Agra dentist murdered at her home, children left injured

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A 38-year-old dentist was on Friday murdered at her home in Agra, and her two children left injured, by a man who entered the house on the pretext of repairing a TV set-top box, the police said.

While the children escaped with minor injuries, Dr Nisha Singhal died during treatment at a local hospital.

The accused, identified as Shubham Pathak, 26, was arrested past Friday midnight and a bag of cash and jewelry, which he had allegedly robbed from the Singhal residence after the murder, was recovered from him, the police said on Saturday.

Dr Nisha ran a dental home clinic and was a private practitioner. Her husband, Dr Ajay Singhal, a plastic surgeon specialising in burns and transplant, was not home at the time of the crime, the police said.

SP (City), Agra, Botre Rohan Pramod said: “We received information that a man had murdered a doctor in her home in Kaveri Kunj, Kamla Nagar. We formed teams and carried out surveillance. We received information on his (accused) whereabouts and traced his bike. Late Friday night, he was arrested after a brief encounter in which he received an injury.”

Pramod said police suspect the accused, Shubham, had planned to rob the house, and “it appears a resistance to the robbery led to the crime”.

According to police, Shubham comes from Sitanagar in Agra and was known to the victim’s family for the last more than a year. He ran an electronics shop in the locality, and the Singhals often called him to recharge their TV sets, the police said.

Around 3.30 pm on Friday, when Shubham came to their house, as Ajay had asked for some repair in the set-top box, Nisha did not have any reason for suspicion since he had come there on multiple occasions earlier, police said. Their two children — aged 4 and 8 — were in another bedroom, they said.

“During investigation, we found Shubham had taken a loan recently and was finding it difficult to repay. It appears he planned to rob the house (to repay the loan). The accused does not have a prior criminal history,” SP Pramod said.

Shubham allegedly had an argument with Nisha, as she objected to giving him money, after which he attacked her with a knife, police said. He got the kife from the house itself and stabbed at Nisha’s throat, leading to excessive bleeding. As the children had seen it, Subham attacked them, too, banging their heads against the wall, the police said.

“The children showed presence of mind. When the accused tried to hurt them, they lay on the ground, pretending to be injured or dead. The accused spared them thinking they had been incapacitated,” Pramod said.

Shubham subsequently emptied the cupboards for cash and valuables and left in about an hour, the police said.

According to the police, Shubham was identified through CCTV cameras installed on the staircase and opposite the Singhals’ house. CCTV images showed him purportedly

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Dentist Nisha Singhal murdered in her home, children attacked too

A 38-year-old dentist in Uttar Pradesh’s Agra city was on Friday murdered inside her home, allegedly by a cable television operator who came to the house on the pretext of recharging the connection, The Times of India reported.

The accused also attacked the dentists’ children, aged four and eight, NDTV reported. He has been arrested. The children are being treated for knife wounds at a hospital, according to Hindustan Times.

The accused entered at house at around 4 pm and slit Nisha Singhal’s throat as she resisted his robbery attempt, according to The Times of India. The police found cupboards in the house open.

Singhal’s husband, who is a plastic surgeon, took her to a hospital immediately. She died of her injuries there.

Inspector General A Satish Ganesh told News18 that the accused tried to run away after committing the crime and fired at the police when they tried to stop him. “[The] Police fired back, causing a bullet injury to Shubham [the accused],” he said. “Later on, the accused was admitted to the hospital and a bag was also recovered from the spot, which contained jewellery and cash.”

Samajwadi Party President Akhilesh Yadav expressed his outrage over the incident. “The state is stunned by the incident, where a women’s throat was slit at her home in a busy area in Agra ,” he tweeted. “The BJP [Bharatiya Janata Party] government is engaged in protecting corrupt officials and trapping the Opposition in false cases. The government should consider crime in UP, instead of campaigning on TV.”

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Woman dentist’s throat, children attacked slit in Agra

© Provided by Hindustan Times

A 38-year-old woman dentist was brutally murdered at her home in Uttar Pradesh’s Agra on Friday afternoon by a man who gained entry to the house on the pretext of recharging the family’s set-top box, reports have said, prompting the opposition to attack the government on rising crime graph in the state.

Reports said Agra Police have caught the attacker, who was identified from CCTV footage, after a brief exchange of fire on Saturday. “Teams were assigned to probe. We traced his bike and caught him. The suspect opened fire on police and was injured in the shooting. He has been admitted to the district hospital,” A Satish Ganesh, inspector general of Agra range, was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.

