Cautioning Indians against rumours about coronavirus vaccination, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday said that the country is preparing to undertake the world’s largest vaccination drive against the infection.
Speaking after laying the foundation stone of a new All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in Gujarat’s Rajkot via videoconference, Modi said: “In 2020, there was a question mark from all sides due to Covid-19 pandemic. But 2021 is coming with the hope of a treatment for Covid-19.”
He said that he was hopeful that the way in which India fought unitedly against the infection, it would similarly work hard to make the vaccination programme successful.
PM Modi said that when India faced any problem, the entire nation united to help each other. “The way in which people took proper steps is the reason why we are in good a situation even amid the pandemic, despite a 1.3-billion population. More than one crore people have fought the pandemic and won. India’s record is much better than other countries in the fight against Covid-19,” he said.
The Prime Minister said that the number of infections in India was going down. Warning the people to not get carried away by rumours, Modi said: “In our country, rumours spread quickly. Different people, for their personal gains or due to irresponsible behaviour, spread various rumours.”
“Maybe, the rumours will be spread when the vaccination drive begins; some have already begun,” the Prime Minister said, appealing to the people to refrain as responsible citizens from forwarding messages on the social media without checking. “India has emerged as the nerve centre of global health. In 2021, we have to strengthen India’s role in healthcare,” he said.
In the meantime, after successfully concluding the Covid-19 vaccination dry run in four states, a similar mega-drill will be conducted in all states and union territories on 2 January. This is aimed at equipping the entire administration and management of vaccine supply, storage and logistics, including cold chain management, the Health Ministry said on Thursday.
The activity is proposed to be conducted in all state capitals in at least three session sites. Some states will also include districts that are situated in difficult terrain or have poor logistical support.
Maharashtra and Kerala are likely to schedule the dry-run in major cities other than their capital. “The objective of the dry run for Covid-19 vaccine introduction is to assess operational feasibility in the use of Co-WIN application in field environment, to test the linkages between planning and implementation and to identify the challenges and guide way forward prior to actual implementation,” the ministry added.
For each of the three session sites, the concerned medical officer In-charge will identify 25 test beneficiaries (healthcare workers). The States and UTs have been asked to ensure that the data of these beneficiaries is uploaded in Co-WIN.
These beneficiaries will also be available at the session site for the dry run. The States and UTs have also been asked to prepare the facilities and users to be created on CoWIN application including uploading the data of Health Care Worker (HCW) beneficiaries.
The States and UTs have been directed to ensure physical verification of all proposed sites for adequacy of space, logistical arrangements, Internet connectivity, electricity, safety.
They have been asked to prepare at least three model session sites in each State for demonstration, ensure that the Model Sites have separate entry and exit in a ‘three-room set-up’ with adequate space outside for awareness generation activities, display all IEC material at these sites.
As the vaccine administrators will play an important role in the vaccination process, training of trainers and those who shall administer the vaccine has been taken up across various states. Around 96,000 vaccinators have been trained for this purpose.
About 2,360 participants have been trained in National Training of Trainers and over 57,000 participants trained in District level training in 719 districts. States are augmenting the State helpline 104, which shall be used in addition to 1075, for any vaccine and software related query.
Orientation and capacity building of the Call Centre executives has taken place in the States and UTs. States were also encouraged to use the FAQs issued by the Health Ministry proactively to address any such query.
An important focus of the dry run will be on management of any possible adverse events following immunisation (AEFI). In addition, adherence and management of infection control practices at the session site, to prevent disease transmission.
The mock drill will include concurrent monitoring and review at the block and district levels, and preparation of feedback. The State Task Force shall review the feedback and share with the Union Health Ministry.
On 28-29 December, dry run for the Covid-19 vaccination was conducted in Krishna district of Andhra Pradesh, Rajkot and Gandhinagar district of Gujarat, Ludhiana and Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar of Punjab and Sonitpur and Nalbari districts of Assam.
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Co-joined twin Veena and Vani pass intermediate exams with flying colours
In a sheer display of determination and will power, a co-joined twin named Veena and Vani have passed the Telangana Intermediate exams with flying colours. The twins scored first class marks, sending out a strong message of where there is a will, there is a way. While Veena secured 712 marks out of 1000, Vani scored 707 marks out of 1000 marks with CEC (Commerce, Economics, Civics) stream.
Satyavathi Rathod, Minister for Tribal, Women and Child Welfare, congratulated Veena and Vani on achieving the feat. The minister further said, «All the necessary facilities will be provided for their higher education. Veena and Vani will always have the support of the state government.» She also praised the staff personnel, who assisted the two girls.
Elated with their scores, Veena and Vani expressed the desire to become Chartered Accountants (CA). In the tenth standard, Veena and Vani had scored 9.3 GPA and 9.2 GPA respectively.
