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01. Veteran Cong Leader Bhumidhar Barman Passes Away

Former Assam Chief Minister and Senior Congress leader Bhumidhar Barman has passed away following prolonged illness. He was 89. Barman was admitted to the ICU unit of Guwahati’s Dispur hospital on April 14 (Wednesday). He was under ventilation. Barman held the Chief Minister’s chair for a brief period between April 1996 and May 1996 after the death of CM Hiteshwar Saikia. He reprised his post again in 2010 when CM Tarun Gogoi was on leave on medical grounds.

02. Covid-Negative Reports From Other States Invalid: Himanta

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Assam health minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on Saturday informed that travellers arriving here carrying Covid negative certificates from other states are invalid and they need to undergo Covid testing upon arrival at airports and railway stations. The minister noted that the previous order that allowed travellers to show Covid-negative reports conducted within 72 hours of their arrival was cancelled and they’ll have to mandatorily get themselves tested here. As per reports, besides air and railways, the order soon will be imposed on travellers entering the state by road as well.

03. Nagaland Prepares For Own Variant Of NRC

In a similar structure to National Register of Citizens (NRC), the Nagaland government has taken a decision to set up a joint consultative committee for the preparation and development of Register of Indigenous Inhabitants of Nagaland (RIIN). RIIN will provide as a register for the government to identify the citizens who settled in Nagaland before December 1, 1963. It is also the day Nagaland became a full-fledged state. After the tedious exercise is conducted and completed, the indigenous inhabitants of the state will be issued certificates. The Register will also prevent the entry of ineligible persons.

04. Huge Cache Of Arms, Ammunition Seized In Chirang

Assam Police arrested one person in connection to the recovery of over seven kilogrammes of explosives, two handmade guns, two cookers, and 106 iron balls near a jungle in Chirang. “The arms and ammunition were meant for cadres of newly formed militant outfit namely the National Liberation Front of Bodoland (NLFB) by some suspected persons,” Additional Director General of Police (ADGP), L R Bishnoi was quoted saying in an ANI report. “They wanted to target security forces or Very Important Persons (VIPs),” Bishnoi said. “It is evident that cadres of active extremist group NLFB are attempting to carry out subversive activities in the Bodoland Territorial Region (BTR) area in general and Chirang in particular,” read a statement by the police.

05. 3-Day State Mourning Declared To Honour Bhumidhar Barman

The Assam government has declared a three-day state mourning as a mark of respect to former chief minister and veteran Congress leader Dr. Bhumdhar Barman. The national flag will be flown half mast in all offices during this period. No official entertainment programmes will be held during this period as well. Barman passed away following prolonged illness at around 6.20 pm today (Sunday). He was 89. He was admitted to the ICU unit of Guwahati’s Dispur hospital on April 14 (Wednesday). He was under ventilation. Barman held the Chief Minister’s chair for a brief period between April 1996 and May 1996 after the death of CM Hiteshwar Saikia. He reprised his post again in 2010 when CM Tarun Gogoi was on leave on medical grounds.

06. CM Sonowal Visits Tinsukia To Review COVID Situation

Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal Sunday visited Tinsukia district to review the measures taken by the district administration and health department to combat resurgence of the pandemic. Stressing on the need to create awareness on maintaining COVID-19 protocols, Sonowal said, panchayat members, block development officials, village heads, and NGOs should be involved in the task, a press release issued by the state government said. He instructed the Tinsukia deputy commissioner to take steps to circulate the COVID-19 protocols, issued by the health department, through miking. The chef minister also highlighted the importance of carrying out COVID-19 tests on truck drivers besides organising awareness drives in market areas. Sonowal urged the district administration to motivate people to get vaccinated.

07. Amid COVID Scare Rahul Gandhi Suspends All Rallies For Bengal Polls

Amid electioneering for the last three phases of West Bengal Assembly Polls, Rahul Gandhi on Sunday announced suspension of all his campaigns keeping in view of the prevailing Covid-19 situation in the state and across the country. Taking to Twitter today, the Congress leader wrote about the development and also urged political leaders to think of the consequences of holding large rallies.

08. JEE Main: April Session Exams Postponed

In a latest update for the conduct of Joint Entrance Examination – Main, the National Testing Agency on Sunday announced the deferment of the JEE MAIN that was scheduled to be held on April 27, 28 and 30. The announcement for the revised dates will be declared later on, or atleast 15 days prior the rescheduled dates of the examination. A notice released by NTA read, that keeping in view of the present situation of the COVID-19 pandemic and also taking into the account of safety and well-being of the candidates and examination functionaries, it has been decided to postpone the JEE Main examination.

09. Declare National Health Emergency: Kapil Sibal To PM

Amid the prevailing situation in the country due to a massive rise in coronavirus cases, senior Congress leader Kapil Sibal on Sunday urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to declare a national health emergency. The former Union minister also called on the Election Commission to declare a suspension on election rallies. “COVID-19 infections faster than recoveries. Modiji: Declare a National Health Emergency. Election Commission: Declare a moratorium on election rallies. Courts: Protect people’s lives,” tweeted. Earlier today, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi suspended all his upcoming public rallies ahead of the last three phases of Bengal Assembly. The country has recorded over 2 lakh cases consecutively for the last four days.

