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Showing posts with label Government Services. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Government Services. Show all posts

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Review: Railway Budget 2015 by Modi Government - Key 30 Highlights

Introduction


Railways is an important asset in growing India's economy to next level. Every year we wait to hear Rail Budget and what it has in store for the countrymen. While every Government's focus is towards security, safety & cleanliness in railways but we hardly see anything change on ground. One reason is because the VVIP hardly travel in trains and secondly there are very limited Audits to traveller grievances.

Getting to know about Railway Budget 2015


With the new Govt. in power in India, the expectations are sky rocketed. We believe three major issues that railways need to address on priority: Safety - Cleanliness Punctuality.

Railway has a very poor track records in all these departments which forms the very basic framework of railways services. Reasons like lack of funds etc. are unacceptable. Its all about setting right processes in place and replacing incompetent workforce by more smart folks.




KEY 30 Excerpts from Railway Budget 2015

1. No increase in passenger fares

2. 67% more funds allotted for passenger amenities

3. 17000 more toilets to be replaced by Bio-Toilets

4. State of the art perishable cargo center under completion for farmers

5. Now you can book rail tickets 4 months ( 120 days) in advance against current 60 days

6. All India 24 X 7 helpline 138 from 1/3/15 ; Toll free No.182 – for security complaints

7. SMS alert on mobile, customer portal promoting digital India campaign - Rly display network

8. SMS alert service to inform about the upgraded arrival & departure timing

9. Unreserved ticket purchase made simpler through smart phones; debit cards - OPN 5 Min

10. Surveillance cameras on select mainline and ladies compartments

11. Modern facilities for disabled citizens, senior citizens, patients through IRCTC

12. Online booking of wheelchairs to be available for the elderly

13. Satellite railway terminals in major cities - 10 select stations

14. 24 to 26 coaches in certain identified trains, more general class coaches, ladders to be replaced

15. 120 crore provided for lifts and escalators to facilitate movements

16. Fast track highest priority works. Investment 84% higher; 77 new projects -Doubling, tripling/quadrupling/ electrification

17. 1330% increase in railway electrification over previous year.

18. Newly manufactured coaches will be Braille enabled & have wider entrances for differently-abled  passengers

19. Station to be redeveloped through simpler processes - faster redevelopment. Monitoring cell constituted

20. TRANSLOC – new PSU – end to end logistics solution

21. The average speed of freight trains both in empty and filled condition will be enhanced

22. Plan to double and triple railway tracks over 7000 km, 686 cr over the next year for the project

23. Automatic freight rebate system launched and to be expanded

24. Corporate safety Plans; ISRO to be involved; 3438 level Xings to be eliminated, Rly expense increased by 2600 %

25. Malaviya Chair at IIT/BHU for Railway technology

26. 970 of road over bridges will be built over unmanned railway crossings

27. Framework to facilitate pvt investment has been readied; MUTP-III, JV with states,PSUs

28. We propose to get a system audit conducted for all Railways in next 2 months

29. 1000MV Solar plants to be set-up by developers on Rly/Pvt. Land and on Rly Building at own cost

30. To expand water vending machines to most railway stations to ensure availability of clean drinking water at very low cost to people

General Observation & Verdict

Good budget with no increase in fares but how much will it be delivered is the question. We are deeply disappointed by booking window extended upto 4 months instead of 2 months. Now if somebody have to travel with a month notice will never find a booking and will have to rely on Tatkal. This is very narrow approach by the Govt. Overall we would rate this budget at 2.5 out of 5.



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Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Review: Delhi Elections 2015 & 10 Reasons for AAP Victory - Key Insights

Introduction

This is being coined as Delhi’s best elections by far. AAP founded by Arvind Kerijwal completely sweeped the Assembly elections uprooting Congress completely and making Central Ruling Party to just 3 seats. 

It’s the time to access results into insights & imperatives:

Getting to know about Top 10 Reasons for AAP Victory


1) Well done home-work & preps: Ever since AAP’s chief Kejriwal gave up CM post after 49 days stint, the focus was very clear in terms of preparation. They were the first party which started the declaration of candidates to its manifesto, compared to their BJP and Congress. It was with their Delhi dialogues, AAP leaders and volunteer would connect to common people who turned into prospective voters. 

