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National Nuggets

Modi wishes Sonia on her b’day
New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday extended his greetings to former Congress President and UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi. “Best wishes to Smt. Sonia Gandhiji on her birthday. I pray for her long and healthy life,” he tweeted. Gandhi was born on this day in 1946 and has been the longest serving president of her party for a record 19 years from 1998 until her son Rahul Gandhi took over in 2017. While studying in England, she met former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi. They married in 1968. She took over as the party chief seven years after her husband’s assassination. (IANS)

Facing flak, threats Guha removes beef tweet
New Delhi: Eminent historian Ramchandra Guha, who is amongst the most vocal critics of the BJP, facing flak on Twitter after he put up a picture of himself enjoying beef, was on Sunday forced to remove and apologise for his earlier take after threats and phone calls. Guha on Saturday wrote: “After a magical morning in Old Goa we had lunch in Panaji, where-since this is a BJP ruled state-I decided to eat beef in celebration.” To this repartee, one Twitter user replied: “If a Hindu eating beef and publicise it he is stigma on this religion. One Ramchandra Guha is doing so. He is trying to tease whole of Hindus by this dastardly action of such publicity. Should be given befitting reply.” Guha identified this Twitter user R.K. Yadav as “a former official of the Research and Analysis Wing”, and reported the matter to the social media site on Sunday. An indignanat Guha said: “I would like to place it on record, and will do with every subsequent threat received.” He aslo said: “I have received threatening calls from a man calling himself Sanjay from Delhi. He threatened my wife as well as me.” However, later when some more tweets from other people criticised his photograph for being in bad taste, he removed the tweet. (PTI)

Smile Train India to bring smile on Himachal children’s faces
Shimla: Finally, children born with clefts in Himachal Pradesh have a fair reason to smile! Smile Train India, a non-government organisation, the National Health Mission and the state Directorate of Health and Family Welfare have signed a memorandum of understanding to enable free surgeries for children with congenital cleft lip and palate. Through this three-year partnership, the patients for the surgeries will be identified through a programme named the Rashtriya Bal Swasthya Karyakram. Smile Train will support free surgeries and post-operative care for the children, a government spokesperson told IANS. Since 2000, Smile Train has supported more than 1,700 cleft repair surgeries, free of cost, in Himachal Pradesh. This new partnership looks at intensifying outreach so that more children born with clefts can benefit from the free surgeries and get a chance to lead a normal life. While signing the memorandum of understanding, Directorate of Health and Family Welfare Mission Director Manmohan Sharma said this partnership will help children with untreated cleft access free treatment in a timely manner through Smile Train India’s partner hospitals. (IANS)

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‘Boundary walls to be raised at along rail tracks’
Jaipur: Boundary walls would be raised at accident-prone spots along rail tracks to stop people from crossing in those areas, Director General of Railway Police Force (RPF) Arun Kumar said on Sunday. “A large number of people cross the tracks illegally and railways conduct awareness drives on regular basis. Now, RPF teams have been directed to identify areas where people generally cross railway tracks,” he told reporters here today. Kumar said after identifying such locations permanent boundary walls will be constructed. Raids were conducted across the country to bust the nexus of agents who booked rail tickets illegally through the e-ticketing system during the festival season, the officer said, adding a mobile application is being developed for the passengers to lodge their complaint in case of theft during journey. Safety and security at stations and trains will be strengthened by monitoring the suspicious activities through network of CCTV cameras being installed in a phased manner, Kumar said. (PTI)

Death toll in Maharashtra truck-van collision rises to 11
Chandrapur: The death toll in Saturday’s collision between a truck and a van in Maharashtra’s Chandrapur district climbed to 11 on Sunday, with a 30-year-old man succumbing to his injuries in civil hospital here, the police said. The accident occurred around 9:30 pm when the van, with 14 occupants, was travelling on the Korpana-Wani road, they said. A police officer said ten people, including seven women, a three-year-old child and another minor, had died on the spot. (PTI)

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