The man attacked Dr Nisha Singhal with a knife and slit her throat even as her children were in another room, according to reports. Her two children, who witnessed the crime, were also attacked by the man. The children received knife wounds and are being treated in a hospital, reports said.

Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav and the Congress’ women’s wing tweeted about the crime as they questioned the Bharatiya Janata Party-led government’s stance on crime in the state.

“The state is stunned by the incident in Agra where the throat of a woman doctor slit inside her house in a busy residential area. The BJP government is busy protecting corrupt officials and trapping opposition leaders in false cases. The government should focus on crime in UP instead of campaigning on TV,” Yadav tweeted in Hindi.

“A 38-year old woman dentist stabbed to death in her house in Agra, U.P. There is ZERO safety for women in BJP ruled Uttar Pradesh. Law and Order is at its pits. While the Ajay Bisht ji claims that “Crime is at a Minimum in UP,” All India Mahila Congress posted on Twitter referring to chief minister Yogi Adityanath.

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‘It’s not just fitness – everything suffers’: Community heroes reveal fears over lockdown ban on Children

As the seconds ticked by towards sporting wipeout on Wednesday, amateur boxing coach Knox White winced through agonising pain during a flare-up of his degenerative multiple sclerosis.

The wheelchair-bound 46 year-old was struck down twice within a few hours that evening, but nothing was stopping him from taking his final sessions for the youngsters at Hayling Island Community Centre.

“I didn’t need reminding why we all need to be here,” says the former Navy boxer of his packed classes with local youngsters. “After the first week back from lockdown, one of the mums came up to me and said, ‘Knox, I’m so glad we’re back as my son really needs this. I’ve been so worried because one of his friends has taken his life and another one’s attempted to’. I just thought to myself, ‘Oh my God, this is how serious it all is’.”

After a week in which the great and good of elite sport rallied behind The Daily Telegraph’s ‘Keep Kids Active in Lockdown’ campaign, it is thousands of lesser-known heroes carrying the heaviest burden over the weeks ahead.

Tennis coach Stephen Perez is another left worrying about his deprived youngsters. He describes how some of the 10 and 11-year-olds he works with under an LTA initiative in Chatham, Kent, are still rusty from bad diet and lack of exercise during the first lockdown.

“The awful thing is that we know exactly what’s coming,” says Perez, who also runs programmes providing healthy food to his community. “In our community there’s people really struggling with poverty and poor diet. We had some kids coming back with real weight issues to the point where they were struggling to just take part in exercise.

“If you’ve got a fairly contented life, it’s hard to put into perspective how big of a deal these classes are for those in a chaotic setting. For many, they haven’t really got a lot else to look forward to. It’s not just their fitness that suffers – it’s their behaviour, their routine, everything.”

Downing Street has so far resisted pressure to ease restrictions on children’s sport during lockdown, but ‘Keep Kids Active in Lockdown’ struck a chord in sport like few other newspaper campaigns had done before.

It is memories of formative experiences under grass-roots coaches like Perez and White that prompted many of the 130 star names to this week sign up to The Telegraph’s call on Government to offer children a reprieve.

The campaign was launched at 5pm on Monday, with epidemiologists, public health experts and cross-party MPs all warning of a mental and physical health time-bomb as activity levels plunge among under-18s.

Ambiguity and confusion for teachers over the risk of Covid infection inside and outdoors at schools had already led to many schools scaling back contact sports or abandoning them altogether during PE classes.

However, despite scientists insisting outdoor infection risk is significantly lower than in the classrooms, Boris Johnson was unflinching in his determination to make no exceptions to his blanket

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Neanderthal children grew and were weaned much like modern humans, new study says

Much like we do, Neanderthals introduced their babies to solid foods around 5 to 6 months of age, a new study published Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences journal revealed.

Through both geochemical and histological analyses of three baby teeth that belonged to Neanderthal children, researchers have shed more light on the weaning and growth pace of Neanderthal babies. The children lived in a small area of northeastern Italy between 70,000 and 45,000 years ago.

The energy demands of Neanderthal children were similar to those of humans, the scientists argued. In fact, Neanderthal and human newborns were likely to be of similar weight and have similar gestational histories.

These findings debunk the theory that a longer breastfeeding process for Neanderthals, which would cause longer periods of postpartum infertility for mothers, could have been a contributing factor to their extinction, co-senior author Stefano Benazzi, a professor in physical anthropology at the University of Bologna in Italy, told CNN.

