PTI visakhapatnam l saturday l may 22, 2021 l `7.00 l PAGES 12 l late city EDITION Chipko movement pioneer Sunderlal Bahuguna dead Sunderlal Bahuguna 9 January 1927 21 May 2021 Cremated with full state honours The 94-year-old environmentalist died of Covid-19 at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences in Rishikesh on Friday Bahuguna had been undergoing treatment in the hospital since May 8. He was cremated with full state honours at the Poornanand Ghat. He, along with other environmentalists launched Chipko in 1973 in Uttarakhand (then part of UP) as a nonviolent social and ecological movement of villagers to protect trees slated for government-backed logging | P7 5,000 km Roped in villagers to save forests ■ ■ Chipko means to embrace. The activists, mostly led by village women, would hug the trees and stay put often chaining themselves to the trunks so that loggers could not cut them. Such protests not only slowed down forest destruction but also brought the issue of deforestation to the public’s attention Bahuguna led a protest march across Himalayas during 1981-1983 CHENNAI ■ MADURAI ■ VIJAYAWADA ■ BENGALURU ■ KOCHI ■ HYDERABAD ■ VISAKHAPATNAM ■ COIMBATORE ■ KOZHIKODE ■ THIRUVANANTHAPURAM ■ BELAGAVI ■ BHUBANESWAR ■ SHIVAMOgGA ■ MANGALURU ■ TIRUPATI ■ TIRUCHY ■ TIRUNELVELI ■ SAMBALPUR ■ HUBBALLI ■ DHARMAPURI ■ KOTTAYAM ■ KANNUR ■ VILLUPURAM ■ KOLLAM ■ WARANGAL ■ TADEPALLIGUDEM ■ NAGAPATTINAM ■ THRISSUR ■ KALABURAGI Breather to UP as SC stays HC’s ‘Ram Bharose’ order Direction to provide two ambulances each in 97,000 villages with ICU beds impossible to implement within a month, agrees bench K a n u S a r d a @ New Delhi A doctor treats a patient infected with mucormycosis at the NSCB Medical College and Hospital in Jabalpur, Madhya Pradesh, on Friday | PTI Black fungus spurt needs study: Docs S u m i S u k a n ya D u t ta @ New Delhi At the Mahatma Gandhi Institute of Medical Sciences (MGIMS) in Sevagram in Wardha, a major tertiary care centre in rural Maharashtra, nearly 4,000 Covid-19 patients had undergone treatment before March this year. None developed mucor mycosis, a deadly fungal disease that is posing a fresh challenge to the healthcare system in India. Beginning April through the first week of May, when nearly 1,000 Covid patients were treated at MGIMS, 20 of them went on to develop mucormycosis, which has a reported fatality rate of nearly 50%. At present, the hospital has at least 15 patients of black fungus, in which a group of molds infect sinuses, lungs and the brain. Raymond Savio, a critical care expert from Chennai, explains that there are multiple reasons for this fungus to infect those with Covid-19. “It’s a combination of the virus, nature of treatment, steroid and other immune-suppressants, nature of body’s response to Covid infection (ferritin level), uncontrolled blood sugar and humidification systems for oxygen that makes it appropriate for Need thorough study A senior doctor at AIIMS, Delhi said she has been treating autoimmune disease patients with steroids for years but mucormycosis cases were rare. “Something has changed now. Whether it is the use of industrial oxygen or the way oxygen has been instituted in health facilities, I am not sure. That is for researchers to find out.” the spores to infect patients,” he said. The sudden and unprecedented rise in mucormycosis cases, however, has prompted S P Kalantri, a senior doctor and medical researcher at MGIMS, like many others in different parts of India, to question whether the popular perception that indiscriminate use of steroids, suppressed immunity his, tory of diabetes and unhygienic conditions in ICUs may be triggering this spurt in cases. “It’s my assumption and I may be completely wrong but maybe Covid-19 virus and mucor are now hunting together. Something about the Covid-19 virus has changed over the months,” he said adding that more research is required to understand the rise in the disContinued on P8 ease. A Supreme Court bench on Friday stayed a bunch of orders on Covid management issued by the Allahabad High Court to the Uttar Pradesh government recently, agreeing they were impossible to implement. It also advised high courts dealing with Covid cases to refrain from dealing with issues that have trans-national and inter national ramifications, since the top court itself is seized of pan-India matters. The Allahabad High Court had on May 17 ordered the UP government to upgrade its health facilities on a war footing, specifically directing it to provide two ambulances with ICU facilities to each village within a month. But a Supreme Court bench comprising justices Vineet Saran and Bhushan Gavai agreed with the state’s position, represented by Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, that UP has 97,000 villages and an order of this magnitude was impossible to implement within the HC’s deadline. @ Vijayawada The Andhra Pradesh High Court on Friday issued orders cancelling the validity of MPTC and ZPTC elections held on April 8 stating that the election notification was issued in violation of the Supreme Court directions and directed the State Election Commission (SEC) to re-conduct the polls. Dealing with a petition filed by TDP leader Varla Ramaiah and petitions by a few others