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Firefighters make a stand in the backyard of a home in front of the advancing CZU August Lightning Complex Fire, Aug. 21, 2020, in Boulder Creek, California. VOA

Firefighters battling history-making wildfires in Northern California say the weather is not in their favor as they struggle to bring more than 600 separate blazes under control.

Hot weather, unpredictable winds, and possible lightning strikes that could set more fires are making an incredibly difficult job even harder.


The U.S. National Weather Service forecasters posted a Red Flag Warning for Sunday and Monday for the San Francisco Bay area north along the coast.

These warnings mean that warm temperatures, stronger winds and lower humdity are expected to combine to produce an increased risk of fire danger.


Soot, smoke and haze are clouding the skies over other parts of the state, creating a health hazard. Unsplash

“There’s a lot of potential for things to really go crazy out there,” California fire chief Mark Brunton said, noting that the winds can blow from any direction.

President Donald Trump declared a major disaster area for Northern California, making the state eligible for federal funds to help those who have lost their homes and property.

State officials are calling the fires the second-largest clusters of wildfires in recorded California history.

As of Sunday, about 450,000 hectares have been torched. More than 1,000 homes and buildings have been incinerated. Thousands have fled their homes. At least five fire-related deaths have been reported.

Also Read: US FDA Issues EUA Over Plasma Therapy to Treat Covid-19

There are reports that a number of ancient redwood trees have been destroyed.

Soot, smoke and haze are clouding the skies over other parts of the state, creating a health hazard.

Experts blame the latest fires on storms that brought lots of lightning but no rain. The extreme heat that baked California last week, including a 54 degree Celsius (130 Fahrenheit) reading in Death Valley, is aggravating the fire risk. (VOA)


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A Jain monk offering ablution to Bahubali in Shravanabelagola

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Sharavanabelagola is named after a pond that is located at the foothills. 'Bel' in Kannada means white, and 'kola' means pond. This is a sacred water body to the activities of the temples. It is a tourist attraction and a pilgrim destination located 85 kilometres from Mysore, and 145 kilometres from the capital, Bangalore.

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The aim of the book is to teach children that families can exist in different forms, and show them how to accept the diversity in family backgrounds.

By Siddhi Jain

Delhi-based author Pritisha Borthakur is set to release her new book, 'Puhor and Niyor's Mural of Family Stories'. The 1,404-word children's book was put together to address a new kind of societal debacle in the family system. The author says the aim is to teach children that families can exist in different forms, and show them how to accept the diversity in family backgrounds.

The author who named the book after her twin sons -- Puhor and Niyor -- is a parent who has seen and heard the tales of ridicule and discrimination suffered by many in India and beyond. She says the book is an artistic illustration for kids that details how different families can live and coexist. Whether it's children with two dads or two moms, children with a single dad or single mom, and even multiracial family units, Borthakur's book teaches love, understanding, and compassion towards unconventional families.

Beyond race, gender, color, and ethnicity which have formed the bases for discrimination since the beginning of time, this book aims to bring to light a largely ignored issue. For so long, single parents have been treated like a taboo without any attempt to understand their situations; no one really cares how or why one's marriage ended but just wants to treat single parents as villains simply for choosing happiness and loving their children.

Homosexual parents, a relatively new family system, is another form that has suffered hate and discrimination for many years. Pritisha emphasizes the need to understand that diversity in people and family is what makes the world beautiful and colourful. 'Puhor and Niyor's Mural of Family Stories' is a firm but compassionate statement against all forms of discrimination on the bases of sexual identity, gender, race, and even differences in background

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Rajesh U Pandya, Managing Director, KAI India, gives easy and completely doable tips to follow at home:

* Refrain from harsh soaps: You should be mindful of the soap you are using to wash your hands. Your soap can have a moisturizing element in it like aloe vera or shea butter. Ensure that you're washing your hands with normal water as hot water can make your hand's skin dry and scaly.

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