2) All Apologies: Kejriwal apologized with Delhi citizens for quitting just after 49 days and taking support from Congress. It was viewed as sincere and honest effort from his side. And he further worked on toning down his "anarchist" appearance. He refrained from naming from naming opponents. People perceived it as his humility. 

3) Suits vs Mufflers: One thing that terribly went wrong for BJP is to have PM Modi wear an expensive suit bearing his name which was touted to be debated at media discussions on the funds used to make that suit. On contrary, Arvind Kejriwal with his Cap & Muffler was prototypical to aam aadmi.

4) Muslim Votes Matters: It is rumored that Muslims prodigiously supported the AAP. The Muslim vote was divided between AAP and Congress in last election but this time the swing of Muslims votes to AAP was well expected.

5) Congress's loss & AAP's gain:  AAP has been able to get majority of Congress's votes. Delhi citizens are extremely dissatisfied with Congress rule in Delhi. Hence Congress patron looking for alternate option but not BJP, lead to lot of AAP’s gain.

6) BJP Complacency: One sure thing was BJP had  been complacent about the Delhi assembly polls after 7-0 score line in the Lok Sabha elections. They felt Delhi should be an easy Victory & NaMo factor at its peak, BJP volunteers & leadership team tend to ignore connect with common Delhites. The party was dependent too much on Narendra Modi's USP and Amit Shah's organizing abilities. It was too late for BJP to regroup as the damage was done already by AAP volunteers.

7) Bedi is not Modi: Bedi is a brilliant leader and no body has doubt on her capabilities however the timing was misjudged by BJP. 17 days was just too little for her to connect with common Delhi citizens. Additionally it is to be believed that internal BJP worked not very happy with sudden upliftment of Bedi out of blue. If Bedi was introduced 5-6 months earlier, the verdict would have been very different. 

8) Zilch polarization:  AAP had worked smart to avoid any polarization of voters on religious grounds. It was prompt to reject the offer of support from Jama Masjid's Shahi Imam Bukhari where as BJP on other hand supported home-coming (reconversion to Hinduism) & some their leaders spoke cheaply about producing more babies and all which was truly unacceptable. BJP should know that Delhi has smartest Citizens. A big introspection needed. 

9) Modi Factor: This elections was not about Modi as CM. It is state election after-all. Delhi voters did allude earlier that they would vote for Modi for PM and Kejriwal for CM  This ideology seems to have worked in AAP's favour big time.

10) Anti-incumbency: Anti-incumbency did not work in Delhi for the BJP. A huge learning for BJP


General Observation & Verdict

Great victory for muffler man Arvind. At end common man's verdict is out and each political party need to learn the new way of engaging citizens. 
We shall be sharing the key lessons for Congress and BJP to learn in our consequent post.

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Thursday, September 25, 2014

Review: India's Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM) - Cheapest Expedition to Mars in human history

Introduction

ISRO - Indian Space Research Organisation founded by Vikram Sarabhai almost 45 years ago on 15 August 1969 with a primary objective to advance space technology and use its applications for national benefit for India and rest of the world. This day 24th Sep'14 shall always be remembered in history as moment for India to be first nation who sent Mars orbiter which successfully entered in its orbit in first attempt. This is a huge success for all Indian. A major boost in DEEP SPACE EXPLORATION.
The Indian Mars Mission 

The Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM), known as 'Mangalayaan' was launched into Earth orbit on 5 November 2013 by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) and has entered Mars orbit on 24 September 2014 at a record cost of $67 million which is less than Rs5 per person of India's total population. This gives India a clear edges over its Asian neigbours.


On 24th Mar 2015 - India MOM completes 6 months in Martian orbit and all the equipments are working normally which would make this mission last much longer than anticipated.