challenging the conduct of MPTC and ZPTC elections in violation of the Supreme Court order – issuance of election notification four weeks before `160 cr spent on conduct of elections: SEC counsel The SEC counsel said it was not possible to cancel the entire election process now. He said `160 crore was spent on the conduct of MPTC and ZPTC elections and conduct of fresh elections would put an additional burden on the State exchequer polls, Justice M Satyanarayana Murthy cancelled the polls. He directed the SEC to conduct the election process again from where it was stopped earlier duly following the Supreme Court orders. The election notification issued on April 1 was illegal. Further, equal opportu- RBI hands out generous dividend amounting to 0.5% of GDP to govt Se sa Sen @ New Delhi THE Reserve Bank of India on Friday sprang a pleasant surprise for the Centre, announcing a handsome dividend of `99,122 crore for FY22. Constituting 0.5% of the GDP, this is more than double the Budget estimate of `45,000 crore and comes as a major relief for the gover nment reeling under strained public finances owing to the pandemic. It will help the Centre provide more pandemic relief measures. However, RBI’s generosity may not be enough. In FY22, the government expenditure is set at `34.83 lakh crore. Revenues may come in at `16.5 lakh crore. So, the government will still have to raise `1.75 lakh crore via disinvestments to pursue its FY22 fiscal deficit target of 6.8% of the GDP . No stay on further proceedings “We are staying the order but we are not staying the proceedings before the Allahabad High Court. The matter be listed on July 14,” the Supreme Court bench said while appointing senior advocate Nidesh Gupta as amicus curiae to assist in the matter bench said. It added that the high court’s May 17 order can be treated as advice and not directives. The Allahabad High Court has been scathing in its observations of the state government’s handling of the pandemic, going to the extent of saying that the state’s healthcare system is Ram Bharose (at God’s mercy). Mehta also sought a direction from the bench to transfer all Covid-19 related matters pending in various high courts to benches headed by their respective chief justices. “In Allahabad High Court, there are other PILs which are listed before other benches in which notice has been issued. Similar cases in other high courts, too. But, let such matters be placed before only Chief Justice-led benches,” he urged. However, the court said it could not pass such sweeping orders as the constitution of benches was the prerogative of the chief justice of the high court. “We cannot demoralise the high courts,” it said. At this, Mehta said, “Health infrastructure can never be ignored. But these directions are impossible to comply with...we understand the anxiety of the court. But this is a matter of concern. Courts should also have some judicial restraint and not pass orders which are difficult to implement.” life-saver District Collector V Vinay Chand inaugurates an oxygen plant at KGH in Visakhapatnam on Friday | express HC cancels MPTC/ZPTC elections, directs SEC to conduct fresh polls E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e “We are of the opinion that high courts should normally consider the possibility of execution of their directions. If such directions cannot be implemented, then such orders may not be passed. The doctrine of impossibility is equally applicable to courts,” the nities for Jana Sena candidates were not provided, he said and found fault with the attitude of SEC Nilam Sawhney . The court in its orders maintained that TDP leader Ramaiah’s petition is eligible for hearing. Free and fair elections are the basis of democracy and contesting elections and electing representatives of their choice is a constitutional right. When such rights are obstructed, anyone can approach the court. However, the TDP leader had only brought it to the notice that the SC directions were violated, but could not prove that constitutional rights were infringed, the Judge said, disP4 missing the plea. Promoters liable for their companies’ debt, rules SC IN what may make high-profile corporate honchos such as Anil Ambani personally liable for the loans their companies have taken but not repaid, the Supreme Court on Friday upheld the constitutional validity of the Centre’s November 15, 2019 circular that brought personal guarantors of corporate loans under the ambit of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code. The verdict has come as a major boost for banks, which can now seek recovery of dues from the promoter guarantors SC grants bail to rebel YSRC MP with riders E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @ New Delhi The Supreme Court on Friday granted bail to rebel YSRC MP Kanumuri Raghu Rama Krishnam Raju, who was arrested in a sedition case by AP CID. A vacation bench of Justices Vineet Saran and BR Gavai formed the prima facie opinion that Raju was possibly illtreated while in police custody after going through the medical report submitted by Army Hospital in Secunderabad. The apex court imposed several bail conditions on Raju, including that he should not give any interview to the media with regard to the case. On May 17, the