It is noteworthy that Veena and Vani were eligible to opt for special priveleges, which could have ensured additional time to write their exam, but they refused and submitted their answer sheet to the invigilator five minutes ahead of schedule.
The results for the 1st and 2nd year were announced by Telangana State Board Of Intermediate Education (TSBIE). Telangana Education Minister Sabitha Reddy announced the results. Among the 9 lakh students who appeared for the exam, the story of Veena and Vani stood out and is garnering praises across the country.
Born in 2003 in Mahabubnagar district of Telangana, Veena and Vani were cojoined from birth. Due to this, their parents stepped back from taking their responsibility and refused to take them, citing lack of resources for their treatment. Thereafter, the twins stayed in Nilopher hospital till they turned 12 and later shifted to State Home.
Despite several attempts by doctors, medical and surgical experts from not just India but also the United Kingdom and Singapore, no way has been found to separate them.
While it was earlier estimated that the procedure to separate them would cost around Rs 10 crore, it is very complex and risky as their veins are tangled up. This is the reason an operation has not be done yet.
A STEP TOWARDS SELFLESS PURSUIT OF HINDUTVA IDEALS
The party’s philosophy of “nation first, party second and self last” was drilled into every cadre not just through words but through actions.
In 1895, Swami Vivekananda was to give a public lecture in London. When it was time to stand up and speak, Swami Vivekananda suddenly announced that it was Swami Saradananda who would deliver the speech instead of him. Though taken by surprise, the learned Swami displayed his scholarly mastery over the scriptures as Vivekananda sat overjoyed intently listening to the teachings. In the following years, Swami Vivekananda would delight himself by hearing about or pouring through the newspaper cuttings sent to him of Swami Saradananda’s lectures from Boston, Brooklyn and New York. Whether it is the success of Swami Saradananda in America or pushing Swami Abhedananda to deliver the teachings of Vedanta at a club in Bloomsbury Square, Swami Vivekananda created leaders who would work on the mission while also surprising his audience. Good leaders merely create followers. Great leaders create leaders and influence generations of leaders through their selflessness. Even after his Samadhi, a whole new generation of freedom fighters right from Lokmanya Tilak to Subhash Chandra Bose drew inspiration from Vivekananda.
Devendra Fadnavis pulled a shocker by announcing the name of Shiv Sena leader Eknath Shinde as Chief Minister. As media personnel took a moment to absorb the gist of the announcement, the CM-Designate let out his profound understanding of politics saying, “Nowadays, not even a Nagarsevak (Municipal Councillor) or Gram Panchayat member lets go of his position. I am thankful to you.”
It was not just a sacrifice or selflessness of BJP Leader Devendra Fadnavis but also a victory of the ideological cause, which every BJP karyakarta works towards. A Shiv Sena leader, who stepped down from government for the cause of Hindutva, was rewarded by fellow brethren, working towards the same Hindutva mission. A political leader moving away from the position of power is a rare instance as 50 rebel MLAs from Shiv Sena proved. However, a BJP leader himself taking a backseat for an ideological cause isn’t rare and Devendra Fadnavis was walking in the footsteps of great BJP leaders. When the founding fathers of Jan Sangh instilled selflessness as a philosophy in its cadre, it was Atal Bihari Vajpayee, who was a leader (Member of Parliament), with Advani working as his secretary and later as editor of a Hindutva publication. Over the next few decades, Vajpayee and Advani alternated between roles selflessly working under each other’s leadership building the party brick-by-brick. The ideological mission was supreme and not individuals. This selflessness of the party was again on display in 1977 when the Janata Party government came into power and Jan Sangh took a backseat despite a higher number of seats – the mission was more important than the individual goals. The party’s philosophy of “nation first, party second and self last” was drilled into every cadre not just through words but through actions. The Modi era brought in a fresh wave of ideological strength with the BJP selflessly taking non-RSS Hindutva leaders like Yogi Adityanath into its fold.
Over the past few days, the Maharashtra government under Uddhav Thackeray had resorted to attacking the rebel Shiv Sena MLAs for insisting on sticking to the Hindutva stand. The Shiv Sena leaders, who were once foot soldiers of Hindutva under Balasaheb and made their way up from humble backgrounds, were portrayed negatively. Their insistence on sticking to the Hindutva cause was painted as a power-hungry move of Shiv Sena rebels with the backroom connivance of the BJP. “Will you get the Chief Minister’s chair by rebelling against me” taunted CM Uddhav Thackeray in a LIVE address to the state.
