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Voice calls connect Kashmir with the world after over 2 months

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Kashmir blackout

Srinagar, Oct 15 : The resumption of voice calls in Kashmir after two months has ended young Afroza’s frequent visits to her neighbour’s house. She can now speak to her Bengaluru-based fiance at will.

Afroza’s marriage, which was scheduled for the last week of August, was cancelled due to the lockdown in Kashmir after the abrogation of Article 370 on August 5.

Her wedding will now take place November. She hopes all restrictions will be lifted and internet will also be back by then.

“I am no longer dependent on my neighbour’s landline to talk my fiance. It’s like coming back to the real world,” she said.

Cell phones and internet remained suspended in Kashmir for 70 days. The resumption of post-paid cellphones after so long has also cheered the students.

“Students were suffering the most due to communication blockade,” said Sabiya Mir, a college student. In Kashmir, 66 lakh cellphones are registered with different services providers. Around 26 lakh pre-paid cell phones are still shut.

“The government should lift all the restrictions on communication to make life easier for the people,” said Raiq Ahmed. “It is not a favour bestowed on us, this is our right that was snatched.”

Scores of people thronged BSNL offices in Srinagar to clear their bills. Some called their contacts in Jammu to pay their bills online.

“My phone is not working, I have an outstanding of Rs 1,200,” said Muhammad Ayub, an engineer.” I went to the telecom office, but there is a huge rush. So I asked a friend in Jammu clear my outstanding.”

The government has also ordered opening of schools and colleges, and has withdrawn the travel advisory to bring back tourists to Kashmir and restore a sense of normalcy. But the situation has shown little signs of improvement.

Many people believe that resumption of prepaid phone and internet will help bring back normalcy in Kashmir, which has been living under siege since August.

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Delhi schools shut till November 15

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Air Pollution

New Delhi, Nov 13 : With air pollution in the city again touching ’emergency’ levels, the Delhi government on Wednesday ordered schools in the national capital to remain shut till Friday.

Delhi Education Minister Manish Sisodia said that all private and government schools will be shut on Thursday and Friday.

“In view of the deteriorating air quality due to stubble burning in north India, Delhi government has decided to close schools on Thursday and Friday,” Sisodia tweeted in Hindi.

The Directorate of Education said the steps are being taken keeping in view the hazardous levels of air pollution.

“All the government, government aided, private recognised (unaided) schools, including those run by the local bodies, are hereby ordered to remain closed till November 15,” an order from the Directorate of Education read.

The decision came after recommendations from the Environment Pollution (Prevention and Control) Authority (EPCA).

This is the second time this month that the EPCA has asked the government to shut schools. The Supreme Court-mandated anti-pollution authority had earlier asked the government to close schools between November 1 and 5.

The Delhi air quality index (AQI) rose to emergency levels again on Wednesday with an overall count of 476, and not much relief is expected in the next two days.

While the overall AQI is in the severe category, PM10 count is at 489 and PM2.5 at 326, which are also in the severe category.

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Delhi Nursery Admission: Get forms from November 29

The last date of submission of application forms in schools will be December 27 and the first list will be out on January 24, 2020.

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Nursery admission

New Delhi, Nov 13 : The Nursery admissions for open seats in private unaided recognized schools of Delhi for the session 2020-21, will begin from November 29, the Directorate of Education (DoE) announced on Wednesday.

The DoE said the schools will have to upload the criteria and point on the website by November 28 and the forms will be made available from November 29, also the date for commencement of admission process.

“Only Rs 25 (non-refundable) can be charged from the parents as admission registration fee. The purchase of prospectus of the school by the parents shall be optional,” the DoE circular said.

It also said that all private unaided recognized schools admitting children in pre-school, pre-primary and/or Class-I level shall reserve 25 per cent of seats for EWS/DG category students and Child with Disability.

The last date of submission of application forms in schools will be December 27 and the first list will be out on January 24, 2020.

“On February 12, 2020 the second list will be out. March 16, 2020, will be the date for closure of admission process, the circular said.

“The draw of lots (if any), shall be conducted in a transparent manner in presence of parents. All the eligible parents of students in draw of lots will be informed well in advance by the school. The draw of lots will be conducted under videography and its footage to be maintained/retained by the school. The slips will be shown to the parents before putting in the box, being used for draw of lots,” the circular added.

It also said that no private unaided recognized schools shall process the admission of EWS/DG/ free ship category students manually.

“The department shall conduct computerised draw of lots for admission of EWS/DG Category Students in all the private unaided recognized schools and the free ship category students in all the private unaided recognized schools running on government allotted land and regulated by the DoE,” it added.

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Mulayam Singh admitted to hospital in Lucknow

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Mulayam Singh Yadav

Lucknow, Nov 13 : Samajwadi Party patriarch Mulayam Singh Yadav was admitted to the Sanjay Gandhi Post Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences (SGPIGMS) on Wednesday evening after he complained of uneasiness and breathlessness.

He was taken to the emergency ward where the doctors began treatment.

The Samajwadi Party sources said that he was likely to be discharged on Wednesday night but hospital sources said he would be kept under observation till Thursday.

Mulayam’s son Akhilesh Yadav has paid a visit to his father at SGPGIMS.

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