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Kozhikode officially declared Indias first UNESCO City of Literature

Kozhikode: Kozhikode in north Kerala, known for its rich cultural heritage, was on Sunday officially declared as Indias first UNESCO City of Literature. In October 2023, Kozhikode had earned a place in the Literature category of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network (UCCN). Also ReadRamappa Temple a UN heritage site because of PM Modi: Kishan Reddy Get the latest updates in Hyderabad City News , Technology , Entertainment , Sports , Politics and Top Stories on WhatsApp & Telegram by subscribing to our channels. You can also download our app for Android and iOS .

The Siasat Daily 23 Jun 2024 11:47 pm

Kozhikode officially declared India's first Unesco 'City of Literature'

Kozhikode in north Kerala, known for its rich cultural heritage, was on Sunday officially declared as India's first UNESCO 'City of Literature'. In October 2023, Kozhikode had earned a place in the 'Literature' category of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network (UCCN). State Local Self Government Department (LSGD) Minister, M B Rajesh, on Sunday in an official event here announced the achievement of Kozhikode which earned the place in the 'Literature' category of the UCCN. Rajesh described Kozhikode as a city with a soul, characterised by humanity, harmony, a strong sense of justice and freedom of expression. These core values have given birth to the vibrant art of Kozhikode, Rajesh said. The minister said the efficient functioning of the Kozhikode city corporation played a major role in bagging the 'City of Literature' tag from UNESCO after beating cities with rich cultural history like Kolkata. The state government also announced that from coming year, June 23 will be celebrated

Business Standard 23 Jun 2024 11:41 pm

Kozhikode Becomes India's First UNESCO 'City of Literature'

Kozhikode Becomes India's First UNESCO 'City of Literature' Kozhikode in north Kerala has been officially recognized as India's first UNESCO 'City of Literature'. The announcement was made during a formal event by State Local Self Government Department Minister M B Rajesh, who hailed the city's vibrant cultural heritage and contributions to literature as key factors in earning this prestigious tag. Renowned for its significant literary contributions, Kozhikode's achievement was celebrated with the unveiling of the 'City of Literature' logo by Tourism Minister P A Mohammed Riyas. Rajesh praised the efficient functioning of the Kozhikode city corporation for this accolade, highlighting the city's humanity, harmony, and freedom of expression. The state government intends to commemorate June 23rd annually as 'City of Literature' Day, honoring the city's literary legends like S K Pottakkad and Vaikom Muhammed Basheer. The new status places Kozhikode alongside global cities known for their cultural contributions under the UNESCO Creative Cities Network.

devdiscourse 23 Jun 2024 11:32 pm

IMD Issues Red Alert for Kozhikode, Wayanad, and Kannur Amid Heavy Rainfall Prediction

IMD Issues Red Alert for Kozhikode, Wayanad, and Kannur Amid Heavy Rainfall Prediction The India Meteorological Department (IMD) issued a red alert on Sunday for Kozhikode, Wayanad, and Kannur districts in Kerala, warning of heavy to extremely heavy rain with over 20 cm expected in 24 hours. Similarly, an orange alert was announced for Ernakulam, Idukki, Thrissur, Palakkad, Malappuram, and Kasaragod districts, indicating very heavy rain ranging from 11 cm to 20 cm. An additional orange alert has been set for Kozhikode, Kannur, and Kasaragod for Monday, while yellow alerts are issued in other districts for both Sunday and Monday, forecasting heavy rainfall between 6 cm and 11 cm.

devdiscourse 23 Jun 2024 3:09 pm

Monsoon Progress: IMD Updates on Southwest Monsoon Across India

New Delhi: After enduring days of intense heatwave conditions, Delhi is expected to experience relief with light rainfall forecasted for Sunday, according to the India Meteorological Department (IMD). Meanwhile, red and orange alerts for showers have been issued across several districts in Kerala. On Saturday, Delhi recorded a maximum temperature of 39.4 degrees Celsius, slightly above normal, while the minimum temperature settled at 28.6 degrees Celsius, also above the season's average. Recent rainfall in the city amounted to 4 mm over 24 hours, bringing some respite. Humidity levels ranged between 50% and 62%. The IMD has predicted generally cloudy skies with the possibility of light rain or drizzle on Sunday. Maximum temperatures are likely to reach around 40 degrees Celsius, with minimum temperatures around 30 degrees Celsius. The monsoon is anticipated to arrive in Delhi by June 30. In Kerala, a red alert has been issued for Malappuram, indicating heavy to extremely heavy rainfall exceeding 20 cm in 24 hours. Orange alerts have been issued for Kottayam, Ernakulam, Idukki, Kozhikode, Wayanad, Kannur, and Kasaragod districts, indicating very heavy rainfall ranging from 11 cm to 20 cm. The Southwest Monsoon has progressed through Navsari (Gujarat), Jalgaon (Maharashtra), Mandla (Madhya Pradesh), Pendra Road (Chhattisgarh), Jharsuguda (Odisha), Balasore (Odisha), Haldia (West Bengal), Pakur (Jharkhand), Sahibganj (Jharkhand), and Raxaul (Bihar), according to the IMD. Favorable conditions are expected for further advancement into more parts of Gujarat, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Odisha, West Bengal, Jharkhand, Bihar, and parts of East Uttar Pradesh in the next few days. In Noida, amidst the ongoing heatwave, the health department has conducted 93 autopsies in four days, including 18 bodies on June 21 alone. To expedite procedures and reduce the backlog at mortuaries, DNA sampling of unidentified bodies has been initiated. The IMD has also issued forecasts for isolated heavy to very heavy rainfall across various regions from June 23 to 26. These include Konkan, Goa, ghat regions of Madhya Maharashtra, Kerala, Mahe, Coastal and South Interior Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Lakshadweep, Gujarat, Saurashtra, Kutch, Marathwada, Coastal Andhra Pradesh, Yanam, southeast Rajasthan, West and East Madhya Pradesh, Sub-Himalayan West Bengal, Sikkim, Assam, Meghalaya, Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Manipur, Mizoram, Tripura, Bihar, Odisha, Jharkhand, Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Uttarakhand, and East Uttar Pradesh. As weather conditions continue to evolve across India, with monsoon progress and localized weather events, monitoring and preparedness are essential to mitigate any potential impacts. 18th Lok Sabha Commencement: PM Modi and Ministers to Take Oath Tomorrow The Kanishka Bombings: Canada's Worst Terrorist Act and its Impact on Khalistani Extremism Death Toll Rises to 56 in Tamil Nadu Hooch Tragedy

News Track 23 Jun 2024 1:11 pm

Kerala Class 11 seat row: KSU, MSF activists wave black flag at CM Vijayan

Kozhikode: The activists of KSU and MSF on Saturday waved black flag at Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan here, protesting against the alleged shortage of plus-one (Class 11) seats in schools across the northern Kerala region of Malabar. Kerala Students Union (KSU) and the Muslim Students Federation (MSF), the students wing of the Congress and Get the latest updates in Hyderabad City News , Technology , Entertainment , Sports , Politics and Top Stories on WhatsApp & Telegram by subscribing to our channels. You can also download our app for Android and iOS .

The Siasat Daily 23 Jun 2024 8:16 am

Pinarayi criticizes IUML for aligning with Jamaat-e-Islami, SDPI for electoral gains

KOZHIKODE: Accusing the Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) of aligning with the Jamaat-e-Islami and the Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI) for electoral gains, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan called on party leaders to introspect over whether they had lost face over the collaboration. Speaking at the opening of the 61st state conference of the NGO Union in Kozhikode, Pinarayi said the League allied with SDPI and Jamaat-e-Islami for votes. Despite being aware of the their antecedents, the Congress also made them a part of the UDF election campaign. It is important for League leaders to examine the consequences of becoming the face of SDPI and Jamaat-e-Islami, he said In a further attempt to drive a wedge between the UDF allies, he said, The League contested vigorously in the recent Lok Sabha election, and the Congress cannot claim all the credit for the victory of the front.Those who supported the BJP in Thrissur should ponder whether they did the right thing, he said on Saturday. In an oblique reference to the Christian community, Pinarayi said its members and leaders should re-evaluate whether it was right to back those behind the attacks on their brethren. It is clear that the BJP struck a deal with leaders of these factions. The change of attitude was merely opportunistic. But we harbour no ill-will. But they must take a proper stand. They should understand that this attitude is not compatible with the culture of our state, Pinarayi added. Despite admitting to the LDFs failure in meeting expectations in the LS election, he added, It should not be seen as the result of any kind of hostility towards the Left front. We are the sole left-wing government in the country. Various right-wing parties coalesced against the left in Kerala, even though they are fragmented in other states. The goal of the left is the welfare of the country and its citizens, he said. The Centre has squeezed Kerala financially and created hardships unlike in any other state. The delayed welfare pensions will be disbursed every month along with arrears, the CM stressed.

The New Indian Express 23 Jun 2024 8:12 am

Row over move to grant remission to three convicts in TP murder case

KOZHIKODE: Raising suspicion that the LDF government in Kerala is considering granting a reprieve to the convicts in the T P Chandrasekharan murder case, the Kannur Central Prison authorities have sought a report from police on granting remission to three accused. The superintendent of the Kannur Central Prison recently sent a letter to the Kannur city police commissioner requesting a report on potentially commuting the sentences of 59 convicts currently in jail in various cases. The list includes the names of T K Rajeesh, Muhammad Shafi and Sijith S alias Annan Sijith the fourth, fifth and sixth accused, respectively, in the TP case. The move comes despite a High Court order imposing a life term of 20 years without remission on the convicts in the TP case. The letter, dated June 13, mentions a preliminary proposal to release 59 convicts from the Kannur prison as part of the Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav initiative. The list calls for a thorough investigation into their eligibility for release. It also seeks a prompt report based on enquiries with the convicts relatives and friends, as well as the victims of their crimes, if any. Rajeesh, Muhammad Shafi and Sijith were sentenced to 20 years imprisonment by the High Court, which restricted their right to remission. The HC had enhanced their sentences while dismissing a petition to overturn punishment awarded by the Kozhikode Additional Sessions Court. The government had recently granted parole to TP case convicts Manoj, Muhammad Shafi, Sinoj, Sijith, and Rajeesh. K K Rema, Vadakara MLA and wife of TP Chandrasekharan, sharply criticised the move to release TP case convicts. She said the governments move is a serious contempt of court, and vowed to challenge the decision both legally and politically. State Director General of Prisons & Correctional Services Balram Kumar Upadhyay clarified that TP murder case convicts will not be released. Will investigate and clarify matter The names of the TP case convicts were included in the list as part of the Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav initiative. Jail officials across the country were instructed to draw up a list of eligible convicts. Many prisoners who have been in jail for more than 10 years were automatically included. However, this does not apply to the TP case convicts. There might have been some confusion among prison officials while preparing the list. We will investigate and clarify the issue soon, Balram told mediapersons. The issue has triggered a major controversy, with the Congress and the BJP coming out against the chief minister and the government. Congress state president K Sudhakaran alleged that the jail superintendents unnatural action to release the three prisoners, that too bypassing the High Courts verdict, would not happen without the intervention of the CPM leadership. BJP state president K Surendran said the move to grant remission to TP case convicts was not surprising. In a Facebook post, Surendran alleged that no Malayali would believe that jail laws were applicable to the convicts in prison. How remission is given Generally, prisoners are given remission based on the recommendations made by a standing advisory board in prison with the prison's DGP as chairman. The panel will hold its meeting once in six months. Prisoners eligible for remission are recommended based on their conduct in jail, time served in prison and other aspects related to their imprisonment. The board consisting of a special judge, collector, commissioner, three nominated officials and district probation officer will look into different factors including social acceptance, family acceptance, behaviour in prison and during parole. The panel submits its report to the district police chief. Later, it will be sent to the cabinet for clearance. Only after the final approval from the governor, remission is granted. If the government refuses to grant remission of those recommended, they can approach the state-level advisory board and file an appeal. Similarly, the victim or his relatives can also file appeal against the remission of a prisoner.

The New Indian Express 23 Jun 2024 8:09 am

Kerala government makes fresh pitch for SilverLine project before Centre

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Hoping to revive the ambitious SilverLine project , which has been pending for long due to non-clearance from the Centre, the state has made a fresh pitch for the semi high-speed rail project. Finance Minister K N Balagopal raised the issue at the finance ministers meeting on Saturday ahead of the Union budget. Raising a slew of demands ahead of the 18th Parliament session set to begin on Monday. The state also put forth the demand for a special package of Rs 24,000 crore before the Union government. Urging that all necessary sanctions should be granted for the SilverLine project, Balagopal said the current railway network is inadequate to meet the demands of the people. At the same time, Balagopal urged that better options should be brought in to enhance the existing railway projects. The need for the semi-high-speed rail corridor should be considered by the Centre. More express and passenger trains should be sanctioned for Kerala to meet the increasing demand, he said. The finance minister pointed out that the state has been going through financial doldrums, and maintained that Kerala requires a special finance package for two years to bounce back. At the meeting, Balagopal demanded that an additional financial package to the tune of Rs 24,000 crore should be announced for Kerala in the upcoming Union budget. He said Kerala has made great strides in human resource development, sustained development, startup and modernity. The borrowing limit for this year should be enhanced to 3.5 per cent. Also, the tax sharing between the state and Centre should be in a 50:50 ratio. Balagopal also demanded that the centres share of Rs 6,000 crore towards National Highway development should be provided without any conditions as loan. The finance minister demanded another Rs 5,000 crore should be sanctioned in the next budget towards the under-construction Vizhinjam International Transshipment Container Terminal. The finance minister also urged the centre to grant another Rs 5,000 package towards constructing a tunnel project linking neighbouring districts of Kozhikode and Wayanad.

