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Journalist Siddique Kappan to be shifted to Delhi hospital from Mathura jail

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The Supreme Court on Tuesday released an order to shift the Kerala journalist Siddiqque Kappan from Mathura Jail in Uttar Pradesh to a government hospital in Delhi for medical treatment despite having recovered from Covid. 

Kappan who is under custody in a UAPA case will receive medical treatment at Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital or AIIMS or any other government hospital in Delhi and will be brought back to Mathura jail post recovery. 

The order was passed by a bench comprising Chief Justice of India NV Ramana, Justices Surya Kant and AS Bopanna while hearing a habeas corpus petition filed by Kerala Union of Working Journalists (KUWJ) seeking Kappan’s release.

The court also gave liberty to Kappan to seek appropriate legal remedies for bail in a lower court.

The move was strongly opposed by the Solicitor General Tushar Mehta representing the UP government. 

Mehta, giving a detailed response, argued, “We are dealing with a 42-year-old Covid negative patient. There are about 50 covid patients with or without comorbidities in Mathura jail, and they are treated at Mathura hospital. In Mathura, there are several Covid positive people with comorbidities who are not getting beds. There is a huge resurgence in UP and people are not getting beds. In Delhi also, (Covid-19) positive people are not getting beds.”

“Shifting him to Delhi so that the family is more comfortable coming to Delhi is doing injustice to lakhs of others,” he added. 

Kappan who had tested Covid-19 positive had also suffered a fall in the jail. He is said to be suffering from various comorbidities like diabetes and blood pressure. Kappan was discharged from Mathura Hospital today morning after being tested negative for Covid-19 and was brought back to the jail. However, the petition said that he needed better medical treatment.

Citing this as the reason to shift him to a Delhi hospital, the Court remarked that it was the responsibility of the state to protect him while he was under its custody.

To this, SG Mehta replied saying that not less than 100 people in jail are with comorbidities and that the Mathura Hospital is sufficient to deal with such cases. 

Dismissing the habeas corpus petition, the bench said it was only considering the issue of medical treatment for Kappan on humanitarian grounds.

UP Police slaps UAPA against Kappan

Earlier this month, the Uttar Pradesh police had submitted a 5000-page charge sheet against Kerala-based ‘journalist’ Siddique Kappan and 7 other PFI members for conspiring to create communal tension in Hathras. He was arrested by the UP Police on October 5 while he was proceeding to cover the Hathras case.

Siddique Kappan was charged under the stringent Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, Indian Penal Code (IPC) Sections 124A (sedition), 153A (promoting enmity between different groups), 295A (hurting sentiments) and relevant sections of the Information Technology Act and was serving his time in Mathura jail. 

Kappan’s wife writes to the CJI

Kappan’s wife Raihanth Kappan had also written to the Chief Justice of India stating that her husband was “chained like an animal” to a hospital bed in Mathura. She urged the Court to intervene and release him from the hospital and keep him back in Mathura jail till his plea for release from jail is decided.

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

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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

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(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

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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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