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Visa extension

The Ministry of Interior (MoI) has informed, through its social media accounts, that visitors entering Qatar through the 30-day on-arrival visa system can extend their stay online for another 30 days via the following link on the MoI website: https://portal.moi.gov.qa/wps/portal/MOIInternet/services/inquiries/visaservices/visitvisaextension

Qatar had recently introduced different types of visas, including on-arrival visas, e-authorisation and e-visas. While the 90-day on-arrival tourist visa (for citizens of 34 countries) has a validity of 180 days with a multi-entry option and is not extendable, the 30-day visa (for nationals of 47 countries) can be extended for another 30 days.

Source Credit: http://www.gulf-times.com

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Indigo airlines flying to Hyderabad and Kochi from Doha

Indigo airlines will start flying to Hyderabad and Kochi from Doha

Booking has already started for both Hyderabad and Kochi routes on the Indigo airlines website. Indigo airlines currently fly daily non-stop to Chennai, Mumbai, Delhi and Kozhikode. Now Hyderabad and Kochi added to the list.

Doha – Hyderabad – Doha

Doha to Hyderabad: It will leave from Doha at 22:00 (10 pm Qatar time) and land in Hyderabad at 05:00 (5 am IST) next day

Hyderabad to Doha: It will leave from Hyderabad at 07:15 (07.15 am IST) and land in Doha at 09:30 (09:30 am Qatar time)

Doha – Kochi – Doha

Doha to Kochi: It will leave from Doha at 10:30 (10.30 am Qatar time) and land in Kochi at 17:40 (05:40 pm IST)

Kochi to Doha: It will leave from Kochi at 18:50 (6.50 pm IST) and land in Doha at 21:00 (9 pm IST) next day

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QM to celebrate traditions from around the world at MIA Park

QM to celebrate traditions from around the world at MIA Park

Qatar Museums’ (QM), under the leadership of chairperson HE Sheikha Al Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani, is getting ready to host a colourful event this weekend to celebrate traditions and cultures from all over the world at the MIA Park.

International schools and communities have been invited to take part in this festival, which celebrates the rich and varied heritage of people residing in Qatar.

Countries represented by either the country’s Embassies, community groups, or schools, include Jordan, Egypt, Syria, Lebanon, Tunisia, Palestine, Morocco, Bangladesh, Philippines, India, China, Tanzania, the US, Canada, Turkey, Afghanistan and Sudan.

During the event tomorrow and on Saturday, communities will give a glimpse into their cultures by showcasing traditional clothing items, music, games, books and much more.

In addition, a selection of delicious food and beverages representing each country will be on offer.

Salem al-Aswad, deputy director, Learning & Outreach at MIA said: “We’re proud to celebrate and recognise cultures from all over the world at MIA this weekend. It is wonderful to see individuals from all over the world come together to connect over music, books, children’s activities and delicious food. We hope that visitors take this opportunity to experience and engage with the different cultures that are available right here in Doha.”

The event at MIA compliments QM’s commitment to promote understanding, recognition and appreciation of different cultures, traditions and people in Qatar.

QM believes that culture is one of the most effective tools for bringing people closer together, encouraging dialogue and deepening understanding between people.

This is evident in its Years of Culture initiative, which was developed and designed to deepen understanding between nations and their people through mutual exchanges of arts, culture, heritage and sport.

Now in its sixth year, the Years of Culture programme has created sustainable platforms for collaboration and exchange between cultures, lasting long beyond the Years of Culture themselves.

Source Credit: http://www.gulf-times.com

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Mamoura Family Park opens after renovation

Mamoura Family Park opens after renovation

Mamoura Family Park, that has shades with design of Qatar’s flag, was opened yesterday after renovation. The park has latest equipment for physical exercise, games for children and other facilities for visitors.

The park measuring 6,500 sqm is located at one of the populated residential areas and came under the spotlight of the Ministry of Municipality and Environment to meet the demand of rising population in Al Mamoura.

“A number of new public parks are being designed and many existing ones are being renovated and they will see light of the day soon,” said Doha Municipality Director Eng Jamal Matar Al Naimi. “We always prefer dense populated residential areas to build public parks to accommodate growing number of people -citizens and expatriates,” said Al Naimi speaking with media persons on the sideline of inaugural ceremony held yesterday.