The New Indian Express 23 Jun 2024 7:22 am

Black Flags Waved At Pinarayi Vijayan Over Plus-One Seat Shortage In Kerala

The activists of KSU and MSF on Saturday waved black flags at Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan in Kozhikode, protesting against the alleged shortage of plus-one (Class 11) seats in schools across the northern Kerala region of Malabar.

NDTV 23 Jun 2024 2:39 am

Junk traders arrested on charge of cutting railway signal wires in Kozhikode

The incident had hit the service schedule of 10 trains

The Hindu 22 Jun 2024 9:34 pm

Identify divisive forces, say cultural leaders

Khasi Foundation organises Nammalonnu friendly get-together in Kozhikode

The Hindu 22 Jun 2024 9:03 pm

Reading session held in Kozhikode ahead of City of Literature announcement

UDF criticises Chief Ministers backing off from Sundays event

The Hindu 22 Jun 2024 7:56 pm

CM rejects anti-incumbency as reason for LDFs electoral setback

At the State conference of the Kerala NGO Union in Kozhikode, he also claimed that the Congress had reached a consensus with the BJP to weaken the LDF in the elections

The Hindu 22 Jun 2024 7:42 pm

IMD red alert for heavy rains in Malappuram, orange alert for 7 districts

The India Meteorological Department (IMD) on Saturday issued a red alert in Malappuram District and an orange alert for seven districts of Kerala for heavy rains.The weather department issued a red alert in the Malappuram district and an orange alert for the Kottayam Ernakulam, Idukki, Kozhikode, Wayanad, Kannur and Kasaragod districts for June 22.Meanwhile, the IMD has also sounded a red alert in Kozhikode, Wayanad and Kannur and an orange alert in Ernakulam, Thrissur, Palakkad, Malappuram, Kasargod for Sunday.The India Meterological Department (IMD) has also issued a red alert for Kerala and Mahe over this weekend. The region is expected to receive heavy to very heavy rainfall to extremely heavy falls on Saturday and Sunday.Kerala and Mahe is very likely to get isolated heavy (64.5-115.5 mm) to very heavy rainfall to extremely heavy falls ( & gt;204.4 mm) on 22nd & 23rd June and likely to get isolated heavy (64.5-115.5 mm) to very heavy rainfall (115.5-204.4 mm) during ...

Business Standard 22 Jun 2024 6:25 pm

Kerala: IMD issues red alert for heavy rains in Malappuram, orange alert for seven districts

Kerala: IMD issues red alert for heavy rains in Malappuram, orange alert for seven districts The India Meteorological Department (IMD) on Saturday issued a red alert in Malappuram District and an orange alert for seven districts of Kerala for heavy rains. The weather department issued a red alert in the Malappuram district and an orange alert for the Kottayam Ernakulam, Idukki, Kozhikode, Wayanad, Kannur and Kasaragod districts for June 22. Meanwhile, the IMD has also sounded a red alert in Kozhikode, Wayanad and Kannur and an orange alert in Ernakulam, Thrissur, Palakkad, Malappuram, Kasargod for Sunday. The India Meterological Department (IMD) has also issued a red alert for Kerala and Mahe over this weekend. The region is expected to receive heavy to very heavy rainfall to extremely heavy falls on Saturday and Sunday. Kerala and Mahe is very likely to get isolated heavy (64.5-115.5 mm) to very heavy rainfall to extremely heavy falls (>204.4 mm) on 22nd & 23rd June and likely to get isolated heavy (64.5-115.5 mm) to very heavy rainfall (115.5-204.4 mm) during 24th-26th June, 2024, the IMD said in a post on 'X'. A red alert indicates heavy to extremely heavy rain of over 20 cm in 24 hours. An orange alert means very heavy rain of 11 cm to 20 cm, and a yellow alert means heavy rainfall between 6 cm and 11 cm. Earlier on Thursday, light to moderate intensity rain and winds over and adjoining areas of a few places of Delhi-NCR brought respite from the scorching heat. As the national capital and its surrounding region face severe hot weather conditions, the IMD on Wednesday said that the monsoon is expected to hit Delhi-NCR around June 30. On Wednesday the Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital reported five deaths due to suspected heatstroke while at least 12 people, mostly daily wage labourers were in critical condition battling for their lives on ventilator support. The IMD has also issued a red alert warning for heavy rains in Karnataka and Goa for Saturday, June 22. Besides this, an orange alert warning is in place for Odisha. (ANI)

devdiscourse 22 Jun 2024 6:13 pm

Heavy to Very Heavy Rainfall Forecast For Kerala

The Northeast Monsoon rains have ceased over Rayalaseema and the adjoining areas of Coastal Andhra Pradesh, Kerala's Mahe, south interior Karnataka, Tamil Nadu-Puducherry-Karaikal and Yanam since Sunday. (Representation image: DC) The Northeast Monsoon rains have ceased over Rayalaseema and the adjoining areas of Coastal Andhra Pradesh, Kerala's Mahe, south interior Karnataka, Tamil Nadu-Puducherry-Karaikal and Yanam since Sunday. (Representation image: DC) Thiruvananthapuram: Many parts of the state, particularly the northern districts, are likely to receive heavy to very heavy rainfall in the coming days. The Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) has predicted significant downpours in Central and northern Kerala. Malappuram is on red alert on Saturday, while Kottayam, Ernakulam, Idukki, Kozhikode, Wayanad, Kannur, and Kasaragod districts have been issued an orange alert. Pathanamthitta, Alappuzha, Thrissur, and Palakkad districts are on yellow alert. A red alert for extremely heavy rainfall has been declared in the districts of Kozhikode, Wayanad, and Kannur for Sunday (June 23), with predictions of isolated torrential downpours. Over 204.4 mm of rain is anticipated in the next 24 hours. An orange alert has been declared for Ernakulam, Idukki, Thrissur, Palakkad, Malappuram, and Kasaragod districts. Concurrently, a yellow alert is in effect for the districts of Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Pathanamthitta, Alappuzha, and Kottayam for the same period. Rain forecast for the coming days Orange Alert June 24: Kozhikode, Kannur, Kasargod June 25: Kozhikode, Kannur, Kasargod June 26: Kannur The Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) has issued an orange alert for the districts, forecasting heavy to very heavy rainfall at isolated locations. A Very Heavy Rainfall warning indicates expected rainfall amounts ranging from 115.6 mm to 204.4 mm within 24 hours. Yellow Alert June 24: Pathanamthitta, Alappuzha, Kottayam, Ernakulam, Idukki, Thrissur, Palakkad, Malappuram, Wayanad June 25: Pathanamthitta, Kottayam, Ernakulam, Idukki, Thrissur, Palakkad, Malappuram, Wayanad June 26: Pathanamthitta, Kottayam, Ernakulam, Idukki, Thrissur, Palakkad, Malappuram, Kozhikode, Wayanad, Kasaragod The IMD has issued a yellow alert in these districts. The possibility of isolated heavy rains is predicted. Heavy rainfall means a situation where rainfall ranges from 64.5 mm to 115.5 mm in 24 hours.

Deccan Chronicle 22 Jun 2024 5:00 pm

Air Arabia Flight Receives Hoax Bomb Threat in Kerala's Calicut Airport

Kozhikode: A hoax bomb threat was made with regard to an Air Arabia flight scheduled to leave for Sharjah from the Calicut International airport on Saturday morning, leading to the aircraft being grounded while the bomb detection squad of the police inspected it, airport sources said. One of the passengers who arrived on the aircraft from Sharjah to Calicut had left a note saying 'bomb' on one of the seats and it was found by the ground staff before boarding commenced, a senior airport official said. Subsequently, the police were alerted, the aircraft was grounded, and the bomb detection squad carried out a thorough inspection of the plane, the official said. It was later found that the note was a hoax bomb threat. The inspection and security drills have just been concluded. We are awaiting a report from the bomb detection squad before the flight is cleared for take-off, the official said around 11 am. He also said that the flight, which was scheduled to depart around 8.30 am, will now leave at around 5 pm. The passengers have been accommodated at the airport and have been provided food and water, he added. Meanwhile, police said that the passenger who put the note in the aircraft has not yet been identified and they are trying to find out who was behind the hoax threat. Further steps will be taken accordingly, an officer from Karipur police station said.

Deccan Chronicle 22 Jun 2024 12:43 pm

Now what for UGC NEET, NET aspirants in Kerala?

KOCHI: Close on the heels of the controversies over NEET-UG 2024 came another shocking news. The UGC NET , held on June 18, was cancelled a day later with the UGC claiming the tests integrity was compromised. The unpleasant developments have jeopardised the future of the nearly 9 lakh teaching and research aspirants who appeared for the NET, and the around 25 lakh candidates who attempted NEET on May 5. CBI registers FIR, initiates probe into UGC-NET paper leak case Understandably, the students, who had burnt the candle at both ends, are upset. While NEET has been mired in controversy over alleged awarding of grace marks and paper leak, the NET was cancelled as authorities said reports from agencies hinted at anomalies. Neet not neat, mired in mess Now, protests against the National Testing Agency, which conducted both tests, are rocking the nation. Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, too, raised the issue on X (formerly Twitter), and urged the Centre to act immediately and resolve the crisis, which, he said, revealed the repeated incompetence of the NTA. The controversy over NEET has barely subsided, and now the Ministry of Education has announced the cancellation of UGC-NET, citing compromised exam integrity. This repeated incompetence is unacceptable, leaving students in limbo and wasting public money. The Central Government Pinarayi Vijayan (@pinarayivijayan) June 20, 2024 Efforts of a lot of candidates have gone down the drain. They should get justice, says Sreenand Sharmil, who scored 720 in NEET this year. Several others, who TNIE spoke to, echoed similar sentiments. Annapoorna V Kartha, Kochi This shows how undervalued students efforts are in our country, which is very disheartening. For a nation that aims to become a global superpower, ignoring the youth and perhaps even punishing them for aspiring for a better future, does not augur well. The ease with which NTA announced the cancellation and the relativenonchalanceof the political class shows how disconnected todays polity is from the sentiments of the youth. Kesiya Ann Babu, Kochi A standalone exam being the admission criterion for a PhD amplifies the existing fierce competition. Now, only those who can afford coaching have the luxury of pursuing higher education. With NEP in place, even students who have completed four years of bachelors degree can apply for a PhD. Without an MPhil course that provides insight into how research would be, it seems like higher education in academia is going downhill. Then comes thecancellation of the June NET exam. Reena Mathew, Thiruvananthapuram For the NTAs inefficiency in conducting the test, the candidates have to pay the price.If there is no provision for changing exam centres for there-examination, I wont be able to attend it. The registration fee is Rs1,150, which is not a small amount for me. Joseph Thankachan, Kochi The mental stress that comes with thislevel ofmismanagement is nothing less than a tragedy. Ive been readying for the NET exam and quit my job to focus entirely on studying becauseI wanted to join for PhD. Unfortunately, the exam has been cancelled. Now, I am thinking whether to prepare again or join my new job. Gowri Krishna, Thiruvananthapuram I wasoneamong a small faction of people who were happy withthepen-and-paper format.I was content with the test.But my hopes were shattered whenNET was cancelled, and Im unmotivated totake the test again. NTA is playing with our future and the integrity of the exam is now at stake. Pooja Syam, KSU vice-president, Kerala University Campus Rumours were spread that the question papers got leaked days before the exam. No clarification was provided by NTA by then. But then why make all these students write the exam and then cancel it? Jeevak A, Kochi I am currently doing my post-graduation and had to prepare for NET while my university exams were going on. Most universities now accept PhD scholars through NET and when such an error happens in a critical examination like this, it is extremely disheartening for an aspirant like me. Adithya V,University Union Councillor (SFI), MG University Campus The cancellation caused many difficulties, as many had travelled long distances to the centres. The question paper leak is the fault of NTA, as it was a pen-paper test this year. NTA is supposed to ensure the failproof conduct of exams like UGC-NET and NEET. Abhinav K P, Kannur, ABVP state joint secretary Such incidents happens due to NTAs carelessness. The pen-paper test increased the procedural difficulty. We demand the removal of the NTA chairman. We have started our protests against the issue. Rajan Gurukal, vice-chairman, Kerala State Higher Education Council The leak happened from within the NAT. Right from the setting of the question papers to the printing press, it could have leaked from anywhere. To prevent a repeat, NTA needs to use digital technology. They should set an exhaustive question bank from which the machine can pick and choose questions right at the time of the examination. The software is already there and institutions all over the world are using it. Shraddha Rajeev, Kochi It is my dream to become a doctor. On June 4, NEET results were declared, and then, news started spreading about the scams. A lot of questions remain in our minds why were the NEET results declared on the same day as the election results? Why were grace marks given? It has been two weeks since the result declaration yet no decision has been made. Future of us aspirants are at stake here. Abhinav Sunil Prasad, Kozhikode I scored 720 and secured rank 1. Now, if there is a re-test, I have to prepare again that too, in a short duration. I believe it is better to have a re-evaluation of marks rather than a retest because lakhs of students like me have worked hard and over the past few months have lost touch with the syllabus. Binyamin Binu Varghese, Bahrain Many stories are coming about papers being leaked and students getting grace marks close to 100. I know many students who prepared for the exams while suffering poverty. Their dreams are in shambles right now. NTA has failed and now lakhs are facing the consequences. We should get justice. Sivani Nalambrone, Kannur The NEET scam is devastating because students like us sacrificed our mental and physical health to prepare. This scandal shatters our tryst in the system. Its not just about studying hard anymore, we also have to worry about the fraud. This added stress is unfair and demoralising. The impact on our future is profound. Lakshmi Priya V, Kochi I have been going through a rollercoaster ride since the day I started preparing for NEET. But I did my part and attended the exam. All the replies from the authorities seem like fudging. I hope all the chaos gets over soon and that the deserving people get justice. Lakshmi Sankar J, Kochi I took a gap year and prepared for NEET. This year it was an easy exam. Thats why though we scored good marks, our ranks went down. However, the recent NTA scam is highly concerning, and it shows the flaws that this system has. It is unfair to ask us to retake the exam, many of us cannot afford to do so. Compiled by: Aliya Siya A S, Keshav R Nair, Sanjana Pradeep, Parvathy S Nair, Aswin Asok Kumar, Mary Thomas

