Bengaluru News Highlights: A day after the Union Health Ministry asked the states to reactivate Covid war rooms and enhance restrictions and surveillance in the backdrop of rising cases of Omicron, the Karnataka government Wednesday directed the health officials, deputy commissioners and district surveillance officials to steadfastly track, trace and quarantine primary and secondary contacts of persons infected by Covid-19. Currently, around 300 Coivd cases are being reported daily in Karnataka and the Test Positivity Rate (TPR) is between 0.25 per cent and 0.3 per cent. As on date, 19 cases of Omicron have been detected in Karnataka.
In a major development, pro-Kannada organisations have called for a state-wide bandh in Karnataka on December 31 against the recent vandalisation of the statue of renowned Kannada warrior and freedom fighter Sangolli Rayanna in Belagavi. The statue was allegedly defaced by activists of the Maharashtra Ekikaran Samiti (MES). A series of retaliatory skirmishes have taken place in recent days between Kannada and Marathi activists in parts of Karnataka as well as Maharashtra.
Meanwhile, a coalition of 40 organisations took out a protest march in Bengaluru from Mysore Bank Circle to Freedom Park on Wednesday, against the anti-conversion Bill, which is slated to be debated upon in the Karnataka Legislative Assembly on Thursday. The protest was attended by Bengaluru Archbishop Peter Machado. “Now that the contents of the bill are read by all, they say it is not affecting only the Christians, but also the larger society. It is the question of privacy, the question of marriage, the question of women, Dalits, Muslims,” Peter Machado said.
The state government had on Tuesday tabled the controversial Karnataka Protection of Right to Freedom of Religion Bill 2021, commonly known as the anti-conversion bill, during the ongoing winter session in Belagavi.