“Yes”, replied the BJP and Sangh Parivar in unison when Devendra Fadnavis made that unexpected announcement at the press conference. In one stroke, BJP under Devendra Fadnavis destroyed Uddhav Thackeray’s anti-Hindutva propaganda and honoured the rebels for taking an ideological stand. In a message to every Hindutva ideologue, he made it amply clear that the stability of Maharashtra, development of the state and ideological cause is more important to him than the Chief Minister’s chair itself. The real Shiv Sena of Balasaheb under Eknath Shinde finally leads the state with the support of BJP MLAs.
The press conference by Devendra Fadnavis will be written in golden words in the history of the Bharatiya Janata Party as a step towards the selfless pursuit of Hindutva ideals. A karyakarta like me, who has tirelessly worked for the party under the leadership of Devendra Fadnavis. saw first-hand what selflessness towards the cause is all about. I have witnessed how faith in leadership trumps every personal consideration and makes BJP truly a party with difference. Detractors often resort to attacking the Sangh and its ideals while taking a gibe at BJP. The BJP under Devendra Fadnavis in Maharashtra has once again demonstrated how these Sangh ideals are the strength of the party.
In the words of Swayamsevaks, BJP Leader Devendra Fadnavis acted true to the lines in the Sangh Prarthana – (TvadiyayayKaryayaBaddhaKatiyam) – We are committed to the cause- The cause of Hindutva, the cause of Maharashtra.
The author is BJP spokesperson, advisor to former Chief Minister of Maharashtra, Devendra Fadnavis, and executive director of Maharashtra Village Social Transformation Foundation.
SEXUAL ASSAULT CASE: ACTOR-PRODUCER VIJAY BABU APPEARS BEFORE PROBE OFFICIALS
Actor-producer Vijay Babu appeared before probe officials for the seventh consecutive day in Ernakulam Town South Police Station for interrogation in connection with a sexual assault case registered against him.
He is appearing before probe officials as per the directions of the Kerala High Court. Meanwhile, a Kerala actor who was allegedly raped by Malayalam actor-producer Vijay Babu has moved the Supreme Court challenging the Kerala High Court’s decision granting conditional anticipatory bail to the actor.
In her petition moved through Advocate Raghenth Basant, she has submitted that the case raises an important issue of whether an absconding accused can be granted anticipatory bail on the ground that it will prompt him to come out of hiding and join the investigation.
A lookout notice was issued against the actor as he went into hiding since the accusations surfaced. Babu then filed an application seeking anticipatory bail before the Kerala High Court, which was allowed on June 22, subject to conditions. The High Court had also confirmed the maintainability of the application for pre-arrest bail filed while the applicant is residing outside the country.
Meanwhile, the Association of Malayalam Movie Artistes (AMMA) earlier in June said that any action against actor-producer Vijay Babu will be taken “as per the judgment of the court”.
Following the accusations, Vijay stepped down from the executive committee of the AMMA in May.
AMMA president Mohanlal, its general secretary Edavela Babu, and its treasurer Siddique were among those who addressed a press conference.
“This is a matter for the court to consider. Action will be taken if necessary as per the judgment of the court. We are waiting for the verdict of the court to come. Everyone is waiting for the verdict. He is a member of eight or nine clubs in Kochi. He has not yet been expelled from those clubs. AMMA is actually a club. AMMA will act in accordance with the court order,” said Edavela Babu, General Secretary of AMMA at the press conference.
Siddique said that the executive committee of AMMA has decided not to take any action against Vijay until the court decides. ANI
IS ‘HEY’ UNPROFESSIONAL? NETIZENS REACT TO VIRAL CHAT
Covid-19 has prompted the majority of the workforce to work from home. With daily communication between work teams is no longer restricted to set timings and official emails, the lines between professional and personal have been blurred, leading to a dilemma on what is formal and what is informal.
A WhatsApp chat between a boss and an employee is going viral on the Internet for this reason. Recently, an employee got an earful for greeting his boss with a ‘hey’. Responding to this, the boss said, “Please don’t use the word ‘hey’. It’s offensive to me. If you can’t remember my name, simply use ‘Hi’, adding how the employee should refrain from using words like ‘Dude’ and ‘Man’ with his boss.
Had it been any other person, they would have gone ahead to apologise, but this employee responded, “Well, considering that we are having a conversation over WhatsApp and not over LinkedIn or a mail chain. I’m just being casual as you are texting me on my personal number. And coming to being professional I’m not the one being offended.”
However, the conversation did not end there as the boss emphasised that Whatsapp is not a personal space anymore. “WhatsApp is not personal space any more, it has been used for business. I am not insisting my ideology on you. If you understand it, fine; or you will understand it sooner or later,” he said.