The New Indian Express 22 Jun 2024 8:34 am

Elephant safari parks in the dock as jumbo tramples mahout in Idukki

KOCHI: A day after a female elephant trampled a mahout to death at an illegal elephant safari park at Kallar in Idukki district, the forest department on Friday ordered immediate closure of the park. Idukki ACF (Social Forestry) P K Vipindas has implemented the order and directed the owner to shift the elephant to Kottayam. Meanwhile, Forest Minister A K Saseendran directed the ACF (assistant conservator of forests) to probe the operations of illegal elephant safaris and take stringent action against them. As per the databook, A H Jalaludeen, a resident of Erumeli in Kottayam district, is the owner of the elephant. However, the custodian of the elephant is P K Raveendran, a resident of Kanjirappally. The elephant, Lakshmi, is 53 years old and was kept at Kerala Farm in Anaviratty village of Devikulam taluk for safari. The owner of the farm is P P Bijesh, a resident of Koyilandy in Kozhikode. The incident occurred at 6.30 pm on Thursday when the mahouts were trying to tether the elephant. The victim, M Balakrishnan, 62, of Neeleshwar in Kasaragod, was the assistant mahout of the elephant. According to eyewitnesses, the elephant trampled Balakrishnan, grabbed him with its trunk and threw him. According to animal rights activist M N Jayachandran, Idukki is the only district in Kerala where elephant safari parks are operating. Though the Kerala High Court had banned elephant safari in 2020, the parks reopened a few months after closure. As per the Captive Elephant Management Rules, 2003, elephants can be used only for parading associated with religious functions, with permission from the district level monitoring committee. To use elephants for safari, the owner has to get a licence from the Animal Welfare Board of India. I have booked 11 cases against illegal elephant safaris in Idukki during the past two years. None of these safaris possess a valid licence, said ACF Vipindas. However, the rules do not specify penal action for using elephants for safari. The government has taken steps to amend the rules and a stakeholders meeting will be held on June 26 to discuss the amendment, he said. None of the parks use male elephants for safari as it is risky. The female elephants are brought from other districts, for which the park owners enter into a contract with elephant owners.

The New Indian Express 22 Jun 2024 8:11 am

Pressure on Kerala government to remove Vellappally Natesan from Navothana Samithi

KOZHIKODE: Pressure is mounting on the government to remove SNDP Yogam general secretary Vellappally Natesan as president of the Navothana Moolya Samrakshana Samithi (Committee for the Protection of Renaissance Values) after his remarks on the Muslim community sparked a row. Those who were associated with the Samithi earlier said Vellappallys uncharitable comments have made the dispensation redundant and only a reconstitution of the body with an appropriate person at its helm can serve the purpose of its formation. Kerala Pulaya Maha Sabha (KPMS) general secretary Punnala Sreekumar, who resigned as the Samithi general secretary around two years ago, said the Samithi has lost its relevance after Vellappallys comments. The Samithi was formed to have a common platform for the renaissance movements from different sections of society. Remarks against a particular section have defeated its very purpose, Sreekumar said. Since the Samithi is promoted by the government, the authorities have a responsibility. Vellappally should either correct himself or the government should intervene, he said. C K Vidyasagar, former president of the SNDP Yogam and the Samithi vice-president, said he is ready to associate with the forum again if the government goes for a rejig. Vidyasagar has been keeping away from the activities of the Samithi for some time now. Vellappally has a master plan and he has deputed his wife and son for a pilot project. Now, he is vigorously pursuing the plan after he found that the pilot project is successful, Vidyasagar said. The Samithi was formed in 2019 after the controversy over womens entry to Sabarimala. Persons from different communities were made members of the Samithi, which aims to protect the values of renaissance in Kerala. Muslim outfits in Kerala lash out at Vellappally Natesan Mujahid leader Hussein Madavoor had resigned recently protesting Vellappallys anti-Muslim remarks. Meanwhile, Suprabhatham daily, the mouthpiece of Samastha Kerala Jem-Iyyathul Ulama, has come down strongly against Vellappally. In an editorial on Wednesday, the daily said Vellappally has the responsibility to give proof to his allegation that Muslims and Christians got undue benefits from the government.

The New Indian Express 22 Jun 2024 7:16 am

Kerala: Fans petition PM as Copa America kicks off sans live telecast

KOZHIKODE: The Copa America has begun in the USA, but Indian football fans have been left disappointed as there is no live telecast of the celebrated tournament in the country. Football enthusiasts in Malabar avidly follow and gather for international tournaments like the World Cup, European Championship and Copa America , and national competitions like the Santosh Trophy. Fans groups like the Nainamvalappu Football Fans Association (NFFA) in Kozhikode have expressed dismay at the absence of live telecast on television for the Copa America. The NFFA has faxed a petition to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, urging him to intervene in the issue. Copa America is one of the most followed tournaments in the world, featuring teams like Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Uruguay, and others. These football teams have a huge fan base in Kerala too, said NFFA president Subair. The football fans in Malabar are hugely disappointed that we cannot watch Copa America live on TV, its a major letdown, said Abdu N V, a 60-year-old daily wage labourer and a football enthusiast from Nainamvalappu. Right now, both Euro cup and Copa America are going on. While we are enjoying the Euro matches live with special screenings, its disheartening that we cannot experience Copa America live. We cannot watch Argentina play, which is a disappointment for its fans here. Its a rare occasion to have both prestigious tournaments running simultaneously, and we have been eagerly following and watching every match. Football is like a celebration for us; we watch all matches together. Its a tradition, he added wistfully. In Malabar, football isnt just a game but a passion that unites communities. This deep love for football reflects Keralas strong connection with the sport, with nearly 30% of Indias last FIFA World Cup viewership coming from the state. Screening football matches has become ingrained in Malabars culture. Whether in bustling local clubs or cosy living rooms, fans of all ages come together, creating an electric atmosphere as they cheer for their teams. This communal experience fosters camaraderie among neighbours, friends, and families alike. However, amid the excitement of local screenings, missing out on Copa America has left a void in their footballing experience. NFFA have requested the PM to arrange live telecasts in India by sports channels or Prasar Bharati (Doordarshan), he said. Football unites us all, and we eagerly look forward to these matches. We hope the fans will soon be able to gather again to witness the thrilling moments of Copa America live on their screens, he added.

The New Indian Express 22 Jun 2024 6:35 am

Education bandh by KSU total in Kozhikode

The Hindu 22 Jun 2024 12:22 am

Wild animal menace: fencing work to be completed soon in vulnerable areas in Kozhikode

The plan is to cover around 38 km in the Thiruvambady Assembly constituency with the support of the Forest department and local administrators

The Hindu 22 Jun 2024 12:19 am

Yoga can reduce problems but not a magic remedy, says Kozhikode Collector

International Yoga Day celebrated in Kozhikode

The Hindu 21 Jun 2024 7:54 pm

Flotilla of books to welcome travellers in Kerala's Panavally

KOCHI: As the nation observed National Reading Day on June 19, the Kerala State Water Transport Department (KSWTD) is making a silent yet effective contribution to developing the reading habits of hundreds of commuters across the state by doubling its ferry boats as floating libraries. Who wouldnt like to flip a few pages of an interesting novel or story while enjoying the cool breeze of the backwaters? Were introducing more floating libraries in ferry services with limited stops and a sailing period of at least 20 minutes, M Sujith, Traffic Superintendent, Ernakulam region, told TNIE. After the success of its pilot project in the Muhamma-Kumarakom route, the department is all set to introduce Pusthakathoni (floating libraries) in its ferry boats operating in Panavally-Poothotta and Ernakulam-Fort Kochi sections as well. In the Panavally-Poothotta section, a 45-minute journey by boat, the Naduvathul Islam UP School has evinced interest in sponsoring and setting up a library on the ferry boat plying there. In Ernakulam, many have approached us, evincing interest. We hope to introduce the facility soon, the official said. The floating libraries were first introduced in two ferry boats (S-52 and S-55) operating in the Muhamma-Kumarakom section. It all started when the A B Vilasam Higher Secondary School students in Muhamma, under the aegis of the National Service Scheme (NSS), proposed the idea of opening a mini-library on the boat jetty. SWTD Muhamma station master K S Shanavas then asked them why a floating library could not be set up on the boats itself, that could take the passengers to the world of literary wonders during the nearly 40-minute ride. CMS College, Kottayam, then chipped in with interesting books and now the floating libraries in the two boats number over 250. The initiative turned out to be a big success, with many of the passengers devouring books of their choice during the boat journeys. Schoolchildren too were excited to find their choice of books among the collections, Sujith pointed out. The success prompted SWTD to introduce the initiative in more boats. A similar floating library was introduced in the boat operating in the Edathua-Chambakulam section a few months back. We got encouraging responses again and the same prompted us to introduce the floating libraries in more sections like Panavally, he added. This is a very good initiative and they have a wonderful collection of books, including those by legendary authors like Vaikom Muhammad Basheer. Its really a great feeling to flip through a few pages amid the cool breeze from the backwater and the feeble sound of the boat moving along the water. But what I liked best was that the initiative brings books closer to ordinary people in regions that lack good library services, reflected Vijayan Karumandy, a native of Atholi, Kozhikode, after arriving at Muhamma in the boat S-55.

The New Indian Express 21 Jun 2024 7:09 am

Suresh Gopis remarks on AIIMS leave question mark on Kozhikodes chances

Kerala government has already showed its preference for Kozhikode. Over around 150 acres in the custody of the Industries department at Kinalur in Kozhikode have been handed over to the Health department

The Hindu 20 Jun 2024 7:35 pm

NDRF team deployed in nine districts in Kerala; orange alert issued for three districts

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: In anticipation of heavy rainfall and strong winds due to the strengthening South-West monsoon, the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) has been deployed in nine districts across Kerala. The decision for the pre-deployment was taken by the NDRF following a request from the state government to ensure an effective and timely response to monsoon-related potential emergencies, including flooding and landslides. An orange alert was issued for Malappuram, Kozhikode and Kannur districts for Friday As per the forecast by the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD), districts including Palakkad, Malappuram, Kannur, Kozhikode, and Kasargod are expected to receive heavy to very heavy rainfall ranging between 115.6 mm and 204.4 mm in the coming days. On Friday, an orange alert has been issued for Malappuram, Kozhikode, and Kannur districts. Nine NDRF teams have been deployed for the districts of Idukki, Pathanamthitta, Alappuzha, Ernakulam, Malappuram, Kollam, Kozhikode, Thrissur, and Wayanad. We seek pre-deployment of NDRF during every monsoon. It's a routine procedure we do during the monsoon season for better preparedness, said member secretary Shekar Lukose Kuriakose, Kerala State Disaster Management Authority (KSDMA). As per a press note issued by NDRF, the teams are self-contained and equipped with flood rescue equipment, and communication equipment including vehicle-mounted quick deployment antenna and personal protective measures. NDRF's 24/7 control room at Arakkonam is closely monitoring the situation round the clock, and all efforts are being made in close collaboration with the state emergency operation control room, Kerala, said a press release issued by NDRF.

The New Indian Express 20 Jun 2024 4:06 pm

Kerala govt seeks pre-deployment of nine NDRF teams in anticipation of heavy rainfall

Kerala govt seeks pre-deployment of nine NDRF teams in anticipation of heavy rainfall Expecting heavy rainfall and strong winds in the state in the coming days, the Kerala government has requested pre-deployment of nine NDRF teams in the southern state, the paramilitary force said on Thursday. The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), in its statement, said the government has sought pre-deployment of the teams in Idukki, Pathanamthitta, Alappuzha, Ernakulam, Malappuram, Kollam, Kozhikode, Thrissur and Wayanad districts of the state. It also said that a 24x7 NDRF control room in Arakkonam is closely monitoring the situation round the clock and all efforts are being made in close collaboration with the state's emergency operation control room. The teams would be equipped with flood rescue equipment, collapsed structure search and rescue equipment, communication gear, including vehicle mounted quick deployment antenna, and personal protective gear, it further said. Stay safe and follow local advisories, the NDRF statement said. The India Meteorological Department (IMD) on Tuesday had predicted the likelihood of an increase in the rains in Kerala by June 21-22. The IMD issued an orange alert in three northern Kerala districts of Malappuram, Kozhikode and Kannur for June 21 and a yellow alert in six others. For June 22, it issued an orange alert in Malappuram, Kozhikode, Kannur and Kasaragod and yellow alert in eight other districts of the state. On Thursday, the IMD issued an orange alert in six districts of the state for June 23 and in four on June 24. An orange alert is issued when 'very heavy rainfall' of 11 cm to 20 cm is expected, and a yellow alert for 'heavy rainfall' of between 6 cm and 11 cm.

