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NRI crashes SUV into Attari gates, held

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Attari (Punjab)/ Islamabad: In a major security breach, an NRI crashed his SUV into the security gates at the Attari joint check post (JCP) early on Monday and reached the zero line at the international border between India and Pakistan.

Non-Resident Indian Surinder Singh Kang was taken into custody by Border Security Force (BSF) personnel after he rammed his sport utility vehicle into the first gate around 3.30 a.m. and then drove to the next gate, about 800 metres ahead towards the international border. He then crashed his vehicle into the second gate.

The vehicle stopped near the Pakistani gate at the border.

Kang was questioned by security agencies and later handed over to Indian police. The NRI was booked under Section 307 (attempt to murder) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and other charges.

The NRI, aged around 50, holds Canadian citizenship and belongs to Nakodar area of Jalandhar district.

“All gates were closed at that time. It is a serious security breach that he managed to reach up to the zero line. The incident is being investigated,” a BSF officer posted in the area told IANS.

Dawn online quoted Pakistani security sources as saying that Pakistan Rangers had written to the BSF authorities to seek an inquiry into the incident.

The report also quoted witnesses as saying that the gate at Attari on the Indian side was “badly damaged” due to the crash while the Wagah gate on Pakistan side was partially damaged.

The SUV was confiscated by Pakistani officials after it entered Pakistani territory, it said.

Another report, however, said that seized vehicle was later returned on the request of BSF authorities.

The Attari-Wagah JCP is located around 30 km from the Sikh holy city of Amritsar.

(IANS)

 

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Report Claims, As Many As 1 Billion Indians Live in Areas of Water Scarcity

The report also highlighted that India uses the largest amount of groundwater -- 24 per cent of the global total and the country is the third largest exporter of groundwater -- 12 per cent of the global total.

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Global groundwater depletion - where the amount of water taken from aquifers exceeds the amount that is restored naturally - increased by 22 per cent between 2000 and 2010, said the report, adding that India's rate of groundwater depletion increased by 23 per cent during the same period. Pixabay

As many as one billion people in India live in areas of physical water scarcity, of which 600 million are in areas of high to extreme water stress, according to a new report.

Globally, close to four billion people live in water-scarce areas, where, for at least part of the year, demand exceeds supply, said the report by non-profit organisation WaterAid.

This number is expected to go up to five billion by 2050, said the report titled “Beneath the Surface: The State of the World’s Water 2019”, released to mark World Water Day on March 22.

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Pure water droplet. Pixabay

Physical water scarcity is getting worse, exacerbated by growing demand on water resources and and by climate and population changes.

By 2040 it is predicted that 33 countries are likely to face extremely high water stress – including 15 in the Middle East, most of Northern Africa, Pakistan, Turkey, Afghanistan and Spain. Many – including India, China, Southern Africa, USA and Australia – will face high water stress.

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Globally, close to four billion people live in water-scarce areas, where, for at least part of the year, demand exceeds supply, said the report by non-profit organisation WaterAid. Pixabay

Global groundwater depletion – where the amount of water taken from aquifers exceeds the amount that is restored naturally – increased by 22 per cent between 2000 and 2010, said the report, adding that India’s rate of groundwater depletion increased by 23 per cent during the same period.

Also Read: Beware! Sipping Hot Tea Raises Risk of Esophageal Cancer

The report also highlighted that India uses the largest amount of groundwater — 24 per cent of the global total and the country is the third largest exporter of groundwater — 12 per cent of the global total.

The WaterAid report warned that food and clothing imported by wealthy Western countries are making it harder for many poor and marginalised communities to get a daily clean water supply as high-income countries buy products with considerable “water footprints” – the amount of water used in production — from water-scarce countries. (IANS)