Getting to know about MOM
MOM was successfully placed into Red-Planet's orbit on september 24 8:23 AM IST.The spacecraft had a lift-off mass of 1,350 kilograms and 15 kg of scientific instruments as payload and planned to be put into a highly elliptical orbit around Mars. Mars Orbiter Mission is India's first interplanetary mission to planet Mars with an orbiter craft and mission is primarily technological mission considering the critical mission operations and stringent requirements on propulsion and other bus systems of spacecraft.
The framework of MOM


If you look at ISRO's objectives , its broken down into two key aspects:

A. Technological Objectives:
Design and realisation of a Mars orbiter with a capability to survive and perform Earth bound manoeuvres, cruise phase of 300 days, Mars orbit insertion / capture, and on-orbit phase around Mars.
Deep space communication, navigation, mission planning and management.
Incorporate autonomous features to handle contingency situations.

B. Scientific Objectives:
Exploration of Mars surface features, morphology, mineralogy and Martian atmosphere by indigenous scientific instruments.


Scientists working on the mission | Photographs - AP

Build & Quality

The payload for MOM has key guests who shall be providing important information of Martian planet.


  • Lyman Alpha Photometer (LAP) - to measure Deuterium & Hydrogen which in turn help understanding loss of water from planet.
  • Methane Sensor for Mars (MSM) - to measure Methan on MArtian atmosphere
  • Mars Exospheric Neutral Composition Analyser (MENCA) - to measure neutral composition
  • Mars Color Camera (MCC) - to capture images and information about the surface features and composition of Martian surface
  • Thermal Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (TIS) - to measure thermal emission to map surface composition and mineralogy of Mars


For more details visit: http://www.isro.org/pslv-c25/pdf/mom-payloads.pdf 

The technical specification are in below brochure :  http://www.isro.org/pslv-c25/pdf/pslv-c25-brochure.pdf 

Some of the Mission Critical Challenges (Courtesy : ISRO/Wikipedia)

Thermal Environment
The bus needs to cope with a wide range of thermal environment, from Near Earth conditions with Sun and Earth contributions (hot case) to Mars conditions where eventually eclipses and reduced solar flux give rise to cold case issues. 

Radiation Environment
The main frame bus elements and payloads are basically designed for interplanetary missions capable of operating in Earth Burn Manoeuvres (EBN), Mars Transfer Trajectory (MTT) and Martian Orbit (MO) environments.

Communication Systems
The communication systems for the Mars mission are responsible for the challenging task of communication management up to a distance of 400 million km. It consists of Telemetry, Tracking and Commanding (TTC) systems and Data transmission systems in S-band and a Delta Differential One-way Ranging (Δ-DOR) Transmitter for ranging. 

The TTC system comprises of coherent TTC Transponders, TWTAs (Travelling Wave Tube Amplifiers), a near omni coverage antenna system, a High Gain Antenna system, Medium Gain Antenna and corresponding feed networks. 

The High Gain Antenna system is based on a single 2.2 meter reflector illuminated by a feed at S-band. 

Power System
One of the major challenges in the design of power system is due to the larger distance of the satellite from the Sun. The power generation in Mars orbit is reduced to nearly 50% to 35% compared to Earth’s orbit. 

The power bus configuration comprises of a single wing of solar array with 7.56 m2 area generating about 840 W during sunlit and normal incidence in Martian orbit, and a 36 Ampere-Hour Lithium-Ion battery supports the power load during launch phase, initial attitude acquisition, eclipse, Earth burns, MOI, safe mode and data transmission phases. 


Propulsion System
Propulsion System consists of one 440N Liquid Engine and 8 numbers of 22N thrusters. The propellant tanks have combined storage capacity up to 852 kg propellant. The 22N thrusters are used for attitude control during the various activities of the mission like, orbit raising using liquid engine, attitude maintenance, Martian orbit maintenance (if any) and momentum dumping. 

As the critical operation of Martian Orbit Insertion with Liquid Engine burn occurs after 10 months of launch, suitable isolation techniques are adopted to prevent fuel/ oxidiser migration issues. 
First Pictures from MOM

On-board Autonomy

Given that the Round-trip Light Time (RLT) from Earth to Mars can vary anywhere between 6 to 43 minutes, it would be impractical to micromanage a mission from Earth. Due to this communications delay, mission support personnel on Earth cannot easily monitor and control all the spacecraft systems in real-time basis. Therefore, the configuration includes the use of on-board autonomy to automatically manage both the nominal and non-nominal scenarios on-board the spacecraft. 