Deccan Chronicle 20 Jun 2024 4:00 pm

Power bank explodes onboard Air Arabia flight from Abu Dhabi to Kozhikode, none hurt

According to passengers, flames and smoke were noticed when plane was getting ready to take off from Abu Dhabi airport

The Hindu 20 Jun 2024 2:14 pm

I carved out a space for myself in the literary world, says Mohammed Abbas

KOCHI: What better time is there to talk about the power of reading, if not Reading Week? And who better than writer Mohammed Abbas, renowned for his works like Visappu Pranayam Unmadam and Athmahathyakkum Bhranthinumidayil , can encompass all about how reading inspires a person? Abbas, who became a writer through the power of reading, is entering a new phase in his career with the release of his maiden novel Abuvinte Jalakangal . The writer who is known for his works centred around his personal life opens up about his life experiences and recounts his journey in Malayalam literature during a conversation with TNIE . Excerpts: How do someone who only knew Tamil fall in love with Malayalam? My father is from Kottakkal, but we settled in the Travancore area in connection with his job. I was born and raised in Perunchilambu in Kanyakumari. Eventually, this area became part of Tamil Nadu, so I had to learn Tamil. Later, we moved back to Kerala when I was in eighth grade. However, my lack of proficiency in reading and writing Malayalam prevented me from enrolling in school. And then financial constraints further put a stop to my former education. Later, I moved to Kozhikode where I took on various jobs in hotels as a day labourer. It was during this time that I met two sex workers. They encouraged me to learn to write Malayalam. They wrote words like Kadal (sea) and Akasham (sky) on a cigarette packet at Kozhikode Beach and started teaching me. I learned words such as Thiramala (waves), Vanji (boat), and Kappal (ship), from them. Since we speak Malayalam at home, I already knew how to read some words. Then, my life changed when my uncle found me and brought me to his home. Later, I moved to his rubber plantation in the hill area, where I spent three years. During this period, I would come down the hill weekly to visit the panchayat and party libraries at the junction, borrowing books to read in my free time. It was there I mastered my skills in reading and writing Malayalam. When did you begin writing? After becoming skilled in the language, I desired to write, despite being self-taught and facing a few limitations. Initially, I was hesitant to show my writing to others or submit it for publication due to errors and shyness. However, epics like Khasakkinte Ithihasam had a lot of influence on me and inspired me to start writing. Over time, my spelling errors came down, and I began writing stories and submitting them to publications. Rejections came swiftly, but I continued to write. I took on jobs like painting, selling vegetables, fish, and lottery tickets at that time. In 2017, I got a phone and joined Facebook. I joined the reading groups and began sharing small write-ups about the books I read and how they influenced me. The positive feedback encouraged me to post more. The platforms freedom allowed me to express myself without fear of negative feedback. This courage led to a publication contacting me to compile my write-up into a collection Oru Paint Panikkarante Lokasancharangal. I continued to write online, but I grew tired of the same format and started penning my personal life experiences, which became the book Visappu Pranayam Unmadam. To date, I have authored five books. So, we can say I taught myself and carved out a space for myself in the literary world. Can you share how your reading journey influenced you to view the world? In my youth, I turned from childrens publications to weekly magazines and eventually into soft porn novels that were available at that time. During this phase, I came across Ithihasathinte Ithihasam , a work where author O V Vijayan responded to criticisms of Khasakkinte Ithihasam . This led me to take Khasakkinte Itihasam , which helped me discover my preferred genres. Soon, I started exploring the works of writers such as Vaikom Muhammad Basheer, M T Vasudevan Nair, and various translated works of world literature. Naturally, my thoughts and perspectives evolved. I began reading nonfiction, history, and diverse subjects, which expanded my thinking. It also influenced how I viewed others. I realised that regardless of our own experiences, continuous reading is important to truly understand others. You said you often write about your life experiences. Isnt it challenging to write about painful experiences? Readers of Visappu Pranayam Unmadam have shared that they got emotional while reading the book. I cried a lot while writing it. There is a difference when we revisit our lives through language, almost as if we are reliving them in a new way. We never anticipate writing about our experiences when we are going through them. The experience is the true teacher, not any religion or culture. Its all about how we navigate and interpret these experiences. But I think everyone can write about their life experiences. But many stumble when beginning to write fiction, and they eventually discover if there is anything within themselves. My readers will find out this through my debut novel. How do you connect these emotions with your audience? I only know the language I speak my vernacular in a colloquial style. This makes it easier for people to connect with me, as opposed to using complex language. Speaking simply ensures that people pay attention, even if the language lacks ornamentation, similes, or substance. This might explain why my writing connects with others. Also, Facebook is a popular medium among ordinary people. While youngsters may prefer Instagram and intellectuals lean towards Twitter, my storytelling on Facebook reaches ordinary people. When we speak truthfully, readers sense our authenticity and embrace it. I write about both my best and worst days, my good and bad habits. I never hide anything. I just write and present myself as I truly am. Recently, one of your Facebook posts about your sons SSLC score went viral. Many people reacted and shared it through different mediums. What inspired you to write that note? I have three children. My two elder daughters have achieved excellent ranks and accolades. However, when my sons results were announced, our family was happy with that. But curious relatives and neighbours called to ask how many A+ grades he received. They viewed it as a matter of dignity and pride. For me, it was not. Seeing that these calls affected my son, I chose to appreciate his humanity instead, knowing that this quality would benefit him more in the future than any A+ grade. I dont believe marks define a person. Whether or not a child gets an A+, they are still our child, right? The most important thing is to support our children without succumbing to societal pressures. By doing so, they will truly flourish. Writing about politics and religion can attract a lot of criticism. How do you deal with that? I have faced a lot of criticism over the years. One notable instance was when I wrote about the kitchen dynamics during Ramadan. During this time, women in the house often have to handle double the household work. They wake up early and prepare food, while the men wake up later and head to the mosque, which is usually air-conditioned. Even during their menstrual periods, women have to carry on with their duties. Then women need to get the children ready for school and start preparing for the feast. They serve food to the men and listen to their minor complaints. Many people criticised me, saying their kitchens dont function like this. However, whether it happens in our own kitchens or not, we need to address these issues. To those who criticise me, I have only one response: Thank you, happiness, and more love. Its not my style to meet criticism with criticism or arguments. Instead, I believe in responding with love. Many considered you the star of the recent Kerala Literature Festival... Platforms like this hold significant importance in todays world. On stage, I didnt speak about the people who were present but about those who could not be there, those who lacked such privileges. When I took an autorickshaw to get here, I told the driver to take me to KLF. He didnt understand. I then mentioned the place where the festival was being held, and he still didnt know. This festival has been happening for seven or eight years, and he has been driving the auto for 16 years, yet he was unaware of the biggest literature festival. I shared this on stage, how many auto-rickshaw drivers, painters, and carpenters remain disconnected from such events. It becomes a significant event only for a small percentage of society. For ordinary people struggling to survive each day, literature is not a big thing. I guess I didnt speak much about literature. Perhaps that is why the audience noticed me. What are your future projects? My first novel has been released. I have always written about the struggles of ordinary people, highlighting issues that often go unnoticed. Over time, some readers commented that my work seemed to focus only on sorrow, asking if there was no happiness in my life. I also felt that my writing had become somewhat repetitive. Thats why I decided to try fiction. Another novel is set to be released next month. I am still going for my painting job because very few people can depend on writing alone. I am not particularly privileged to do so. I hope that my books will provide me with the opportunity to focus entirely on writing.

The New Indian Express 20 Jun 2024 9:14 am

Kerala braces for heavy rain as monsoon gains strength after 47 per cent deficit

KOCHI: The southwest monsoon, which had stalled for two weeks after its onset on May 30, has become active over Kerala. However, between June 1 and 19, Kerala recorded a 47% deficit, receiving 208.1 mm of rainfall against the normal 393.9 mm. This has the KSEB worried as its reservoirs are at just 25% storage. Monsoon arrives in Kerala; North continues to bake Meanwhile, the India Meteorological Department (IMD), in a special weather bulletin on Wednesday, said the monsoon will be active for the next seven days and Kerala is expected to receive copious rain in July, August and September. The westerly wind, which weakened after the monsoon onset, has gained strength and is expected to bring heavy rain in northern districts. As per the forecast, south Kerala will receive isolated heavy rainfall on Thursday and northern districts will receive heavy to very heavy rainfall from June 21 to 23. Kozhikode, Kannur, Wayanad and Kasaragod are expected to receive extreme heavy rainfall on June 23 and 24. The lull in monsoon was caused by weakening of westerly after monsoon onset. However, the strength and depth of the wind has increased from Tuesday from 1.5 km to 4.5 km now which brought fairly widespread rain from Wednesday. The rain will continue till June 25 after which we can expect a lull. However, there are indications monsoon will gain strength in July, said IMD Thiruvananthapuram director Neetha K Gopal. KSEB dams have storage to generate 1,020 MUs of power The special weather bulletin said rain or thundershower is most likely at most places in Kerala and Lakshadweep from June 19 to 25. IMD has advised fishermen not to venture into the sea from June 20 to 23. Considering the heavy rain forecast, the KSEB has decided to increase generation and keep water level in its reservoirs low. The forecast indicates Kerala may get 150% rainfall as against the average of 445 mm in August. This year, KSEB reservoirs have the storage to generate 1,020 million units (MUs) of power as against 2023, when the storage allowed generation of 648.76 million units. The Idukki reservoir, with a storage of 29%, generated 10 MUs of power on Tuesday while the Sabarigiri project generated 6 MUs. Meanwhile, peak-hour consumption in the state went up during the past week prompting the KSEB to purchase additional power from real-time market. On Tuesday, KSEB purchased 1.17 MUs during peak hours. The demand during the second peak from 10.30pm to 12.30 am has been increasing in recent days owing to the rise in temperature caused by the monsoon break. La Nina may bring heavy rain in August La Nina is expected to set in between July and September and may bring heavy rainfall to India by August. The IMD too has forecast above normal monsoon during the latter phase of the Southwest monsoon. La Nina is the periodic cooling of surface water in the central and east central equatorial Pacific, which influences wind pattern and causes heavy rainfall. Monsoon active, heavy spell predicted till Sunday After breaking a long dry spell on Wednesday, the state is bracing for heavy rain over the weekend. The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has predicted that the conditions are set for heavy to very heavy rain in the state till June 23, aided by the presence of a cyclonic circulation over coastal Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. Kozhikode, Wayanad and Kannur are expected to get extremely heavy rain (orange alert) at one or two places on June 23. IMD has issued an orange alert for Thursday in Malappuram, Kozhikode and Kannur and a yellow alert in Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Alappuzha, Kannur and Kasaragod. Extremely heavy rain means a place getting over 20cm rainfall in 24 hours.

The New Indian Express 20 Jun 2024 7:44 am

Beach tourism destinations in Kozhikode to get a facelift

Three destinations to be improved with the newly sanctioned State government fund

The Hindu 19 Jun 2024 8:06 pm

Kerala Assembly: 92% land acquired for Kozhikode-Wayanad tunnel road project, says Minister Riyas

Proposed four-lane tunnel road project on Anakkampoyil-Kalladi-Meppadi route is an alternative for busy Thamarassery ghat road that connects Kozhikode and Wayanad districts

The Hindu 19 Jun 2024 3:11 pm

Party workers welcome Priyanka's entry; decision sparks political firestorm in state

KOZHIKODE : Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi is set to fulfil a long-standing wish of her party workers by contesting the byelection from the Wayanad Lok Sabha constituency in Kerala, marking her electoral debut at the age of 52. The move follows her brother Rahul Gandhis decision to retain Uttar Pradeshs Rae Bareli seat, a Congress stronghold in the Hindi heartland, and let go of Wayanad as the Constitution stipulates that an individual cannot represent more than one seat simultaneously. The decision is also seen as one that honours Rahuls promise to the voters of Wayanad that he would not disappoint them while deciding which constituency to retain. Priyankas prospective candidature has energised the region, in anticipation of having another member of the Nehru family represent Wayanad. If Priyanka wins the byelection, she will be the sole woman MP from Kerala, as all nine female candidates fielded by UDF, LDF, and NDA had lost the recent elections. The Wayanad District Congress Committees (DCC) resolution released on Tuesday welcomed the decision to select Priyanka as the Wayanad candidate. DCC general secretary P D Saji said in the resolution that Priyankas candidacy will lead to significant progress in Wayanad. He highlighted the determination and honesty shown by Rahul for the people of Wayanad and expressed confidence that Priyanka would take that legacy forward. Asking Rahul to focus on Rae Bareli was a timely decision by the Congress national leadership, he added. The DCC is anticipating a huge win, by at least five lakh votes, with Priyanka as their candidate. Wandoor MLA A P Anil Kumar, the general convener of the election campaign committee for Rahul Gandhi, said Wayanad would be honoured to have sent two Gandhi family members to Parliament. He emphasised that all efforts will be made to highlight Priyankas presence in Wayanad, marking her electoral debut which is a significant event for the party and the district. The decision, however, has faced criticism too. Rahuls main contender, CPIs Annie Raja, said the news of Priyanka coming to Wayanad is not a surprise, considering the national political scenario. She accused Rahul of cheating the people of Wayanad by not retaining the seat and claimed that he played with the emotions of the people who had trusted him. She criticised the Congress for allegedly deceiving the Wayanad electorate to serve the Nehru familys interests. Priyankas nomination has also sparked a political firestorm, with the BJP accusing the Congress of engaging in dynastic politics. BJP state president K Surendran condemned the Congress leadership, alleging that they had betrayed the people of Wayanad. He urged the electorate to respond to this perceived betrayal through their votes in the upcoming bypoll.