Inbreeding may have helped cause Neanderthals to go extinct, study says

“In this hypothesis, Homo sapiens, who had a shorter breastfeeding period, were able to have larger populations, effectively outnumbering Neanderthals,” Benazzi explained.

“This study demonstrates that the way Neanderthals and Homo sapiens raised their children are actually similar, so this hypothesis has to be rejected,” he said. “We need to find the explanation somewhere else.”

Teeth are like trees

The Neanderthal-era baby teeth were found in caves between the provinces of Vicenza and Verona in northeastern Italy. The teeth belonged to three separate children, who lost them naturally as part of the process of growing up, according to the scientists.

This is a 3D reconstruction of the three Neanderthal milk teeth analyzed in the study. Shown are (from left) the tooth found in the Fumane Cave; the one found in the Broion Cave; and the tooth found in the De Nadale Cave.

Much like a tree trunk has growth rings for each year of life, teeth present growth lines, forming on a daily basis until the enamel is fully developed, the researchers explained.

“It’s a fitting comparison,” said co-first author Federico Lugli, a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Bologna’s department of cultural heritage. “These lines can be studied with noninvasive techniques or through histology, cutting thin sections of the teeth.”

Co-senior study author Stefano Benazzi, a professor at the University of Bologna, is shown here studying Neanderthal remains.

Combined with chemical analysis looking at the strontium concentration in the teeth, information from these growth lines provided important information about the chronology of weaning in our evolutionary cousins.

To corroborate their data, scientists also compared information from the baby teeth of contemporary children with documented eating and weaning histories to their findings on the weaning of Neanderthal children.

What baby teeth tell us about Neanderthal moms

Even if teething happens later in a baby’s life, primary teeth form before birth, and the growth lines associated with the moment of birth have a specific, recognizable shape, Benazzi said.

Neanderthal genes may be to blame in some severe coronavirus cases

That also allowed scientists to broaden the scope of study from the children to their mothers.

“Since baby teeth mostly form in utero, what we see in the chemistry in these specimens is partly connected to the behaviors and dietary habits of their mothers,” Lugli explained.

Building on the body of evidence from previous studies, Lugli explained that the diet of Neanderthals examined was high in protein.

It’s possible that pre-chewed meat

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More Than 61,000 Children Tested Positive for COVID-19 Last Week, Setting New 7-Day Record


More than 61,000 children in the U.S. tested positive for COVID-19 last week, setting a new high for any 7-day span since the beginning of the pandemic, new numbers show.

On Monday, the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Children’s Hospital Association reported that 61,447 children contracted the coronavirus from Oct. 22 to Oct. 29.

This number is “larger than any previous week in the pandemic,” the organization, which is tracking weekly COVID numbers using state health department data, said in a statement.

The AAP found that the percentage of cases in children has been on the rise since mid-April.

RELATED: U.S. Hits Highest Single-Day Number of COVID-19 Cases for Any Country, England to Enter Lockdown

Since the onset of the pandemic, 853,635 children have tested positive for the coronavirus, representing 11.1 percent of all cases in the U.S.

In October alone, nearly 200,000 new pediatric cases of COVID-19 were reported.

“This is a stark reminder of the impact this pandemic is having on everyone — including our children and adolescents,” Dr. Sally Goza, president of the AAP, said in a news release.

“This virus is highly contagious, and as we see spikes in many communities, children are more likely to be infected, too,” she added.

The AAP noted that this record number is most likely an undercount as children’s symptoms are often mild and they might not test for the virus.

RELATED: 13-Year-Old Missouri Boy Dies from COVID-19 Complications: ‘He Was So Very Sweet and Caring’

While severe illness due to COVID-19 is rare among children, the AAP notes an urgent need to collect more data on longer-term impacts on kids.

“Not only are children feeling the direct effects of the virus and becoming ill, but the pandemic has transformed their lives at critical stages of development and education,” Dr. Goza added.

“I’m very concerned about the long-term harms that children may suffer, particularly Black and Hispanic children, who are suffering a higher number of infections,” she continued. “This includes not only children who test positive for the virus, but everyone in these communities who are suffering disproportionate emotional and mental health harms.”

The AAP urges people to continue social distancing, wearing masks and following other public health recommendations to further protect children and their communities.

