India got off to a good start on the second day of
the para-badminton competition at the Tokyo 2020
Paralympic Games on Thursday with Palak Kohli
winning her second Group A match in the women’s
She defeated Turkey’s Zehra Balgar 21-12,
Other Indians, Suhas J. Yathiraj and Tarun
Dhillon, also won their respective group stage
matches in the men’s singles SL4 category.
Yathiraj started recorded an impressive 21-9,
21-3 win against Jan Niklas Pott of Germany in 19
minutes, while Dhillon beat Sriripong Teamarrom
of Thailand 21-7, 21-13 in 23 minutes.
India’s medal tally at the Tokyo Paralympics rose
to 10 (two golds, five silvers and three bronzes) on
Wednesday – a record as it is recording double
digits for the first time.
On Monday, the country’s athletes claimed five
medals in a single day – two golds, two silver and
one bronze– which was another record.
On Tuesday, three more medals came India’s way
– one in shooting and two in high jump.
Shooter Avani Lekhara scripted history when
she became the first Indian woman to win a gold
medal at the Paralympics, firing her way to the top
of the podium in the R-2 women’s 10m Air Rifle
Standing SH1 event.
(Turn to page 12 to read what she had to say
after her win.)
Sumit Antil then obliterated his own world
record in the men’s javelin F64 category with a
throw of 68.55m to hand India a second gold
Indo-Asian News Service
India’s Palak Kohli playing a women’s singles SU5 group match in Tokyo.
REPORT ON PAGE 4
Indian para athletes’ record haul in Tokyo
A swab test in
SINGAPORE, WEEKEND OF FRIDAY,
SEPTEMBER 3, 2021
MCI (P) 072/03/2021
SINDHURA SET TO
Mysterious fever kills more than
40 children in Uttar Pradesh
At least 56 people, including more
than 40 children, have died following a
mysterious fever outbreak in Uttar
The yet-to-be-determined condition
has symptoms including high fever,
joint pains, headaches, dehydration
None of the dead tested positive for
Covid-19. Physicians suspect the
outbreak in the six districts is caused
by a particularly severe form of
Security clampdown in Kashmir
after death of separatist icon
Authorities imposed a security
clampdown in Kashmir on Wednesday
after the death of separatist icon Syed
Ali Geelani at the age of 92.
Troops put up barbed wire and
barricades on roads leading to
Geelani’s house in Srinagar after the
family announced the death.
Announcements were made from
loudspeakers near Geelani’s residence
asking people to march towards the
house. But police said no one in the
Kashmir valley would be allowed to
leave their homes.
7 killed, 3 bodies recovered after
landslide hits Uttarakhand
At least seven people were feared
dead after their houses were hit by
debris due to a cloud burst in
Uttarakhand’s Pithoragarh district on
“The disaster occurred in Jamri and
Tarkot hamlets in Jumma village when
heavy rains led to debris and muck
hitting the houses. So far, three bodies
have been recovered and the State
Disaster Response Force team is
searching for the other missing persons
of the village,” said District Magistrate
Four charged with rape, murder of
A priest and three men have been
charged with the gang rape and
murder of a nine-year-old girl in a case
that sparked days of protests in
The girl was allegedly assaulted by
the priest, 53, and three workers on
Aug 1 after she had gone to a
crematorium to fetch water. The four
men, who have been in custody since
they were detained in early August,
face the death penalty.
Bus tickets, call records help
police nab culprits
Bus tickets and liquor bottles near the
crime scene and call detail records
from mobile towers led the police to
the gang who were allegedly involved
in the rape of a college student near
Mysuru on Aug 24, official sources
Police on Saturday announced the
arrest of five people from Tamil Nadu,
including a juvenile, while they are on
the lookout for a sixth suspect.
Woman constable attacked for
objecting to lewd remarks
A woman constable in Aliganj, Uttar
Pradesh, was hit on her face with a
rod after she objected to a youth
passing lewd remarks at her.
The incident took place on Sunday
and the local residents managed to
catch the youth, Prabhat Kumar, who
The profusely bleeding constable
was later admitted to a hospital.
Right-wing outfit threatens to lock
up Taj Mahal
Members of a fringe outfit called
Rashtriya Hindu Parishad (Bharat)
staged a protest at the west gate of the
Taj Mahal on Tuesday and threatened
to lock the monument if action against
an Archaeological Survey of India
(ASI) staff member who denied entry
to a visitor dressed as Lord Krishna is
Security personnel at the 17th
century monument of love denied
entry to a visitor who was dressed as
Lord Krishna to celebrate the
Janmashtami on Saturday.