The New Indian Express 19 Jun 2024 9:18 am

Cloud changes linked to frequent lightning

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Once confined to specific months, lightning has become a year-round occurrence in Kerala, including during the monsoon season, mainly due to shifts in cloud structure and extended dry periods. This monsoon, lightning strikes have already claimed four lives, two each in Thrissur and Kollam, in the state. Experts attribute the increased occurrence of lightning to the frequent presence of Cumulonimbus clouds, heavy and dense cloud of considerable vertical extent, during the monsoon. Rajeevan Erikkulam, a meteorologist with the Kerala State Disaster Management Authority (KSDMA), said the frequency of lightning increases in the break period during the monsoon. The southwest monsoon this year is characterised by longer breaks interspersed with shorter active spells. Notwithstanding the prediction of an above-normal rainfall, the state has recorded a rainfall deficit so far this season. Earlier, Cumulonimbus clouds were seen during pre and post-monsoon periods only. Monsoon is characterised by stratus clouds. However, this structure seems to have altered in recent years, Rajeevan said, while also highlighting recent studies, especially by the Cochin University of Science and Technology, on the presence of Cumulonimbus during monsoons. After a longer break period, winds carrying rain-bearing clouds are expected to get stronger from June 21, he said. The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has declared an orange alert in Malappuram, Kozhikode and Kannur on the day. The state gets more lightning during pre-monsoon period between April and May and during the northeast monsoon season starting from October. Kerala is one of the major states affected by lightning though deaths due to it have declined owing to better awareness and development, said a hazard analyst, who did not wish to be named. He said casualties of lightning strikes in Odisha and West Bengal are higher as more people work in fields. In Kerala, pucca houses, tall trees and fewer field activities have prevented a high number of casualties. However, construction workers, MGNREGA workers, and painters are a risk category, he said. A study by National Centre for Earth Science Studies in 2016 said earlier, over 70 people died of lightning each year. In 2015, the Kerala government classified lightning as a state-specific disaster. 2 MGNREGA workers killed in lightning strike in Punalur Two elderly MGNREGA women workers died after they were struck by lightning on Tuesday. The deceased have been identified as Sarojam, 55, and Rajini, 59. Both hails from Punalur taluk of Kollam district. The incident occurred around 11.45 am on a rubber plantation owned by a private individual in Maniyar ward of Punalur. Workers had divided into two groups to clear the bush in the upper and lower sections of the plantation. Rajini and Sarojam were working in the upper area of the plantation. As the work progressed, heavy rain accompanied by thunder began. The workers in the lower section wanted to bring back Rajini and Sarojam to safety and went in search of them, but by then they had lost their lives. Local residents informed the police, who arrived at the place and recovered the bodies.

The New Indian Express 19 Jun 2024 9:11 am

Pantheerankavu domestic violence: Accused moves Kerala High Court to quash criminal case

KOCHI : The controversial Pantheerankavu domestic violence case appears to be reaching a conclusion as the husband has expressed his desire to reconcile with his wife, stating that their dispute has been settled out of court. Rahul P Gopal, the husband, on Tuesday, approached the Kerala High Court seeking to quash the criminal case filed against him based on his wifes complaint. Allegations of physical abuse and domestic violence emerged after the womans parents visited her in Pantheerankavu, Kozhikode, on May 12. The petitioner submitted that the issue between him and his wife has been amicably resolved out of court. He cited that they had been married for just one month and, with the misunderstanding now cleared, they wished to continue their life together. Therefore, he has requested that the criminal proceedings against him should be quashed. Rahuls sister,mother and friend also approached the High Court seeking to quash the case against them.

The New Indian Express 19 Jun 2024 8:57 am

Mass Yoga to be organised in Kozhikode

The Hindu 19 Jun 2024 7:42 am

Survey unveils thriving biodiversity at IIM Kozhikode campus

The campus is now home to 668 species of flora, and fauna in its 113 acres, and the survey was able to record 350 plant species

The Hindu Businessline 18 Jun 2024 6:54 pm

Kerala rains to get heavier by June 21-22, yellow alert issued for several districts: IMD

Kerala is expected to experience intensified rainfall around June 21-22, following a recent decrease in monsoon activity, according to the India Meteorological Department (IMD). The IMD has issued alerts for several districts, with northern districts like Malappuram, Kozhikode, and Kannur under an orange alert for June 21 and additional districts for June 22. These alerts signify anticipated heavy to very heavy rainfall, driven by strong westerly/south westerly winds along the Kerala coast during this period.

The Economic Times 18 Jun 2024 6:26 pm

Monsoon gains strength in Kerala

Though the vulnerability component of India (exposure index) is not that high (11.9 per cent), its lack of ability to cope with disasters is very high (80.2 percent). Though the vulnerability component of India (exposure index) is not that high (11.9 per cent), its lack of ability to cope with disasters is very high (80.2 percent). THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: With the monsoon gaining strength in Kerala, the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) has predicted heavy to very heavy rainfall in several districts till June 22. Orange alert has been sounded in Malappuram, Kozhikode, Kannur and Kasargod districts later this week. Some of these places are expected to receive extremely heavy rainfall ranging from 115.6 mm to 204.4 mm. The IMD has also predicted rainfall accompanied by lightning in various districts. The revenue authorities have asked people residing in danger zones including coastal areas to remain cautious in the wake of the possibility of high tidal waves and rough seas. The disaster management authority has advised people residing in these areas to be prepared for evacuation at short notice. Fisherfolk have been asked to keep their fishing gear in safe places. Orange alert (heavy rainfall ranging from 115.6 mm to 204.4 mm) in the following districts; June 21: Malappuram, Kozhikode, Kannur June 22: Maappuram, Kozhikode, Kannur, Kasargod. Yellow alert (Heavy rainfall ranging from 64.55 mm to 115.5 mm expected in these districts) June 18: Ernakulam, Kannur and Kasargod. June 19: Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Alappuzha, Ernakulam, Kozhikode , Kannur. June 20: Kannur, Kasargod June 21: Idukki, Ernakulam, Thrissur, Palakkad, Wayanad, Kasargod. June 22: Pathanamthitta, Alappzha, Kottayam, Idukki, Ernakulam , Thrissur, Palakkad , Wayanad. Two killed in lightning strike: Two MGNREGA workers were killed in Punalur in Kollam district after being struck by lightning. The dead were identified Sarojam and Rajani, natives of Edakunnam. In a separate incident, a fisherman was injured after being struck by lightning at Cheppanam near Panangad in Ernakulam. The boat was destroyed by a lightning strike. The injured identified as Siby George, a native of Thoppumpady, has been admitted to a hospital.

Deccan Chronicle 18 Jun 2024 6:23 pm

Ex-MLA Lathika deletes kafir screenshot, locks FB profile

KOZHIKODE: Former Kuttiyadi MLA and CPM state committee member K K Lathika has deleted a controversial kafir screenshot from her Facebook wall. She also locked her Facebook profile on Sunday. Lathikas FB post carrying the screenshot amid the Lok Sabha elections had created a buzz, with the post having remained on her page for over a month and a half. After the Vadakara police filed a report in the High Court stating that Youth League member Muhammed Khasim had no link with the WhatsApp screenshot, UDF has intensified the attack on CPM. Congress demanded that the police take Lathika into custody to find the real culprit behind the screenshot. The UDF alleged that Lathikas latest move was borne out of fear. Lathika, who is also the wife of the CPM Kozhikode district secretary, is yet to respond. Meanwhile, Kozhikode DCC president K Praveen Kumar demanded that Lathika clarify how she got the screenshot. Removing a Facebook post will not resolve the issue. Lathika should clarify how she got the screenshot. The police should arrest and question Lathika. Only then can the real culprit behind the screenshot be brought before the law, Praveen told reporters.

The New Indian Express 17 Jun 2024 8:41 am

Snakes in a Kerala school! Plea for police aid goes viral

KOZHIKODE: A school principals plea for help may have proffered the idea for a sequel to the Hollywood flick Snakes on a Plane. And the plot, as it played out, couldnt have been better written. The head teacher of REC Government HSS in Chathamangalam, Kozhikode, was struggling to handle an unusual situation, when he sent a heartfelt letter to the local police station requesting assistance in catching snakes that had invaded the school premises. The letter, which was shared online, detailed the schools struggles with the uninvited reptilian visitors. Our students and staff are extremely frightened by the presence of snakes on the school grounds, the principal wrote. We urgently request your help to ensure the safety and well-being of everyone at our school. In the most recent development, on June 13 and 14, snakes were spotted in the classrooms. The request quickly went viral due to its unconventional nature. Traditionally, snake removal does not fall within the responsibilities of the police force, which is more accustomed to handling law enforcement and public safety issues. Social media users reacted with a mix of amusement and empathy. Many shared their own stories of unexpected animal encounters, while others praised the principal for taking proactive steps to protect students. Local authorities responded to the viral plea with a statement acknowledging the principals concern and clarifying the role of different public services. The police department expressed their willingness to coordinate with wildlife control experts to address the situation. While it is not our usual duty, the safety of the community is always our priority. We are in touch with local wildlife specialists to resolve the issue soon, the statement read. The incident sparked conversations about the need for clear protocols in handling wildlife encounters in public spaces. It also showed the sometimes blurred lines between different public services and the importance of community cooperation.

The New Indian Express 17 Jun 2024 8:17 am

Drivers needed; e-autos purchased by Kozhikode Corporation gathering dust

Opposition alleges lack of foresight in purchasing them

The Hindu 16 Jun 2024 11:22 pm

Quick Serve to be launched in Kozhikode by July-end

The Kudumbashree-supported project will provide reliable and trained household helps

The Hindu 16 Jun 2024 10:55 pm

Kerala eyeing 3,250 MW through pumped storage schemes

Of the total nine schemes, four of the PSPs are proposed in Idukki district, and one each in Wayanad, Pathanamthitta, Kozhikode, Malappuram, and Thrissur

The Hindu 16 Jun 2024 6:16 pm

INTERVIEW | Once out of touch with people, you cant survive: CPM leader Sudhakaran

