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Himanta Biswa Sarma offers to send 20MT oxygen daily to Delhi



Assam health, education, finance and PWD minister Himanta Biswa Sarma has said that he can deliver 20 MT of oxygen per day to Delhi, if the Delhi govt sends tankers to pick it up. The NEDA convenor was responding to AAP Founder & National Council member Rajesh Sharma on Twitter, who was trying to find holes in the claims of oxygen availability in Assam made by the Assam minister.

The argument started when one AAP leader from Assam named Dr Bhaben Choudhury said that there is no vaccine available at Guwahati Medical College Hospital. He sposted a screenshot of the Arogya Setu app, and said that it is showing no vaccine slots available when Himanta Biswa Sarma has claimed that 5 lakh doses are available.

This tweet reached the AAP founder, and said that while Himanta Biswa Sarma claimed about installation of 5 oxygen plants in Assam, people of Assam don’t know about a single one. He also repeated the claims of Choudhury on vaccines, and tagged the Twitter handle of Sarma.

To this, the Assam health minister responded with the details of new oxygen plants installed in the state, saying that 3 oxygen plants in Guwahati Medical College Hospital, 2 in Assam Medical College Hospital in Dibrugarh, 2 in Jorhat Medical College Hospital, and one each in the Medical College Hospitals in Diphu, Tezpur and Barpeta, and 1 in the Mahendra Mohan Choudhury hospital has been installed. He also added that 3 private sector plants in Samuguri, Bongaigaon and Amingaon are there.

“What kind of proof you want? Please tell me. At least I am not Arvind Kejriwal”, Sarma challenged Sharma.

The AAP leader thought that he found a great hole in the claims of the Assam minister, as he is only talking about PSA oxygen generators installed in the hospitals. He said that these plants are not even capable to refill oxygen cylinders of ambulances. “You are health minister of Assam for last 20 years”, Rajesh Sharma added, implying that Himanta Biswa Sarma knows nothing about oxygen plants despite being the health minister for so long.

However, Rajesh Sharma was misinformed, because although the BJP leader mentioned the new PSA plants installed in the hospitals in Assam, the fact is that Assam already has industrial oxygen generation plants that produce liquid oxygen, and many more are coming up in the next few weeks, which can be filled into cylinders. Himanta Sarma said that the state has 4 such plants producing 42 MT more than the current demand in the state, and he can send 20 MT per day to Delhi as of now. “Send your tankers and I will refill the tankers. My promise”, he added.

After this open offer, Rajesh Sharma was forced to change tune after this offer from the minister, and responded that Delhi does not have cryogenic tankers as it is not an industrial state. So he requested Sarma to arrange the tankers too, saying it will be a great help for the people of Delhi.

Responding to Himanta Biswa Sarma saying that he is not Arvind Kejriwal, Rajesh Sharma said that he can’t be Kejriwal, who has “revolutionized whole education & health system in Delhi in just 7 years”. Himanta Sarma questioned what kind of revolution the Delhi CM has done in the health system, citing the present Covid-19 situation in the city-state. “We don’t want that time of revolution in Assam”, he said. He also invited Rajesh Sharma to vising Assam to see the plants if has any courage.

While the AAP leaders try to mock other states on the oxygen situation when the state under its rule is facing the most severe shortage of the gas, Assam govt has taken several steps to ensure that adequate oxygen is available in case Covid-19 cases surge in the state. There are four existing oxygen generation plants in the private sector in Assam, and in recent weeks, the state govt has made arrangements for the supply of oxygen from several other plants. Some plants which were not used for years are being revived, apart from installing PSA plants in the hospitals.

The Assam govt has also signed an MoU with a plant in Dimapur to source oxygen, which was operating only 2 days a week due to low demand in Nagaland. Now the plant will run 7 days a week, and Assam will get oxygen on 5 days. Apart from this, Assam will also get 40 MT oxygen from a plant in Bhutan which is being set up two private companies from Assam and Bhutan. The work on the plant was stalled due to lockdown in the Himalayan nation, but it has been resumed after the MEA talked to Bhutan govt on the request of Assam govt.


Karnataka Temporarily Suspends Vaccination For 18-44 Age Group, Will Prioritise Second Dose



Owing to the short supply of Covid vaccines, Karnataka on Wednesday decided to ‘temporarily suspend’ vaccination drive for those aged between 18 to 44 years.

In a series of tweets, the Karnataka Health department said that the state government has decided that the vaccine procured directly by the state government for vaccination of persons between 18 and 44 years too will be utilised for vaccination of beneficiaries who are due for the second dose.

“Therefore, all vaccines available with the state government i.e. supplied by union government and procured directly by state will be utilized for vaccination of beneficiaries due for second dose,” the Karnataka health department tweet explained.

The Health department added that vaccination drives for the 18 to 44 age group, including those who have already booked appointments will be temporarily suspended from May 14 till further orders.

According to the health department, the state government on May 7 had decided to utilise the complete supply of vaccines provided by the union government for vaccination of persons above 45 years, for vaccinating beneficiaries who were due for second dose.

“But under the changed circumstances and severe shortage of vaccine, the vaccine procured directly by the state government for vaccination of persons between 18 to 44 years too will be utilised for vaccination of beneficiaries who are due for second dose,” a senior health department official told reporters on the condition of anonymity.

