Karnataka govt urges people to remain cautious for next 6 weeks to control 3rd covid wave

News Network
January 5, 2022

Bengaluru, Jan 5: Karnataka Health Minister Dr K Sudhakar on Wednesday said people need to be cautious for the next four to six weeks to control a possible third wave of Covid-19 and the spread of Omicron variant in the state. The minister called on the people to follow the guidelines and containment measures announced by the government and cooperate with the administration.

"New Covid guidelines have been released after a meeting chaired by the Chief Minister. My appeal to the people is, four to six weeks is crucial. As we have observed worldwide, it is declining in five to six weeks. This wave will not be for too long, like in the first and second wave that was for three to four months," Sudhakar said.

Speaking to reporters here, he said the latest wave spreads fast and will also decline in the same phase. "If we remain cautious for at least four to six weeks, we will be able to control it," he said, adding that there is no need to worry in case of infections.

The Karnataka government on Tuesday decided to impose curfew on weekends and restrict public gatherings to fight the third wave of Covid-19 till January 19. Also, the daily night curfew from 10 pm to 5 am, which is supposed to end January 7, will continue for two more weeks.

Noting that the Omicron variant of coronavirus enters the throat through the nose, but entering the lungs is very rare, the minister, who is also a medical professional, said. This is the reason why the cases requiring oxygen, ventilators and ICU are very less this time, he added.

"But, its effect may be more on those who have not taken both the doses of Covid vaccination. So, I request people with folded hands to get vaccinated with both doses mandatorily," Sudhakar said.

Those above 60 years and with comorbidities will be given the third preventive dose of vaccination from January 10 along with health workers and front line Covid warriors, he said adding that "our fast phase vaccination effort has helped Karnataka to control the large scale spread of the virus."

Speaking about the ongoing vaccination drive for those between the age group of 15-18 years that was rolled out on January 3, Sudhakar said Karnataka is at the third place in the country by covering about 25 per cent of the age group in the state.

"One in every four children (adolescents) in this age group have been vaccinated so far. It is happening at a fast phase," he said, adding that the vaccine drive is on track to with the government's target to cover the entire population in the age group within 10 to 15 days. Covaxin is being administered to adolescents between 15-18 years as per central government guidelines and the second dose will be given after a gap of 28 days.

The minister also sought cooperation from all stakeholders, including opposition parties and organisations, to join hands with the government in containing the spread of the virus.

To a question on Congress organising the Mekedatu padayatra (march) from January 9 amid the outbreak of cases and government imposing restrictions, he said, "People will decide. They are watching everything. We (the government) have not released the guideline without any malice."

"We are seeing the Covid spread before us. I hope Congress will understand, as they too want to protect the public interest. They too have been in government for long," Sudhakar added.

Asked if there will be any action on violations, he said, "Law will take its course." The Congress is organising the march from Mekedatu to Bengaluru, covering a distance of over 100 kilometres, demanding the implementation of the Mekedatu project across Cauvery river, which is being opposed by neighbouring Tamil Nadu.

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News Network
January 21,2022

Bengaluru, Jan 21: Karnataka government, on Friday, decided to revoke the weekend curfew that the state government had imposed due to a surge in Covid-19 cases.

"This is subject to the condition that if the rate of hospitalisation goes up from the current 5%, we will impose weekend curfew again," said Revenue Minister R Ashoka.

However, night curfew will remain across the state. More details to follow. 

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News Network
January 14,2022

Two more legislators, belonging to the Apna Dal, an ally of the BJP, have resigned just ahead of the Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections scheduled to take place next month.

Following his resignation, Chaudhary Amar Singh said: "This government is a liar and no development has been done. I met Akhilesh Yadav and will join him. Soon more people will join us."

He is likely to contest his Shohratgarh seat in Siddhartha Nagar on an SP ticket.

The other Apna Dal MLA R K Verma, who represents the Vishwanath Ganj seat of Pratapgarh, also announced that he is leaving the party.

Both the legislators blamed the Yogi Adityanath government for their leaving the alliance.

