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Sino-Indian ties to benefit world: Indian envoy

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China and India are re-emerging in a mutually supportive manner and their cooperation will benefit the world, India’s ambassador Ashok Kantha has said.

Kantha has a “sense of deep satisfaction” as relations between the Asian neighbours gained momentum since he took office in 2014, Xinhua quoted the ambassador as saying.

Kantha will complete his tenure and leave China this week.

The last two years were “the most productive phase” in the development of Sino-Indian ties, as shown by frequent high-level exchanges, especially the two landmark visits by leaders of the two countries, he said.

In September 2014, Chinese President Xi Jinping visited India. In May 2015, Xi welcomed Modi to his hometown.

In addition to reaching a series of agreements and understandings, the leaders also sent out “very powerful signals of the desire by India and China to work together”, said Kantha.

The re-emergence of India and China was a defining development of the 21st century, and the two countries have to take into consideration each other’s interests, concerns and aspirations, he added.

China is one of India’s largest trading partners, with two-way trade in 2015 expected to reach $100 billion.

“We need to move to a more balanced trade relationship,” said Kantha, adding India was trying to expand its economic engagement and attract investment from Chinese companies.

While China has promoted strategies including ‘Made in China 2025’ and ‘Internet Plus’, India has launched initiatives such as ‘Make in India’, ‘Digital India’ and ‘Smart Cities’.

Kantha said these will create new opportunities for the two countries to contribute to each other’s development.

“Indian companies have strengths when it comes to the knowledge-based economy, which can contribute to China’s economic development, which emphasises innovation and R&D,” said Kantha.

Kantha said he appreciated Chinese people’s interest in Indian culture. After visiting 27 Chinese cities, Kantha said: “Yoga is finding a second home in China.”

China and India, as neighbours and two of the world’s fastest growing economies, approach several key global issues with similar perspectives.

“We have converging interests when it comes to international issues. Therefore, it is not surprising that collaboration is increasing significantly.”

Kantha admitted there were problems, such us border disputes. “But we will not let them get in the way of the development of relations.”

In 2015, China and India, together with other BRICS partners, worked to launch the New Development Bank, which is headquartered in Shanghai and headed by an Indian president.

India also supported China in establishing the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank last year, with India being the second largest shareholder.

India

India wants to focus on connectivity to Buddhist sites: PM Modi

The Prime Minister said that the event is also known as Guru Purnima. “This is a day to remember our gurus who gave us knowledge. In that spirit, we pay homage to Lord Buddha,” PM said.

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New Delhi, July 4 : Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the occasion of Asaadh Poornima and the inauguration of the Dharma Chakra Day, on Saturday, said India wants to focus on connectivity to Buddhist sites to improve tourism.

The Prime Minister’s remark came at a time when the country is passing through its worst economic phase and needs improvement in all sectors including tourism to attract revenue.

“We want to focus on connectivity to Buddhist sites. A few days back the Indian cabinet announced that Kushinagar airport will be an international one. This will bring people, pilgrims and tourists,” Modi said.

Addressing through video conferencing, Modi said he is very hopeful about the 21st century and this hope comes from young friends. He lauded the efforts of youths in start-up sectors saying, “If you want to see a great example of how hope, innovation and compassion can remove suffering, it is our start-up sector led by our youths,”

Noting that bright young minds are finding solutions to global problems, the Prime Minister said India has one of the largest start-up eco-systems and I would urge my young friends to also stay connected with the thoughts of Lord Buddha so that they could be motivated and find the way ahead.

The Prime Minister said that the event is also known as Guru Purnima. “This is a day to remember our gurus who gave us knowledge. In that spirit, we pay homage to Lord Buddha,” PM said.

“The eight-fold path of Lord Buddha shows the way towards the well-being of many societies and nations. It highlights the importance of compassion and kindness. The teachings of Lord Buddha celebrate simplicity, both in thought and action,” He said.

Buddhism teaches respect for people, the poor and women, for peace and non-violence. “Therefore, the teachings of Buddhism are the means to a sustainable planet.”

“In his very first sermon in Sarnath, and his teachings after that, Lord Buddha spoke on two things — hope and purpose. He saw a strong link between them. From hope comes a spirit of purpose,” the Prime Minister said.

Talking of the fight against the novel coronavirus pandemic, the Prime Minister said the world is fighting against this virus with extraordinary challenges. To these challenges, he said, lasting solutions can come from the ideals of Lord Buddha. “They were relevant in the past. They are relevant in the present. And, they will continue to remain relevant in the future.”

“May the thoughts of Lord Buddha further brighten togetherness and brotherhood. May his blessings inspire us to do good,” the Prime Minister added.