Superintending Archaeologist (Agra
circle) Vasant K. Swarnkar said that no
promotional activities are allowed at
any protected monument without
permission. The entry was denied
according to rules and regulations.
Minister made to walk through
People in Bilaspur assembly
constituency in Rampur stopped the
convoy of Uttar Pradesh Minister
Baldev Singh Aulakh on Saturday
while he was on his way to address a
function and made him walk through a
potholed road that was brimming with
rain and sewage water.
The locals were agitated as several
complaints to repair the road over the
past several months had failed to yield
The minister later slammed the
irresponsible attitude of local
administration and the civic body.
“The issue being faced by people must
be addressed at the earliest,” he said.
Houses of accused who dragged
tribal man on road demolished
A day after a 40-year-old tribal man
was allegedly thrashed and killed by
eight men on suspicion of theft in
Madhya Pradesh’s Neemuch district,
the local administration demolished
the houses of four accused on Sunday.
The man, identified as Kanhaiyalal
Bheel, was tied to the rear side of a
vehicle and dragged on the road by the
Madhya Pradesh Home Minister
Narottam Mishra said five persons
have been arrested.
Pollution likely to cut nine years of
life of 40 per cent of Indians
Air pollution is likely to reduce the life
expectancy of about 40 per cent of
Indians by more than nine years,
according to a report released by a
United States research group on
More than 480 million people living
in the vast swathes of central, eastern
and northern India, including the
capital New Delhi, endure significantly
high pollution levels, said the report
prepared by the Energy Policy Institute
at the University of Chicago.
Kerala cyanide murder accused’s
husband seeks divorce
Kerala cyanide murder accused Jolly
Amma Joseph’s husband Shaju
Zachariah has sought a divorce.
The woman, who was arrested in
October 2019, is accused of poisoning
to death six members of her family
over 14 years. Two of Jolly’s alleged
victims were Mr Shaju’s former wife
and their two-year-old daughter.
“Jolly has a very deadly mindset.
Therefore, I want a divorce,” Mr Shaju
said in his petition filed at a family
court in Kozhikode district.
Five electrocuted in Ghaziabad
Three children and two adults died
after they were electrocuted in
Ghaziabad’s Rakesh Marg area on
Two children, who had gone to buy
some items from a grocery shop in the
Uttar Pradesh city, were electrocuted
after they touched the iron pole.
supporting a tin shade of the shop.
Two adults standing nearby and a
child who tried to save them were also
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V.K. Santosh Kumar
Channel Excellence Lead
Mounted Police take part
in a ceremonial cavalcade
on Police Day in Kolkata
West Bengal Chief
Banerjee paid a floral
tribute at the Martyrs’
Column in Panagarh
Industrial Park to the
policemen who laid their
lives in the line of duty
and expressed gratitude to
the police force for
protecting the common
people during the raging
Commissioner of Police
Soumen Mitra flagged off
tableaus from the police
headquarters at Lalbazar
which travelled around
the city throughout
The Kolkata Police
Band also performed at
different places in the city.
Ceremonial cavalcade on Police Day in Kolkata
More than three million people
have been affected by the annual
monsoon deluge as torrential
rains pummel eastern India, offi-
cials said on Wednesday, with
villagers fleeing to higher ground
and wildlife sanctuaries under wa-
Monsoons are crucial to replen-
ishing water supplies after the
scorching summer season but also
cause widespread death and de-
struction across South Asia each
The storms have been wors-
ened by climate change.
India’s poorest state Bihar and
wildlife-rich Assam have been hit
by incessant rains for a week,
with swollen rivers bursting their
banks and stranding thousands of
people in villages.
In Assam, water levels on the
Brahmaputra – a mighty transbor-
der Himalayan river system –
have risen above their “danger
levels”, a water resource depart-
ment officer said.
Villager Amshar Ali said locals
were struggling with basic needs.
“We are in great suffering. It is
difficult to get food, drinking wa-
ter and other essential items,” he
said. “Many villagers do not have
their own boats, so people are
Up to 80 per cent of the
Kaziranga National Park and Po-
bitora Wildlife Sanctuary – both
along the Brahmaputra and home
to rare one-horned rhinoceroses –
“All the wild animals are tak-
ing shelter on higher lands in the
sanctuary,” Pobitora ranger Nayan-
jyoti Das said.
Assam officials said at least 11
animals – including two swamp
deer, eight hog deer and one
capped langur – have been killed
in the floods.
