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Andaman man adrift at sea for 28 days returns home from Odisha



Adrift at sea for 28 days before he washed ashore near the mouth of Odisha’s Chilika lake last week, Amrit Kujur from the Andaman islands left Puri on Wednesday to reunite with his family, officials said.

On October 25, the 49-year-old Kujur from Saheed Dweep area of the Andamans had washed ashore on a battered boat at Khirisahi village near Chilika mouth, 28 days after he and his friend lost their way at sea.

Kujur, who sells grocery items and potable water to other ships from his boat, survived two successive storms that pummeled his tiny vessel while the sea current propelled him 1300 km away from his home. While he survived an incredible journey through a hostile sea, his friend Dibyaranjan died on the way.

Five days after he landed at the obscure village of Khirissahi, Kujur boarded a flight Wednesday evening to Kolkata from where he will take another flight on Thursday morning to Port Blair, capital of Andaman islands. Kujur was kept in a shelter home in Puri town arranged by the district administration.

“As Kujur’s story was one of fight against all odds, bravery and resilience, we provided all possible assistance like food, shelter, medicines, clothes and other basic essentials so that he could gets back to his normal condition,” said Balwant Singh, Puri’s Collector and District Magistrate, Puri.

Singh said to make Kujur’s return a hassle-free affair, one officer from the district administration is accompanying him up to Kolkata. The entire expenditure of his return to his home was sanctioned by the Puri administration.

On September 28, Kujur and his friend Divyaranjan had stocked their motor boat with groceries and potable water worth Rs 5 lakh when they ran into a storm in the Andaman sea, officials said. The boat then drifted along till it ran out of fuel. The boat’s mast was also badly damaged and the wireless communication failed. Kujur and Divyaranjan then threw their wares into the sea to reduce the weight on the boat.

A Myanmarese Navy ship helped the two men by giving 260 litres of diesel and a compass to find their bearings at sea. But the duo again ran out of luck as they encountered another storm in the Bay of Bengal which pushed their boat off course and their fuel ran out or a second time. With no food and drinking water, Kujur’s friend Divyaranjan died a few days later but Kujur survived by drinking rainwater. Kujur who buried his friend at sea said he had lost all hopes of surviving when he was washed ashore near Chilika lake last week.

“It’s God’s grace that I managed to remain alive. Everyone in Odisha including the villagers, police and officials treated me well. I am really happy and grateful for the help I got from people of Odisha,” he said before leaving for his home.



Do you want electric buses to operate in your neighborhood too? Send your suggestions here.



Image Source: PTI

A survey is being conducted in Delhi to initiate small-sized electric neighborhood buses on congested roads. The Delhi Transport Department has commenced an extensive ground survey to determine suitable routes for neighborhood bus services in different areas of Delhi. This survey will run from June 1st to June 15th, with 23 technical teams deployed in various locations across Delhi for study purposes.

Transport Minister Kailash Gahlot stated that the Delhi government has never purchased more than 2000 feeder buses before this initiative. The 9-meter buses will operate on routes where 12-meter buses are unable to reach. Delhi residents can also share their feedback and suggestions regarding the neighborhood buses at mohallabusfeedback [at]

To ensure the inclusion of public suggestions, teams have been formed by the Transport Department to gather insights from the people of Delhi. This will guarantee that all significant routes are covered by these neighborhood buses.

The technical teams involved in the survey will visit metro stations, bus terminals, bus stops, and different areas of Delhi. The survey will focus on the following four aspects:

  1. Assessment of travel demand: The survey teams will examine last-mile connectivity in each area and study the transportation needs of the general public for such connectivity.
  2. Road network: The survey teams will assess road width, encroachments, and obstacles encountered during bus operations.
  3. Public transport connectivity: All teams will determine the distance travelers need to cover to reach public transport. A Pakistani team will also investigate the availability of other public transport options in the area.
  4. Para-transit connectivity: The availability of options such as e-rickshaws, auto-rickshaws, and other para-transit services in specific areas will also be surveyed.

