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Travelling to Maharashtra from these states? Covid-negative report must

The Maharashtra government has issued a new set of rules according to which domestic passengers travelling via trains or flights will need to carry a RT-PCR negative test report with them to enter the state.

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The Maharashtra government on Monday made it mandatory for all passengers coming in from Delhi NCR, Gujarat, Rajasthan, and Goa to procure a Covid-negative certificate to gain entry into the state.

The state government has issued a new set of rules, according to which domestic passengers travelling via trains or flights will need to carry a RT-PCR negative test report with them before entering the state.

Those coming via air will have to show the negative test report to airport officials before boarding the flight. The RT-PCR sample collection should have been done within 72 hours of the scheduled landing in Maharashtra. Those not carrying the reports will have to undergo the test at the landing airport. While the airport authorities will arrange for the tests, the passengers will pay for them.

Meanwhile, all passengers travelling to Maharashtra by trains originating or having halts at stations in Delhi, Rajasthan, Gujarat or Goa need to carry a negative RT-PCR test report not older than 96 hours before arrival in Maharashtra.

Passengers not carrying the report shall be screened for symptoms and body temperature at the alighting railway stations. Those without symptoms will be allowed to enter the state, while those who display symptoms will be made to undergo Rapid Antigen test.

The rules are relaxed for those travelling by road. Passengers entering the border will be screened for symptoms, including body temperature. Those without symptoms will be allowed entry, while those who display symptoms will be made to undergo a Rapid Antigen test.

The state government’s circular came hours after the Supreme Court sought a status report from governments of Delhi, Gujarat, Maharashtra, and Assam on steps taken to control the spread of the coronavirus infection. The pandemic situation in Delhi has “worsened” and it has gone “out of control” in Gujarat, the Supreme Court had said.

While fresh cases of coronavirus infections continue to decline — or remain stagnant — in the worst-affected states of Maharashtra, Karnataka, and Andhra Pradesh, on the other hand, Haryana, Punjab, Rajasthan, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and even Himachal Pradesh have been seeing a significant rise in active cases.

At least five persons died due to COVID-19 every hour on an average in Delhi in the last 24 hours, accounting for the largest chunk of such fatalities across the country, PTI reported. Gujarat, on the other hand, reported 1,495 fresh coronavirus positive cases, taking the total count of infections to 1,97,693. The biggest rise in active cases in the last two weeks has come in Rajasthan – an increase of more than 5,600 — followed by Haryana, Madhya Pradesh and Himachal Pradesh.

India

India, China hold 16-hours long talks

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 India and China held 16 hours-long marathon military dialogue to resolve an ongoing border dispute and thinning of forces along the Line of Actual Control in Eastern Ladakh, government official said on Monday. The details of the meeting are yet to be known.

It started at 10.30 am on Sunday and ended at 2.30 a.m. on Monday. Lieutenant General P.G.K. Menon, the Corps Commander of Leh-based HQ 14 Corps, led the Indian delegation. India has sought complete disengagement and withdrawing of forces from the disputed areas. 

The military commanders to convey the details of the meeting to Prime Minister Office. The Ministry of External Affairs representative was also part of dialogue. The eight Corps Commander level talks had taken place happened on November 6.

Though the talks had ended in a deadlock, both countries had agreed to maintain dialogue and communication through military and diplomatic channels, and take forward the discussions, push for the settlement of other outstanding issues, so as to jointly maintain peace and tranquillity in the border areas. 

Indian Army chief General Manoj Mukund Naravane earlier this month said the forces are ready for a long haul along the Line of Actual Control but hoped for an amicable solution in its nine month long conflict with the Chinese People’s Liberation Army. “

We are prepared to hold our ground where we are for as long as it takes to achieve our national goals and interest,” General Naravane had said. Since no thinning of troops happened the soldiers of both the countries are poised to remain exposed to minus 20 degrees Celsius. 

On August 30, India had occupied critical mountain heights on the southern bank of the Pangong Lake like Rechin La, Rezang La, Mukpari, and Tabletop that were unmanned till now.

India also made some deployments near the Blacktop. The movement was carried out after the Chinese tried to make a provocative military move. Now, dominance at these 13 peaks allows India to dominate Spangur Gap under Chinese control and also the Moldo garrison on the Chinese side. 

At the height of the standoff, in a violence face-ff last year between the two sides at Galwan Valley, India had lost 20 of her soldiers, while the Chinese side an unknown number.

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Barricades to open on Jan 26 as police allow Tractor Rally

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The Delhi Police on Sunday said that after several round of talks with the farmers groups, it has permitted the tractor rally inside Delhi on January 26.

Police has said that the barricades would be lifted at Singhu, Tikri and Gazipur borders on January 26 after the Republic Day parade is over and the farmers would be allowed to enter upto 100 kilometers within Delhi with their tractors in a circular path on the routes discussed with the farmers.

The route specified is from Singhu Border to Sanjay Gandhi Transport Nagar, Kanjhawala, Bawana to Auchadi. From Tikri border, it will be to Nangloi, Najafgarh, Jharoda, Dhansa, Badli and the KMP and from Gazipur border to Apsara border to Hapur Road.

“We have told the farmers that the rally would start once the Republic Day parade is over. We expect with the cooperation of the farmers the rally would be peaceful,” Special Commissioner of Police, Intelligence, Deependra Pathak, said.

However, the police said that they are on alert after intelligence inputs that various Twitter handles operating from across the border are active to disrupt the rally on January 26.

“According to our intelligence input, 308 Twitter handles have been generated from Pakistan to disrupt the rally to create disturbance. We are also concerned about the security of the rally given the threat perception,” he added.

Meanwhile, several batches of farmers from Punjab and Haryana set out on their tractor-trolleys and other vehicles to take part in the proposed tractor rally on January 26 in the national capital. Tractor-trolleys have now become a common sight at the Singhu border as the farmers have started bringing in the tractors to the protest site from villages in Punjab for the proposed rally.

Thousands of farmers from Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and other states have been protesting at multiple border points of Delhi at Singhu, Tikri and Gazipur borders since November-end. They are demanding a repeal of the three central farm laws passed by Parliament in September last year.

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Soldier injured in Pak ceasefire violation succumbs

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An Army soldier injured in a ceasefire violation by Pakistan on the Line of Control in J&K’s Rajouri district, succumbed to his injuries on Sunday.

An Indian Army statement said, “Pakistan Army had resorted to unprovoked ceasefire violation on the LoC in Sunderbani sector of J&K on January 18 which was responded to strongly by our own troops.”

“In the incident, Naik Nishant Sharma of 10 JAK RIF was critically injured and was under treatment at the command hospital.

“Today the soldier succumbed to injuries. Naik Nishant Sharma was a brave, highly motivated and sincere soldier. The nation will always remain indebted to him for his supreme sacrifice and devotion to duty.”

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