top court had ordered forthwith shifting of Raju to the Army Hospital in neighbouring Telangana from a prison in AP for medical examination and hospitalisation till further orders. Raju, an MP from Narasapuram, alleged that the sedition case was filed against him by the State police ‘because of political vendetta’ as he has been criticising the actions of his own party . “Considering the totality of the plea and the health condition of the petiWhat Supreme tioner since he has undergone open heart surgery, we deem it fit that the Court said petitioner be enlarged on bail,” the SC Charges against the order read, while directing Raju to copetitioner are not operate with the investigation and such that custodial present himself when called by the ininterrogation vestigation officer. He is required to should be required furnish a bond of `1 lakh and two sureties of the same amount before the trial Considering the totality of the plea court within 10 days. During the hearing conducted and the health through video-conferencing, the bench condition of the petitioner since he stated that the report received from the Army Hospital mentioned that Raju has undergone open heart surgery, has fracture in his toe. Senior advocate we deem it fit that Mukul Rohatgi, appearing for Raju, said, “That means the allegation of torthe petitioner be ture is proven. If this happens to a sitenlarged on bail ting MP, what will happen to an ordiMP Raju should not nary person?” Please grant him bail and the matter of torture should be ingive any interview vestigated by the CBI, he added. to the media and Senior Advocate Dushyant Dave, apcooperate with the pearing for the Andhra Pradesh govinvestigation ernment, however, opposed the contention and said, “Something seems to have happened between the examination by the medical board as requested by the petitioner and now with the Army Hospital examination. We don’t know if these are self inflicted injuries or not.” On Raju’s statement that the sedition charge was invoked against him, Dave said, “He did not restrict himself to fair criticism of the government, but tried to stroke hatred among two communities. This caused public disharmony . Dave argued that the rebel YSRC MP’s plea seeking bail P4 should be dismissed. EXPRESS READ Insolvency code E x p r e ss N e ws Se r v i c e @ New Delhi se D i t i o n c ase even while bankruptcy processes against the companies are pending. The order came on a plea by industrialists Anil Ambani, Kapil Wadhawan, Sanjay Singhal, and Venugopal Dhoot – whose firms are facing insolvency proceedings – challenging the 2019 notification. According to the promoters, the Centre targeted them though the law was for individuals, corporate guarantors as well as partnership firms. The SC held that the government’s intent was to implement the provisions of the IBC in a phased Continued on P10 manner. IMD warns of low pressure in Bay Combat black fungus infection: CM to officials Vijayawada: The IMD has predicted formation of a low pressure area over East Central Bay of Bengal. It is very likely to intensify into a cyclonic storm by May 24 and reach Odisha-West Bengal coast around May 26. Vijayawada: CM YS Jagan Mohan Reddy has directed officials to evolve protocols for use of oxygen masks for Covid patients negating scope for black fungus infection. All precautions should be taken to prevent the infection, he said. Kamma, Reddy corporations to be set up Vijayawada: With an objective to support the economically backward people in OC communities, including Reddy, Kamma and Kshatriya, the State government on Friday issued separate orders for the establishment of Andhra Pradesh Reddy Welfare and Development Corporation, Andhra Pradesh Kamma Welfare and Development Corporation and Andhra Pradesh Kshatriya Welfare and Development Corporation under the AP Societies Registration Act, 2001. Special Chief Secretary (BC Welfare) G Anantha Ramu issued the orders. May 20 14,56,088 doses May 21 13,83,358 doses Total doses: 19,32,97,222 Jab-o-meter Take your shot NATIONWIDE MAY 20 Fresh cases Recoveries Deaths MAY 21 2,76,110 2,59,551 3,69,077 3,57,295 3,874 4,209 m ad r u s h Chaos at Krishnapatnam for ‘Ayurvedic medicine’ for Covid E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @ Nellore Thousands of people descended on Krishnapatnam village on Friday morning for the alleged Ayurvedic medicine for Covid-19 prepared by Bonigi Anandaiah, leading to total chaos. Later in the day the State , government stepped in and brought the situation under control. “As it was in violation of Covid safety guidelines, we stopped the distribution of Ayurvedic medicine,” Nellore District Collector KVN Chakradhar Babu said. andhra pradesh may 20 May 21 Fresh cases 22,610 20,937 Recoveries 23,098 20,811 Deaths 114 104 Samples tested 1,01,281 92,231 During a review meeting on Covid, Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy took stock of the situation in Nellore and directed officials to contact the ICMR and Ayush Department and request them to send a team of experts to test the efficacy of Ayurvedic medicine and verify the claims of it being a prevention and cure for P4 Covid.
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22-05-2021 of The New Indian Express-Vishakapatnam