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Air pollution may also lead to deadly diseases like lung and kidney cancer. Pixabay.

Fearing high amounts of air pollution forecast for Friday, authorities in Chinas northern Hebei province which includes the capital Beijing issued the second-highest level of alert on Wednesday, according to the local environment bureau.

The orange alert is issued when the level of PM 2.5 particles the most harmful kind is expected to remain above 200 on the Air Quality Index for three consecutive days, Efe news reported.

An alert of this level implies a reduction in production for certain industries, as well as the suspension of work in certain construction points. It also results in the prohibition of the circulation of heavy vehicles.

Hebei is located in the heart of the northern plains of China, where smog is common in winter as a result of high concentrations of industrial emissions, limited air circulation and coal burning.

A specific action plan was designed that included the creation of a special agency in that region, where the industrial infrastructure is dominated by chemical industries.

Airborne metal pollution is associated with an increased risk of premature death in humans. Pixabay

Liu Youbin, ecology and environment ministry spokesman, said Tuesday at a press conference that “2020 is a key year” to complete the plan, and that “the success of this fall season and winter will be decisive to measure total achievements.”

“There are many tasks planned, more than in the previous two years, which demonstrates the government’s determination to win the fight against pollution,” he said.

However, he warned that winter pollution is “more sensitive,” and that the weather conditions this season are not going to be as favourable as in previous years, when high winds used to help disperse polluting particles.

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Experts such as Lauri Myllyvirta, of international environmental organization Greenpeace, said there has been an effective reduction of pollution in the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region, but that it has increased in the south of the country, in provinces such as Jiangsu, Anhui, Canton and Fujian.

Chinese authorities announced in July that tax exemptions on purchases of vehicles running on renewables will continue until 2020 to “boost the country’s ecological development.” (IANS)



Hailey said: "I really am lucky to say I'm with someone who is extremely respectful of me"

Super model and actress Hailey Bieber said she is lucky to have a husband like Justin Bieber, refuting rumours of the ace singer not treating her properly. Hailey was speaking at singer Demi Lovato's podcast '4D With Demi Lovato', reported.

Talking about her popstar husband and rumours around their marriage, Hailey said: "I think one of the biggest things is you have to know what the truth is behind everything. You know, there's so many narratives that float around about me, about him, about us together." She addressed the rumours point blank as she said: "There's one big fat narrative that goes around that's like, 'Justin is not nice to her, and that he mistreats her', and I'm just like, it's so far from the truth, and it's the complete and utter opposite."

Hailey went on to set the record straight about Justin, who she married in 2018. She said: "I really am lucky to say I'm with someone who is extremely respectful of me, who makes me feel special every single day. So when I see the opposite of that, I'm just like, 'Huh?' And everybody around who knows us personally would say the same thing." (IANS/ MBI)

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Tamil inscriptions of epics, written on palm leaves

Among the Tamil epics written during the Sangam age, only a few survived to this day. Manimegalai is one such. It is written as a sequel to the Sillapadikaram, taking the story forward of Kovalan and Madhavi's daughter, Manimegalai. The Sillapadikaram is about the injustice of the Madurai kingdom in the execution of Kovalan, which turned Kannagi, his wife into a goddess seeking vengeance for her husband's death. Kovalan, before his death, has an affair with a court dancer, Madhavi, and his daughter, Manimegalai, is said to begin a different tradition among the Tamils.

The epic, written by Sattanar, introduces Buddhism to Dravidian culture, something that has been alien to them for years. Manimegalai is the protagonist, who flees constantly from the pursuit of Chola prince Udhayakumara, and tries to lead an ascetic life. Throughout the plot, Buddhist tenets are used to avoid the culmination of a love-story. Manimegalai is believed to be the anti-love story sequel to the Sillapadikaram.

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The Covid-19 pandemic could act as an inflection point to shift India's growth model from being consumption driven to investments-led.

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"On the contrary, with listed companies' financial positions improving and an uptick in household investments in the Real Estate sector (called physical savings), the narrative of investment-led recovery is gaining momentum." The report prescribed that various economic participants - households, governments, listed companies, and unlisted corporates -- to increase their fixed asset investments in the immediate future based on their financial position.

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