Kazakhstan officially announces 225 people killed in unrest last week, Beijing reports first local Omicron case ahead of Olympics, Bilateral trade between India, Delhi restaurants closed for dine-in as Covid cases surge, CBI arrests Director (Marketing) of Gas Authority of India Limited, others in bribery case, Maruti Suzuki hikes prices for the fourth time in FY22, Punjab CM Charanjit Singh Channi's brother denied Congress ticket, to fight as independent candidate, Rajasthan govt to hand over probe into Alwar rape case to CBI,

Centre review status of migrant workers with states

Centre has held a meeting with States and UTs to review the status of preparedness in respect of migrant workers keeping in view the surge in COVID-19 cases. Secretary, Ministry of Labour and Employment, Sunil Barthwal chaired a Co-ordination Meeting with States and UTs through video conferencing. During the meeting, the states informed that barring night curfews and weekend curfews at few places, there are no restrictions on construction activities, business activities, running of shops and industrial activities in the country. So far, there is no report of unusual movement of migrant workers at present owing to the limited restrictions imposed by the governments. Some media reports of mass exodus regarding movement of migrant workers to their home States were found to be untrue and it was also noticed that such reporting was based on old photographs. The ministry said, the business situation is normal throughout the country except 50 percent restrictions on workforce at some places. The Central as well as the State governments are keeping a close watch on the situation and are fully ready to tackle it.Some state governments have already made plans for distributing dry rations to the needy labourers. Some have made preparations to provide financial assistance from the Building and Other Construction Workers cess fund and social security fund. Railways is also keeping a very close watch on the situation particularly at the major railway stations including Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, Kolkata, Bangalore and Secundrabad and is ready to provide special trains in case the situation demands. All the States and UTs have been advised to keep a close liaison with the local Railway Authorities.

-Maharashtra Health Minister Rajesh Tope has said that Covid restrictions in the state are not likely to be relaxed till February. Talking to reporters, he reiterated the need for vaccination and adherence to preventive measures to prevent covid infection. Tope has also warned of stern action against those who advise not to wear masks. Meanwhile, Maharashtra Additional Chief Secretary (Health) Pradeep Vyas has expressed concern over the unreported Covid cases in the state which are done with the help of self testing kits. He has written to all the authorities in this regard to monitor the sale of the self testing kits. In his letter he said that, it is expected that all Covid Positive Tests either through Rapid Antigen Test Kits or Home Test Kits will be reported to the concerned authorities by the concerned laboratory or Individual through Mobile App. But it seems that there are large numbers of Covid Positive cases which have been tested on these Kits but have not been reported to the concerned Authorities and such persons appears to be in Home Isolation.

-The 18th edition of the two days long Kachai Lemon Festival began in Manipur on Thursday at the Local Ground of Kachai Village in Ukhrul district. Kachai Lemon of Manipur has been accorded Geographical Indication (GI) registration tag and widely grown in the Kachai Village of Ukhrul district. Unlike the other lemon varieties grown in other parts of the world, Kachai Lemon is considered to be unique as it is a rich source of ascorbic acid and famous for its juice content. The Kachai Lemon Festival is organised annually to promote this unique kind of lemon fruit and to encourage the lemon farmers. This year, altogether 260 stalls are put up at the festival showcasing the rich reap of lemon this year. While inaugurating the festival, Additional Chief Secretary of Manipur P. Vaiphei said that the Kachai Lemon is one horticulture product that can change the socio-economic facets of not only Kachai Village but the entire region.The festival is being organised under the theme 'Organic Kachai Lemon for Safe Environment and Rural Transformation'. A training program for lemon farmers will be held tomorrow as part of the festival.

-Kerala Police on Thursday raided the residence of Malayalam actor Dileep at Aluva, in connection with a case accusing him of conspiring to attack investigating officers who probed the sexual assault on an actor in 2017, by waylaying her. Police are also on the lookout for the visuals of the sexual assault, which the actor is believed to be possessing.Raids were also conducted at the residence of Dileep's brother and the office of Graand Productions, a film production company owned by the duo.The raids come in the backdrop of film director Balachandrakumar's recent disclosures that Dileep held discussions at several places to attack the investigating officers . Police had registered a case against the actor and five others  based on the disclosures by the director.

-Bengaluru urban district in Karnataka has turned into an epicentre of Covid cases in the state with cases surging to 15,615 on Wednesday. The number of active cases in the state capital has swelled to 73,654. The micro containment zones have jumped up to 479 with Mahadevapura and Bommanahalli reporting the highest number of containment zones. Our Bengaluru correspondent says that the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike has initiated steps to contain the spread of the pandemic in the city.The Central war room and zonal war rooms are now working round the clock. The war rooms are keeping a tab on the positive cases, triaging and hospitalization, oxygen availability and infection of children in the city. The Covid tests have now increased from 80,000 per day to about 1.3 lakh daily. By Friday 27 Covid Care Centres will be ready for Covid positive patients. The mobile triage units are visiting the Covid positive patients to check for symptom



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