The health department added that this order will be applicable for Covid vaccination at all state-run Covid vaccination centres in the state.

As of now, only two vaccines manufactured by Pune based Serum Institute of India (SII) and Hyderabad based Bharat Biotech are allowed in India for mass inoculation programme, but these companies are struggling to meet the country’s overwhelming demand for vaccines amid the ferocious second wave that has seen India’s Covid burden go up manifold.

Karnataka symbolically launched anti-Covid vaccination drive on May 1 but ever since it has failed to take off due to short supply of vaccines.

Karnataka Health minister, K. Sudhkar was first to state on April 30 that it was better to put off the launch of the drive on May 1 as the state had not received required stock and this was even endorsed by Chief Minister, B.S. Yediyurappa on that day. But, Yediyurappa the next day launched the vaccination drive symbolically on May 1.

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Check Out Tithi, Shubh Muhurat, Rahu Kaal and Other Details For Thursday



(Representative pic: Shutterstock)

(Representative pic: Shutterstock)

Panchang: The day Guruvara is dedicated to Lord Brihaspati who is known as the priest of Gods

May 13 will mark the Shukla Paksha Dwitiya Tithi of Hindi month Vaishakha in Vikram Samvat 2078 and the day is Guruvara (Thursday). The Dwitiya tithi will prevail up to the full night on May 13. The day Guruvara is dedicated to Lord Brihaspati who is known as the priest of gods. Devotees observe fast and worship Lord Brihaspati by offering yellow flowers, sandals, clothes, jaggery and gram pulse. He is also believed to be an incarnation of Lord Vishnu. Know about the tithi, timings, Nakshatra, and other details for May 13.

Sunrise and Sunset time for May 13:

Sunrise time – 05:32 am

Sunset time – 07.04 pm

Moonrise time – 06.26 am

Moonset time – 08.33 pm

Tithi, Nakshatra, and Rashi Details for May 13:

Dwitiya Tithi will prevail up to a full night on May 13. The Nakshatra will be Rohini up to the full night. Sun will remain in Mesha Rashi while Moon will transition to Vrishabha Rashi.

Shubh Muhurats on May 13:

The most auspicious muhurat of the day i.e, Abhijit Muhurat will prevail between 11:51 am and12:45 pm on May 13. This time period is believed to be one of the most auspicious muhurat to perform any puja or to start any work. There are some other shubh muhurats which also prevail for a certain period of time almost every day. These are Vijaya muhurat andGodhuli muhurat which will take place between 02:33 pm and03:27 pm, 06:50 pm and 07:14 pm, respectively. There will be no Amrit Kalam for today.

Inauspicious timings for May 13:

The most inauspicious muhurat Rahu Kalam will prevail between 1.59 pm and3.41 pm on May 13. It is said that any auspicious work during this time is interfered with by planet Rahu. Other inauspicious muhurat like Gulikai Kalam and Varjyam will last from 08:55 am to 10:36 am and 08:44 pm to 10:32 pm.

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Yogi Adityanath Takes Cognisance of Bodies Dumped in Ganga; UP-Bihar Govts Blame Each Other



Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on Wednesday took cognisance of bodies found floating in the Ganga in Ballia district and said the last rites should be done according to the deceased’s religious beliefs. He also noted that the dumping of bodies in water causes pollution.

At least 45 bodies were seen floating in floating near the Ujiyar, Kulhadia and Bharauli ghats in the Narahi area on Tuesday evening. Late on Tuesday night, seven more bodies were found, taking the total count of bodies to 52, an official said. District officials have begun performing the last to avoid Covid-19 contagion. The dumping of bodies also increases the risk of spreading infections in communities inhabiting the banks of rivers, officials said.

Meanwhile, the Bihar government on Tuesday said altogether 71 bodies have been fished out from the Ganges in Buxar district and were later cremated as per protocols. Some samples were, however, collected for DNA testing.

Bihar Additional chief secretary (home) Chaitanya Prasad said that the bodies in Buxar had flown downstream from neighbouring Uttar Pradesh. Speaking to News18, he said, “All these dead bodies were being dumped in Ganga from Uttar Pradesh, which flowed and stopped at Chausa and Mahavir Ghat in Buxar (Bihar border). An investigation has been launched on the orders of the Bihar government regarding the issue.”

Officials of both UP and Bihar have discussed the issue with their counterparts, including the Chief Secretaries, Additional Chief Secretaries, DGPs and District Magistrates, sources said.

Bihar authorities have raised strong objections to the dumping of bodies amid Covid-19 pandemic concerns. However, both the states have agreed to implement strict Covid-19 protocol in bordering districts. As per reports, a huge net has also been put up in the Ganges near Raniganj, Buxar.

A video of bodies found buried in shallow pits near the banks of the Ganga had also gone viral. The viral video showed dogs nibbling on the corpses.

The Allahabad High Court had earlier expressed concern over the under-reporting of Covid-19 deaths and has asked the state to record the deaths of those who died with Covid symptoms even if their tests could not be done.

Uttar Pradesh reported 329 more Covid-19 deaths and 18,125 fresh cases in the last 24 hours.

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