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Major News and Events of 18 May 2016

What Happened on 18 May 2016

IAF helicopters battle hill fires in Kashmir

A major fire broke out in the forests of Trikuta Hills in Katra town, Jammu & Kashmir. The incident happened near the famed Vaishno Devi shrine in Reasi district. Indian Air Force choppers have been pressed into service to assist paramilitary forces in dousing the wildfires. As a precaution, all civilian helicopters ferrying pilgrims from Katra to Vaishno Devi shrine have been shifted to the campus of Mata Vaishno Devi University.

Heavy rains, landslides in Northeast India; rail services hit

Torrential rains and heavy landslides in Lumding-Badarpur hill section of southern Assam have disrupted rail services in southern part of the state along with Tripura, Manipur and Mizoram. Northeast Frontier Railway officials said that railway workers have been working round-the-clock to clear the mudslides and stones covering large portions of the railway tracks. It may take another three-four days to resume rail services in the region.

Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh on cyclone alert
The Indian Meteorological Department has put out a cyclone alert for north Tamil Nadu and south coastal Andhra Pradesh. Met officials said that a cyclone build up has been detected over the Bay of Bengal about 90 km east of Chennai which may intensify into a cyclone in the next 24 to 48 hours. The wind speed is expected to be 75 km per hour. Fishermen have been advised against going to the sea.
India rejects Pakistan's objection to Geospatial Bill, moves UN

The draft Geospatial Information Regulation Bill, 2016, , which plans to bring in a set of regulations regarding the geospatial information of India, has become the cause of a diplomatic war between India and Pakistan as the former “firmly” rejected Pakistan’s objections to the draft Bill. According to Vikas Swarup, spokesperson for the Ministry of External Affairs, the proposed bill is an internal legislative matter of India and Pakistan has “no locus standi in the matter”.  

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