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Fog disrupts air, rail traffic in Delhi; air quality ‘severe’

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New Delhi, Dec 25 : It was a cold foggy Tuesday morning in the national capital with visibility dropping to 50 metres affecting flight schedule and causing cancellation of over 300 trains.

The air quality in Delhi-NCR remained ‘severe’ for the fourth consecutive day as high humidity, low wind speed and drop in mercury prevented the dispersal of particulate matters.

According to SAFAR, the Air Quality Index (AQI) of the national capital was 423 — in the hazardous zone — as the minimum temperature was recorded at 5.6 degrees Celsius, two notches below the season’s average.

The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has predicted shallow fog for the day with the maximum temperature likely to hover around 21 degrees Celsius.

At 8.30 a.m., the humidity was 100 per cent; visibility dropped to 50 metres at Palam with a spate of flight delays at the Delhi airport.

All departures at the the Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGI) were suspended for over an hour as dense fog delayed 45 flights.

“Due to adverse weather conditions (fog) at Delhi, few of our flights have been affected,” the Jet Airways tweeted.

“The overall air quality in Delhi is severe,” System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting And Research (SAFAR) said in its daily pollution analysis.

“There is a significant fall in temperature which has brought down the boundary layer significantly with the huge amount of moisture beneath,” SAFAR said.

At the IGI Airport (T3) PM2.5 was recorded at 434. Many areas in the capital recorded Particulate Matter (PM)10 levels way beyond the safe standard.

Experts advised against all physical activities outdoors and prescribed the use of N-95 or P-100 respirators when stepping out.

A total of 316 trains were cancelled this morning. Train starting from here that were cancelled included Shramjeevi express to Rajgir in Bihar, Gomti express to Lucknow and Mahabodhi express.

IANS

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Bhopal may get country’s first cremation ground for cows

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Bhopal, Jan 18 (IANS) The country’s first cremation ground for cows will be prepared in Madhya Pradesh’s capital Bhopal and the city’s municipal authorities are already on the lookout for a site for the purpose.

Bhopal Mayor Alok Sharma said: “The municipal corporation wants to prepare a cow cremation centre for their salvation. We will do it as soon as we find a suitable land for it.”

Sharma said that the project was already under discussion during former Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan’s regime, and now they were taking it forward.

Hailing the civic authorities’ effort, Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamalnath said the government would encourage the efforts made for the welfare of cows. The government was committed to fulfilling its promises, he said.

The Congress had promised to construct cowsheds at Panchayat level in its manifesto before the Assembly elections.

There are an estimated 227 crore cattle in the state, out of which 90 lakh are milch cows.

Farmer leader Kedar Sirohi has also welcomed the effort and urged the government to take in notice the cows who are dying due to malnutrition at early age.

Stray cattle have become a problem in the state and often cause accidents and destroy crops.

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10% quota for economically weak applicable from Jan 14 in UP

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Lucknow, Jan 18 :The Uttar Pradesh cabinet on Friday ratified 10 per cent reservation for economically weaker sections among the upper castes, a government spokesman said.

A meeting of the state cabinet chaired by Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath here decided to enforce the reservation in government jobs and higher education institutions with retrospective effect, from January 14.

“The officials have carefully studied the formula of reservation to the upper castes, as rolled out by the Central and the Gujarat governments, and it has been decided that the quota will come into effect in the state the way it is being implemented by Centre,” said state Power Minister Srikant Sharma.

All Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-ruled states, including Jharkhand, Uttarakhand and Gujarat, have already implemented the 10 per cent reservation for economically weak, after President Ram nath Kovind gave his assent to the constitutional amendment bill passed by the Parliament.

In another key decision, the cabinet okayed a proposal to use Rs 165 crore earned through the cess on liquor sale for protection of cows.

Besides, it was also decided that the cabinet approval will not be required for the projects worth up to Rs 1 crore.

The cabinet also gave the nod for renaming Mughalsarai tehsil after RSS ideologue Deen Dayal Upadhyay.

Also, a decision to rebore 1,101 tubewells and install 2,000 new sets was taken on Friday.

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Bihar: Boy’s jaw broken for plucking plums in Muzaffarpur

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Patna, Jan 18: A seven-year-old boy was beaten, his jaw was broken and six of his teeth were knocked out as punishment for plucking some plums from a tree in Bihar’s Muzaffarpur district, police said on Friday.

An FIR has been lodged on the basis of the complaint filed by the boy’s mother, police officer Mohammad Sujauddin said.

Mohammad Sohail was attacked by Faizan Warsi alias Jonny, who beat the boy black and blue for plucking fruits from the tree near his house. The child has been admitted to a hospital in critical condition.

Sohail’s mother also claimed that Warsi’s parents had asked her to keep mum on the matter and not involve the police.

The police were yet to nab the culprit.

IANS

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