconvenience faced by foreigners in Kerala after the central government announced on November 8 that it was spiking the country’s 86 per cent — Rs 500 and 1,000 notes — of all currency in circulation.

He said he also faced “similar situation as many of my clients are foreign tourists”.

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The restaurant owner narrated an incident how a group of French tourists — four men and four women — walked into his eatery and said they were very hungry and wanted to eat but had no cash.

“They said they have credit cards, but since I don’t have swiping machine, I told them they can have food and pay later.”

However, the generosity came with a cost.

“Their total bill was Rs 1,600. A few days later the women came and paid their amount, but the men slipped away and have not paid as yet.” (IANS)


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Basil Leaves

Basil scientifically called Ocimum basilicum, and also known as great basil, is a culinary herb from the Lamiaceae (mints) family. A common aromatic herb, it is usually used to add flavor to a variety of recipes, but what may astonish one is that there are various health benefits of basil that make it well-known for its immunity-enhancing properties.

Basil seeds or basil essential oil are proven to help prevent a wide range of health conditions, which makes it one of the most essential medical herbs known today. Basil has vitamin A, C, E, K, and Omega 3 components including cooling components too. It also contains minerals like Copper, Calcium, Manganese, Phosphorus, Zinc, and Potassium. An ancient Ayurvedic herb, basil has various proven benefits including being anti-inflammatory, ant-oxidant, immune-booster, pain-reducer, and blood vessel-protector.

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This herb also contains cooling components thus making it really helpful for summers. It detoxifies the body and maintains one's body temperature pace. Adding to the benefits Basil contains antioxidant-rich volatile essential oils, which are considered hydrophobic, meaning they don't dissolve in water and are light and small enough to travel through the air and the pores within our skin. Basil's volatile essential oil is something that gives the herb its distinct smell and taste, but basil contains some great healing properties.

In the long history of Ayurveda, basil seeds were also called tukmaria seeds. These seeds may support one's gut health, may complete one's fiber quota, reduce blood sugar, help in weight loss, and also reduce cholesterol.

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When you're pregnant, the immune system is seeing the placenta for the first time in decades.

The US researchers have discovered a class of immune cells that plays a role in miscarriage, which affects about a quarter of pregnancies.

Researchers at the University of California-San Francisco found that the recently discovered subset of cells known as extrathymic Aire-expressing cells in the immune system may prevent the mother's immune system from attacking the placenta and fetus.

The researchers showed that pregnant mice who did not have this subset of cells were twice as likely to miscarry, and in many of these pregnancies fetal growth was severely restricted.

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"When you're pregnant, the immune system is seeing the placenta for the first time in decades -- not since the mother made a placenta when she herself was a fetus," said Eva Gillis-Buck, from UCSF.

"Our research suggests that this subset of immune cells is carrying out a sort of 'secondary education' -- sometimes many years after the better-known population of the educator cells have carried out the primary education in the thymus -- teaching T cells not to attack the fetus, the placenta and other tissues involved in pregnancy," she added. The findings are published in the journal Science Immunology.

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