As information about the coronavirus pandemic rapidly changes, PEOPLE is committed to providing the most recent data in our coverage. Some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For the latest on COVID-19, readers are encouraged to use online resources from the WHO and local public health departments. PEOPLE has partnered with GoFundMe to raise money for the COVID-19 Relief Fund, a fundraiser to support everything from frontline responders to families in need, as well as organizations helping communities. For more information or to donate, click here.

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Poverty affects brain development, cognitive performance in children, study finds

Nov. 3 (UPI) — Children living in poor neighborhoods don’t perform as well on cognitive function tests and have lower “brain volume” compared to those who reside in higher-income areas, an analysis published Tuesday by JAMA Network Open found.

Increased household income was associated with improved vocabulary, reading skills and memory, among other skills, the researchers said.

These differences were likely attributable to the fact that children in these settings had more developed prefrontal and hippocampal brain regions, they said.

The prefrontal cortex has been linked with behavior, personality and decision making, among other functions, while the hippocampus is believed to be involved in learning and memory skills, according to the researchers.

“This study found evidence for independent associations of household and neighborhood environment with brain and cognitive outcomes in preadolescent children,” the researchers, from Washington University in St. Louis, wrote.

“The study also provided evidence consistent with a pathway wherein variation in prefrontal and hippocampal volume partially explains the association between neighborhood poverty and scores on cognitive tests,” they said.

Earlier research has linked socioeconomic status with brain development and academic performance, according to the researchers.

However, much of this research has focused on the impact of the socioeconomic status of individual households and families on child development, rather than the effects of living in poorer neighborhoods, they said.

“Typically, studies of socioeconomic status and the brain focus on household characteristics,” researchers Bruce Ramphal told UPI. “This study shows … that neighborhood- and household-level socioeconomic factors are uniquely related to the structure of brain regions.”

Ramphal was not part of the JAMA study published Tuesday but has devoted much of his research work to related subjects.

“These findings … [suggest] that equitable child development may be best supported by intervention both at the household and neighborhood levels,” said Ramphal, a research assistant at Columbia University and the New York State Psychiatric Institute.

For this study, the Washington University researchers analyzed the cognitive performance and brain development of 11,875 9- and 10-year-old children.

Cognitive performance was assessed using an approach created by the National Institutes of Health to measure verbal ability, attention, executive functioning, working memory, brain processing speed, episodic memory and reading ability, the researchers said.

Brain development was measured using 3T magnetic resonance imaging, a more powerful version of MRI designed to provide highly detailed images, they said.

Household socioeconomic status was measured using both household income and the Parent-Reported Financial Adversity Questionnaire, which is used to determine “whether families generally have enough money to pay for basic life expenses, such as food and healthcare,” according to the researchers.

Using the addresses of study participants, the researchers identified those living in neighborhoods with higher poverty levels.

Children living in lower-income households and in poorer neighborhoods generally performed less well on cognitive function tests than those living in wealthier areas, the researchers said.

MRI scans of the children in the study also revealed less development in the prefontal cortex and hippocampus in the brains of those living in poorer

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Cases of Covid-19 in children on rise in the US, with highest 1-week spike yet

Soaring case counts around the country are impacting children at “unprecedented levels,” according to new numbers released Monday by the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Children’s Hospital Association, which are tracking data reported by state health departments.

a police car parked in a parking lot: An attendant talks to a person waiting in their car at a coronavirus testing site October 31 in El Paso, Texas.

© Cengiz Yar/Getty Images
An attendant talks to a person waiting in their car at a coronavirus testing site October 31 in El Paso, Texas.

There were 61,000 new cases in children during the last week of October, “which is larger than any previous week in the pandemic,” the AAP said in a statement. From the onset of the pandemic through October 29, more than 853,000 children have tested positive for Covid-19, the AAP said, including nearly 200,000 new cases during the month of October.

“This is a stark reminder of the impact this pandemic is having on everyone — including our children and adolescents,” said AAP President Dr. Sally Goza in the statement.

“This virus is highly contagious, and as we see spikes in many communities, children are more likely to be infected, too,” Goza said.

Yet these numbers are likely an undercount, the AAP said. Because symptoms in children are often mild and can look like common colds or viruses, many children go untested.

Symptoms in children

Typical symptoms of Covid-19 in both children and adults include a fever of 100 degrees Fahrenheit or higher, a dry cough, difficulty breathing, headaches, digestive issues, body aches and fatigue, runny nose, sore throat and sneezing.

