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Maha to create ‘Health Map’ with Covid campaign: Thackeray

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Uddhav Thackeray

Two days after the Centre took note of Maharashtra’s unique “My Family, My Responsibility” Covid-19 initiative, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Friday announced that the campaign will be taken ahead to create a state “Health Map” for a healthier and happier population.

The “My Family, My Responsibility” (MFMR) drive has been implemented all over the state with the participation of health workers, volunteers, Asha and Anganwadi staffers, student groups and social workers who go door-to-door to collect information on peoples’ health status.

The Centre had mentioned the initiative on Wednesday when it advised 10 states, which contribute 76 per cent of the country’s Covid cases, to implement a massive grassroots level Covid awareness campaign in which Maharashtra had taken a “head start”, as IANS had reported on September 23.

Elaborating about the initiative, Thackeray said: “Besides those who are Covid infected, cured, post-recovery status, people are also providing information about other ailments and their general health status, and getting taught about the preventive triad of ‘wearing masks, physical distancing and clean hands’. We want to make it a peoples movement.”

He was speaking after a survey of Konkan and Pune divisions on the Covid pandemic status, through video-conferencing, with ministers and top officials.

The coastal Konkan Division – with Thane, Palghar, Raigad, Ratnagiri and Sindhudurg districts – has a population of around 1.93 crore comprising 48.66 lakh families for which 6,721 health squads have been deployed for the MFMR campaign and are targeting 2.17 lakh families daily, with nearly 25 percent covered till date.

“During this campaign, 1,403 fever patients were detected, another 38,658 with Corona-like symptoms were found. The Konkan region needs 6,780 oxymeters, of which 6,420 are made available. There is a requirement for 6,666 thermal scanners of which 6,602 are provided,” said Thackeray.

Additionally, another 55,268 health teams are in the field across the state and have examined 70.75 lakh families till date or 2.83 crore people, from whom nearly 38,000 suspected Covid patients were detected.

Speaking on the occasion, Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar urged people to be kind and caring to Covid patients, and said the government might consider setting up ‘Post-Covid Centres’ for those who have recovered from the virus.

Pune Divisional Commissioner Saurabh Rao said that the district has a large number of commercial establishments, factories and industries, and as a result of MFMR, people are now participating enthusiastically as “My Factory, My Responsibility”, “My Housing Society, My Responsibility”, “My Locality, My Responsibility”, etc.

Stating that the MFMR campaign is all-inclusive, Minister of State for Information and Public Relations Aditi Tatkare sought maximum publicity, through various media, to patients who have conquered Covid.

She said that innovative ideas have been implemented in the campaign, for instance, by depicting the Covid message through the world-renowned Warli paintings in Palghar, through ‘Dashavtara’ in Sindhudurg, the ‘Gudi festival’ in Ratnagiri, on buses, at prominent bus stops, arches and billboards, online essay competitions for children, etc.

Others present during the interaction included Guardian Ministers like Dadasaheb Bhuse (Palghar), Uday Samant (Sindhudurg), top district, police and health officials.

Source: IANS


India

‘Not allowed to meet anyone’: Delhi riots accused Umar Khalid tells court

Khalid was arrested under the anti-terror law Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act in connection with the communal violence that took place in Northeast Delhi in February this year.

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Umar Khalid

Former Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) student Umar Khalid, who is in judicial custody in connection with his alleged role in Delhi riots, on Thursday claimed that he is not being allowed to step out of his cell or meet anyone, alleging that it is a form of solitary confinement.

“Security does not mean that I should be punished like this,” Khalid told a Delhi court during a hearing. He said that this is being done on the orders of additional jail superintendent.

Khalid also said that he is not well from the last few days and due to the orders to keep him confined to the cell all the time, he is feeling discomfort, not just physical but also mental.

The court then summoned the jail superintendent, and posted the matter for further hearing on Friday.

On October 17, the court had directed the Delhi Police to give adequate security to Khalid. The order came on a petition filed by the JNU student seeking adequate security because of his “ideological differences and dissenting opinion”.

Khalid was arrested under the anti-terror law Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act in connection with the communal violence that took place in Northeast Delhi in February this year.

A Delhi court had on September 24 sent Khalid to judicial custody till October 22. At the end of the custody today, the police moved an application to keep Khalid in the judicial custory for another month.