10. New High: India Records Over 2.61 Lakh COVID Cases

India reported its highest-ever single-day spike of COVID-19 cases with over 2.61 lakh new cases and more than 1,500 deaths in the last 24 hours, according to the Union Health Ministry on Sunday. In the last 24 hours, 1,501 COVID-related deaths were reported in the country taking the death toll to 1,77,150. As many as 2,61,500 new COVID-19 cases have been reported in India in the last 24 hours. With this, the total number of cases has gone up to 1,47,88,109.

11. ‘COVID Situation In Delhi Serious’: Kejriwal Writes To PM Modi

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Sunday wrote a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi informing him that the COVID-19 situation in Delhi has “become very serious” and highlighted the “shortage of COVID beds and oxygen supply”. “Delhi’s situation of COVID-19 has become very serious. There is a grave shortage of COVID beds and oxygen supply. We are doing everything we can at our level. Your help would be needed,” Kejriwal wrote. Kejriwal also urged the prime minister to reserve at least 7,000 hospital beds out of Centre’s 10,000 beds for COVID patients. “Delhi has around 10,000 beds at Central Government’s hospitals. Out of these, only 1,800 have been reserved for COVID-19 patients. Taking note of the seriousness of this situation, it is my request to you, to reserve at least 7,000 beds for COVID-infected patients. Delhi is also facing a grave shortage of oxygen. Provide us oxygen on an urgent basis,” he stated.

12. Uttarakhand: 20 COVID Patients Escape Hospital

As many as 20 COVID-infected patients escaped a hospital by hoodwinking the authorities in Uttarakhand’s Narendra Nagar. According to PTI, a total of 28 people were being treated at the hospital, of which 20 of them were found missing when doctors visited the wards on Saturday night for a regular check-up. While, two of the escapees hailed from Uttarakhand, the rest were from different states including Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Odisha and Haryana. Meanwhile, a case has been registered against the missing persons under the Disaster Management and Epidemic Diseases Acts. A search operation has also been launched. Notably, this comes at the backdrop of a devastating second wave of COVID-19 where over 3700 pilgrims tested positive for the virus in a matter of 2 weeks in Uttarakhand’s Haridwar during Kumbh mela.

13. FIR Against IndiGo, 3 Other Airlines For Flouting COVID Rules

The Delhi government on Sunday lodged an FIR against four airlines for allegedly not checking COVID-19 negative reports from passengers arriving from Maharashtra. The airlines in question are IndiGo, Vistara, Spicejet and AirAsia. The FIR has been filed under the Delhi Disaster Management Act (DDMA). In a bid to curb the spread of the COVID-19, the state government issued fresh guidelines on April 10 making it mandatory for air passengers to produce COVID-19 negative test report, 72 hours prior to the arrival. Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, while addressing a presser on Sunday, informed that that Delhi has reported over 25,000 new COVID cases in the last 24 hours. “The major concern is the positivity rate that has increased to 30 per cent from 24 per cent in the last 24 hours. The cases are rising very fast. The beds are getting exhausted very quickly. There has been a shortage of ICU beds. There are less than 100 ICU beds are left in Delhi,” he said.

14. COVID Assam: 639 New Cases, 6 Deaths

Assam on Sunday reported 639 fresh cases of COVID-19, pushing the active cases to 5,268. The overall tally of the state has reached 2,24,455. The new cases were detected out of 23,300 tests conducted in the last 24 hours. Six deaths were reported today – one each from Kamrup Metro, Barpeta, Cachar, Dhemaji, Morigaon and Tinsukia. Of the new cases, Kamrup Metro reported 354 fresh cases, followed by Kamrup Rural with 35 cases, Nagaon with 28 cases and Dibrugarh with 26 cases. Today’s positivity rate stands at 2.74 per cent.Further, 159 cured patients have been discharged today, and the recoveries have touched 2,16,705 with a recovery rate of 96.55 per cent.

15. Ramping Up Vaccination Key To Fight COVID: Manmohan Singh To PM

Amid surging COVID-19 cases in the country, former Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh on Sunday urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to ‘resist the temptation to look at the absolute number of vaccinations and focus on the percentage of the population vaccinated’. In a letter to PM Modi, the senior Congress leader also listed out suggestions for consideration ‘in a spirit of constructive cooperation’, that included publicizing firm orders for doses placed on different vaccine producers and allowing states more flexibility to plan vaccination roll-outs. “The key to our fight against Covid-19 must be ramping up the vaccination effort. We must resist the temptation to look at the absolute numbers being vaccinated, and focus instead on the percentage of the population vaccinated,” Singh wrote, adding that India has vaccinated only a small fraction of its population so far. “I am certain that with the right policy design, we can do much better and very quickly,” he added.

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