With the two new resignations, a total of 12 MLAs from the ruling alliance in Uttar Pradesh have quit, blaming the state government of being anti-backward.

Ten BJP MLAs, including three ministers, have quit the BJP since Tuesday.

It started with the exit of top minister Swami Prasad Maurya, followed by three MLAs close to him on the same day - Bhagwati Sagar, Roshan Lal Verma, and Brijesh Prajapati.

On Wednesday, another state minister Dara Singh Chauhan and MLA Avatar Singh Bhadana quit. Bhadana joined the RLD, an ally of the SP.

On Thursday, Minister Dharam Singh Saini, and three other BJP MLAs - Vinay Shakya, Mukesh Verma and Bala Awasthi - also left the party.

All three ministers who have quit are key OBC (Other Backward Class) leaders, claiming that the interests of the community are being neglected.

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News Network
January 13,2022

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Lucknow, Jan 13: Uttar Pradesh minister Dharam Singh Saini on Thursday resigned from the BJP, becoming the ninth MLA to break off ties with the saffron party just days ahead of the state assembly polls.

Earlier in the day, Dharam Singh Saini returned the security cover and residence allotted to him by the state government, which set off speculation that he was going to quit the BJP.

Dharam Singh Saini is the Minister of State (Independent Charge), Ayush, Food Security and Drug Administration.

The BJP’s Uttar Pradesh unit has witnessed a string of defections over the last few days, starting with cabinet minister Swami Prasad Maurya. At the time, Maurya had said that many more legislators would follow suit.

He said he was resigning due to "gross neglect" towards Dalits, backwards, farmers, unemployed youth and small traders. Over the following days, several other BJP MLAs Brajesh Prajapati, Roshan Lal Varma, Bhagwati Sagar, Mukesh Verma, Vinay Shakya among others, quit the party.

OBC leader Dara Singh Chauhan resigned on Wednesday from the Yogi Adityanath cabinet and appeared to be headed towards the Samajwadi Party. Chauhan said he had worked with dedication for the past five year but Dalits, the OBCs and the unemployed did not get justice from the BJP government.

Dharam Singh Saini is said to be a close aide of Maurya.

Earlier, Suheldev Bharatiya Samaj Party (SBSP) chief Om Prakash Rajbhar claimed that one to two ministers would quit the Yogi Adityanath Cabinet daily and this figure would go up to 18 by January 20. Rajbhar has struck an alliance with the Samajwadi Party for the 2022 assembly elections.

The Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections will be held in seven phases. Polling will be held from February 10 and the counting of votes will take place on March 10. 

Earlier, Shikohabad MLA and backward caste leader Dr Mukesh Verma has resigned from the party. "Swami Prasad Maurya is our leader. We will support whatever decision he takes. Many other leaders will join us in the coming days," Verma said.

In his letter addressed to the state BJP president, Varma alleged that the Yogi Adityanath government, in the past five years, has failed to address the problems of weaker sections, youth, farmers, Dalits and OBCs.

He said small traders and businessmen had suffered in the regime.

OBC leader Dara Singh Chauhan resigned Wednesday from the Yogi Adityanath cabinet and appeared to be headed towards the Samajwadi Party.

A day earlier, as BJP leaders brainstormed in Delhi on the UP assembly polls, Swami Prasad Maurya, also a prominent Other Backward Class leader, had quit the state cabinet.

Three other BJP MLAs announced their resignation from the party, seemingly in Maurya's support.

Yet another BJP MLA, Avtar Singh Bhadana, quit the party on Wednesday and is joining the Rashtriya Lok Dal, an SP ally.

But two Uttar Pradesh MLAs – Naresh Saini from the Congress and Hari Om Yadav from the SP – joined the BJP on Wednesday, a welcome development for the ruling party as it deals with the sudden defections from its ranks.

Maurya, Dara Singh Chauhan, (both ministers), Roshan Lal Varma, Brijendra Prajapati, Bhagwati Sharan Sagar, Vinay Shakya and Avatar Singh Bhadana resigned in past two days.

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