That only nine chief ministers were slated to speak during the Prime Minister’s interaction with chief ministers on Monday had caused heartburn among many, who wished to get an opportunity to personally present their views ahead of May 3. But there is very little for CMs to complain on this count. Reason: almost every chief minister was slotted for presenting their views once during the four interactions called by the PM to mobilise national response to the pandemic. For the CMs, the real issue remains that of financial support to states, for which they are still looking to the Centre.
Mizoram Chief Minister Zoramthanga came out of the PM’s video-conference with CMs feeling a little perplexed. Having been asked to speak, after briefing the Prime Minister on the COVID-19 situation in the state, the CM said he did not understand a word of what anyone said because “they were all speaking in Hindi. And I don’t understand a word of Hindi”.
Hearing a petition seeking a direction to flight operators to fully refund the tickets booked for flights that had to be cancelled due to the lockdown, the Supreme Court has issued notice to the Centre. A bench of Justices N V Ramana, S K Kaul and B R Gavai issued the notice on the plea by NGO Pravasi Legal Cell, which requested that non-refund of the amount be declared illegal and violative of the Civil Aviation Requirement issued by the Director General of Civil Aviation. It pointed out that the Ministry of Civil Aviation in its office memorandum on April 16 had asked airline operators to refund full fare for tickets booked during the first phase of the lockdown period — from March 25 to April 14.