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No Permit Required for Inter-District Movement, Nod to Open Public Transport, Barber Shops/Saloons, Run Cabs, Auto Rickshaws

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HP Cabinet Meeting May 23, 2020

Shimla– The State Cabinet meeting was held on May 23, 2020, under the chairmanship of Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur. Among various decisions, the Cabinet has decided that the private schools in Himachal Pradesh would be allowed to charge only tuition fee. The school won’t be allowed to make cuts in the salary of teachers or fire them during the period of lockdown. This decision was taken in view of the lockdown due to outbreak of Novel Corona Virus in the country, as well as, in the State.   

Further, decision has been taken to start public transport, including both private and government buses, from June 1st in all parts of Himachal Pradesh. While buses would ply from one district to another, inter-state transport would remain suspended. Buses would carry only 60 percent of their passanger capacities to ensure social distancing. The buses would be allowed to pass through containment zones but no passanger would be allowed to enter or exit the bus in these areas. No hike would be made in bus fares, the Cabinet decided. Cab services and auto-rickshaws would also be allowed to operate Monday onwards. 

The decision was also taken  to allow opening of the barber shops/saloons Monday onwards.  The Government informed that guidelines would be issued regarding the same soon. Also, now private vehicles would not require curfew passes to move within districts. Street vendors/Rehadi/phadi would also be allowed to operate Monday onwards. 

However, the schools and educational institutes will remain closed for now.  

The Cabinet also decided to establish three Fast Track Special Courts at Shimla, Rampur for Kinnaur district and at Nahan, district Sirmaur to deal with the rape/POCSO cases for a period of one year.

The Cabinet also authorized all the District Magistrates of the State under the proviso of Sub-Section (4) of Section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 to extend the order issued by them under Section 144(1) of the Code upto 30th June, 2020. 

It was decided to implement the recommendations of 15th Central Finance Commission in the State.  Under  this Commission, out of the total grants received from it, 70 percent would be provided to Gram Panchayats, 15 percent to Panchayat Samitis and 15 percent would be allocated to Zila Parishads for undertaking various developmental works.

The Cabinet decided to levy transfer fee at the time of issue of permits under L-19 A licenses from local distilaries (D-2) located within the State   for procurement of all kinds of spirits i.e. Ethyl Alcohol, ethanol, rectified spirits, ENA and absolute alcohol used in  manufacture of sanitizers at the rate of Rs. 4.50 per bulk litre. This would give an additional revenue of about Rs. five crore to the State exchequer. 

It also gave its consent to levy license fee for Bar licenses L-3,L-4, L-5, L-4 and L-5 and L-4A and L-5A and Minimum Guarantee Quota on pro-rata basis for the year 2020-21.

It gave its nod to start a scheme for ‘Rehabilitation of Stray Cattle’ in Himachal Pradesh gau sadans in the State.  In the initial phase, it was decided to provide Rs. 500 per cow for cows in gausadans/gaushalas and cow sanctuaries.

The Government believes that it would help solve the problems of stray cattle, encourage individuals and organizations to adopt stray cattle, provide assistance for running of cow sanctuaries.  The Animal Husbandry Department was advised to complete tagging under Information Network for Animal Productivity and Health (INAPH) Scheme as per Government of India’s guidelines at the earliest.

The Cabinet gave its nod to complete shifting of works transactions of Jal Shakti Department and Public Works Department to Treasury Mode by abolishing the LOC system from 1st July 2020.

It said this step was taken to achieve transparency, accuracy and efficiency in the payment and accounting process for works transactions and to eliminate delays in pairing of payment and receipt instruments.

The Cabinet gave its consent to extend the period of four Special Land Acquisition Units (SLAUs) for a further period of one year with effect from 1.3.2020 to 28.2.2021 alongwith permission to continue with staff already engaged. These include SLAUs, Bilaspur, Pandoh-I, Pandoh-II and Shahpur for the acquisition of land for construction of four laning projects of Kiratpur-Bilaspur-Nerchowk-Pandoh, Pandoh-Takoli, Takoli-Kullu-Manali and Pathankot-Chakki-Mandi respectively.

It also gave its approval for an extension of Special Land Acquisition Unit (SLAU), Nalagarh for further one year from 1.1.2020 to 31.12.2020 for acquiring land for four laning of NH-21A Baddi-Nalagarh-Swarghat.

The Cabinet decided to transfer land in favour of Ministry of Defence, Government of India for the establishment of ECHS Polyclinic and ESM, CSD Canteen at Dehra Gopipur in district Kangra free of cost to facilitate the ex-servicemen and army personnel of the State.

The Cabinet decided to amend the ‘Mukhya Mantri Swavlamban Yojna-2019. Now units sanctioned under this scheme would come into commercial production within one year from the date of disbursement of the first instalment of loan by the bank under the Scheme for both manufacturing and service enterprises. Besides, in case such units have been set up by widows who are bonafide Himachali and having age upto 45 years, the amount of eligible subsidy has been enhanced from 30 percent to 35 percent.

