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Houston department’s first Sikh cop shot dead

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Washington, 28 Sep : A Sikh police officer was shot dead in the US state of Texas during during a mid-day traffic stop, authorities said.

Sandeep Dhaliwal, 42, was the Harris County Sheriff’s first-ever Sikh Deputy and had been pushing for a historic expansion of religious rights in the department, reports The Houston Chronicle newspaper.

Dhaliwal pulled over a vehicle around 12.45 p.m. on Friday in the 14800 block of Willancy Court in the Cypress area, Harris County Sheriff’s Office Maj. Mike Lee told reporters here.

According to Lee, dashcam video showed that Dhaliwal and the suspect, Robert Solis, 47, still in his car, having a conversation with no sign of confrontation.

A few seconds after Dhaliwal returned to his squad car, the suspect ran up and shot him in the head multiple times, Lee said. Dhaliwal was airlifted to the hospital, where he died.

Solis was charged late Friday with capital murder in the case, The Houston Chronicle reported.

A woman who was outside gardening heard the shot and saw Solis run to a getaway car.

Lee said the suspect then went to a store nearby. After a brief search, authorities detained Solis, who has a criminal record that includes convictions for aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, aggravated kidnapping and driving while intoxicated.

Dhaliwal was the county’s first Sikh deputy when he joined the force 10 years ago, and became a national figure after convincing the department to allow him to wear religious attire and grow a beard while on patrol.

“He was a hero, a trailblazer,” Sheriff Ed Gonzalez said of Dhaliwal, who he considered a close friend. “There are no words to speak to how heartbroken we are, how devastated.”

Dhaliwal, a father of three young children, began his career in law enforcement out of a desire to serve after then-Sheriff Adrian Garcia reached out to strengthen the department’s relationship with the Sikh community after deputies botched a domestic violence call at a Sikh family’s home.

He was also very active at his Gurudwara, and his house of worship held a special ceremony after he became a Deputy.

“He was very, very, very important,” community member Sampuran Singh said. “He was always willing to do what the community needed him to do.”

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Abhinandan, Balakot heroes steal the show on IAF Day

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New Delhi, 08 Oct : Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman and heroes of the Balakot operation stole the show at the Air Force Day parade held at the Hindon Air Base in Ghaziabad on Tuesday with their fly past on fighter jets.

Chief of the Indian Air Force, Air Chief Marshal RKS Bhadauria, was the chief guest at the 87th Air Force Day celebrations in Ghaziabad. The parade was also attended by Army Chief General Bipin Rawat and Navy Chief Admiral Karambir Singh.

Abhinandan, who had shot down a Pakistani F-16 in an aerial dogfight on February 27 near the India-Pakistan border, flew past in an avenger formation leading a group of three MiG-21 Bison fighter jets. His aerial manoeuvre was greeted with huge cheers from the crowds gathered at the Hindon Air Base to witness the air show. A Vir Chakra medal had been conferred upon Abhinandan on Independence Day this year for his gallantry in shooting down the Pakistan F-16 with a MiG-21 Bison.

Heroes of the pre-dawn air strikes carried out on February 27 by Indian Air Force (IAF) upon a terror camp near Balakot in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan were also part of the spectacular air show. These pilots had bombed the terror camp with five Mirage 2000 fighter jets.

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Expect Kashmir among top states by 2029: Amit Shah

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New Delhi, 03 Oct : Flagging off the second semi-high speed indigenous Vande Bharat train from the national capital to Katra in Jammu and Kashmir, Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Thursday announced that Kashmir would be in the “list of most developed Indian states in the next decade and a beginning in that direction has already been made today by the Railways“.


Shah said the hurdles in the development of Kashmir had been erased with the abrogation of Article 370 that gave the erstwhile state a special status. “With the scrapping of Article 370, Kashmir has become a part of India like the other states,” he said.

The Minister said Article 370, which was scrapped on August 5, was not only a hurdle in country’s unity and integrity, but also the biggest obstacle in the development of Jammu and Kashmir, which has now been bifurcated into two Union Territories — Jammu and Kashmir with an Assembly and Ladakh without one.

“I have firm belief that we will gain success in complete eradication of terrorism and terrorist ideology from Kashmir after abrogation of Article 370. Our Kashmir would be mentioned in the list of most developed Indian states within 10 years,” Shah said.

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India-Pak N-war can kill over 10 cr people: Study

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New Delhi, 03 Oct : If Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan’s repeated forecast of a nuclear war between India and Pakistan comes true, anywhere between 5 crore to 12.5 crore people will die within a span of less than a week — more than the death toll during all six years of World War II, according to new research.

Today, India and Pakistan each have about 150 nuclear warheads at their disposal and that number is expected to climb to more than 200 by 2025.

The study conducted by researchers from the University of Colorado Boulder and Rutgers University in the US examined how such a hypothetical future conflict would have consequences that could ripple across the globe. The researchers calculated that an India-Pakistan war could inject as much as 80 billion pounds of thick, black smoke into Earth’s atmosphere.

“The picture is grim. That level of warfare wouldn’t just kill millions of people locally,” said Brian Toon from CU Boulder, who led the research published in the journal Science Advances.

“Hopefully, Pakistan and India will take note of this paper. But mostly, I’m concerned that Americans aren’t informed about the consequences of nuclear war,” the researchers noted.

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