Cheat Sheet

  1. A tiring but an ambitious journey of 300 days and 420 million miles, cheapest interplanetary mission ever to be undertaken by the world” 
  2. Though Indian Space Research Organisation – is a late entrant to the space race, and the success of Mangalyaan makes the country an Asian leader in space exploration, is national pride.
  3. While some think that in India, still large population lives below poverty line however India’s weather satellites helped reduce the number of deaths during cyclone Phailin last year is classic example of such exploration which costed India only Rs 5 per person on population scale.
  4. India is fortunate in having a long and diverse history of campaigning science movements that have sought to draw both on indigenous knowledge traditions and direct modern scientific research towards progress in health, literacy, environment, nutrition and sanitation which is vital for next generation Young Indians.
  5. Mangalyaan and NASA's MAVEN join two other NASA orbiters, Europe's Mars Express orbiter and two NASA rovers currently exploring Mars.
    The Cheat Sheet
  6. Two-thirds of the craft's parts were made by Indian companies such as Larsen & Toubro and Godrej & Boyce.
  7. Both the United States and Russia lost their first Mars probes. Europe's first Mars mission, the multinational Mars Express, did enter orbit in December 2003, although a companion British-built lander was destroyed during its descent to the surface.
  8. NASA duly tipped its hat. "We congratulate the Indian Space Research Organisation for its successful arrival at Mars with the Mars Orbiter Mission," NASA Administrator Charles Bolden said in a statement.
  9. The expected life of the craft is six months, after which it will run out of fuel and be unable to maintain its orbit.
  10. The project had cost less than "Gravity", whose budget the Internet Movie Database (IMDb) estimates at $100 million.
The live updates on the mission can be found here

General Observation & Verdict
Indeed its one of the most sought out achievement for India, and western world for surely attribut it to people costs which are less, and the scientists and engineers working on any space mission are always the largest part of the ticket price. One of the important aspect is how India's home-grown components and technologies have also been prioritised over expensive foreign imports. But its the zeal of each each Indian had carefully made things work simply. Kudos to all. 


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Sunday, August 31, 2014

Review: DDA Housing Scheme 2014 & Final Results


Introduction


Looking forward to buy a flat/house in Delhi? For most of the Delhites , one of the biggest dreams in their lives is to own a flat in national capital at an affordable price. As we know, after Mumbai, Delhi is one of the most expensive real-estate market of India. The property index of Delhi had been increasing exponentially and for a middle class person – buying a flat/house using black-market is crazy expensive. The only on scheme every Delhi citizen wait every couple of years is for the Delhi Development Authority (DDA)  housing scheme where you get a flat a fraction of price and every bank willing to mortgage it as it is considered to be a gateway to prosperity. This year DDA is launching its much awaited scheme of 25,034 flats and we shall give you a crystal review of this scheme and process of enrolment.




https://docs.google.com/file/d/0Bxp9guUL2zR9Rm9xWko0bUQ3b3M/edit
DDA Housing Scheme 2014

Getting to know about DDA 2014 housing scheme
Under the DDA 2014 housing scheme, which has 25,034 flats are on offer starting today, 1st Sep till Oct 9, 2014. An important note, unlike its previous schemes, forms will not be available at Vikas Sadan this time and will neither be accepted at the DDA headquarters.


Quality & Build
DDA flats are known for their under quality, however this time around, special focus had been laid to quality standard while they were being built. Most of the flats comes will well planned layout both internally and externally. Now let’s analyze the numbers and probability of getting a flat.

The largest mass of the flats — 22,627 out of total 25,034 — are one bedroom units with a drawing room, kitchen and bathroom and located mostly in Rohini, Narela and Dwarka.

The price ranges are as follows:
a)    Rs. 14-22 lakh for the one bedroom flats,
b)    Rs. 41-69 lakh for two bedroom flats
c)    Rs. 69 lakh to Rs. 1.2 crore for three bedroom flats
d)    About 700 flats for the Economically Weaker Sections that are priced at Rs. 5.87 lakh to Rs. 9.9 lakh.