It gave its nod to provide NOC in favour of Shri Lal Bahadur Shastri Government Degree College and Hospital, Ner Chowk district Mandi for increasing B.Sc. nursing seats from existing 40 to 60 seats.

The Cabinet gave its approval to create and fill up one post of Assistant Professor in Radiology and Gastroenterology in IGMC Shimla and one post each of Assistant Professor Anatomy and Pediatrics Department in Dr. Rajendra Prasad Government Medical College, Tanda.

The Cabinet decided to upgrade Veterinary Hospital at Nagrota Bagwan in Kangra district to Zonal Veterinary Hospital alongwith creation and filling up of seven posts of different categories to man this hospital.

 

Misc News/Press Release

Himachal: COVID-19 Claims 116 Lives in 25 Days, Still No Concrete Strategy to Combat Community Spread

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himachal pradesh covid-19 community spread

Shimla: Himachal Pradesh didn’t get any respite from rising number of fatalities on September 25 too. Seven more patients succumbed to the infection. These deaths were reported from Shimla (2), Solan (2), Chamba (1), Siramur (1), and Hamirpur (1). The patients included six males and one female aged between 35-66 years.  According to the Health Department, two of the deceased were patients of diabetes mellitus.  (View details of the deceased below). So far, 152 people have lost their lives due to COVID-19 infection.

COVID-19 deaths in himachal pradesh

Further, according to the official report, a total of 293 cases were traced yesterday. The official tally had reached 13679 till 9:00 PM yesterday. (Scroll down for district-wise statistics).

Despite the onset of community spread, the state hasn’t come out with any projection of the actual number of cases and deaths. There is no word on a strategy for combating community spread and minimize the casualties. Of the total 152 deaths traced by the government, 116 casualties were reported in the last 25 days of the September month. On average, the state is reporting four COVID-19 casualties per day during the current month.

Meanwhile, Dr Lokender Sharma, who was removed from the position of the Medical Superintendent, DDU, Shimla, following a suicide of a COVID-19 patient, has come out with statements which refer to the callous attitude of the state Health Department and its higher officials. He said that there was no negligence on his part and that he was ready for any inquiry. He said the higher officials are washing their hands of responsibilities by putting the entire blame on hospital administration and doctors. He again referred to the shortage of staff and his repeated reminders to the department regarding the same. However, it’s pertinent to mention that the actual cause of the suicide was yet to be ascertained.

Govt Not Prepared for Peak Period of COVID-19 Spread: Sanjay Chauhan

The incident has led to protests from oppositions who allege ill-preparedness of the government in combating COVID-19. Sanjay Chauhan, former Mayor of Shimla and a leader of Communist Party of India (M), said that the incident highlights miserable state of and mismanagement at the COVID-19 hospitals. He said there is an acute shortage of health staff including doctors, nurses, and paramedical staff at the DDU hospital. More than 30 percent of posts are vacant at the hospital, he added.

The government has been claiming it an achievement to receive 500 ventilators, but there is no staff to operate them, he said. He said that the leaders of the ruling government are also criticizing the miserable state of the COVID-19 hospitals and asking to fix it.

“Instead of formulating any concrete plan to attend to this issue, the government is emphasizing on ‘Havans’ which is unscientific. It clearly displays the backward and unscientific approach of the ruling party,”

Chauhan said.

He said that the government should prepare a strategy to combat the spread on a war footing and constitute a task force under able leadership. The Chief Minister should call for an all-party meeting to gain their support  to ensure appropriate preparedness to combat the peak period, he said.

Chief Minister Focused on PM Visit ahead of Rohtang Tunnel

The Chief Minister, however, did preside over a “Media Plan” meeting yesterday pertaining to the proposed visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to the State on October 3, 2020 to inaugurate Atal Tunnel Rohtang.

Chief Minister directed the officers to ensure elaborate arrangements for installation of LED screens at different locations for the live telecast of the event. He directed the authorities to make special arrangements for the VVIP visits. He said that appropriate hoardings must be installed at different sites including district headquarters. A proper media centre with the internet and other facilities must be established to facilitate the media persons, he directed the officials. 

HP Health Department COVID-19 Bulletin- September 25, 2020 (9 PM)

Himachal Pradesh COVID-19 deaths on september 25, 2020

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Himachal: 10 COVID-19 Deaths in Single Day Take Tally to 145, DDU MS Replaced Following Patient Suicide

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Shimla-DDU covid-19 patient suicide 2

Shimla-Himachal Pradesh reported 10 COVID-19 deaths on September 24, 2020, which took the state’s death tally to 145. This is the biggest single-day-spike in the fatalities – a matter of huge worry amid community spread. Kangra district reported the highest six deaths while Shimla, Chamba,  Sirmaur, and Kullu reported one death each. The deceased including eight males and two females were aged between 55-78 years. At least five of these deceased were patients of diabetes mellitus.So far,

So far,  Kangra district has reported the highest 37 deaths, followed by Shimla (24), Solan (23), Mandi (20), Una (10), Sirmaur (10), Chamba (8), Hamirpur (6), Kullu (5), Bilaspur (1), and Kinnaur (1).