Veteran CPM leader G Sudhakaran, the founding president of SFI in Kerala, has always been an enigmatic figure in state politics even while speaking his mind. He has steered clear of showing allegiance to any particular faction and remained a loyal party worker throughout. He is also a rarity in public life, having declined several nominations to the CPM state secretariat. A three-time MLA, two-time minister, and former state committee member of the party, Sudhakaran speaks to TNIE about the recent elections, setbacks, his creative side, and his analysis of national politics. Excerpts LDF secured only one seat in the Lok Sabha polls. What has led to this poor performance? We got one seat, like in 2019. But we received fewer votes compared to the last election. Even UDFs vote share is low. While securing seats is important, the vote share is crucial as it reflects the peoples support for each party. Unexpectedly, the BJP managed to garner more votes. The reasons may not be singular, rather a socio-economic process contributing to political effects. These factors are interconnected. By analysing the reasons and finding appropriate solutions, I believe we can reverse these changes. More than losing seats, the decline in vote share in Alappuzha is a major concern. The party considered you for the Alappuzha seat. Do you think the result would have been different had you contested? In April itself, when district secretary Nasar discussed with me, I had made it clear that Im not interested. I suggested the name of Thomas Isaac. He was fielded in Pathanamthitta. By the way, I dont think Arif was a wrong choice. Last time, he polled a majority of the Hindu, Christian, Ezhava and Nair votes. Since he was the only sitting MP, keeping him away would have led to criticism or even vote loss. This time, it was a general trend. Even a candidate like K Radhakrishnan, despite his clean image, didnt get a huge majority. Whats the primary reason for the increase in BJPs vote share in Kerala? One of the main reasons is the decline in Congresss vote share. Additionally, some voters who previously supported the Left but were not party members, have switched sides. This change was not anticipated by the Left parties. This situation has happened before; in 1977, we lost badly when we thought we would win more seats. This election, the party didnt focus on development politics and welfare, but on CAA. Was that a wrong move? We have discussed CAA and Palestine in the past. How can we ignore such topics? If we dont discuss these topics, where is our international outlook? Marx emphasised that we are not just nationalists but internationalists too. Revolution is an international process, though it can happen in a particular country as well. How does standing up for Muslims become communalism? Some intellectuals wrongly accuse us of trying to please Muslims. Did the BJP campaign that CPM indulges in Muslim appeasement influence Hindu and Christian voters? Its a campaign by Hindu communalists against the minorities. They have always done this. Now it has become stronger. Its part of an attempt to put people in the Muslim community in a spot. It cannot be allowed. Its a declared position of the party. Irrespective of the minority community, they should be protected from communal activities indulged in by prominent communities. A majority of those in the Hindu community are not communal. Had they (BJP) polled the majority of Hindu votes, the scenario would have been different. Even SNDP Yogam general secretary Vellappally Natesan said something on such minority appeasement... Thats different. Hes neither BJP nor RSS. Hell never be part of them. Theres nothing new in his criticism. He will never act against the interests of the Communist Party. His criticism is aimed at rejuvenating the Left. Going by the poll results, the Ezhava community, which used to remain with the Left, seems to be having a rethink? Even Vellappallys son is with the NDA... The Ezhava community hasnt changed en bloc. In some constituencies, they (BJP) got some votes. If everyone in the Ezhava community listens to Vellappallys son, BDJS would be ruling the state now. We need to look at all aspects. Mao has said that communists are like fish in the water. We should remain with the masses. Once you are out of touch with people, then you cant survive. We need to apprise the cadre of the same. Theres no point in going for disciplinary actions. Actions are taken for grave mistakes. Corrections are whats required. I believe it is possible. There are corruption allegations against the Pinarayi government now. Isnt the party on the back foot facing these allegations? None of the allegations have any evidence. No legal proceeding has been initiated. I didnt see the party facing any issues over that. The party has given a proper explanation regarding the allegations. Is it time for the party to do some introspection? What went wrong for the party? State secretary M V Govindan has already said theres need for introspection. Discussions should be held. I dont think the party made any lapses in planning and programme. Theres nothing wrong with the partys decisions. When it comes to implementation, our system at the lower level is not theoretically equipped enough. We just need to correct it by augmenting the same. Do you think CPM is facing an erosion of ideology in the absence of leaders like EMS and AKG who studied issues and provided proper explanations and solutions? Govindan recently pointed out that there is a shrinking of theoretical and ideological knowledge among party workers, affecting everyone in the party. This needs to be addressed and party workers need to be educated about it. As for leaders like EMS and AKG, such leaders emerge through experience. Its unrealistic to expect a leader to possess all knowledge from the outset. When the younger generation engages more in politics, capable leaders will naturally emerge. While there are individuals within the party, there is also a shortage of true leaders. Resolving these issues is inherent to the partys mission, and I believe it will be addressed. It is intriguing why a senior leader like you were never included in the state secretariat... Thats because I wasnt interested. The party did nominate me three times to the secretariat. I was never after recognition. Even then I was appointed minister twice. Did you feel disappointed when the party denied you permission to contest the 2021 election? Why should I feel dejected? Had I not proposed H Salams name in the secretariat, he would never have got the candidature. I recommended him recognising his service to the party. I had informed my family members in 2020 itself that I will not be contesting the election. Later, the party decided to implement the two-term policy. Next time, it will be a single term. After the 2021 assembly poll, a complaint came up against you... There are people who engage others to tarnish my image by making allegations on social media. These are fake accounts. This is done by some people in Alappuzha, and I know them. The public knows them but I am not keen to expose them. I have never named anyone. I was instrumental in the victory of the person who represents Ambalapuzha constituency. I have worked there for more than 60 years and no one else has won the constituency with a bigger margin. H Salam, who was only a party member, won by 11,000 votes in a constituency where VS was defeated by 5,000 votes. After winning the election, he submitted a complaint to the state committee denigrating me. That pained me. It has been three years and I have never responded to the allegations. After the party reprimanded me, Pinarayi Vijayan and Kodiyeri Balakrishnan asked me why he made a complaint after winning the poll. I replied I had no idea. The allegation was probed by a party commission led by Elamaram Kareem, who was once my cabinet colleague. The probe was not carried out sincerely or honestly. He should never have given such a report against a sincere party worker like me. He admonished party members who reported that it was I who nurtured the party in Alappuzha after VS. This is the first time I am revealing the incident. Now, he has lost the Lok Sabha election in Kozhikode by a margin of 1.5 lakh votes. What is the reason for the loss? The margin was 85,000 in the previous election. Should we not probe the erosion of votes? It is simple... the people did not vote. It happens. I won by a margin of 23,000 votes in Ambalapuzha on the third occasion. The margin grew gradually. VS brought you into the CPM leadership. Can you explain your relationship with him? VS played a pivotal role in guiding me into the CPM leadership. Initially, it was C H Kanaran who influenced me. VS was closely associated with Kanaran; he served as his right-hand man and became the state secretary in 1964. VS encouraged me, recognising my fighting spirit. In 1982, VS officiated my marriage, which was a party wedding. VS faced the most disciplinary action in CPM history. He faced party action 10 times. You sometimes stood alongside him and sometimes stayed away. Why? Yes, my stance has always been guided by the partys official policies, and this approach has been vindicated over time. I come from an ordinary family. It was the recognition of my service by the party leadership and ordinary workers that propelled me forward. How did the absence of VS affect Left politics? We truly feel the void left by VS. Currently, there is no one like him who can vehemently speak out against communalism. His voice and style of speech were unique and strong. No one can replace him. Many feel the party did not do justice to Gowri Amma. There was a belief she would become CPMs leader in 1987, but it didnt happen. Whats your perspective? There was indeed a strong belief that Gowri Amma would become the chief minister, but that sentiment has faded over time. However, I do not take a stand on this matter personally as we all respect the decisions of the party. In my opinion, she was deserving of the chief minister post. Nonetheless, the party chose someone with greater intellectual and ideological qualifications and seniority for that role. Back then, there was a need for a prominent theoretical and intellectual face on the national stage due to frequent confrontations with the Centre. Gowri Amma did hold significant ministerial portfolios, in 1957, 1967 and 1980. If she had remained in the party, she would most likely have become a minister again. Her stature remains unmatched, and no one can truly replace Gowri Amma. What happened in 1996? While Susheela Gopalan was an elected member, the party granted the chief minister post to E K Nayanar, who did not contest that election. Nayanar was the right choice at that time. Theres no need to review that decision now. VS was intentionally defeated, which led to disciplinary actions against those responsible. Despite the setback, VS did not retreat. Has the party ever considered K K Shailaja for the chief ministers post? The party has never discussed the candidacy of K K Shailaja for the chief ministers post. Such discussions have been created by the media. It is widely understood, even among children, that with a leader like Pinarayi in place, no other person is considered for the chief ministers post. Any other speculation in this regard is irrelevant. Your past statement on womens entry into Sabarimala was widely discussed. You said the restriction on womens entry is part of a custom that should not be changed... The restriction continues and I believe it should remain as it is. However, it is not a priority issue. During my time as devaswom minister, another significant issue arose regarding the claim over the gold treasures of the Sree Padmanabhaswamy temple. Officials of the temple had filed a memorandum to the government. I took a stand against it and refused to intervene. According to the Travancore Cochin Hindu Religious Institution Act, the government does not have the right to claim the wealth of the temple. This applies not only to the Padmanabhaswamy temple but also to the wealth of any temple under the Devaswom Board. There is no legal provision allowing the government to claim such wealth. Instead, the government provides funds to Devaswom temples. The claims made by BJP that temple wealth contributes to the governments exchequer are baseless lies. Your brother was killed in one of the first instances of student politics violence in Kerala. Campus violence over politics is on the rise. Can CPM play an active role in ending it? Yes, steps must be taken to end violence over campus politics. Campus issues should not escalate to such tragic ends where lives are lost. My brother, G Bhuvaneswaran, was brutally killed inside the mathematics department office on December 7, 1977. He was only 18, a second year BA Economics student at the NSS College in Pandalam. Your statement on Narendra Modi, that there is no corruption, has been trending... My statement was that he was not being accused of corruption the way Congress leaders were. During this election, Modis corruption was not a topic of discussion. Was there any campaign to end Modis corruption? There werent any. Earlier, CPMs Jyotirmoy Basu would expose all the corruption of the rightist leaders in the assembly. Leaders were scared of him. Do we have anyone like him today? It is obvious that Modi too has corruption, but unfortunately, it is not being widely discussed in the country. Thomas Isaac and you rose to prominence together from Alappuzha. Was there friction between you two? No, there wasnt any. Though we had differences of opinion on some government decisions, there were no personal grudges. When the party came to power a second time, there was an allegation that the party kept senior leaders aside... Those who had completed two terms were removed. It is the partys decision. Before the LS election, the LDF convener met a BJP leader... I have nothing to say about that. CM Pinarayi Vijayan has said that there is nothing wrong with anyone meeting a BJP leader. Do you think LDF is interested in Muslim League joining it? The League should not join the Left front when UDF is weak. If they want to join, I cannot stop them. Such a perspective is wrong. It is good if people join LDF for their ideologies and convictions. Whether the Left is in power or in opposition, it stands for certain values. Unfortunately, people are not realising this. The priority should not be power. Do you think Kerala Congress joining LDF has benefited the Left? They say it has, and we won several seats in the assembly elections. That was their argument. In the CPM, is there a Kannur lobby and an Alappuzha lobby? No. Its just a media creation. Most of the state secretaries are from Kannur, and now the CM is also from Kannur. The media has misinterpreted this as the existence of a Kannur lobby. It might be that the most efficient candidates for the office of state secretary are from Kannur. Is there a possibility of a woman party secretary? Definitely. But there is no specific reservation for women in any party. In the CPM, leadership quality is the prime criterion for becoming the party secretary. Theoretical, ideological, intellectual, political, and legacy qualities are also considered. Why cant CPM, which always speaks about revolution, select a party secretary from scheduled tribes or castes? Representation from dalits and tribals is good if they have the requisite qualities. The central committee takes such decisions, I cannot comment on it. Did M V Raghavan and Gowri Ammas departure from the party make any changes to the party? MVRs departure didnt have a significant impact in Alappuzha. However, Gowri Ammas departure caused some displeasure because she was a very effective campaigner. There were also rumours that V S Achuthanandan would leave the party, but that never happened... VS never considered leaving the party, and he never will. Thats VS. How do you manage to write poems while remaining active in politics? Its not a difficult task for me. I never sought publicity or awards as a poet. I started writing during my school days but was initially shy about showing my writings to others. I began writing poetry actively after 2001. Sometimes, I stay up until 3am to write poems. When an idea strikes me, I jot it down and later develop it into a poem. I believe poems are creations that touch readers hearts and stay in their minds for a long time. TNIE team: Anil S, Manoj Viswanathan, Rajesh Ravi, Kiran Prakash, Arun M T P Sooraj (photos), Harikrishna B (video)

The New Indian Express 16 Jun 2024 9:15 am

Kozhikode To London, A cyclists odyssey

The Times of India 15 Jun 2024 6:43 am

Nothing to fear about FSTP on Kozhikode medical college campus, says Deputy Mayor

While protestors fear that the Corporation will transport around 100 truckloads of faecal waste to the plant every day, the Deputy Mayor says the FSTP can handle only 20 truckloads a day

The Hindu 14 Jun 2024 9:14 pm

Kozhikode students win NITI Aayog internship

A project by Sanjay Sajith and Navaneeth Krishna is one of the best 100 projects under ATL Marathon

The Hindu 14 Jun 2024 7:07 pm

Each blood drops can save life

KOCHI: It all started in 1665 when a British doctor Richard Lower drew blood from a canine and transfused it to another. The success of the process paved the way for the method to be replicated among humans, and soon blood transfusion became one of the mandatory procedures of modern healthcare. Centuries later, in 2005, the World Health Assembly decreed that June 14 be observed every year as World Blood Donor Day. This year the theme, as per the WHO website, is 20 years of celebrating giving: thank you blood donors. The expression of gratitude also comes with the need for safety precautions in the collection and transfusion process, as well as ensuring better accessibility. Voluntary blood donors form a major chunk of the collection drive, and India seems to have a slump in voluntary donation, suggests a 2023 Union Health Ministry report that records a 1 million unit shortage. Voluntary blood donation (VBD) has registered only a slight increase in Kerala too. As per the Kerala State Aids Control Society report, in the 2023-2024 period, VBD in the state registered just a 1.04% increase in 2023-24. In Ernakulam, the VBD saw a dip 69,316 units in 2023-24 as against 72,787 in 2022-23. In Thiruvananthapuram, there was just a slight increase from 59,032 units in 2022-23 to 60,265. The total blood collection scenario too has not seen much of a jump. According to the data from Kerala State Blood Transfusion Council (KSBTC), presently there are 189 licensed blood centres in the state out of which 42 are in the government sector and the rest are owned by private entities, cooperatives, and charitable organisations. A total of 5,90,726 units of blood were procured in 2023-2024 as against 5,86,788 in 2022-23. Not alarming But the drop is not alarming, instead, data suggests a change for the better, says Sinu Kadakamapally, assistant director of KSBTC. The priority should always be whether we have adequate blood units to meet the requirement and ensure the donated blood is safe. The figure also reflects that our requirement for blood transfusion is not too high and that we have a healthier society. Unless and until it is absolutely necessary, dont go for a transfusion, thats our policy. Current treatment procedures, hence, insist on exploring other alternatives before deciding on the need for blood transfusion. For example, in cases where an anaemic condition is diagnosed that can be corrected with the use of medications or lifestyle, doctors encourage patients to do so rather than go for a blood transfusion that may bring faster remedy. Also, voluntary blood donors are less hesitant to donate blood and better aware now of the importance of the act, and hence follow a safe lifestyle, says Rema Menon, medical officer at Indian Medical Association (IMA) Blood Bank. This is largely due to awareness campaigns. The IMA Blood Centre in Ernakulam attends at least three camps each week, with an average of 25-30 donors per camp. Various NGOs, organisations, colleges, and political parties conduct these camps. Our list includes at least 60 organisations in the district that regularly hold monthly camps, says Dr M I Junaid Rahman, secretary of IMA Blood Centre, Ernakulam. People between 18 and 65 years can donate blood and according to experts, some second-generation and third-generation also sign up. More awareness camps in educational institutions seem to have brought many youth into the donor fold, according to National Service Scheme (NSS) coordinators in Thiruvananthapuram and Ernakulam. In addition, resident associations also help blood centres stock up. Frequent donation Though there is an optimistic air, coordinators of Blood Association Forums are doubtful of steady participation from the youngsters. When camps are conducted, the young often participate and sometimes donate, but they do not donate regularly. Men should donate every three months, while women should donate every four months, says Rajeev Menon, president of Cochin Blood Donors Forum. The idea then should be to catch the donors young. If youngsters donate when they are between 18 and 25, chances of them continuing the habit is higher, says Dr Junaid. This thought probably prompted the KSBTC to work with the higher secondary department to increase awareness. Though they cannot donate now, KSBTC officials feel the exposure could guide them as adults in the future. This has prompted 28-year-old Vishnu Raj K R to donate blood frequently. It wasnt a planned decision, he recalls. My blood group is A negative, which is quite rare. A nurse at the hospital where I was admitted a few years ago suggested I start donating. Thats how it all began. He soon learned that because of the rarity of his blood type, it wasnt advisable to donate every three months. Most blood centres arent directly associated with hospitals, so I decided to donate only when theres a specific need, he explains. Inspired by Vishnus commitment, his friends have also started donating blood. Though theyre not regular donors, they step up whenever theres a need, says the IT professional. Yet, between February and May, the collection sees a dip because of exams and vacations making the students at institutions unavailable. Vacations pose a challenge as donation camps will not be viable in colleges. Moreover, with the increasing trend of work-from-home, difficulties have arisen in mass procurement from spaces like Technopark, says a blood centre official in Thiruvananthapuram who wishes to remain anonymous. Thanks to these moves, it is possible for medical institutions to store adequate blood. Even during emergency situations like childbirth, road traffic accidents, liver transplantation, and diseases that demand blood transfusions like Thalassaemia, there is immediate access to blood units from hospitals and blood units, says Rema. The process of blood donation has also seen several changes as per the KSBTC. Over the last decade, there has been progress in the collection and checking process, and more women also come forth for donations. Our priority is on bringing down whole blood consumption by focusing on component separation therapy and apheresis procedure, Sinu says. In the apheresis procedure, components are extracted from the donors blood while returning the rest to the donor. This helps in the faster replenishment of blood components in donors, enabling them to donate more frequently. Moreover, this targeted approach benefits patients too, as it considers their specific requirement. As of now, all 14 districts of the state have Blood Component Separation Units. It was in 2013 that the component separation unit in General Hospital, Thiruvananthapuram, began. We collect the whole blood that gets screened for mainly five diseases. Once the safety of the blood is ensured, it undergoes component separations, says an official from General Hospital. Rejection and checking Not all are eligible to donate blood, all the time. Donors complete a questionnaire to assess their social life, and the likelihood of infections is then analysed based on their responses to ascertain their qualifications. Any recent surgeries, body piercing, tattoos, all of these have a probability of acquiring infections. A person who has done tattooing and body piercing can donate after six months, says Rema. In addition to the screening process serology, most blood centres and hospitals in the district also do a nucleic acid amplification test to flag any components. Screening of the donated blood is done to identify Hepatitis B, C, HIV, Malaria and syphilis, says Athulya Satheesh, consultant pathologist at Renai. A recent media report on drug usage in Kozhikode created a buzz in the blood donation circle. There have been instances of deferring donors who have disclosed the usage of drugs or alcohol, says Deepa Shenoy, head of the department of transfusion medicine at Amrita Hospital. These high-risk groups are later linked to KSBTCs Targeted Intervention programmes, where counselling and other health services are provided to them, says Sinu. But the identification of drug usage or alcohol cannot be found during any screening process, and it is usually during counselling that such habits are flagged, say experts. However, Athulya says there is no test to determine the presence of drugs in donated blood. With the introduction of NAAT testing, patients incur a slightly higher cost. Adding other toxicology tests would further increase expenses, says Athulya. She adds that there havent been many studies to understand whether the presence of drugs in donor blood will impact the patient or how it will impact. Only founding is that, there can be possibilities of Hepatitis and HIV infections when the donor is an IV drug user, she says.

