The News – Pakistanis stranded in India due to virus lock-down return home via Wagah border

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Attari – Wagah – Panjab, 05 May 2020. Pakistanis stranded in India due to the corona-virus lock-down and closure of the borders have safely returned home via the Attari-Wagah border, according to a message from the High Commission in New Delhi issued Tuesday.

These 193 Pakistanis, the High Commission said, were stuck in different states, including Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Punjab, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, and West Bengal.

Their return had been delayed for several weeks due to the corona-virus pandemic, the lock-down in India, and closure of the Attari-Wagah border. The Pakistani citizens had traveled to India for various reasons, including pilgrimage, visit, and medical treatments.

The High Commission lauded the stranded Pakistanis for understanding the situation and being patient. The Mission was making efforts, such as coordination and logistics, for their early repatriation with the support of the Foreign Office and relevant national stakeholders, it added.

The Mission facilitated and managed logistics for the transfer of these Pakistanis from 25 Indian cities, including Agra, Ahmedabad, Bijnor, Bhopal, Delhi, Gurgaon, Indore, Jaipur, Kolkata, Ludhiana, Mumbai, Nagpur, and Raipur, to Attari amid the lockdown,

From 20 March to date, a total of 243 Pakistanis who had been stuck in India have been repatriated, for which the Mission thanked the foreign ministry in New Delhi for its assistance.

The High Commission would continue with its ongoing efforts towards early repatriation of all the remaining Pakistanis stranded in India, it added.

“In these extraordinary times when we are all confronted with the challenge of novel corona-virus, it remains the Mission’s top priority to look after the stranded Pakistanis in India and facilitate their expeditious, safe and smooth return to Pakistan,” the statement said.

It was reported on 02 May that India had permitted these 193 stranded Pakistanis to return.

The Ministry of External Affairs had directed state police chiefs to facilitate the stranded Pakistanis’ travel back home via the Atari-Wagah border crossing, while the citizens were informed to arrive at the border early Tuesday to begin the formal process of their return.

The MEA had said only asymptomatic persons would be allowed to return to Pakistan.

“It is requested that all returning Pakistan nationals may be screened as per international norms and existing provisions of the Government of India and only asymptomatic individuals may be allowed to return,” MEA Additional Secretary and COVID-19 Coordinator had said. – Gopal Singh Chawla likely to get removed from chairmanship of Panjabi Sikh Sangat tomorrow

Sikh24 Editors

Lahore – Panjab – Pakistan, 06 May 2020. After expelling Gopal Singh Chawla from the Pakistan Sikh Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee, the Evacuee Trust Property Board is now in action to expel him from the ‘Punjabi Sikh Sangat’ also.

Notably, the ETPB had constituted ‘Panjabi Sikh Sangat’ to look after the religious activities in the Sikh shrines of Pakistan and Gopal Singh Chawla was appointed as a chairman of this body.

It is learnt that the ETPB has started cornering Gopal Singh Chawla after he illegally occupied a piece of land managed by ETPB. Last month, an FIR was registered against Gopal Singh Chawla under sections 447/511 in Nankana Sahib police station on the complaint of revenue officer Asif Chadar.

Sources have revealed that Gopal Singh Chawla might resign from the chairmanship of ‘Punjabi Sikh Sangat’ on 07 May.

It has also come to fore that the ETPB has not even credited Gopal Singh Chawla’s monthly salary worth Rupees 30,000/-.

Meanwhile, Gopal Singh Chawla has said that the ETPB officials are going to remove him from the chairmanship of “Punjabi Sikh Sangat” under a conspiracy.

Gopal Singh Chawla booked for illegally occupying land of Nankana Sahib

Gopal Singh Chawla likely to get removed from chairmanship of Punjabi Sikh Sangat tomorrow

Gent – Van de Gentbrugsebrug naar de Dampoort

Van de Gentbrugsebrug naar de Dampoort
25 Maart 2020

Gentbrugsebrug – Bus 3 and 6

Gentbruggestraat – Bus 3 and 6

Bus 6 to Watersportbaan

Bus 3 to Gentbrugge Braemkasteel

Heernisplein – Bus 3, 34, 35 and 36

Banierstraat – Bus 3, 34, 35 and 36
In the other direction

More Belgian pictures to be published
Harjinder Singh
Man in Blue

Daily Mail – Curry in a hurry! Kindhearted Sikhs rush to make delicious vegetarian meals for 300 Australians returning from New Delhi who are quarantining in hotels.

  • Lucky Singh is cooking for 300 Australians who are stuck in isolation in hotels
  • Families returned home on Friday after being stranded in India for two months
  • The charity has been providing food to healthcare workers during the pandemic
  • Here’s how to help people impacted by Covid-19

Kelsey Wilkie

Sydney – New South Wales – Australia, 08 May 2020. Sikh volunteers are rushing to make meals for 300 Australians who recently returned home after being stuck in India for two months during the corona-virus pandemic.

Families returned to Sydney from New Delhi on Friday morning and were forced into 14-day isolation at hotels around the city.

Kindhearted volunteers at Guru Nanak’s Free Kitchenette in Sydney will be cooking around the clock to provide meals for the travellers after getting a desperate call for help on Wednesday afternoon.

Lucky Singh, who founded the charity, has had to take time off work to prepare food for the families.

Ms Singh, who is an ESL teacher, said many of the families are vegetarian and are worried the hotels will not be able to provide them with a decent selection of healthy vegetarian food during their 14-day isolation.

