Speaker Om Birla’s profile on the official Lok Sabha website grabbed attention on Thursday as some key changes were made to it. While the profile on the website after he was elected Speaker stated that he was a “Primary Member of Rashtriya Swayam Sevak Sangh”, the updated one does not mention it. Another omission was that Birla was “imprisoned in Uttar Pradesh due to active participation in Ram Mandir construction movement; Led the movement of starting Sawai Madhopur Cement Factory in Jaipur and Sawai Madhopur and was imprisoned in various jails of the State in this connection”. The new profile mentions only his activities as a Parliamentarian, including charity initiatives he has undertaken. The profile, it is learnt, was updated to protect the neutrality of the post he holds.
Even as President Ram Nath Kovind and Prime Minister Narendra Modi have decided to cancel their Holi Milan programmes — the Rashtrapati Bhavan, in fact, has announced that the Mughal Gardens will be closed for the public from Saturday as part of precautionary measures — and several Union ministers and other leaders have followed suit, the Women and Child Development Ministry, and others holding events for Women’s Day on March 8, for now seem to be going ahead with their scheduled programmes. While a large section of the Women’s Day campaigns comprise televised programmes — screening of women-centric films and a special series hosted by celebrity chef Sanjay Kapoor on recipes for pregnant women and lactating mothers, among others — the events being organised by the ministries and organisations under their patronage have so far shown no signs of being cancelled.
Guidelines On Track
The Indian Railways has joined the effort to spread awareness about coronavirus among passengers and its employees. The medical department of Northern Railways has issued an advisory for its hospital staff, detailing the precautions required to keep the virus at bay. It also asks employees to not hug, kiss, and shake hands while greeting; advises against smoking in public places and indulging in excessive physical exercise. It also asks the staff to avoid frozen meat as part of the gamut of precautionary measures. The Railway Board Chairman on Thursday had a meeting with all general managers through video-conferencing to take stock of measures being adopted to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
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