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India proposes dates for Kartarpur corridor talks with Pakistan

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Gurudwara Kartarpur Sahib

New Delhi, June 29 : India has proposed to Pakistan to hold the second round of meeting to operationalise the Kartarpur corridor on the Pakistani side of the Attari-Wagah border.

India has offered July 11-14 to finalise modalities to open the Kartarpur corridor for the 550th birth anniversary of Guru Nanak in November.

The first meeting of officials of the two sides was held at Attari on March 14 on the modalities for the corridor, which will link Dera Baba Nanak in Indian Punjab with Gurdwara Darbar Sahib at Kartarpur in Pakistan.

India

Injured Inspector recounts July 3 horror by Vikas Dubey gang

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Vikas Dubey.

Bithoor police inspector Kaushalendra Pratap Singh, who was injured in the July 3 ambush at Bikru village, has now been discharged and is ready to tell the ghastly story of that night when he lost eight of his colleagues in the shootout by gangster Vikas Dubey and his associates.

Singh had taken three bullet injuries on his legs and arm in the shootout. He is the first eyewitness in the case and was at Bikru village on Tuesday to help the SIT reconstruct the sequence of events that led to the incident.

Kaushalendra Pratap Singh told SIT members that his police station had received a phone call from Station Officer (SO) Chaubeypur, Vinay Tiwari — now in jail, asking them to accompany a raid team from his police station.

“We left at around 12.30 am on July 3 to conduct a raid at gangster Vikas Dubey’s residence at Bikru village. We parked our vehicles near the site and started walking towards his house. An earthmover was parked near his house in such a way that only one person could move to the other side. As soon as we crossed the earthmover, a volley of bullets was sprayed on us,” Singh later told reporters.

Singh admitted that the police team was unarmed and completely unprepared for an encounter.

“Some of us who had our weapons took positions while others ran for cover. I took position behind the wall with two other police personnel, who were unarmed. Later, our colleague Ajay Sengar told me that he was shot in the stomach. One more police personnel was shot in the hand. As the criminals were firing from the rooftop, we could not see them,” he said.

The team from three police stations — Bithoor, Bilhaur and Chaubeypur — which went to conduct the raid consisted of about 35 police personnel, he said.

Contrary to the earlier assertion that the power supply to the village had been disconnected before the police team reached Bikru, Kaushalendra Pratap Singh said, “When we reached Bikru village, lights were on and the criminals on the terrace easily spotted the locations of police personnel and took position accordingly. Soon after, the village plunged into darkness owing to a power cut.” He said that suspended SO Chaubeypur Vinay Tiwari disappeared when the criminals started firing indiscriminately.

The Special Investigation Team (SIT) and the judicial commission headed by Justice Shashikant Agarwal (retired) are visiting Bikru village to record statements of the local people and police about the July 3 massacre and the events prior to the incident.

IANS

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Covid-19 takes 93 lives in Agra in around 100 days

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covid-19 test

More than the lack of medical facilities, it is the critical delay in testing samples of Covid-19 to ensure early treatment of patients, that has taken a heavy toll of lives in Agra which has recorded 93 deaths in around 100 days.

So cumbersome and time-consuming is the process of sampling that most suspected cases go unreported. “People on their own are reluctant to come forward to give samples, as they have to wait for long and go through an agonising procedural process. The patients are also scared of being sentenced to quarantine in facilities that are ill equipped, and reportedly unhygienic,” explained a health worker attached to an NGO.

So far Agra has tested only 30,510 samples. The SN Medical College, district hospital and the JALMA centre run by the ICMR, have a collective testing capacity of more than a thousand daily.

“If only people could get samples checked without fear and delay, and confined to friendly hospitalisation, the results would show a marked improvement. The private nursing homes are compounding the problem by squeezing the victims and when things get out of control, the patients are referred to government hospitals,” complained a family member of a victim.

In the last 24 hours, 14 fresh cases have been reported in Agra, while Firozabad reported 23 and Kasganj 12.

Agra district magistrate P.N. Singh said the total now stands at 1,411 cases, of which 1,154 had recovered. The number of active cases is 164.

More than 1,550 teams under the Covid Surveillance Programme, scheduled to end July 15, have surveyed over a lakh homes and collected health related data.

Health department officials collected 67 samples of the inmates of the temporary jail at the MD Jain Inter College. All those arrested are first lodged in this temporary jail for 14 days and only when the report comes, are they transferred to the district or the central jail.

On Monday markets opened in all areas, except in the buffer and the containment zones.

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Rail Bhawan shut for 2 days after officials test Covid positive

However, if there is specific urgency that requires an official to attend office, specific directives will be given to the official concerned, the ministry said.

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Rail Bhawan

New Delhi, July 13 : The Railways Ministry will remain closed for the next two days as a matter of “precaution” after some officials were found to be positive for coronavirus, an official statement said on Monday.

“Some officials of the Railway Board have tested Covid positive during the rapid antigen testing camp organised at Rail Bhawan on 9th, 10th and 13th July, 2020. Accordingly it has been decided to close all offices at Rail Bhawan on 14th and 15th July, 2020 to carry out intensive sanitisation of rooms and common area,” read a circular issued by the Ministry.

During these two days, all officials will work from home. They are also asked to remain available not only through phone but other electronic means of communication.

However, if there is specific urgency that requires an official to attend office, specific directives will be given to the official concerned, the ministry said.

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