After the post surfaced online, a social media user said, “Agreed. You don’t use a social media app like WhatsApp to have a professional relationship over the Internet. They should write a properly-formatted email. And that’s “Mr NutWrench” to them, too.” Another user added, “My old boss told me “what’s up?” is disrespectful. Dude, you’re calling me, you clearly need something. What’s up?.”
CRIME BRANCH ISSUES NOTICE TO SWAPNA SURESH IN CONSPIRACY CASE
Crime Branch of Kerala Police has asked Swapna Suresh to appear before the probe officials at the Kochi Police club on July 5. Crime Branch has issued a notice to her in a conspiracy case registered over the complaint filed by MLA and former minister KT Jaleel. She is the prime accused in the Kerala gold smuggling case.
Thiruvananthapuram cantonment police have registered a case against Swapna on Jaleel’s complaint on June 8 this year seeking a probe into the charges made by Swapna Suresh against him in the Gold Smuggling Case and alleged that she conspired and made defaming statements against him.
The police registered the case under Section 153 (wantonly giving provocation with an intent to cause riot) and Section 120B (criminal conspiracy) against her.
She skipped the interrogation earlier this week when the Crime Branch issued a notice by citing the reason for ED questioning in the gold smuggling case.
The prime accused in the gold smuggling case Swapna Suresh on Wednesday said Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan had told lies in the Assembly on Tuesday and urged him to release CCTV visuals of Cliff House and Secretariat in view of the probe in the case.
“Yesterday, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan talked a lot of things at the Assembly. It came to my notice that he had told a lot of lies in order to mislead the public by standing in a very sacred place,” Suresh said to reporters today.
She added, “The Chief Minister said that he has often seen me with the Consul General. There is no MEA approval for such meetings. All these meetings were facilitated through me by his point of contact, that is Sivasankar. All these meetings are against the protocol.”
She demanded the Chief Minister to release the CCTV visuals of Cliff House (official residence of Kerala CM) and Secretariat from 2016 to 2020.
“After 7 o’clock at night along with the Consul General, I went to Cliff House for secret meetings for their requirements. Also, I had gone alone there earlier. You can see in those visuals that there was no security check for me to go there. It is not ethical to mislead people by standing in the Assembly with so many blatant lies like saying that you do not know Swapna Suresh.”
In the Assembly on Tuesday, Vijayan said Swapna is a person who is accused of gold smuggling and other cases and the Congress-led Opposition is treating her words as the ultimate truth and using them here. He also referred to her as someone who is now being guided by Sangh Parivar forces.
Villagers catch two LeT terrorists in J&K
This has prompted LG Manoj Sinha to announce reward of Rs 5 lakh to the villagers.
With the help of locals Jammu and Kashmir police on Sunday arrested two most wanted Lashkar-e-Taiba terrorists from Mahore area of Reasi district of Jammu region and recovered Two Ak 47 rifles, seven hand grenades, Pistols and huge quantity of ammunitions.
Both arrested terrorist Talib Hussain of Rajouri and Faisal Ahmed Dar of Pulwama are associated with terror outfit Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) and are wanted in three IED blasts in Rajouri and for terror incident in South Kashmir.
Jammu and Kashmir Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha announced a reward of Rs 5 Lakhs for the brave villagers who apprehended two Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) terrorists in Jammu and Kashmir’s Reasi district.”I salute the bravery of villagers of Tukson Dhok, Reasi, who apprehended two most-wanted terrorists. Such determination by the common man shows the end of terrorism is not far away. UT Govt to extend Rs 5 Lakh cash reward to villagers for the gallant act against terrorists and terrorism.”
According to the Jammu Additional Director General of Police (ADGP), the apprehended terrorists have been identified as Faizal Ahmed Dar and Talib Hussain.
The Director-General of Police (DGP) announced a reward of Rs 2 lakhs for villagers.
Two AK rifles, seven grenades and a pistol were recovered, the police said.
Earlier on June 30, the Chinar Corps of the Indian Army eliminated two terrorists during Operation ‘Kataran’ in the Kulgam district of Jammu and Kashmir.
Police said that the joint operation ‘Kataran’ was launched on Wednesday and the area was cordoned off. One AK rifle, one pistol and war-like stores were recovered.
Earlier on Wednesday, two Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) terrorists were neutralized during an encounter that broke out in Kulgam.
The encounter site was very close to the pilgrimage route of the Amarnath yatra. Both the terrorists killed in the encounter were identified and categorized as local terrorists of the proscribed terror outfit LeT.
Jammu ADGP Mukesh Singh said it has been observed LeT is trying to revive terrorist activities in Chenab valley and the Rajouri-Poonch area and managed to revive some workers.
“In the recent past, it’s been observed LeT is trying to revive terrorist activities in Chenab valley and Rajouri-Poonch area, managed to revive some workers. In this, 2 modules had been created,” Singh said.
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