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Shaheen Bagh protest: HC asks Delhi Police to review traffic restrictions

The Delhi High Court’s orders came on a PIL that sought to open the Kalindi Kunj-Shaheen Bagh stretch as it was causing “inconvenience or hardships” to lakhs of commuters every day.

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Shaheen Bagh

The Delhi High Court Tuesday directed the Delhi Police to review restrictions imposed along the Kalindi Kunj-Shaheen Bagh stretch in the city, which has been closed since December 15 due to ongoing protests against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA). The HC directed the police to keep in mind larger public interest as well as maintenance of law and order.

The road was closed on December 15, 2019 after hundreds of women hit the streets of Shaheen Bagh to protest against CAA and NRC. The diversion has thrown traffic out of gear in South East Delhi and on the roads leading to and from Noida. While the diversion was meant to be a temporary measure, it has been extended due to the continuous protests.

The court’s orders came on a PIL that sought to open the stretch as the closure was causing “inconvenience or hardships” to lakhs of commuters every day. The petition, filed advocate and social activist Amit Sahni, sought direction to the Delhi Police Commissioner to withdraw the closure of Kalindi Kunj-Shaheen Bagh Stretch and Okhla underpass.

On Monday, a police officer appealed to protesters to vacate one side of the stretch, citing traffic woes and problems faced by parents who have to take a longer route to drop their children to school. But a month into their sit-in at Shaheen Bagh, women protesters have decided to stay put.

The plea said children, who take that route, are compelled to leave home two hours prior to school timing. It claimed that the authorities have failed to take appropriate action to give relief to the residents of the locality and lakhs of commuters of Delhi, UP and Haryana.

Besides Delhi Police, the plea has made the Centre and the Delhi government as parties, seeking from them requisite assistance to the police in addressing the issue.

India

Army chief in Arunachal to review operational preparedness

The troop disengagement happened only at patrolling point-14 in Galwan Valley, the site of the June 15 clashes, and patrolling point-15 in Hot Springs.

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Manoj Mukund Naravane

New Delhi, Aug 6 : As talks on disengagement with China hit a roadblock, Indian Army chief, Gen. Manoj Mukund Naravane has gone to Arunachal Pradesh for a two-day visit to forward areas along the Line of Actual Control.

He would be interacting with field commanders to check operational preparedness in the forward areas.

The Army chief’s visit comes as China has started building up troops, artillery, armour and materials in depth areas in all three sectors — western (Ladakh), middle (Uttarakhand, Himachal) and eastern (Sikkim, Arunachal) — of the 3,488-km Line of Actual Control.

China has also mobilised soldiers near Uttarakhand’s Lipulekh Pass, a tri-junction between India, Nepal and China situated atop the Kalapani Valley.

Since Chinese People’s Liberation Army troops are not moving back as per the consensus, the Indian Army has kicked off the massive logistical exercise for advance winter stocking, with rations, specialised clothing, prefabricated shelters, arctic tents and other equipment. India has deployed over 35,000 troops in Ladakh.

The countries are locked in a hitherto unprecedented three-month-long stand-off at multiple points along the border.

China had changed the status quo on the LAC at various places, moving inside the Indian territory. India has objected to it and is taking up the matter with China at all levels.

The troop disengagement happened only at patrolling point-14 in Galwan Valley, the site of the June 15 clashes, and patrolling point-15 in Hot Springs.

On June 15, as many as 20 Indian soldiers and an unknown number of Chinese troops were killed in a violent clash in the Galwan Valley.

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Unemployment biggest worry after Covid for urban Indians: Survey

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New Delhi, Aug 6 : As the ongoing pandemic hits the Indian economy hard and the employment scenario worsens with large scale job losses, an Ipsos survey shows that unemployment is the second biggest worry for urban Indians, after the concern over novel coronavirus infection.

According to the survey, the top issues perturbing urban Indians include COVID-19 in the first place, followed by unemployment. The other worries which follow are financial and political corruption, poverty and inequality, and healthcare.

The sentiments are largely the same globally with novel coronavirus and unemployment emerging as the top two concerns.

The other issues which concern people globally are poverty and social inequality, financial and political corruption, crime and violence and healthcare, said an Ipsos statement.

“Largely, the worries of global citizens are a lot similar to what urban Indians are experiencing, though concern around coronavirus and lack of jobs is far more pronounced for urban Indians. COVID-19 scare for India is far from over and it is collaterally impacting jobs, standard of living, healthcare cost and there is fear of corruption levels going up as things continue to be in a state of flux, said Amit Adarkar, CEO, Ipsos in India.

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Deadly cobra comes home for dinner!

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Giant Cobra Rescued

Agra, Aug 6 : A slithering serpent triggered a state of panic amongst members of a family as soon as they spotted the uninvited guest comfortably perched in a drawer of the almirah in their bedroom, perhaps waiting for dinner time to move out.

The local police man contacted the NGO Wildlife SOS which sent its team to nab the reptile. A two-member team from the NGO geared up with necessary rescue equipment and rushed to the location. After ensuring that the occupants were at a safe distance, the team carefully extricated the distressed cobra from the almirah and transferred it in a safe transport carrier. It took 30 minutes minutes for the rescue operation. The reptile was safely rescued by the team and was later released back in its natural habitat.

Baijuraj M.V, Director Conservation Projects for Wildlife SOS, said, “We are glad that more and more people are reaching out to us for help, rather than taking matters in their own hands. Snake sightings increase in the monsoons and our teams work round the clock to ensure no call for aid goes unanswered.”

Kartick Satyanarayan, CEO and Co-founder of Wildlife SOS, said “Being one of the four most venomous snake species to be found in India, our team had to exercise a lot of caution while conducting the rescue in order to avoid any unnecessary casualties. Sometimes these rescues can be dangerous and risky, but our team is trained to handle and carry out such sensitive operations, in the interest of public safety and protection of urban wildlife.”

The cobra was kept under observation for a few hours and later released back in the wild.

India is home to a variety of snake species ranging from extremely venomous snakes like the Cobra and Common krait to relatively harmless and non-venomous ones like the Common sand boa, Red sand boa, Wolf snake & Rat snake. Largely misrepresented and often perceived as dangerous, reptiles are met with fear and hostility, leading to incidents of human conflict with this species.

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