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COVID-19: India has emerged as the new epicentre of the global pandemic

Hospitals on the brink, thousands dying on a daily basis, and new variants spreading rapidly across the country – India has emerged as the new epicentre of the global pandemic

(Asian News Hub) – India was hit hard by coronavirus last year, recording one the highest caseloads in the world alongside the US and Brazil. But numbers started declining rapidly after last summer and by January this year, as vaccines started to roll out, the health minister proclaimed the country had reached the end of the pandemic.

But after months with few restrictions, and just as life was starting to look normal again, cases have suddenly exploded, with a tsunami of infections sweeping the country and putting ICUs into what doctors have called a “war-like” situation.

With many other nations making rapid progress on vaccinations, the country is now the global epicentre for the disease, while concerns are mounting about the new variants involved. Doctors in the Indian states facing the worst pressure paint a grim picture, describing a chaotic and overwhelming intake of desperately sick patients.

Loved ones wailing outside hospitals, ambulances queued up with patients, crematoria and graveyards drowning in dead bodies, failed resuscitations and families scrambling for beds, plasma, and even basic medical supplies such as oxygen, stretchers and ventilators.

“Patients are dying suddenly of hypoxia. There are more patients here than the doctors could attend and all the monitoring equipment has been exhausted. We are suffering,” a resident doctor from Mumbai’s state-run Sion hospital tells The Independent, on condition of anonymity.

Maharashtra, the state where Mumbai is located, has for several weeks been painted as an outlier in terms of the new outbreak, but the situation is now no better in the capital Delhi, where Dr Atul Gogoi of Sir Ganga Ram Hospital says ICU beds and even general wards are out of capacity. He says the situation is becoming increasingly difficult with each passing day.

Having to remain “aloof” during this “war-like” fight against the disease is taking its toll, he says. “We are worn out physically as the workload is constantly increasing, [but also] mentally as we regularly deal with emotional breakdowns of elderly people.”

India’s outbreak is worse now than it was at any point last year, with the country registering a series of grim milestones in the past few weeks. As well as overtaking Brazil in total caseload, the country has recorded daily spikes of more than 200,000 new infections over a 48-hour period in the last week.

While there remains insufficient data to attribute the new wave to any one cause, scientists say an indigenous variant of the virus called B.1.617 is likely to be fuelling the flames, coupled with a fatigue with safety precautions that has seen a return to crowding and a reluctance to wear masks across the country.

It may be that multiple more infectious variants are at play here. Testing has shown the presence of the UK’s B.1.1.7, South Africa’s B.1.351 and Brazil’s P1 spreading among the population. These variants have been found in Maharashtra, Punjab, Kerala, Delhi, and Karnataka states, which between them contribute a high proportion of new cases.

However, the greatest concerns swirl around India’s B.1.617, which has been dubbed the “double mutant” variant in media reports, although it actually has 15 mutations from the original virus. This is because it carries two specific and concerning mutations in its spike protein that have cropped up elsewhere during the pandemic – known as E484Q and L452R. It is the first time that these genetic changes have evolved together in a single variant.

With inputs from Independent

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Hindi Diwas 2021: People from Kashmir to Coimbatore brainstormed in Prabhasakshi’s discussion

(Asian News Hub) – Scholars from Kashmir to Coimbatore participated in the discussion organized by Prabhasakshi News Network on Hindi Diwas.

In the discussion on ‘Future of Hindi language in the digital age’ everyone thought about how Hindi can progress by taking all regional languages ​​together.

The challenges being faced by Hindi in the digital age were also discussed. In the inaugural session of the online discussion, Mr. Sanjay Dwivedi, Director General, IIMC, Delhi gave his views, after which young litterateur Dr. Indira Dangi suggested measures for the prosperity of Hindi language.

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The people associated with the discussion also enjoyed the poems of Mr. Sarvesh Kumar Asthana, Dr. Mrs. Manjari Pandey, Ms. Aakriti Vigya Arpan, Mr. Tara Chand Tanha and Mr. Ashok Jhanjhati, who have mesmerized people with their compositions on national and international fora.

In the welcome address, Neeraj Kumar Dubey, editor of Prabhasakshi.com, while wishing everyone a happy Hindi Diwas said, “It is a matter of great pleasure that this time Hindi Diwas has come in the middle of the ten-day Ganeshotsav, so we pray that Lord Shri Ganesh is ours. Give more prosperity to Hindi and fame to all Indian languages. More collaboration can be done.

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Sanjay Dwivedi, Director General, IIMC, Delhi said, “In the present times, Hindi’s danka is ringing in the country and the world. It is also a matter of feeling proud of Hindi because we speak a language which has the biggest word world. Which has a great tradition of creators.

India has the largest number of internet users after China and the US. He said that many new journalists have emerged through digital medium. Replying to a question during the Q&A session, Shri Dwivedi said that it is true that in this age of social media, language is being spoofed but we should go ahead by including everyone in this development journey. He said that when any language develops, there are problems in it. English people speak differently. Similarly, Hindi is also enriched by mixing dialects of different states. Shri Dwivedi said that language is like a flowing river. There is no need to bother with it.

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Addressing the program, Dr. Indira Dangi, who was awarded the Sahitya Akademi’s Young Literary Award, said that language is a medium. How you present yourself in life and career has to be seen. He said that the meaning of Hindi Diwas is only when we celebrate it every day instead of celebrating it for one day.

