May 6, 2021 8:04:49 am
On the day that Goa reported 71 deaths in the state, the highest single-day mortality count so far, activists and lawyers approached the High Court of Bombay at Goa with petitions seeking a common platform for information on bed availability, ICUs and oxygen in the state and imposition of a lockdown.
Among those who have filed petitions in the High Court are activists Armando Gonsalves and Shruti Chaturvedi and Goa Forward Party Vice-President Durgadas Kamat, who has filed a letter petition. The petitions are likely to be heard by the court on Thursday.
The petitioners before the High Court have also urged the court to direct the government to impose a 15-day lockdown in the state and to also make it mandatory for passengers travelling to Goa to have a negative RT-PCR test report.
The PIL, filed by Gonsalves and Chaturvedi, had also cited the example of Maldives, also a popular tourist destination, that has kept tourism afloat but demanded a negative RT-PCR report from those coming into the archipelago nation.
Kamat’s petition states that Goa has seen a positivity rate of up to 50 per cent over the last few days and seeks the court’s intervention.
On Wednesday, Goa had 27,964 active cases of Covid-19 of which 3,496 were new cases. The state has seen an almost 10-fold rise in the number of active cases in April and recorded its highest single-day mortality count on Wednesday.
While the state government had earlier imposed a four-day lockdown that concluded on May 3, the government has since only imposed “restrictions” on several activities.
GFP President Vijai Sardesai said, “The Chief Minister does not even want to utter the word lockdown. Goa is becoming a Covid disaster. The state is under a self-imposed lockdown. The government is still allowing shootings of TV shows to make money. People are in hundreds and without masks. We are demanding a complete lockdown.”
On Wednesday, Chief Minister Pramod Sawant commissioned a Super Speciality Block at the Goa Medical College equipped with 20,000-litre oxygen tanks, 150 oxygen beds for Covid-19 patients which will be scaled up according to requirements, he said.
Govt advises yogic kriya for officials
Meanwhile, the General Administration Department of the Goa government on Wednesday issued circular advising officers and government staff to watch a YouTube video by Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev that was shared by the Union Housing And Urban Affairs Ministry on April 15.
The circular issued by Under Secretary Shripad Arlekar stated that the video “is a very powerful Simha Yogic Kriya in the current challenging times of an upsurge in Covid-19 cases. This kriya strengthens one’s respiratory and immune system and prepares one to deal with the present crises in a positive manner. It requires only a few minutes of one’s time and needs to be done on an empty stomach.”
The circular sent to all secretaries, heads of departments, ministers, Speaker of the legislative assembly and the leader of Opposition, also states that officers and staff members “are advised to see the video, practice the kriya and be benefited. Needless to say, all must follow instructions in the video carefully, in order to get maximum benefit and help boost their immunity”.
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