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Sunday,20-June-2021

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Rahul Gandhi writes to Modi, criticises govt’s Covid, vax strategy

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Rahul-Gandhi

Former Congress President Rahul Gandhi on Friday wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi saying his government’s lack of a clear and coherent Covid and vaccination strategy, as well as its hubris in declaring premature victory as the virus was exponentially spreading, has placed India in a highly dangerous position.

He also said that government’s failures have made another national lockdown almost inevitable, and to prevent a repeat of the manifold suffering caused by last year’s lockdown, the government must act with compassion and provide critical financial and food support to “our most vulnerable people”.

This is his second letter to the Prime Minister within a month. He has earlier written to Modi on April 9 calling for vaccinations to be opened up to “everyone who needs it” and an immediate halt on vaccine exports, predicting “catastrophic effects” on the economy if inoculations continued at the current pace.

His remarks came on the day when India recorded 4.14 lakh fresh cases of Covid in the last 24 hours, highest in a day.

In a three-page letter, Rahul Gandhi, who is also a Lok Sabha MP from Kerala’s Wayanad, said: “I am compelled to write to you once more as the Covid-19 tsunami continues to ravage our country unabated.”

The Congress leader said “in such an unprecedented crisis, the people of India must be your foremost priority”.

“I urge you to do everything in your power to stop the needless suffering that our people are going through,” he said.

He further said that but it is also important to understand India’s responsibility in a globalised and interconnected world.

“India is home to one out of every six human beings on the planet. The pandemic has demonstrated that our size, genetic diversity and complexity make India fertile ground for the virus to rapidly mutate, transforming itself into a more contagious and more dangerous form. The double and triple mutant strains that we are currently grappling with are only the beginning, I fear,” he said.

He highlighted that “allowing the uncontrollable spread of this virus in our country will be devastating not only for our people but also for the rest of the world”.

“It is, therefore, absolutely critical that we address several urgent issues without delay. We must — scientifically track the virus and its mutations across the country using genome sequencing as well as its disease patterns, dynamically assess the efficacy of all vaccines against all new mutations as they are identified, rapidly vaccinate our entire population and be transparent and keep the rest of the world informed about our findings,” he said.

Hitting out at the government, Rahul Gandhi said: “Your government’s lack of a clear and coherent Covid and vaccination strategy, as well as its hubris in declaring premature victory as the virus was exponentially spreading, has placed India in a highly dangerous position: today the disease is growing explosively.”

“It is currently on the verge of overwhelming all of our systems. Government of India’s (GOIs) failures have made another devastating national lockdown almost inevitable,” he said.

He suggested that in light of this, it is critical that our people are prepared for such an eventuality.

“To prevent a repeat of the manifold suffering caused by last year’s lockdown, the government must act with compassion and provide critical financial and food support to our most vulnerable people. In addition, it must be ready with a transportation strategy for those who will require it,” he said.

He also emphasised that he was aware that the Prime Minister is concerned about the economic impact of a lockdown.

“Inside and outside India, the human cost of allowing this virus to continue its march unimpeded will result in many more tragic consequences for our people than any purely economic calculations your advisors are suggesting,” he said, adding that in times of crisis, various stakeholders must be taken into confidence so we can all work together to safeguard India.

National News

By giving clean chit to Agra hospital, UP govt did mock drill of inquiry: Priyanka Gandhi Vadra

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Priyanka-Gandhi-Vadra

Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra on Saturday slammed the Uttar Pradesh government for giving a clean chit to an Agra hospital where 22 patients died after oxygen supply was allegedly cut during a drill.

She said that the government has closed all the doors of justice.

Priyanka, who is also the in-charge of UP Congress, tweeted: “What an irony. According to reports a hospital in Agra conducted mock drill by allegedly cutting the oxygen supply and the BJP government gave clean chit to the hospital doing mock drill of the inquiry. The paths of government and the hospital have been cleared. By not listening to the complaints of the patients families, the government has shut all hope of justice.”

She also attached a news report claiming that a clean chit was given to the Paeas Hospital, which was caught in a controversy after a video surfaced online.

In the video, a man was heard saying to conduct a mock drill on oxygen supply.

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Crime

Gurugram: FIR against ex-BJP MLA for forging court records

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FIR

Following a complaint by the District Town Planner (DTP), the Gurugram police on Friday registered FIRs against three persons, including a former Gurugram BJP MLA for allegedly forging court records and circulating them on social media, the police said on Saturday.

According to the police, on May 16, former BJP MLA Umesh Aggarwal’s associates had filed a plea alleging contempt of court against the officials of the DTP team for carrying out demolition drive in an illegal colony in Sector-77 Kherki Daula, on June 10.

The District Town Planner R.S. Batth in his police complaint alleged that former MLA, Umesh Aggarwal had circulated forged court summons on social media, claiming that a contempt of court proceedings had been initiated against the officials of the DTP department by a court.

Following the complaint, an FIR has been registered against three under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) at Sector-14 police station.

“Before carrying out the demolition drive, all legal formalities were taken but the trio continue to develop an illegal colony,” Bhatt told IANS.

“In connection with the matter an FIR has been registered. Further probe is underway,” said a police officer.

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National News

BJP demands attempt to murder case against Pinarayi Vijayan

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Kerala-Chief-Minister-Pinarayi-Vijayan

Joining issue in the ongoing war of words between chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan and new Congress president K. Sudhakaran, on Saturday, Union Minister of State for External Affairs V. Muraleedharan demanded that an attempt to murder case against Vijayan be lodged.

On Saturday, at Sudhakaran’s press conference, his party colleague K. Gopi, who hails from Vijayan’s village in Kannur, recalled an old incident, that in 1977 when 26 beedi workers were terminated from a society, they led a protest.

“I was leading the protest and then Vijayan with a sword led a group of people and he brandished his sword and it hit my hand and the injury mark is still there,” said Gopi showing his hand and adding that despite his complaint to the local police then, there was no further action in the case.

Muraleedharan told the media in the state capital that if the Congress party is serious in the allegation, they should register a police complaint.

“There is no time limit to an attempt to murder case and hence, Sudhakaran should ask Gopi to go forward and register a fresh complaint,” said Muraleedharan.

He also pointed out that in the past two days both these leaders have been revisiting their college days at the Government Brennen College and have been saying about their deeds then and it shows that both of them were goons and criminals.

“My appeal to both of them is not to portray a great institution like Brennen College by distorting its greatness, and lowering it as a place of goons,” said Muraleedharan.

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