“We have been surviving on
dry food grains as our kitchen is
in chest-deep water,” villager
Prem Yadav said from his rooftop,
where he and his family have
been sleeping since Saturday in
Bihar’s Gopalganj district.
The homes of villagers in other
low-lying areas were also inun-
dated with floodwaters, forcing
them to take shelter at nearby
embankments and roads.
More than 3.2 million people
in over 2,200 villages in 17 dis-
tricts in Bihar have been impacted
by the rising waters since last
week, authorities said.
Some 215,000 people were
evacuated from their homes.
Since the start of the monsoon
season in June, some 43 people
have died in Bihar, according to
official data. The India Meteoro-
logical Department said the heavy
downpours could continue in the
Visitors at the renovated Jallianwala Bagh memorial in Amritsar on Wednesday.
After facing criticism over the renova-
tion of the Jallianwala Bagh complex
in Amritsar, the Indian government
said on Wednesday that it has been
restored with “utmost respect” and
was in “dire need of conservation”.
The Culture Ministry said that the
restoration work was done by the
Archaeological Survey of India (ASI),
the agency that has restored World
Heritage sites in the country, to con-
serve it for posterity.
Several opposition leaders have
slammed the Central government over
the new look of the complex, saying
that it was “glamorising” the structure.
On Aug 28, Prime Minister Naren-
dra Modi inaugurated the restored
memorial and posted a dramatic video
on Twitter of a new sound and light
show featured as part of the revamp.
“It (sound and light show) would
display the horrific massacre of April
1919 and instil a spirit of gratitude and
reverence towards the martyrs,”
Mr Modi tweeted.
In an online address, he said the
renovation “will remind the new gener-
ation about the history of this holy
place and inspire them to learn about
The complex’s galleries now show-
case the historical value of events that
unfolded in Punjab during that period
with fusion of audio-visual technology.
The walls of the narrow lane have
been embossed with sculptures.
But the renovation of a historical
monument in Punjab where British
troops once killed hundreds of men,
women and children has sparked furi-
ous debate and concerns over the
“Disneyfication” of history.
On April 13, 1919, British troops
fired without warning on a peaceful
protest of thousands of unarmed peo-
ple in Jallianwala Bagh, a public gar-
den in Amritsar. The horrific event is
now known as the Jallianwala Bagh or
“Devastated to hear that Jallian-
wala Bagh has been revamped – which
means that the last traces of the event
have effectively been erased,” said
Mr Kim A. Wagner, a professor of
global and imperial history at Queen
Mary, University of London, and the
author of Amritsar 1919: An Empire
or Fear and the Making of a Mas-
Mr Wagner went on to describe the
addition of the light show as the
“Disneyfication of the old city of
Amritsar” and posted before-and-after
photos of the narrow passage leading
into Jallianwala Bagh.
As part of the makeover, the walls
of the passage – through which sol-
diers led by General Reginald Dyer
entered the area – have been deco-
rated with embossed murals depicting
those who were caught up in the
violence, reported CNN.
The Martyrs’ Well, a water hole in
which scores of people died after
jumping in to try to save themselves,
has been covered with a transparent
Several critics referred to the more
sensitive manner in which Holocaust
memorials have been preserved in
Europe, with one Twitter user writing:
“The Jewish Museum, Berlin, is a
prime example of the power of archi-
tecture to invoke a feeling of remem-
brance – architecture should not al-
ways be comforting! It needs to be
Members of opposition parties in
India also criticised the renovations.
Mr Rahul Gandhi, a lawmaker from
the Congress party, tweeted: “Only a
person who does not know the mean-
ing of martyrdom can inflict such an
insult on the martyrs of Jallianwala
Mr Gandhi, who is the son of
assassinated former Indian Prime Min-
ister Rajiv Gandhi, added: “I am the
son of a martyr, I will not tolerate the
insult of martyrs at any cost.”
Ministry of Culture Secretary
Raghvendra Singh defended the reno-
vation and said the complex was in
dire need of conservation.
“Instead of letting a derelict struc-
ture to fall, we have restored it to
conserve it for posterity,” he told the
Press Trust of India.
Commenting on the political furore
over the restoration and the light and
sound show, Mr Singh said: “The
soundtrack is so poignant. It has been
very sensitively done and is informa-
tive as well. Anyone coming to this
place will leave better informed.
“The galleries too have been im-
proved, technology has been improved
to bring out the poignancy of the
killings of innocents and how the
incident influenced other bravehearts.”
Indo-Asian News Service
People escaping the flood waters in Morigaon district in Assam.
Torrential rains wreak havoc
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