There is a locking period introduced this year to remove any middlemen – the locking period is for 5 years and hence this time we would expect only genuine buyers applying.

Flats & Demographics: While majority of flats are located in Rohini, Narela and Dwarka,  many flats are also located in Jasola, Vasant Kunj, Kalyan Vihar, Motia Khan and Mukherjee Nagar


Applying for DDA Housing Scheme 2014
a)    The scheme will be open till October 9. Any Indian citizen, who doesn’t own a property in Delhi individually or jointly, is allowed to apply for a flat.

b)    The application form has been kept simple this time and applicants don’t need to provide any documents along with it. However, it is mandatory for applicants to provide their PAN details.

c)    The application forms can be downloaded from: (due to heavy traffic, some of the links may not work) :
          http://dda.org.in/ddanew/Hosing_Scheme2014.aspx
          https://www.payumoney.com/dda/#/kotak         
          https://easypay.axisbank.co.in/index.php/dda1.html


You can also download the free copy of DDA Housing Scheme 2014 Brochure/form from our shared-drive:
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0Bxp9guUL2zR9Rm9xWko0bUQ3b3M

d)  Application fee of INR 100,000 with copy of form and PAN card details to be submitted

e)    Additional fee of INR150 for brochure need to be submitted with above mentioned application fees

f)     Most of the nationalized banks are opening special counters to fund loan for application fees and kindly check with your nearest branch today

g)    The last date for submission is 9th Oct, 2014

h)    The draw of lots for the scheme is expected to be held between on 25th November 2014 and DDA promises to hand over all flats by March 2015

i)      The draw will be held by the Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC), which had held the draw for DDA’s 2010 housing scheme too

j)      For unsuccessful applicants, the money will be refunded back in 90 days from draw result’s date


General Observations and Feedback

DDA Housing scheme is one of the most awaited schemes in India, and as alluded earlier is one of the cheapest and easiest way to own a flat in Delhi.



http://www.hindustantimes.com/Images/popup/2014/9/0109pg02a.jpg
DDA Scheme in Infographics - Courtesy - HT

With affordable price and easy access to mortgage options – we would expect more than half a million applicants trying their luck for getting nearer to a dream of owning a home of their own.

Quick Snapshot : Total no. of applicants - 10 Lakhs (1 million)
No. of total flats: 25,034
Ratio: 40:1 (40 applicants per flat)

For Final Result/ Lottery Draw : Click Here
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Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Review: Filing your income tax for free

Introduction



Income Tax Returns filing deadline is just around the corner. Thanks to the Internet connectivity, you can file it online from the comforts of your home. However, like all the Government websites, Income Tax Department's website is a mess. Its complicated UX is one of the reasons why most people prefer to pay Charter Accountant to get this thing done. In addition to making them rich, we also end-up inflating their ego. What else do you think drives them to add the Title 'CA' on their Facebook profiles?
Anyway, we've come up with an easy to follow tutorial that will help you file IT returns within 10 minutes without any professional help. Keep in mind though that this tutorial is only for salaried individuals like me.
Before you get started, keep a copy of your Form 16 handy. If you're new to all this, this form is provided by your employer. It has details such as taxable salary, deductions, and the tax that has been paid on your behalf. If you're eligible for refunds, try and file your returns before 31st July
- See more at: http://www.techtree.com/content/features/7010/how-file-income-tax-returns-online-2014.html#sthash.sQt68lbH.dpuf


Income Tax Returns filing deadline is just around the corner. Thanks to the Internet connectivity, you can file it online from the comforts of your home. However, like all the Government websites, Income Tax Department's website is a mess. Its complicated UX is one of the reasons why most people prefer to pay Charter Accountant to get this thing done. In addition to making them rich, we also end-up inflating their ego. What else do you think drives them to add the Title 'CA' on their Facebook profiles?
Anyway, we've come up with an easy to follow tutorial that will help you file IT returns within 10 minutes without any professional help. Keep in mind though that this tutorial is only for salaried individuals like me.
Before you get started, keep a copy of your Form 16 handy. If you're new to all this, this form is provided by your employer. It has details such as taxable salary, deductions, and the tax that has been paid on your behalf. If you're eligible for refunds, try and file your returns before 31st July
- See more at: http://www.techtree.com/content/features/7010/how-file-income-tax-returns-online-2014.html#sthash.sQt68lbH.dpuf
With Income Tax Returns filing deadline making those whooshing sounds in your ears, with technological advance and rapid use of INTERNET has making your filing a lot easier. For a layman, the Income Tax Department website to could be a harrowing experience and hence most of us hire CAs to do the job which is an expensive affair.

