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Islamabad: Pakistan has further extended the closure of its airspace along its eastern border with India until June 15, according to the country's civil aviation authority.

Pakistan fully closed its airspace in February after an Indian Air Force strike on a Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) terror camp in Balakot. The country opened its airspace for all flights except for New Delhi, Bangkok and Kuala Lumpur on March 27.

On May 15, Pakistan extended its airspace ban for flights to India till May 30.

According to a notice issued to airmen (NOTAM) by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), the country's airspace along the eastern border with India will remain closed until 5 am (local time) on June 15.

As per a separate NOTAM issued by the CAA, the Panjgoor airspace would remain open for overflying transit flights from the western side as Air India had already been using that airspace.

Pakistan had given a special permission to India for External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj to fly directly through Pakistani airspace to attend the SCO meet in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, on May 21. However, the airspace for other commercial airliners remained closed.

As a result of the ban, foreign carriers using Indian airspace have been forced to take costly detours because they cannot fly over Pakistan. The closure mainly affects flights from Europe to Southeast Asia. The flights from US and Europe flying in and out of New Delhi were worst hit.

Thousands of travellers suffer flight cancellations, delays and soaring ticket prices due to Pakistan's decision to close its airspace for flights to and from India.

Aviation Minister Ghulam Sarwar Khan had said that due to closure of eastern side airspace, Pakistan was suffering from less loss compared to India as Indian commercial flights had to take longer routes for Europe, the Dawn reported.

SCB gets high-tech molecular genomic laboratory

Cuttack: A state-of-the-art Molecular Genomic Diagnosis and Research Laboratory has been set up in the Biochemistry Department of SCB Medical College and Hospital. Health & Family Welfare Secretary Pramod Kumar Meherda inaugurated the lab on Thursday.

The molecular genomic diagnosis and research laboratory is first of its kind facility in the Eastern India.

SCB officials informed that HPV, the main cause of cervical cancer can be detected at pre-cancerous stage along with the virus type. The facility will be a major boost in detection of malaria, TB, methicillin resistant bacterial infection in ICU and drug sensitivity within a few hours.

"We can easily monitor various diseases and can come up with patient wise drug therapy. It will be of great help in treating several diseases," said Meherda.

Earlier, the samples were being sent outside Odisha for tests while the patients had to wait for 15 to 20 days to get the report.

"Cancer is 100 per cent curable disease if it is detected at an early stage. We can now detect cancer at pre-early stage," said Roma Ratan, Associate Professor at Biochemistry Department, SCB Medical College and Hospital.

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