‘After school on Wednesday I was busy writing down all their names, their room numbers and what they need’.

With the help of 150 volunteers, they will provide each family with a package filled with enough food for three days.

Among some of the treats being handed out by the volunteer group was a handful of Indian favourites including dahl, paneer, rajma and homemade roti.

Volunteers will also provide fresh fruit and the dessert gulab-jamun.

It’s tireless work, but Ms Singh loves it.

‘I have a real passion for this. I love doing it, the feeling you get helping people is priceless.’

During the pandemic, the charity has been providing food for frontline workers as well.

Guru Nanak’s Free Kitchenette Sydney has operated in Sydney for eight years providing food for the homeless in the city, the elderly at nursing homes, international students with less support and women affected by domestic violence.

They give away Indian meals to the less fortunate in pursuit of the centuries-old Sikh tradition of Langar.

Under the practice of Langar free vegetarian meals are served to anyone in the community regardless of their religion, caste, gender, economic status or ethnicity.

Two special Qantas flights carrying hundreds of Australians left New Delhi on Thursday heading for Sydney and Melbourne.

The Sydney bound Boeing 787 Dreamliner arrived about 10.45 am, while the other arrived in Melbourne around 11 am.

A third planeload of Australians will arrive in Sydney on Sunday.

In total, about 500 Australians are being brought home after being stranded in India following the onset of the coronavirus crisis.

All are expected to be quarantined in hotels for two weeks.

The Hindu – Anti-Muslim incidents bound to attract negative attention abroad, We need to change domestic reality

New Delhi – India, 01 May 2020. The 57-member prominent international Mulim grouping, Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), recently accused India of “Islamophobia”.

Asserting that incidents and comments against Muslims were bound to attract negative reactions abroad, senior Congress leader Shashi Tharoor on Friday said it is more important to change the domestic reality than do damage control, while referring to India’s criticism in the Arab states over alleged “Islamophobia”.

What matters is not what the government says but how it is perceived because of what it does, or let others do, Mr Tharoor said, and alleged that the Modi government has “shamefully failed” to curb the appalling behaviour of many of its “most rabid supporters”, including some in high positions.

“Let us not forget that ‘Ramzade/Hara…..’ comment came from a minister, and the latest remark from a BJP MLA in UP telling people not to buy vegetables from a Muslim vendor,” Mr. Tharoor said.

His remarks were an apparent reference to 2014 comments reportedly made by Union Minister Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti, and the recent controversy triggered by Uttar Pradesh BJP MLA Suresh Tewari who allegedly asked people not to buy vegetables from Muslim vendors. The BJP on Tuesday issued a show cause notice to Tewari for his remarks.

In an interview to PTI, Mr Tharoor alleged that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has, throughout the last six years, been too slow to “condemn his party’s bigotry and has condoned overt expressions of Islamophobia from his own camp”.

“The attitude that India loves Muslims so long as they are outside India, but insults them at home, is not tenable in a world of instant global communications. The mounting number of incidents and statements against Muslims in India was bound to attract negative attention abroad,” the former Union minister said.

His remarks came in the backdrop of angry reactions from UAE royal princess, Kuwait government and other leading citizens from various Arab countries after some people blamed Muslims for spreading COVID-19 in several parts of India following a spurt in corona-virus cases linked to Tablighi Jamaat meet at Nizamuddin.

Also, the 57-member prominent international Mulim grouping, Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), recently accused India of “Islamophobia”.

Ministry of External Affairs Spokesperson Anurag Srivastava on Thursday dismissed all such allegations and highlighted Prime Minister Modi and External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar’s regular conversations with their counterparts from the region in the wake of the corona-virus pandemic, to stress the closeness in ties.

Responding to the criticism in Gulf nations and by the OIC, Mr Tharoor said the backlash is not surprising.

“While I welcome the PM’s and the Foreign Minister’s attempts at damage control, it is far more important to change the domestic reality than to issue reassuring statements,” the MP from Thiruvananthapuram said.

Asked about plea by several Indians stuck in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries and his request to the prime minister and the external affairs minister to expedite their evacuation, Mr. Tharoor said every nation has a responsibility towards its citizens.

He claimed that the government’s argument is that a large number of travellers from abroad would place an unsustainable degree of strain on the country’s healthcare and quarantine facilities.

“If that was true 40 days ago, it is no longer true now. We must bring our own citizens back. It is not just a matter of their rights, but of what’s right, morally, emotionally and constitutionally,” the Congress leader said.

Mr Tharoor also demanded that in these difficult times of the pandemic, the Centre must give the State governments their dues.

It is shocking that GST dues have not been paid despite States, and the Congress calling for this for more than two months, he said.

“Give the States their own money, so they don’t have to beg for resources to combat the virus. In addition, yes, extra support will be needed for those states facing a larger COVID-19 burden,” Mr Tharoor said.

“The ordinary people of our country also need financial help so they can help themselves. We have been calling for Rs 7,500 to be put into every Jan Dhan account. This is far from happening, several weeks after we suggested it,” he said.

Asked about Kerala doing well in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic and whether other states need to emulate its model, Mr. Tharoor said Kerala has been a model state in terms of its social development indicators for a long time, but the practices and systems it has built up take generations to entrench.

Kerala spends a large portion of its state resources on health care and public education, promotes literacy and women’s empowerment, and gives village-level local authorities autonomy and funds, he said.

Other states should emulate it, but it will take them a long time to reorient their current practices to get there, he added.