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Indian air force airdrops aid to flood-hit Assam

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Authorities in India's flood-affected northeastern Assam state on Thursday intensified relief efforts, with air force helicopters dropping off food and other supplies to stranded people. India's Foreign Secretary Vinay Mohan Kwatra held talks with Sri Lanka's president and prime minister on Thursday as India signalled its willingness to go beyond the 4 billion U.S. dollar in loans, swaps and aid that it has already provided to its cash-strapped neighbour. Pakistan's ousted premier Imran Khan has said that the leaders in the coalition government were "afraid" that he would appoint Lt. General Faiz Hameed, the former spy agency chief as the next army chief, but he had no such plan. Political activist Mumtaz Hussain has blamed Pakistan has been misusing the Schedule IV of anti-terrorism act in Gilgit Baltistan to muzzle dissenting voices.Earthquake survivors recovered bodies and struggled to come to grips with their loss and Taliban officials surveyed the aftermath of a massive earthquake that struck eastern provinces of Afghanistan which has killed at least 1,000.Sri Lanka's economy has "completely collapsed," Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe told the Parliament on Wednesday, as the crisis-hit nation faces an increasingly dire situation that has left its 22 million people struggling with fuel, electricity and food shortages.  India reported as many as 13,313 cases of coronavirus infection in the past 24 hours, according to the Health ministry data on Thursday. The new infections have taken country's overall Covid-19 numbers to 43 million, 5,24,941 deaths and 83,990 active cases. A hotelier in southern India has replaced window panes with solar panels on his hotel to curb pollution and save electricity.  
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