According to the information received from the Transport Department, the data collected during this survey will be digitized. It will be used to determine the origin and destination of proposed neighborhood bus services in each area. Additionally, the survey aims to identify potential routes that will benefit the maximum number of passengers through neighborhood buses.

It should be noted that Kailash Gahlot, Delhi’s Finance Minister, who also serves as the Transport Minister, announced the Neighborhood Bus Plan in the budget speech. The objective of this plan is to deploy 9-meter-long electric buses to provide local or feeder bus services. The Kejriwal government has planned to operate a total of 2,180 such buses by 2025. The neighborhood buses will be specifically operated in those areas of Delhi where road width is limited or regular operation of 12-meter buses is difficult due to congestion.

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Delhi’s Coolest May in 36 Years: Record-Breaking Temperatures and Abundant Rainfall



Image: PTI

Delhi has recently witnessed a remarkable drop in temperatures during the month of May, marking it as the coolest May in the past 36 years. This significant shift can be attributed to the abundant rainfall that showered the city over the course of two weeks.

Surprisingly, Delhi encountered an unusual 11 days of rainfall, which is quite uncommon for this hot summer month. Data provided by the India Meteorological Department (IMD) reveals that the average maximum temperature recorded in May this year was 36.8 degrees Celsius, the lowest since 1987. It is worth mentioning that in May 1987, the Safdarjung weather station recorded an even lower average maximum temperature of 36 degrees Celsius, according to IMD scientist Kuldeep Srivastava.

To put things into perspective, the average maximum temperature in May last year was a scorching 40.1 degrees Celsius. The stark contrast in temperatures this year can be attributed to the five active western disturbances that affected the northwest plains of India. Srivastava highlighted that while the region usually experiences two to three western disturbances during this period, this year marked the fifth one.

Delhi received a staggering 111 mm of rainfall in May, which was 262 percent above the normal average of 30.7 mm for the month. The city has also witnessed above-normal rainfall in March, April, and May, accumulating a total of 184.3 mm during the pre-monsoon season. This figure represents an excess of 186 percent compared to the average of 64.4 mm.

Furthermore, the Safdarjung weather station did not record any instances of a heatwave throughout May, although other weather stations in the vicinity reported heatwave conditions. The copious rainfall and gusty winds not only provided relief from the scorching heat but also improved Delhi’s air quality. On Wednesday, the Air Quality Index (AQI) was recorded at 85, falling under the ‘satisfactory’ category. In contrast, on May 23, when there was no rainfall, the AQI soared to 198, according to data from the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB).

Remarkably, data from the Commission for Air Quality Management (CAQM) shows that the average PM10 and PM2.5 levels from January to May this year have been the second lowest since 2016. The lowest levels were observed in 2020 due to the summer lockdown.

In conclusion, Delhi’s unusual weather patterns in May, marked by the lowest temperatures in over three decades and abundant rainfall, have brought relief from the scorching heat and improved air quality in the city.

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Delhi Government Introduces Small Electric ‘Mohalla Buses’ for Improved Public Transport.



Image: PTI

The Delhi government is taking a big step towards improving the city’s public transportation system by introducing small-sized electric “Mohalla Buses” on the streets. To make sure they identify the areas where these buses are needed and determine the best routes for them, the Transport Department has launched a comprehensive 15-day evaluation campaign. Starting from Thursday, teams of experts will be deployed in different areas until June 15 to conduct the study.

This means that soon we’ll have these convenient and eco-friendly buses operating throughout Delhi! Isn’t that exciting?

But that’s not all! The government has also come up with a plan to purchase over 2,000 feeder buses. These buses will serve routes where the regular 12-meter buses can’t go. So, it will make traveling much more convenient for all the bus commuters out there!

To ensure that they cover all the important areas and connect the major attractions in the city, They are forming teams across Delhi to gather feedback from the people. Their input will help them determine the most suitable routes for these Mohalla Buses. After all, They want to make sure that everyone benefits from this new and improved public transport system!

So get ready, Delhiites! Exciting changes are on the horizon, making your daily commute more comfortable and sustainable.

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