With our continuous endeavor to give you best of review services we happened to come across this article which is truly helpful.  A caveat is this article will be applicable to salaried professionals only.

Please keep your form 16 ready and ensure the deadline is 31st Jul, 2014 for all returns.


Getting to know about ITR
Below is the link which has the detailed step by step process with screen-shots as to how you need to file your return. 


http://www.techtree.com/content/features/7010/how-file-income-tax-returns-online-2014.html



ITR Website

General observations

The steps are very useful and even a first time filer should be able to take the guidance and file the returns. Most of the corporate organisations have tie-ups with leading HR consulting firms like Hewitt and Tax Consultants like Tax Spanner. In case you are not sure, you can indeed use their services for nominal price depending on the kind of guidance you want to seek from them.



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Thursday, July 10, 2014

Review: India's Union Budget 2014 - Modi Government maiden act

Introduction

The maiden budget presented by newly elected Prime minister Modi today in Indian parliament is being considered as one of the most apt budget that had been presented in recent times. While Dalal street has cheered the budget up, others  especially from opposition parties have completely rejected it. The common man is fairly fine with "Modi-ism".

TOP 20 excerpts from Modi budget:


  1. -Excise duty on footwear halved
  2. -Five new tourist circuits to be established
  3. -World class convention centre to come up in Goa
  4. -IT exemption limit for those below 60 raised from Rs.2 lakhs to Rs.2.5 lakhs; from Rs.2.5 lakhs to Rs.3 lakhs for senior citizens
  5. - No change in surcharge for corporates; education cess to continue
  6. - Allocation of Rs.2.037 crore for creating integrated Ganga conservation mission
  7. - National sports foundations to be set up for disciplines like shooting, wrestling and boxing; Jammu and Kashmir gets Rs.200 crore to upgrade sports facilities; Sports university to come up in Manipur
  8. -Defence allocated Rs.229,000 crore; modernisation gets Rs.5,000 crore over and above interim budget
  9. - Uniform KYC norms to be introduced across entire financial sector
  10. - Steps to revive SEZs
  11.  -Sixteen new port projects to be taken up this fiscal
  12. -Jal Marg Vikas programme to be launched to promote navigation on Ganga from Allahabad to Haldia
  13. -Kisan TV to be launched to disseminate information in real time
  14. -Allocation of Rs.14,389 crore for rural roads
  15. -FDI limit in insurance sector raised to 49 percent
  16. -All states to get AIIMS like institutions an allocation of Rs.500 crore for 5 more IITs and 5 more IIMs
  17. - Allocation of Rs.500 crore to provide 24x7 power in rural areas
  18. - E-visas to be introduced at nine airports
  19. - Colour TVs to cost less on reduced customs duties- Thirteen more airports to get 24x7 customs facilities
  20. - Excise duty increased on Tobacco products
Budget Summary & Reviews in 60 seconds:



Insights & Imperatives:

Today's budget speech was one of the longest most speech by any Finance Minister. The budget looks bold aiming to contain fiscal deficit, pull economy back on track by fiscal consolidation. The budget also aimed to improve investment sentiments which should turn around by more job opportunities for young Indian generation. Modi government did cover most of every industry but left in lurch on scheme related to Aviation, Automobiles and Telecom services in general. One of the interesting aspect is Public banks will now be able to raise fund by rolling out shares/IPOs which should infuse much needed capitalization.

We feel this is definitely a brave budget and next 1-2 years will be interesting to watch, the success of the budget and in particular the Govt. will be assessed on how it actually executes, implement and monitor promises made in this budet, we do believe "Acche din zaroor ayengay" ; Good days will surely come.


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