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Tuesday,18-January-2022

Maharashtra

Amid vaccine spat, Maharashtra tops with 93L jabs

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COVID-19 Vaccine. (Photo: IANS)

Amid a major ‘vaccine-war’ with the Centre, it has emerged that Maharashtra continues to fly high in terms of the inoculation drive despite having nearly-exhausted its stocks, officials said here on Friday.

As per the latest data released for April 9 (today), the state has administered the highest 93,38,531 jabs, comprising 84,35,010 first doses and 903,521 second doses, making it the best performer in the national vaccination programme, officials pointed out.

The state is followed by Rajasthan with 88,07,351 vaccinations comprising 77,72,197 first jabs and 10,35,194 second doses.

Next is Gujarat with 84,75,305 vaccinations including 75,01,404 first doses and 973,901 second jabs.

In the past two days, the Centre and Maharashtra have been engaged in a bitter war of words with the latter accusing the former of ‘stepmotherly treatment’ for the state which is worst-hit by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Top leaders of the Maha Vikas Aghadi government and Shiv Sena-Nationalist Congress Party-Congress said that the Centre has not given sufficient numbers of vaccines to Maharashtra but was allegedly concentrating on Gujarat and other states ruled by Bharatiya Janata Party.

Lashing out at the MVA, BJP’s Leader of Opposition Fadnavis said on Thursday evening that the vaccines’ “supply is not on the basis of population but purely based on state’s performance of execution of vaccination process”.

Refuting the MVA leaders’ contentions, Fadnavis also pointed out that only three states — Maharashtra, Gujarat and Rajasthan — have been given over 1-crore doses by the Centre.

While Maharashtra has a population of 12 crore, Gujarat and Rajasthan each have around 6 crore population, and the latter is ruled by Congress, he said.

As per the current figures, Uttar Pradesh ranks fourth with 81,45,161 vaccinations notched till date, comprising 69,51,956 first jabs and 11,93,205 second doses.

At the bottom of the list are less-populated smaller territories like Lakshadweep Islands (10,737), Union Territory of Daman & Diu (28,441), Andaman & Nicobar Islands (30,799), and Union Territory of Dadra & Nagar Haveli (31,851).

Maharashtra

Devendra Fadnavis demands action over Nana Patole remarks on Modi

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The BJP will not keep quiet over Maharashtra Congress president Nana Patole’s alleged controversial remarks against Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Leader of Opposition in the Maharashtra Assembly and senior BJP leader Devendra Fadnavis said on Tuesday.

Speaking to reporters in Panaji, Fadnavis also slammed the Maharashtra government for not filing an FIR over Patole’s comments, a video of which had gone viral on Monday.

“Someone called the Maharashtra CM’s wife Rabri devi and an FIR was filed. And here a person who calls himself a leader, threatens to kill the PM and there is no FIR (First Information Report) against him in Maharashtra. This is wrong. We will not keep quiet,” Fadnavis said.

In the video in Bhandara district in Maharashtra, Patole is allegedly heard saying he could beat up and badmouth Modi.

Patole later clarified that he was not referring to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, but a local goon with a similar surname.

Fadnavis, however, hinted at Congress conspiracy against the Prime Minister.

“I feel it is a Congress policy. In Punjab, the security of the PM is compromised and in Maharashtra the president says we will beat the PM. Through this, one can know what he (Patole) really feels about the PM. I feel it is Congress policy and we demand that an FIR and legal action should be taken against Nana Patole because he has spoken about beating the Prime Minister,” Fadnavis said.

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Maharashtra

Maharashtra Veteran PWP leader Prof N.D. Patil dies at 93

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Veteran political leader of Peasants & Workers Party (PWP), an ex-cabinet minister and a four-time legislator, Prof Narayan Dnyandeo Patil passed away following a brief illness, party leaders said here on Monday.

Battling from a recent brain haemorrhage, he breathed his last at a private hospital here early on Monday, aged 93.

Earlier, the fiery leader – who spent over seven decades in public life – was infected by Covid-19 and had recovered from it despite his advanced age.

He dedicated his life to the cause of farmers, peasants, mill-workers, casual labourers, the deprived and downtrodden in society and served as Maharashtra Member of Legislative Council for four terms, and served as a minister from 1978-1990.

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Maharashtra

Bombay HC rejects BJP MLA Nitesh Rane’s anticipatory bail plea

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In a massive setback, the Bombay High Court on Monday dismissed an anticipatory bail plea filed by Bharatiya Janata Party MLA Nitesh Rane, son of Union MSME Minister Narayan Rane – in an attempt to murder case.

Kept in reserve last week as Nitesh Rane was granted continued interim protection from arrest, the much-anticipated order was pronounced by Justice C.V. Bhadang.

However, on the court’s request, the prosecution assured it will continue its earlier commitment and refrain from any coercive steps against Nitesh Rane till Jan 27.

Among other things, Nitesh Rane, 39, has been accused as the key conspirator behind an attempt to murder case against a ruling Shiv Sena leader Santosh Parab – which allegedly took place on Dec 18 (2021) – in Kankavli town of Sindhudurg district, considered the political bastion of the Rane family.

On Dec 30, the Principal Judge of Sindhudurg District & Sessions Court Shirishkumar V. Hande had rejected the legislator’s anticipatory bail plea which was challenged by Rane on Jan 4 in the Bombay High Court.

The Kankavli Police lodged an FIR against Rane Jr following a complaint by Parab, but the BJP legislator claimed that he was being targeted for allegedly mocking Tourism Minister Aaditya Thackeray and to prevent his participation in the Sindhudurg District Cooperative Bank elections held on Dec 30.

Nitesh Rane’s lawyer, Nitin Pradhan contended before the court that his client had been cooperating with the investigators and had been questioned for four hours last month.

The Special Prosecutor Sudeep Pasbola said that they needed Nitesh Rane’s custodial interrogation to corroborate the circumstantial evidence collected in the case, various transactions like who had paid and how much for the attempted contract killing, plus the forensic reports of the confiscated phones of the accused.

Meanwhile, BJP Leader of Opposition (Council) Pravin Darekar slammed the Maha Vikas Aghadi government for allegedly misusing the official machinery and pursuing vendetta against Rane Jr, but said they respect the court verdict.

The Shiv Sena has demanded that now with the Sindhudurg District & Sessions Court and Bombay High Court have rejected the anticipatory bail plea, Nitesh Rane – who was ‘incommunicado’ for several weeks – should gracefully go and surrender before the police.

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