This day is also aptly observed as Guru Poornima by both Buddhists and Hindus as a day to mark reverence to their Gurus. The day is celebrated as Dharma Chakra Day by the International Buddhist Confederation (IBC), under the Ministry of Culture. This day commemorates Buddha”s First Sermon to his first five ascetic disciples at the Deer Park, Rsipatana in the present-day Sarnath near Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh.

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COVID-19: Fresh surge in corona cases causes alarm in Agra

Increased mobility and opening of markets in Unlock-2, plus the monsoon rains, can further increase the number of cases, health officials indicated.

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Agra, July 4 : With 14 new COVID-19 cases and three deaths in the last 24 hours, alarm bells have begun to ring in the Taj city. The district authorities have reviewed the grim situation and scaled up testing in the hotspots.

In view of the spike in cases, the authorities have again raised the number of containment and buffer zones to 68. Earlier, the number had dropped to 54.

The new cases have taken the tally to 1,267. Six patients were discharged after recovery. The death toll now stands at 90, while the total number of discharged patients is 1,040. Health officials said the number of active cases now was 137.

The recovery rate is 82.09 per cent.

Indian Medical Association (IMA) secretary doctor Sanjay Chaturvedi said the picture would be clear in eight to ten days. The number of positive cases had gone below ten, but now it has gone up again. As private labs begin testing samples, the cases could go up, he feared.

Increased mobility and opening of markets in Unlock-2, plus the monsoon rains, can further increase the number of cases, health officials indicated.

But the district administration and the screening teams now organising health camps in hotspots were fully prepared to cope with the challenges, they said.

A total of 41 teams surveyed 2,541 homes on Friday, contacting more than 10,000 people who were provided free medicines and consultations.

Three private laboratories are now offering testing facilities. One problem the survey teams faced was wrong addresses and mobile phone numbers recorded by the patients. Rescue teams had now been asked to cross check and verify the details to be able to trace positive cases.

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Maharashtra touches new high of 6,364 corona patients, 198 deaths

Meanwhile, the number of people sent to home quarantine increased to 589,448, while those in institutional quarantine increased to 42,371.

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Mumbai, July 3 : Maharashtra’s Covid-19 cases continued to break records with a new high of 6,364 – up from Thursday’s 6,330, and notched 198 deaths for the second time in three days, health officials said here on Friday.

With the latest fatalities, the state death toll climbed up to 8,376 and total cases zoomed to 192,990 – both the highest in the country.

Friday”s figures work out to roughly one death recorded every 7 minutes and a staggering 265 new cases notched every hour.

The recovery rate in the state improved marginally from to 54.24 per cent while the mortality rate stood at 4.34 percent.

July has started with three-digit highs of deaths and over 5,000 cases daily, causing major concerns among health officials.

The Health Department said of the total number of cases declared till date, 79,911 are active case.

On the positive side, 3,515 fully cured patients returned home on Friday – taking the number of those discharged to 104,687.

Of Friday”s fatalities, Mumbai alone notched 73 deaths – pulling up the city death toll to 4,762, while the number of Covid-19 positive patients here shot up by 1,338 cases to 82,074.

There were also 50 deaths in Thane, 19 in Pune, 15 in Solapur, six each in Palghar, Aurangabad and Jalgaon, five in Jalna, four in Raigad, three in Akola, two each in Dhule and Amravati, and one each in Nashik, Ahmednagar, Nandurbar, Latur and Gondiya. Two deceased were from other states.

The MMR (Thane division) continues to see deaths and cases continue to pile up, with a total of 6,060 Covid-19 fatalities and a whopping 4,379 new patients pushing up the number of positive cases to 137,783.

Thane cases have shot upto 43,634 with 1,075 fatalities – to emerge as the second worst-hit district after Mumbai in the state.

Pune district comes third with 25,454 patients and 826 deaths till now. But Pune division ranks second (after MMR) with 29,371 patients and 1,157 fatalities.

Nashik division has 566 fatalities and 10,379 positive cases, followed by Aurangabad division with 306 deaths and 7,060 cases, and Akola division with 139 fatalities and 2,934 cases.

Kolhapur division has notched 55 deaths and 2,173 patients, Latur division 49 fatalities and 1,134 cases, and Nagpur division has recorded 19 deaths and 2,050 cases.

Among the eight divisions, only Kolhapur recorded zero fatalities on Friday, though there were new Covid-19 positive cases.

Nashik division, meanwhile, the third division to enter the 5-digit levels in the total cases.

Meanwhile, the number of people sent to home quarantine increased to 589,448, while those in institutional quarantine increased to 42,371.

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