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Amid Panic Over Spread of ‘New Coronavirus Strain’, India Suspends All Flights from UK

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India suspends uk flights

Delhi– While the world was hoping to recover from the pandemic, the spread of a new strain of coronavirus in the United Kingdom has again created panic. The UK government has termed this new strain more dangerous than the previous one. However, it hasn’t termed it as more deadlier. In this panic, several countries have imposed travel/flight restrictions. The UK has announced a series of stricter coronavirus restrictions considering the current situation.

India has also suspended all flights originating from the UK temporarily from 22nd December to 31st December 2020, informed Hardeep Singh Puri, MoS, I/C, Civil Aviation. He said that Government of India has decided to take all necessary precautions as a result of the situation arising out of the spread of a new strain of coronavirus in some countries.

It’s pertinent to mention that UK PM Boris Johnson has warned that the new strain is up to 70% “more transmissible”.

Similarly, U.K. Health Secretary Matt Hancock has warned that the new strain of the coronavirus is “out of control”.

“This thing’s transmitting, it’s acquiring, it’s adapting all the time. But people don’t want to hear what we say, which is: This virus will mutate,’ Dr. Ravindra Gupta, a virologist at the University of Cambridge,

told the New York Times.

However, the Health Minister Harsh Vardhan called UK’s claim of the discovery of new strain as an imaginary situation. He said that there is no need to panic.

At the same time, considering the emerging COVID-19 situation in UK, India has decided that all flights to and from UK will be suspended till 31st December 2020 (23.59 hours). This suspension will start w.e.f. 23.59 hours, 22nd December 2020. However, this restriction will not apply to international all-cargo operations and flights specifically approved by DGCA.

Airlines operating flights to India from other countries will not board any passenger travelling from UK to India and will ensure that no passenger coming from UK is boarded in a flight for any destination in India either directly or indirectly, the government said.

As a measure of precaution, passengers arriving from UK in all transit flights (flights that have taken off or flights which are reaching India before 22nd December 2020 at 23.59 hrs) would be subject to mandatory RT-PCR test at the arrival port in India. The passengers found COVID-19 positive on arrival will be quarantined as per guidelines issued by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and would bear the medical costs incurred.

 

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Vaccination of 15-18 Year Age Group in India from Jan 3, Precautionary Dose for Frontline Workers from Jan 10

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teenage vaccination in india

New Delhi-India will begin vaccination of the children in the age group of 15-18 years from 3rd January 2022. The move is likely to aid in education normalization in schools. The announcement was made by Prime Minister Narender Modi on Saturday evening. He also announced a precaution dose (booster dose) for healthcare and frontline workers from 10th January 2022, Monday.

In India, this has been called the ‘precaution dose’ not booster dose. An option of precaution dose will be available for senior citizens above 60 years of age with co-morbidities on the advice of their doctors from 10th January 2022. 

Referring to the Omicron infections In India, the Prime Minister requested the people not to panic and to follow precautions such as masks and washing hands repeatedly.

According to the Government, the vaccination campaign started on 16th January this year has crossed the mark of 141 crore doses, and 61 percent of the adult population of the country has received both the vaccines and 90 percent of adults have received one dose.

According to the Government statistics, currently, the country has 18 lakh isolation beds, 5 lakh oxygen supported beds, 1 lakh 40 thousand ICU beds, 90 thousand ICU and Non-ICU beds especially for children, more than 3 thousand PSA oxygen plants, 4 lakh oxygen cylinders and support to states is being provided for buffer doses and testing.

The Prime Minister assured that soon the country will develop a nasal vaccine and the world’s first DNA vaccine.

Photo by Nataliya Vaitkevich from Pexels

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Three Farm Laws to be Withdrawn, Announces PM Modi Ahead of Elections in Punjab and UP

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farm laws withdrawn

New Delhi: Ahead of assembly polls in Punjab and Uttar Pradesh, Prime Minister Narender Modi on Friday retreated from his stand on the three contentious farm laws and announced that the government will repeal three laws. He requested the protesting farmers to end the protest that has been going on for over a year now.

He said the three laws would be repealed in the winter session of Parliament starting later this month. He also said that though the laws were in the interest of the farmers, his government failed to convince them.

The Prime Minister chose the occasion of Guru Nanak Jayanti to make this announcement. The decision is being perceived as an attempt to appease the farmers, especially in Punjab ahead of the assembly polls. Also, the results of by-poll held in various states are being seen as a setback to the ruling government that compelled it to reconsider its stand on the farm bills.  

The Prime Minister said, “today I have come to tell you, the whole country, that we have decided to withdraw all three agricultural laws. In the Parliament session starting later this month, we will complete the constitutional process to repeal these three agricultural laws”.

It’s pertinent to mention that the Centre government had to announce a cut in taxes on petrol and diesel right after the results of bye polls were declared.

The three contentious bills are The Farmer’s Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill, 2020, the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement of Price Assurance and Farm Services Bill, 2020 and the Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill.

The opposition Congress and farmers’ bodies have termed it a victory of their unity against the government’s decision. Former Chief Minister of Punjab, Captain Amarinder Singh was one of the first to welcome the decision through a Tweet.

 

 

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Himachal Kisan Sabha Condemns Alleged Mowing Down of Protesting Farmers by Minister’s Son, Calls it “Ghastly” and “Inhuman”

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Himachak Kisan Sabha

Shimla-Himachal Kisan Sabha has condemned the incident where four farmers were allegedly run over by vehicles in Lakhimpur Kheri district of Uttar Pradesh on Sunday, terming it a “ghastly” and “inhuman” act. The Sabha paid tribute to the martyred farmers and demanded immediate arrest of Ashish Mishra – son of Union Minister of State for Home Affairs Ajay Mishra – and other accused and book them under Section 302 (murder).

The farmers have alleged that three SUVs that mowed down protesting farmers were part of the convoy of the Union Minister of State. The farmers alleged that Minister’s son was behind the wheel in one of these SUVs. Following this incident, violence broke out that killed four more persons. The Minister, however, denied the allegations. 

Kisan Sabha also demanded that an inquiry should be conducted into the incident by a Supreme Court Judge. The Sabha also demanded that the Union Minister of State should be suspended with immediate effect.

Sabha said that it’s extremely shameful that the Centre government is attempting to end farmers protest against three Farm Laws in a dictatorial way by means of violence.

“On September 25, 2021, Union Minister of State, Ajay Mishra, had threatened to end the farmers protest within two minutes in a public meeting, and now his son has been alleged of mowing down farmers,” said State President of Himachal Kisan Sabha, Dr Kuldeep Singh Tanwar.

“The execution of this ghastly act merely one day after the non-violence day clearly reflects that the current Centre Government has no belief in democracy. The government wants to suppress dissenting voices rising against it at any cost,” Tanwar added.

Dr Tanwar further added that protests would be staged against this “barbaric” act in Himachal Pradesh too. The sacrifice of martyred farmers won’t go in vain, and it would only strengthen the farmers’ protest, he added.  

Meanwhile, following this incident, Priyanka Gandhi, who was on her way to Lakhimpur to meet the affected families, was detained by police, while Akhilesh Yadav – former Chief Minister of UP and president of Samajwadi Party- was put under house arrest ahead of his scheduled visit.

 

 

 

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