The court will hear the matter on Friday and is expected to pass the order of Delhi Police’s petition.

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India

Govt restores all existing visas, barring electronic, tourist and medical categories

This includes flights operated under ‘Vande Bharat’ mission, air transport bubble arrangements or by any non-scheduled commercial flights as allowed by the Ministry of Civil Aviation

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Indian Passport

New Delhi, Oct 22 : The government on Thursday decided to restore with immediate effect all existing visas, except electronic, tourist and medical categories, almost eight months after their suspension following the coronavirus outbreak and subsequent imposition of a nationwide lockdown

The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) also announced giving permission to all Overseas Citizen of India (OCI) and Person of Indian Origin (PIO) card holders and all other foreign nationals to visit India for any purpose, except on a tourist visa

The ministry said in a statement that in view of the situation arising out of the COVID-19 pandemic, the government had taken a series of steps to curtail the inward and outward movement of international passengers since February, 2020

The government has now decided to make a graded relaxation in visa and travel restrictions for more categories of foreign nationals and Indian nationals who wish to enter or leave India

Under this graded relaxation, the government has decided to restore with immediate effect all existing visas, except electronic visa, tourist visa and medical visa, the statement said

If the validity of such visas has expired, fresh visas of appropriate categories can be obtained from Indian mission or post concerned

Foreign nationals intending to visit India for medical treatment can apply afresh for a medical visa, including for their medical attendants

Therefore, this decision will enable foreign nationals to come to India for various purposes such as business, conferences, employment, studies, research, medical purposes etc

The government has also decided to permit all OCI and PIO card holders and all other foreign nationals intending to visit India for any purpose, except on a tourist visa, to enter by air or water routes through authorised airports and seaport immigration check posts

This includes flights operated under ‘Vande Bharat’ mission, air transport bubble arrangements or by any non-scheduled commercial flights as allowed by the Ministry of Civil Aviation

All such travellers will, however, have to strictly adhere to the guidelines of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare regarding quarantine and other health/COVID-19 matters

While the restrictions on visas were imposed following the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic in February, commercial flight operations were suspended when the nationwide lockdown came into effect on March 25

However, the government has been allowing limited operations of Air India flights under the ‘Vande Bharat’ mission for certain categories OCI and PIO card holders and those Indians who were stuck due to COVID-19 outbreak since June.

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Economy not circus lion that responds to ringmaster’s stick: Chidambaram

Chidambaram said the economy was largely determined by the market, by the laws of demand and supply, and by the purchasing power and the sentiments of the people, which are missing currently

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P Chidambaram

Former Finance Minister P. Chidambaram on Thursday criticised the Centre for its claims on reviving the economy. He said the economy was largely determined by the market, by the laws of demand and supply, and by the purchasing power and the sentiments of the people, which are missing currently.

“Unless the government puts money in the hands of the bottom half of the families and puts food on the plates of the poor, the economy will not revive smartly,” he added.

The Congress leader said if the government doubted about what he say, then “just listen to the voices of the voters of Bihar on their existential crisis — no work or not enough work, no income or little income, and their thoughts are on surviving, not on spending.

He also said that RBI Governor, SEBI Chairman and the DEA Secretary should tell the FM, in unison, that the vast majority of the people do not have the money or the inclination to buy goods and services.

“Is it not intriguing that the RBI Governor, the SEBI Chairman and the DEA Secretary should speak on the same day on the same subject? All three have tried to ‘talk up’ the economy. I wish the economy was a circus lion that would respond to the stick of the ringmaster!” Chidambaram mocked.

The former Finance Minister was criticising the statements made by the RBI Governor and the Economic Affairs Secretary.

Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Governor Shaktikanta Das said on Wednesday that India is at the doorstep of a revival process from the ongoing pandemic.

Speaking at an event, he said that it is very important that the financial entities have adequate capital to support the growth. He noted that many of them have already raised capital while others are planning to do the same.

He said that after the pandemic is contained, the government will have to spell out a fiscal roadmap for the country.

Secretary, Economic Affairs, Tarun Bajaj on Wednesday said the Centre is open for further measures to boost the economy.

Participating at a CII event, he said that the government has received suggestions from various ministries and sectors on the needed measures.

Bajaj also said that while preparing the next Union Budget, the government would be looking at expenditure for this year and the requirements of various ministries.

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