He said that Mamoura Family Park had been renovated completely in cooperation with Public Parks Department at the Ministry. The park is equipped with varieties of games for all children of all age groups, physical fitness facilities for adults to attract more visitors. The park also has trees and flower plants and a huge green area as part of the efforts of the Ministry to increase greenery across the country. Every public park, regardless of its size, will have cafeteria as plans are afoot to provide portable Kiosks in small parks, said a senior official.

Eng. Jamal Matar Al Nuaimi, Director of Doha Municipality (left) with Mohammed Ali Al Khori, Director of Public Park (second left) and AbdulRahman bin Abdullah Al Khulaifi, (third left) Member of Central Municiple Council (CMC) on the Opening of Mamoura family Park yesterday. Pic: Abdul Basit

Eng. Jamal Matar Al Nuaimi, Director of Doha Municipality (left) with Mohammed Ali Al Khori, Director of Public Park (second left) and AbdulRahman bin Abdullah Al Khulaifi, (third left) Member of Central Municiple Council (CMC) on the Opening of Mamoura family Park yesterday.
Pic: Abdul Basit

“As per the plan, long term contracts will be signed with traders to provide potable kiosks serving coffee, tea and snacks at small parks,” said Mohammed Ali Al Khori, Director of Public Parks.

The plan is under the scrutiny of legal, financial and administrative affairs departments at the Ministry, he added. Al Khori assured that the project would see the light of day soon.

Regarding free-wifi Internet service to the public park, Al Khori said “so far we have installed free-wifi Internet connection in nine public parks and are working to provide this service to other parks”.

Giving details about newly opened park, Al Khori said “the park measuring in an area of 6,500 has been renovated according to the international standards,” Al Khori said that the walking lanes of the park has been converted in spongy pathways and a total of 400 sqm is dedicated for walkways for joggers.

Opening of Mamoura family Park yesterday. Pic: Abdul Basit

Opening of Mamoura family Park yesterday. Pic: Abdul Basit

“The children’s play area has witnessed major change as the sand ground is replaced with rubber floor after renovation. The shade in play area has design of Qatar’s flag”, said Al Khori.

Abdurrahman bin Abdullah Al Khulaifi, a member of Central Municipal Council (CMC) from constituency number 10 under which the Mamoura Family Park comes, appreciated the Ministry for opening a number of parks in the area. Al Khulaifi said that the coordination was made with the Ministry to open a new park for public close to the Central Market.

The officials toured the park to see the various the facilities. Mamoura Family Park has four shaded exercise equipment for adults, three water coolers and air-conditioned toilets. Many benches are installed for comfort of visitors who can take rest after exercise.

To save the electricity and water, LED bulbs and central irrigation system are installed. Parking areas are created around the park to accommodate cars.

Source Credit: https://www.thepeninsulaqatar.com

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Registration for 2018 Ooredoo Doha Marathon opens

Registration for 2018 Ooredoo Doha Marathon opens

Ooredoo has officially opened registration for the 2018 Ooredoo Doha Marathon, which will take place on January 12, 2018.

Now in its sixth year, the 2018 edition of the Ooredoo Doha Marathon is being organised to hold the biggest number of runners yet, as Ooredoo continues its push to inspire Qatar’s communities to get fit.

Registration

Registration opened yesterday and fees will range depending on the selected course as well as the age of the participant.

Talking about the marathon, Manar Khalifa Al Muraikhi, Director of PR and Corporate Communications, Ooredoo Qatar, said: “The Ooredoo Doha Marathon is a great chance for us all to get fit and run as a community.

Families can run together, and also even people who have never competed before can start training and their year with something they are proud of. As always, we’re working to ensure the best possible experience for our competitors, so stay tuned for more marathon announcements soon.”

Source Credit: https://www.thepeninsulaqatar.com/

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Four new FM radio stations to begin broadcasting from Qatar

Four new FM radio stations to begin broadcasting from Qatar

Expatriates in Qatar will be able to tune in to four new radio stations that will be based in Doha.

Minister of Culture and Sports will inaugurate four new channels – 98.6 FM, 91.7 FM, 106.3 FM and 89.6 FM – on Wednesday evening at 6pm.

Two of them will be airing programmes in Malayalam and the other two in Hindi.

98.6 FM, a Malayalam radio station, will broadcast between 5am and 11pm and will air music programmes, current affairs and talk shows.

Radio Suno 91.7 FM, another Malayalam radio service, promises on its website that “Malayalis in Qatar will never miss their home town as it brings love from God’s own country.”