The New Indian Express 14 Jun 2024 9:56 am

Kerala drugs control department steps up case against Baba Ramdev

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The state drugs control department has turned up the heat against Baba Ramdev and Acharya Balkrishna, the promoters behind Divya Pharmacy , with the successful registration of another case in a court in Kozhikode. The case has been filed with the Judicial First Class Magistrate Court in Kozhikode, citing misleading drug promotion in violation of the Drugs and Magic Remedies (Objectionable Advertisement) Act of 1954. Baba Ramdev to face Kerala court over misleading drug advertisements Keralas drugs control department is the first state agency to file a case against the controversial pharma promoters under the DMR Act on April 4. As of now, a total of three cases have been filed. The court has issued summons to the company representatives or the promoters, requiring their appearance before it on August 3, after they failed to appear in the first case on June 3. The hearing for the second case is scheduled for August 13. This stringent action comes after the drug regulator launched a special drive against the pharmacy for repeated violations of drug laws, following the intervention of the Supreme Court against the promoters at the national level. The department found that Divya Pharmacy advertised pharmaceutical products for diseases, for which the cure should not be advertised, in more than 30 instances. However, there were challenges in filing cases under the DMR Act. Accessing the drug constitution from the Niti Ayog website was crucial, given our struggles in obtaining it from Uttarakhands drug licensing authorities, said Dr Sujithkumar K, drugs controller. Following Keralas lead, the chief judicial magistrate of Haridwar also summoned the pharmaceutical promoters for non-appearance in a similar case on July 18. Dr Babu K V, a health activist pivotal in the Supreme Court case against Baba Ramdev, lauded this development. Normally, pharmaceutical companies overlook DMR Act violations. However, interventions from the Supreme Court and the Prime Ministers Office have shifted the landscape, he said.

The New Indian Express 14 Jun 2024 7:28 am

Training under way for teachers in disaster management in Kozhikode

Around 600 teachers complete training in the first phase of the programme

The Hindu 13 Jun 2024 9:00 pm

Death in the sewers, again in Kozhikode

In the aftermath of the suffocation deaths of two manual scavenging workers in Keralas Kozhikode city, Aabha Ravindran explores the dangerous reality of sewage cleaning and the desperate call for mechanisation in the southern State

The Hindu 13 Jun 2024 8:15 pm

IIM Kozhikode to offer professional certificate programme in product management

IIM Kozhikode to offer professional certificate programme in product management

India Today 13 Jun 2024 11:59 am

Field Muslim candidate in Wayanad: Samastha to Congress

KOZHIKODE:Suprabhatham daily, the mouthpiece of Samastha Kerala Jem-Iyyathul Ulama, has asked the Congress to consider fielding a Muslim candidate in Wayanad if Rahul Gandhi decides to vacate the seat. The editorial appeared in the newspaper on Wednesday said Muslim representation in the Lok Sabha will be negligible because no party has given representation for the community according to the strength of the population. T Siddique was considered for the Wayanad seat, which was represented by M I Shanawaz twice. But Siddique paved the way for Rahul Gandhi in 2019. In this circumstance, Congress should consider a Muslim candidate, the editorial said. Those who rule the country should have the realisation that keeping Muslim community out of the democratic process will send a wrong signal in society, it further said.

The New Indian Express 13 Jun 2024 8:49 am

Kerala HC directs government to proceed against Siby Mathews

KOCHI: The Kerala High Court has directed the station house officer of the Mannanthala police station to consider the complaint against retired IPS officer Siby Mathews for humiliating the survivor in the 1996 Suryanelli rape case in his book Nirbhayam and to proceed within seven days. It also set aside the decision of the Commissioner of Police, Thiruvananthapuram, not to take any action after the complainant alleged that the author of the book revealed the identity of the victim with exact details though her name was not specifically disclosed. In the book, the names, addresses and all details of the parents of the victim were disclosed with certainty and thereby Siby Mathews committed an offence punishable under Section 228A of IPC. The court said that the finding in the preliminary inquiry report was an attempt to save the former higher police official from the clutches of the prosecution. As per the preliminary enquiry final report and the legal opinion given by the Director General of Prosecution, both of them found that the details were sufficient enough to identify the girl as peedippikkapetta penkutti. When analysing the Malayalam term peedippikkapetta penkutti the same means a victim of sexual assault or molestation or rape. So the word would carry the offences dealt with in Section 228A of IPC. The court issued the order on the petition filed by K K Joshwa, a retired police officer seeking to initiate a case based on the complaint. Advocate Nandagopal S Kurup submitted that the author of the book revealed the identity of the survivor, hence a case should be registered. HC upholds adults right to choose partner despite parental concern The High Court has ruled in favour of a womans right to choose her own partner, stating that parental concerns cannot override adult autonomy. The decision came in response to a habeas corpus filed by Althaf J Muhammed, of Kollam, who is pursuing his Masters in Transportation Systems in Germany. He alleged that his 27-year-old partner, who works as a project engineer in Thiruvananthapuram, is under illegal detention of her parents. Appearing at the court through a video conference, the woman expressed her desire to be with Muhammed despite them belonging to different religions. The court emphasised the importance of habeas corpus in protecting individual liberties, citing previous Supreme Court cases. As a result, the woman was granted freedom to join Muhammed. Come together in name of god and end Church dispute: HC The High Court said that it is time for the Orthodox and Jacobite factions of the Malankara Church to come together in the name of Jesus Christ and end the conflict concerning handing over churches, as per the guidelines of the Supreme Court in the K S Varghese case. The court emphasised that if members of the two factions believe in the law and in Jesus, they should not act like this. The court questioned the purpose of the eight-decade-long conflict and called for an end to it. The K S Varghese case was expected to put a quietus to everything, but nothing has happened. Its become far worse. Generations of lawyers have been involved in the case, said Justice Devan Ramachandran. The single-judge bench made the observation while considering the contempt case against the state chief secretary for not complying with the order to hand over St Thomas Orthodox Syrian Church, Cherukunnam; St Marys Orthodox Syrian Church, Mangalam Dam; and, St Marys Orthodox Syrian Church, Erickinchira to the Orthodox faction. Sidharthan death: HC allows accused Naseef to write exam, rejects plea of former union chairman The High Court has directed Kerala Veterinary and Animal Sciences University to permit Naseef V, of Kozhikode, an accused in the J S Sidharthan murder case and a student of Government Veterinary College, Pookode, to appear for the final-year examination of BVSc and AH course. At the same time, the court rejected a similar plea filed by former college union chairman Arun K, another accused in the case. When the petition filed by Naseef seeking permission to attend the exam to be held from June 13 to July 2 came up for hearing, Justice Ziyad Rahman said: I have considered the fact that, in case, it is found in the inquiry now in progress that the petitioner is innocent, the denial of opportunity to attend the examination will cause serious prejudice to him. Forged titles: Govt asked to form SIT to probe case The High Court on Wednesday directed the state government to appoint a special investigation team comprising senior police officers and revenue officials to look into the alleged involvement of revenue officials in the forgery of property titles in the Idukki district. The court also asked the government to present the details of the special team before it. The court expressed dissatisfaction with the ongoing police investigation into the cases related to the forging of titles. It highlighted that out of 42 cases concerning illegal titles, 18 forgery cases were registered for fabricating titles to acquire government land. The court noted the absence of provisions under the Prevention of Corruption Act in these cases and emphasised the inclusion of Section 120 B (conspiracy) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) in the investigation.

The New Indian Express 13 Jun 2024 8:39 am

Interference of politics in religion diminishes space to agree or disagree: CM Pinarayi Vijayan

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The interference of religion in politics is poised to threaten the states space to agree or dissent, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has said. Releasing the autobiography of Kanthapuram A P Aboobacker Musaliar here on Wednesday, the chief minister said the Sunni leader has taken a principled stance whenever the space to agree or dissent has come under threat. At a time when development is being resisted for the sake of vested interests, Kanthapurams autobiography tells us to give importance to development, Pinarayi said. He added that the Sunni leader has always stood for using religion for the overall welfare of society. The chief minister released the book by handing over a copy to Thiruvananthapuram MP-elect Shashi Tharoor. Speaking on his autobiography titled Vishawasapoorvam, Kanthapuram said the book deals with ideals that could be used for the betterment of future generations. Citing Kerala as an epitome of secularism, he stressed the need to strengthen the bond between various communities. Vishawasapoorvam has been brought out by Malabar Foundation for Research and Development that functions from Markaz Knowledge City. Kozhikode-based Read Press is entrusted with the books distribution. Samastha Kerala Jamiyyathul Ulema vice-president Syed Ali Bakafi Thangal presided over the function. Sunni Yuvajana Sangham state secretary Mohammed Abdul Hakeem delivered the introductory speech. Law and Industries Minister P Rajeeve, former union minister V Muraleedharan and P V Anwar, MLA, also spoke on the occassion.

The New Indian Express 13 Jun 2024 8:28 am

Union min Suresh Gopi visits former CM E K Nayanar's house in Kalliasseri

KOZHIKODE/KANNUR : Union Minister Suresh Gopi on Wednesday visited the house of former CM E K Nayanar at Kalliasseri in Kannur and interacted with his family, including the late CMs wife Sarada. Later, Sarada described Suresh Gopis visit as apolitical. Emphasising the personal nature of the visit, Sarada noted that Suresh Gopi and his family have had a close relationship with her family for many years, and such visits were not unusual. There is nothing new about Suresh visiting our house, Sarada said. He has visited our house many times before. There is no politics in his visit. I do not ask the politics of those who come to my house. Sarada, wife of late EK Nayanar, handing over the book Ormakalil Ente Priya Sakhavu written by herself, to Union Minister of State Suresh Gopi. Suresh Gopi has often expressed his admiration for Nayanar. Reflecting on their relationship, he once shared a heartfelt message on social media with a photo of himself and Sarada, stating, There was a chief minister like this in Kerala. Why did you depart so early, leaving us orphaned? We Malayalees need your presence now more than ever. Suresh Gopi visited Nayanars house after a series of temple visits in Kozhikode and Kannur. Starting his day with a visit to the Tali Temple in Kozhikode at 6 am, he later proceeded to Mararji Bhavan. He visited several places in Kannur on Wednesday. After offering prayers at the Thiruvarkadu Bhagavathy Temple (Madayi Kavu), he visited the Rajarajeswara Temple and the Parassinikadavu Muthappan Temple. He also paid floral tributes at the Mararji memorial in Payyambalam before heading to the Kottiyoor temple and subsequently returning to Thrissur. The premises of Tali temple in Kozhikode was crowded with party workers and worshippers who had gathered to welcome Minister Suresh Gopi. The temple authorities organised a grand reception for the MP, by conducting a special pooja. Expressing his gratitude towards the people who placed their trust in him, Suresh Gopi stated, I was chosen by the people, guided by their faith. Gopi emphasised that he won by securing votes from all segments of society and highlighted the significant responsibilities that come with his role as Indias tourism minister. He pointed out the extensive work required for Keralas progress.