Go through the reasons of deaths given by the state Health Department below:Himachal pradesh corona deaths Sept 24

According to the official update, 337 new positive cases were registered yesterday. The total for the state has now reached 13,386. (Scroll down to view statistics for all districts)

DDU MS Replaced After COVID-19 Patient Suicide 

As part of the damage control, the Medical Superintendent of Shimla’s Deen Dayal Upadhyay (DDU) Hospital, Lokender Sharma, was replaced after a COVID-19 patient committed suicide inside the hospital premises. Dr Ramesh Chauhan has been appointed as the new MS.  The case has led to protests against poor facilities and mismanagement in COVID-19 hospitals in the state. The opposition even staged a protest on September 5.

Reacting to his removal, Dr Lokender denied any negligence on his part and said he had been working with insufficient staff and limited facilities. He also alleged that the administration did not consider his repeated complaint regarding the same. Himachal Pradesh Medical Officers Association (HMOA) has also pointed out that the state government has not done anything to chalk out a comprehensive strategy to deal with the pandemic. They also pointed out the lack of trained staff.

These developments, including a sudden spurt in the fatality rate among COVID-19 patients, are now exposing the poor preparedness of the state government. The government doesn’t seem to have any clue about controlling the spread. There is no data on the projected number of actual cases as it is not possible to trace all infected amid a community spread.

While there is a dire need to make more efforts to save lives, the government and the Chief Minister Jairam Thakur appear to be busy in preparing for the visit of the Prime Minister Narender Modi for the opening of the Rohtang Tunnel.

HP Health Department COVID-19 Bulletin- September 24, 2020 (9 PM)

DDU COVID Patient suicide in himachal pradesh

Feature Photo: [email protected]

 

 

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Five More COVID-19 Deaths, Three Suicides, Shimla’s Kotkhai Nagar Panchayat Sealed

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shimla kotkhai nagar panchayat sealed

Shimla– Five more COVID-19 casualties were reported in Himachal Pradesh on September 23, 2020. According to the official update from the Health Department, a total of 280 cases were reported till 9:00 pm today . The COVID-19 death tally is rising at an alarming rate with the onset of a community spread. Currently, a total of 135 persons have lost their lives due to COVID-19.(Scroll down for district-wise statistics)

These deaths were reported from Solan (1), Kangra (2), and Mandi (2). The deceased aged between 58 years to 77. Read the reasons for deaths below:

Shimla- kotkhai nagar panchayat sealed

Kotkhai Nagar Panchayat Sealed for Four Days

Kotkhai Nagar panchayat of Shimal district was sealed today after four persons tested positive at the CHC, Kotkhai. However, there is one case which has increased worries for both the people and the administration.

According to the BMO, Kotkhai, one of these persons, identified as Kavinder Kanwar, runs a car parking at the Kotkhai Bazaar. He also runs a newspaper distribution agency in the same area and deals in mobile recharge business. He frequently handles keys of cars parked in the parking as part of his routine task, it was informed.

“It is quite possible that the concerned positive person has also surely visited several shops and public places in Kotkhai bazaar during the last four days. In this situation, it is difficult to find out the exact contact tracing history due to which there is a high risk of surface transmission and risk of a direct contact person to person,”

informed the Sub-Divisional Magistrate, Theog, in a notification issued today.   

Therefore, the administration has declared the entire Kotkhai Nagar panchayat as containment zone and sealed it except for essential services for four days (till September 27th).

The local police have been directed to restrict any entry to or exit from the area. The BMO has been asked to undertake contact tracing and the Secretary of the Nagar panchayat area has been directed to sanitize the entire area.   

COVID-19 Positive Woman Ends Life at DDU, Shimla

A woman, who was tested positive for COVID-19, and was admitted to the DDU hospital, Shimla, ended her life on the intervening night of September 22-23. The exact reason for the suicide was yet to be ascertained.

Further, two suicides in Kangra district have been associated with the financial distress caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. One of the deceased worked at a fuel station.  The second person was a cab driver. According to the English daily, The Tribune, he had recently received a notice from the bank over non-payment of his loan that he had taken to buy a cab. These suicides are indicators that the people are in dire need of relief from the state government. 

HP Health Department COVID-19 Bulletin- September 23, 2020 (9 PM)

Himachal Pradesh COVID-19 Fatalities on september 23

 

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