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13 Aug, 2022
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Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka Crisis: Speaker Accepts Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s Resignation From Singapore

Sri Lanka Crisis: Speaker Accepts Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s Resignation From Singapore

On Thursday, Gotabaya Rajapaksa, who travelled to Singapore from the Maldives, sent his resignation to the Parliamentary Speaker’s Office. Gotabaya Rajapaksa has resigned from the President’s post at a time when Sri Lanka is dealing with an unprecedented economic crisis in several decades. He rose to power in 2019 after a thumping election win. However, after Sri Lanka witnessed anti-mass government protests which escalated last weekend, Mr Gotabaya sought refuge on two other islands, Maldives and Singapore. On Wednesday, he was flown to the Maldives, along with his wife and two bodyguards in a Sri Lankan military aircraft. On Thursday evening, he reached Singapore, as per Sri Lanka Foreign Ministry. The Parliament will not be convened on Friday as per Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena due to the delay in receiving the President’s resignation letter. Gotabaya’s resignation signals a victory for the protestors as they have been shouting slogans like ‘Gota go home’. One of the most influential leaders of Sri Lanka had to flee and quit after protestors stormed his office and official residence. Sri Lanka is witnessing the worst-ever economic crisis since independence in 1948, triggered by an acute shortage of foreign-exchange reserves. Due to extremely low forex reserves, citizens scramble for essentials like fuel, food and medicines. Mr Gotabaya is the last Rajapaksa to resign from the Sri Lanka government following his brother and former Sri Lanka PM Mahinda Rajapaksa, who stepped down earlier. Sri Lanka’s economic crisis has eliminated the first family of great political prominence for the near future. 

Covid-Bulletin: India Registers 20,038 New Cases; Recovery Rate At 98.48%

According to the latest data released by the union health ministry, India has registered 20,038 new covid-19 cases in the last 24 hours. The active caseload of the country currently stands at 1,39,073. Meanwhile, the nation has recorded 16,994 daily recoveries in the previous 24 hours, and the total recoveries have reached 4,30,45,350. The daily and weekly positivity rates currently stand at 4.44% and 4.30%, respectively. As per the Indian Council of Medical Research, the country has conducted 86.86 crore covid-19 tests so far. On the vaccination front, India has administered 199.47 crore covid-17 vaccine doses so far under the nationwide vaccination drive.

India’s First Monkeypox Case Reported In Kerala; Central Government Sends An Expert Team

On Thursday, Kerala reported the first case of monkeypox in India. A United Arab Emirates returnee has tested positive for monkeypox, said State Health Minister Veena George. The patient landed at the Thiruvananthapuram airport and is quite stable with all vitals normal, as per the Kerala Health Minister. Meanwhile, the union government has sent a team of experts from the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC). “There is nothing to worry about or to be anxious about. All the steps are being taken, and the patient is stable,” said Veena George. The patient’s sample has been sent to the National Institute of Virology. His primary contacts have also been identified – his father, his mother, an auto driver, a taxi driver and 11 fellow passengers from adjacent seats. Recently, the central government wrote to states to take precautions against monkeypox due to concerned cases in Europe and America. The Monkeypox disease was first reported in monkeys in 1958, hence the name. Rodents are now considered the main transmission source and spread through close contact, both from animals and less commonly between humans. The Monkeypox disease belongs to the smallpox family. The smallpox disease was eradicated by vaccination in 1980, and the shot has been phased out since then. However, the smallpox vaccine is believed to provide protection against monkeypox, and the winding down of vaccination can be the reason behind the surge in new cases, as per experts. 

Presidential Election 2022: Congress Ally Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) Back NDA Candidate Droupadi Murmu

The Presidential Election in India is due on July 18. While the NDA has picked Odisha’s Droupadi Murmu as their presidential candidate, UPA has picked former Union Minister Yashwant Sinha. However, in recent days, the NDA candidate has received support from numerous political parties that are a part of the United Progressive Alliance (UPA). The recent to join is Congress’ ally Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM), which has announced its support for Droupadi Murmu. After Murmu visited Jharkhand seeking the party’s support, JMM extended its support to the NDA candidate. “For the first time after Independence, a tribal woman is going to get the distinction of becoming the President. Therefore, after due deliberation, the party decides to vote in favour of Ms. Droupadi Murmu,” said JMM Chief Shibu Soren. Uddhav Thackeray, the Shiv Sena Chief, announced his support for Droupadi Murmu. Thackeray also noted that the decision was not taken under pressure and that he is ‘not so small-minded‘ to not support a Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) candidate. On a similar note, Andhra Pradesh’s YSR Congress Party (YSRCP) and Telegu Desam Party also agreed on their support to Droupadi Murmu. Punjab’s Shiromani Akali Dal’s (SAD) resolution read: “She (Murmu) has emerged as a symbol of the poor and tribal segments in the country,” If Droupadi Murmu wins the Presidential Elections, she will become the first-ever tribal women and India’s second women to take over the President seat

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