Hindi songs, including latest gossip from the tinsel town (Bollywood), are what Radio Olive 106.3 FM — Jiyo Bindaas — and 89.6 NE FM Radio — Qatar ki Dhadkan — promises to the listeners.

The four channels are the first radio stations from the sub-continent to be aired from Qatar. Residents till date listened to the channels aired from the other GCC states for their dose of vernacular music and latest news updates from their home town.

Radio is a very popular medium for expatriate listeners as they spend hours listening to them while commuting to and from work.

Source Credit: http://www.thepeninsulaqatar.com

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Malayalam 98.6 FM – New Malayalam FM radio inaugurated in Qatar

Malayalam 98.6 FM – New Malayalam FM radio inaugurated in Qatar

An FM Radio for the Qatar Malayali expatriate community, Malayalam 98.6 FM, was formally inaugurated on Tuesday at 9am by Indian ambassador P Kumaran.

The radio station’s programme head Abdul Gafoor noted that the broadcast timings will be between 5am and 11pm, and would have daily entertainment programmes, including music, current affairs, talk shows on a host of topics featuring community leaders, programmes for women and children among others, as reported by Gulf Times.

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Woqod stations may accept debit, credit cards from year-end

Woqod stations may accept debit, credit cards from year-end

Thousands of vehicle owners stand to benefit from a Woqod initiative to allow users to pay for fuel using their debit and credit cards at petrol stations across the country from the year-end.

Woqod chief executive officer Saad Rashid al-Muhannadi on Wednesday revealed that “Woqod is in the process of accepting debit and credit cards for fuel sales at petrol stations by the end of this year.”

Al-Muhannadi said the number of petrol stations in operation under the company’s ownership or management, including mobile dispensing facilities, has reached 58. This includes six petrol stations, including two mobile petrol stations, opened this year.

In addition, 13 stations are under construction and 12 under the tendering and designing stage.

Woqod is planning to increase the number of petrol stations to 83 by the end of 2018 and 120 by 2022.

He said Woqod was coordinating with the Ministry of Municipality and Environment for the allocation of more sites for petrol stations.

With regard to Fahes centres, al-Muhannadi said some two new vehicle inspection centres started operation in the period under review up to September. Another Fahes station will be opened by the end of this year.

The total sales volume of petroleum products (diesel and gasoline) for the period exceeded 4,024mn litres, with an increase of 2.5% for the period that ended in September as compared to the same period last year.

Jet fuel sales increased by 11.5% to 3,315mn litres for the period that ended in September as compared to the same period last year.

In addition, al-Muhannadi said bitumen sales increased by four times for the period that ended in September, and that Woqod marine vessel occupancy rate increased by 12% for the period, driven by increased level of bitumen and “HFO Bunkering” operations.

On the other hand, LPG and natural gas (CNG) sales for the period increased by 14% and 0.9% respectively.

Source Credit: http://www.gulf-times.com

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Driving licence ban in Qatar on select jobs temporary

Driving licence ban in Qatar on select jobs temporary

People who are concerned about their ineligibility to apply for driving licence, with the recent ban on some job categories, have news to cheer up as the General Directorate of Traffic has said that the ban on some job categories to get licence was a temporary measure and will be lifted once infrastructure projects are completed.

“The ban of many job categories to apply for driving license is a temporary decision and not a permanent one. It is just because that many roads are under constructions and development, so the department excluded some job categories from securing licenses, especially the categories in which cars are not necessary for their professions,” Brigadier Mohammed Saad Al Kharji, (pictured) Director of the General Directorate of Traffic told The Peninsula in an exclusive interview.

Al Kharji also added “Once the construction of roads is completed, the banned professions will be allowed to apply for driving licenses. Actually, I can’t say it was a ‘ban’ but I can say it is just temporary decision” he stressed.

The General Directorate of Traffic at the Ministry of Interior (MoI) had banned around 180 job categories from getting the driving licence.

Brigadier Mohammed Saad Al Kharji, Director of the General Directorate of Traffic Department. Picture by: Salim Matramkot

Brigadier Mohammed Saad Al Kharji, Director of the General Directorate of Traffic Department. Picture by: Salim Matramkot

The job categories that are barred from securing a driving licence include grocer, newspaper vendor, barber, servant, cosmetologist, security guard, porter, shepherd, butcher, tailor, goldsmith, agricultural worker, decoration technician, mining technician, beautician, and mechanic, etc.