Unusual symptoms can include “Covid toes” — a reddish tinge to toes and other extremities, a sudden loss of taste and smell and conjunctivitis, a highly contagious condition also known as pink eye.

However, early research has suggested children may not get fever, cough or shortness of breath as often as adults. Fever and cough was found in 56% and 54% of children in one study, compared to 71% and 80% of adults, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Shortness of breath was found in only 13% of pediatric patients, compared to 43% of adults. Sore throat, headache, muscle pain, fatigue and diarrhea were also less commonly reported in children.

While cases of severe illness due to Covid-19 appears to be rare among children, severe illness has been reported, most often in infants less than a year.

When children did need to be hospitalized, the CDC found, one in three needed to be treated in the intensive care unit — the same rate as for adults.

Long-term effects not known

Adolescents between the ages of 12 and 17, according to an early October report by the CDC, were about twice as likely to test positive for Covid-19 than kids between 5 and 11 years old.

More severe cases of Covid-19 were most likely to be found in children with underlying health conditions, the CDC said, with chronic lung disease, including asthma, the most commonly reported condition (55%). While in smaller percentages, children with disability (9%), immune disorders (7%), diabetes (6%), psychological conditions

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Johnson & Johnson to test coronavirus vaccine in children

Pharmaceutical giant Johnson & Johnson has plans to begin testing its coronavirus vaccine on children, according to Reuters

Reuters reported on Friday the company soon plans to test the experimental vaccine candidate on people aged 12 to 18. 

Our country is in a historic fight against the Coronavirus. Add Changing America to your Facebook or Twitter feed to stay on top of the news.

“We plan to go into children as soon as we possibly can, but very carefully in terms of safety,” Jerald Sadoff, senior advisor with Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine division, said during a meeting held by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Friday, according to Reuters. 

Sadoff said the company also has plans to test the vaccine in children younger than 12 if it’s shown to be safe among those 12 to 18. 

Most COVID-19 vaccine trials are focused on whether the shots are safe and effective in adults. Pfizer, which has manufactured one of the four vaccine candidates currently in phase three trials in the U.S., recently started testing its vaccine candidate in children. 

While far fewer children have been sick with COVID-19 compared to adults, they can still become infected with the virus and spread it around to others. 

Johnson & Johnson kicked off phase three trials of its vaccine last month, aiming to enroll 60,000 participants. The company had to pause the trial earlier this month after a participant suffered a stroke. An independent committee investigated the incident and determined the incident was not related to the vaccine and the trial resumed this week. 

It’s not unusual for some participants to become ill during large scale vaccine trials and most resume shortly after they’re put on pause so cases can be evaluated for safety.








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Ontario coronavirus models reveal cases growth is much ‘slower’ than anticipated; Alberta changing testing guidelines for children

For more on today’s top stories and the spread of the novel coronavirus across the country, please refer to our live updates below throughout the day, as well as our COVID-19 news hub.

Ontario premier’s constituency closed after COVID-19 outbreak

A statement from the office of Ontario Premier Doug Ford confirms that his constituency office in Etobicoke North has been closed after COVID-19 cases were detected.

“Toronto Public Health has confirmed cases of COVID-19 among staff members of Premier Ford’s constituency office,” the statement reads. “The Premier has not visited the office in the past two weeks and has had no exposure.”

The Etobicoke office is expected to be closed “for the foreseeable future” to allow for deep cleaning of the space.

This comes as Ontario reported 896 new COVID-19 cases on Friday, including 314 cases in Toronto, 173 in Peel, 115 in York Region and 92 in Ottawa.

The province confirmed nine more COVID-19 deaths, bringing the total to 3,127.

A total of 41,008 tests were completed in the last day, with 41,063 tests under investigation.

There are currently 314 people with COVID-19 in Ontario hospitals, including 75 in ICU.

Across the province, 78 long-term care homes have an active outbreak with 421 active cases in residents and 280 staff cases.

Ontario reported 61 new school-related COVID-19 cases, including 40 student cases, four staff cases and 17 cases that haven’t been identified.

Quebec reports more than 950 new cases, 18 new confirmed deaths

Quebec reported 952 new COVID-19 cases on Friday, including 195 cases in Montreal, 151 in Montérégie and 109 in Lanaudière.

The province also confirmed 18 new deaths with four of them occurring in the last 24 hours.

There are currently 515 people with COVID-19 in Quebec hospital, including 81 people in intensive care.

Check out our COVID-19 in Canada topic page for latest news, tips, health updates, cases and more.

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