Smt. Dangi also said that children should not shy away from teaching English but should also be taught mother tongue.

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During the discussion, Dr. Smt. Manjari Pandey, a writer and poet associated with Varanasi, said that today we are talking about digital revolution, but today there is a need for knowledge revolution. He said that the website of all the departments should be in Hindi.

Apart from the comic poet Sarvesh Asthana who is also known as Smile Man in the discussion, besides the poems of Ms. Aakriti Vidhya Arpan from Gorakhpur, Mr. Tara Chand Tanha from Ayodhya and Mr. Ashok Jhanjti from Lucknow and Mr. Nirbhay Shukla from Gorakhpur, the present also enjoyed the poetry.

At the conclusion of the program, Neeraj Kumar Dubey said that many programs are being organized across the country on Hindi Diwas today and in these programs all kinds of resolutions are being taken for the upliftment of our official language.

The development journey of Hindi, which unites the country in one thread, continues and the resolutions taken can be converted into accomplishment, for this, the younger generation will have to make their full contribution.

He said that the way we celebrate Valentine’s Day, Father’s Day, Mother’s Day and all such ‘days’ with great pomp and share their related pictures on social media, if we celebrate Hindi Diwas with the same enthusiasm, then it will be pleasant. The result is sure to come.

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Man loses 21kg weight after marriage due to cruelty, high court grants divorce

(Asian News Hub) – The Punjab and Hrayana High Court upheld the decision of a Hisar Family Court granting divorce to a physically challenged man with 50 per cent hearing loss & using a hearing aid, who had alleged that his weight had dropped from 74kg to 53kg due to mental cruelty by his wife.

Dismissing the plea filed by the man’s wife against the family court order, the High Court mainly relied on the fact that all criminal complaints and cases filed by the woman against her husband, his family were found false, which amounts to mental cruelty.

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The division bench, comprising Justice Ritu Bahri, Justice Archana Puri, passed the orders while dismissing the petition filed by a woman from Hisar, seeking quashing of the order dated Aug 27, 2019, through which the Family Court had allowed her estranged husband’s plea & granted divorce.

The couple had got married in April 2012 and have a daughter. The man works in a bank & the woman is a teacher in a private school in Hisar.

Their daughter lives with her father. The wife alleged harassment at hands of her in laws. The man’s case was that his wife was hot-tempered and spendthrift who never tried to adjust herself in his family.

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According to him, she used to pick up fights over small matters due to which he felt humiliated in front of his parents and relatives, but kept silent, believing that good sense would prevail upon her in the near future, but her behaviour never changed.

Accusing his wife of cruelty, the man alleged before the Court that he weighed 74 kg till the time of marriage, but his weight had fallen to 53 kg after that. Denying the allegations, the woman contended that she always performed her marital obligations with love and respect.

She also alleged that after 6 months of marriage, her husband and his family members started harassing and humiliating her for dowry.

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During the hearing of the case, the HC found that the woman had left her husband in 2016 & had also left her daughter in the matrimonial house and never tried to meet her. It also came to the fore that the husband’s family had never demanded any dowry & had even paid for the woman’s higher studies after the marriage.

The HC also found that false complaints were also filed by the woman against her husband and his family members.

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‘Keeping in view that the appellant was an educated woman, she was aware of the effects of criminal complaints, which she had made against her husband and his family members in 2013 and 2019. Moreover, he was looking after his three-year-old daughter alone after his wife had left the matrimonial home in the year 2016. All this amounted to mental cruelty,’ observed the High Court while dismissing the woman’s petition against divorce.

AGENCY

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Akshay Kumar’s mother Aruna Bhatia passes away, actor pens emotional note

Akshay Kumar’s mother passes away, actor pens emotional note

(Asian News Hub) – Bollywood actor Akshay Kumar’s mother Aruna Bhatia passed away on Wednesday morning. The actor took to Instagram and shared the sad news with his fans and followers. She was admitted on Friday, September 3, evening in Mumbai’s Hiranandani Hospital. She was in critical condition. He wrote, “She was my core. And today I feel an unbearable pain at the very core of my existence. My maa Smt Aruna Bhatia peacefully left this world today morning and got reunited with my dad in the other world. I respect your prayers as I and my family go through this period. Om Shanti.”

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Akshay Kumar, who was shooting for his film Cinderella in the UK for the past couple of weeks, flew back after her mother was admitted to ICU.

Updating about the same, the actor on Tuesday took to social media and wrote that it is a ‘very tough’ time for his family and him. He thanked his fans and well-wishers for their concern and said “Touched beyond words at your concern for my mom’s health. This is a very tough hour for me and my family. Every single prayer of yours would greatly help.” 

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On the professional front, Akshay Kumar was last seen in his recently released film “BellBottom.” The film became the first major Bollywood film to release in theatres after the second wave of the novel coronavirus. 

Directed by Ranjit M Tewari, it also stars Lara Dutta, Huma Qureshi and Vaani Kapoor. The spy thriller featured Akshay as a RAW agent who goes on a mission to save passengers of a hijacked flight. While, Lara essayed the role of former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, who was in power at that time, Vaani played Akshay’s wife in the film. 

The film did not release in Maharashtra, Assam, Tamil Nadu and Kerala as theatres are shut there.

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Apart from ‘Cinderella.’ Akshya has ‘Raksha Bandhan’, ‘Sooryavanshi’, ‘Prithviraj’, ‘Ram Setu’ and ‘Bachchan Pandey’ in the pipeline.

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