To address traffic jams, a number of roads and bridges will open soon during next two months, Al Kharji said adding that “Lusail underpass and Al Rayyan bridge (near of Al Rayyan park) both will open by the end of December. This opening will contribute to reducing traffic jams.

About the pedestrian bridges, he said that the General Directorate of Traffic is coordinating with Ashghal to allocate the spots which witness more of traffic accidents specially run-over accidents and Ashghal has started building a number of such bridges and soon will start in important areas inside Doha.

Increase in the registration of new vehicles

Al Kharji also said that the number of vehicles which have registered this year is about 100,000 vehicles, which means Qatar economy is strong and the number of investors has increased. There is a direct correlation between the number of vehicle registrations and the number of driving licenses he added.

More than 99 percent of traffic accidents which cause serious injuries involve just one party where a driver meets an accident due to careless driving and over-speeding. The vast majority of the vehicles found after an accident are free of defect, Al Kharji said adding our major challenge is over-speeding.

The accidents between two parties usually cause minor injuries and rarely lead to serious injuries or death.

Over the department’s efforts to reduce traffic department, he said that the department relies on awareness among motorists. We encourage them to avoid speed, mentioning that “we should appreciate the fact that awareness among Qatari youth has increased about the risk of traffic accidents”.

He said that the department is focussing on spreading awareness through all media, especially social media so that the message can reach to every section of the society. Also, the presence of police is necessary to control traffic violations, in addition to radars, especially the mobile radars, because motorists don’t know its locations so remain careful, unlike the fixed ones as people know its location and they reduce speed only when they reach near them. All these things have contributed to decreasing traffic deaths.

An instructor at the Gulf Driving School giving advices to new students during a gear-shifting exercise using simulators. Picture by: Salim Matramkot/The Peninsula

An instructor at the Gulf Driving School giving advices to new students during a gear-shifting exercise using simulators.
Picture by: Salim Matramkot/The Peninsula

Number of deaths falls

The first statistics this year until now mentioned that the number of deaths due to traffic accidents in Qatar has declined compared to previous year but the next two months will be a challenge as the winter season is beginning and the movement of vehicles will increase.

Road fatalities dropped to 178 in 2016 from 227 in 2015, according to data released by the General Directorate of Traffic.

Al Kharji urged people to tell police in case they have caravans, and trailers, which they want to move if its width is more than 3.65 metre which is more than the allocated lane for every vehicle. If the size is more than a police patrol must accompany the caravan, otherwise it may cause traffic accidents. The small caravans with less width than the allocated lane is allowed but they have to take license for it.

He also added that all the motorcycles which is more than 50cc must get a number plate and also the caravans because it is like the vehicles. There is a committee which is sent to winter campers for license and to put plate number on the caravans because the caravans can block the camera to capture the vehicle’s number in case it has committed any traffic violation.

New motorcycles can now renew their (Istimara) in the first 3 years without technical inspection The owners of new motorcycles can now renew their road permits (Istimara) in the first three years without technical inspection like the cars. A few weeks ago an official from technical inspection of the Traffic Department said that new motorcycles have to pass technical inspection every year.

Many bikers were not satisfied with that but Al Kharji said that according to the traffic law the new motorcycles is like any other new vehicle and do not need to pass technical inspection in the first three years.

Credit Source: https://www.thepeninsulaqatar.com

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Aspire Park to offer drive-in cinema first time in Qatar

Aspire Park to offer drive-in cinema first time in Qatar

Aspire Park has recently soft-launched a new initiative introducing many outdoor activities including go-kart racing, food caravans and drive-in cinema.

The project located behind the Aspire Park will feature latest movies and will be shown in coordination with BeIN Sports, showcasing exclusive football matches from Spanish league ‘La Liga’, Italian league ‘Seria A’ and Premier league.

The park announced on its Facebook Page naming the initiative as ‘The Driving School’ that will be launched soon at the Aspire Park. Officials from the Aspire Park refused to comment more saying that there is an initiative that will be announced in the next few days.

Aspire will also showcase family shows encouraging visitors to head outdoors and enjoy the pleasant climate.

Meanwhile Arabic Daily AlSharq reported that the park will feature a large screen, where visitors will be able to enjoy movie in the comfort of their cars and listen to the audio on radio. The open theater will accommodate 80 cars with ample amount of food and snacks available on carts.

Source Credit: thepeninsulaqatar.com

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