The New Indian Express 13 Jun 2024 8:25 am

Malabar River Festival to be held from July 25 to 28 in Kozhikode

The 10th edition of MRF is being held across eight grama panchayats in the district with an aim to promote white water kayaking in south India

The Hindu 13 Jun 2024 12:07 am

One Health Centre in Kozhikode to be expanded

The Hindu 12 Jun 2024 9:16 pm

Rahul Gandhi in dilemma on whether to retain Wayanad or Raebareli

Kozhikode, June 12 (IANS) Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday said that he was in a dilemma as to which constituency he should relinquish Wayanad or Raebareli. He was in his constituency, Wayanad, which he won in the recently concluded Lok Sabha elections. Gandhi arrived at the Kozhikode airport in the morning and drove []

bhaskarlive 12 Jun 2024 1:59 pm

Wayanad or Rae Bareli: Rahul keeps voters guessing

KOZHIKODE: Keeping the decision on which Lok Sabha seat to retain as a suspense, Rahul Gandhi said that he will listen to the people of Wayanad and Rae Bareli before making a final call. Addressing a public meeting at Edavanna in Malappuram, which is a part of the Wayanad Lok Sabha constituency, Rahul said he will take a decision that would make the people of both the constituencies happy. Rahul came to his constituency to thank the voters. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said that he is guided by the Paramatma. But I am an ordinary human being and for me the people are the Paramatma, he said, adding that he would abide by what people will say. Rae bareli or Wayanad?: UP leaders appeal to Rahul Gandhi to retain family bastion Rahul said the people of the country have taught the BJP a lesson. Before the elections, the BJP leaders said that they will change the Constitution. After the polls, you saw Prime Minister bowing before the Constitution. The people of the country has defeated hatred with love and affection, he said. Congress leaders V D Satheesan, Ramesh Chennithala, M M Hassan and leaders of the other constituents of the UDF were present at the function. Rahul is scheduled to address another public meeting at Kalpetta in the afternoon. It was announced earlier that AICC general secretary Priyanka Gandhi will accompany Rahul in the visit to the constituency, but she didnt turn up for the programme. Rahul likely to retain Rae Bareli constituency

The New Indian Express 12 Jun 2024 12:59 pm

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi holds road show in Kerala

Congress leader and two-time winner of the Wayanad Lok Sabha seat, Rahul Gandhi, conducted a road show in the district, marking his first visit to the state after the election results. Thousands of UDF supporters lined the route at Edavanna. He received a warm welcome from party members and workers at Kozhikode airport.

The Economic Times 12 Jun 2024 12:04 pm

Ayahs are also human beings, dont force them to work 24 hours: Kerala Administrative Tribunal

KOCHI : At the old age home, I hardly get any sleep as we have to be at the service of the inmates round the clock. Working 24 hours for six days continuously is strenuous and I have developed health issues because of sleeplessness, says Shylaja (name changed), a caregiver at an old age home under the social justice department. The caregivers are able to avail a weekly off only if they work round the clock for six days, she says. My day starts at 5.30am. I have to prepare breakfast and tea for the inmates. After that, I have to help them brush their teeth, bathe, and change clothes. I have to feed some of the ailing inmates. Some need help with primary needs. Though there is a private room to rest in at night, I hardly get time to sleep. I love taking care of the elderly, but I also need rest. The 24-hour duty is exhausting. I hardly get time to visit my children and spend time with them, Shylaja says. Expressing anguish over the plight of the caregivers (ayahs), the Kerala Administrative Tribunal (KAT) has directed the state government to rationalise their duty hours, limiting the work pattern to eight hours a day and 48 hours a week. The government cannot deny the ayahs just and humane working conditions. The government should recognise the fact that they are also human beings having every right as declared under Article 23 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, said the KAT bench comprising Justice P V Asha, judicial member, and Pradeep Kumar, administrative member. KAT directed the government to take all steps to implement the shift system within four months. The tribunal stepped in following a plea filed by five ayahs working at the Old Age Home for Physically Handicapped, Thodupuzha, Home for Mentally Deficient Children (HMDC), Kozhikode, Home for Physically Handicapped, Pratheekshabhavan (Custodial Care Home), Kozhikode, and Asha Bhavan (Women), Ernakulam, challenging the directive to them to work for 24 hours a day and six days a week. The KAT bench declared that compelling ayahs to perform duties for 24 hours a day continuously for six days a week without a break is arbitrary and unconstitutional. While protecting the marginalised people, the government has to consider the fact that the ayahs also have personal responsibilities and they also have the right to exercise their fundamental rights. The ayahs are compelled to work throughout the day on six days in a week, just because the management manual enumerates the duties of ayahs and authorises the superintendent of the respective institutions to fix the duties and duty hours, it said. Counsel for the petitioners, Aruna A, pointed out that while other last-grade servants, who got advised from the same PSC rank list, are working only for eight hours, the ayahs are made to work for 24 hours a day. KAT made it clear that the superintendents of the institutions should be directed to implement the modified duty hours for ayahs.

The New Indian Express 12 Jun 2024 10:32 am

Have been given big responsibility, reached here with everyone's support: Suresh Gopi

Union Minister Suresh Gopi expressed gratitude for the support he received from all walks of life as he took on new responsibilities in the Narendra Modi-led government. During a visit to a temple in Kozhikode, he emphasised the importance of people's support in his journey, highlighting his plans to prioritise tourism development and interactions with different communities.

The Economic Times 12 Jun 2024 10:17 am

Have been given big responsibility, reached here with support: Suresh Gopi

Union Minister Suresh Gopi on Wednesday said he has been given a big responsibility and he got a new role as a member of Narendra Modi-led government due to the support of the people from all walks of life. Gopi, who returned to Kerala for the first time after becoming MoS for Tourism and Petroleum, visited the Thali Mahadeva temple in Kozhikode city this morning to pray. Later speaking to reporters, the actor -turned politician said he has a lot of connections with people and temples, and he has taken all that into account. People from all walks of life supported me. I cannot cut all that away. I have taken up a responsibility. I have reached here with everyone's support, he said. Gopi said that it will be the people who will keep him close. As MoS Tourism of India, Gopi said he has a huge responsibility, and his duties would include identifying the prime spots in the country for tourist activities. For now, the PM has spoken to him only about Kerala, he added. Gopi also refu

Business Standard 12 Jun 2024 9:43 am

Suresh Gopi's New Role: A Responsibility Earned Through Public Support

Suresh Gopi's New Role: A Responsibility Earned Through Public Support Union Minister Suresh Gopi emphasized the weight of his new responsibilities under the Narendra Modi-led government, acknowledging the diverse support that lifted him to his current role. Upon his return to Kerala, the newly appointed Minister of State for Tourism and Petroleum paid his respects at the Thali Mahadeva temple in Kozhikode, underscoring his ties with local communities and their importance in his political journey. Addressing the media, Gopi highlighted the major task of identifying prime tourist spots across India. However, he refrained from commenting on political controversies, stating they would be resolved internally by the concerned parties.

devdiscourse 12 Jun 2024 9:12 am

KSRTC plans destination numbering system, aims to solve navigation woes

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM : In an effort to enhance passenger convenience, the KSRTC has announced the implementation of a numbering system for its buses indicating their respective destinations. These codes, alongside Malayalam script on display boards, are anticipated to facilitate travel, particularly for those who struggle to read and navigate unfamiliar locations, especially tourists new to the region. The initial phase will see districts from Thiruvananthapuram to Kasaragod being assigned two-letter district codes. Buses bound for central depots within this range will be designated serial numbers from 1 to 14. For instance, a bus heading to the central depot in Thiruvananthapuram will be labelled as TV-1, while the one bound for Ernakulam will display EK-7 and for Kozhikode, KK-11. Destination numbers ranging from 15 to 99 will be allocated to other KSRTC depots, while 100 to 199 will be reserved for buses serving civil stations, medical colleges, railway stations, and airports. These numbers will be assigned exclusively to buses operating within a single district. Buses traversing multiple districts will incorporate the respective district code alongside the number. For instance, a bus destined for Thiruvananthapuram International Airport within the district will bear the code 103. If originating from another district, it will display the district destination code (TV) and the international airport code (103). Buses with stops at depots near bypasses will feature additional numbers denoting specific stops. For example, a bus halting at the Ayathil bypass in Kollam will carry the code 2-1, with 2 representing the district code and 1 indicating the bypass stop. Numbers starting from 400 will be assigned to destinations that dont come under the aforementioned categories within each district. Interstate buses to have identity codes Interstate bus services will feature destination codes representing respective states. For instance, buses bound for Karnataka will display KA, those heading to Bengaluru will be designated KA 01

The New Indian Express 12 Jun 2024 8:54 am

2 Keralites drown in sea in Sydney

KANNUR : Two individuals from Kerala drowned in sea off Kurnell Beach near Naranath Bridge in Sydneys Sutherland Shire around 4 pm local time on Monday. The victims, identified as Marwa Hashim, 35, and Nirshah Haris, 38, from Kannur and Kozhikode districts, respectively, were swept off rocks by a powerful wave while vacationing at the beach. Marwa Hashim, a government employee in Australia, was enjoying a vacation with her family and friends when the unexpected wave struck, causing three people to lose their balance and fall into the sea. While Roshna, Nirshahs sister, managed to swim to safety with injuries, Marwa and Nirshah were swept away by the current. A helicopter search and rescue operation was launched, and both Marwa and Nirshah were found unconscious in the water. Despite medical efforts, both women could not be revived. The area where the incident occurred is known as a Black Spot due to its history of accidents and fatalities. Local police have acknowledged that accidental deaths are common in this location. Marwa Hashims husband, Dr Sirajuddin, is originally from Kasaragod, and the family has been living in Australia for about ten years. Nirshah is survived by husband T K Haris, and parents, A S Rahman and Laila.

The New Indian Express 12 Jun 2024 7:58 am

Suresh Gopi to visit Nayanars house today

KOZHIKODE : In a curious gesture, Union Minister of State for Petroleum and Tourism Suresh Gopi, in his first trip to Kerala after assuming office, will visit the house of CPM leader and former chief minister E K Nayanar at Kalliasseri in Kannur on Wednesday. Suresh, scheduled to arrive at Karipur airport late on Tuesday, will offer prayers at the Tali Temple in Kozhikode early Wednesday before visiting the local BJP office. Thereafter, he will leave for Kannur and offer tribute to the late BJP leader K G Marar at his memorial on Payyambalam beach. He will then proceed to Nayanars residence. Suresh is an ardent admirer of Nayanar. Kollam MP N K Premachandran was his classmate at Fatima Mata National College, Kollam, and both were active in left politics then. Suresh had visited the late communist stalwarts house two years ago and shared the photo with Nayanars wife Sarada on social media with the caption, There was a chief minister like this in Kerala. Why did you depart so early, leaving us orphaned? We Malayalees need your presence now more than ever. Suresh had told reporters in Thrissur last year that Nayanar is his comrade and Kodiyeri Balakrishnan (former CPM state secretary) knows this fact. He had also praised Congress leader K Karunakaran, who stood for the people like Nayanar. Meanwhile, Nayanars family sources said they dont have any intimation about the Union ministers visit. However, there is nothing unusual. He comes home and meets amma whenever he visits Kannur, they said. Talking to reporters after taking charge of his ministries in Delhi, Suresh said he would try to exploit the untapped potential of tourism in Kerala. In his pre-poll discussion, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said Kerala is the tourism destination of the country. There were officers from Kerala who occupied the office of the director general of tourism. There will be serious discussions on the sector, he said. To a question, he said oil exploration possibilities in Kerala will be studied in depth. There were some talks about the presence of oil in Kollam. Such things will also be studied, Suresh added.

The New Indian Express 12 Jun 2024 7:41 am

Protest brews over project to treat septic waste at Kozhikode MCH plant

Kozhikode Corporation to utilise 100 KLD capacity of the faecal sludge treatment plant situated on medical college hospital premises

The Hindu 11 Jun 2024 11:14 pm

Travel tips: Celebrate Bakrid at these places in India, the fun of the festival will be doubled

The festival of Bakrid, one of the major festivals of Islam, is being celebrated this month. Bakrid is also known as Eid-ul-Azha. This year Bakrid is being celebrated on 17 June 2024 in India. After the sighting of the moon of Zilhijja in the country, Muslim religious leaders have announced to celebrate Bakrid on 17 June. The festival of Eid ul Azha is a festival of sacrifice. In this, goat is sacrificed, hence it is also called Bakra Eid. On the holy occasion of Bakrid, family, relatives and friends gather and celebrate the festival together. However, if you want to make the festival of Eid ul Azha memorable and special, then you are getting a good opportunity. If you get Saturday and Sunday off in the office, then you can plan to travel somewhere for three days by combining the holiday of 17 June i.e. Bakrid. Here we are telling about such places in the country, where the splendor of Bakrid is worth seeing. Here you can come to visit with friends or family on the occasion of Eid ul Azha. Lucknow The festival of Eid ul Azha is celebrated with delicious dishes in Lucknow, the capital of Uttar Pradesh. This city has Bada Imambara and Chota Imambara, which bloom in the enthusiasm of Eid. Visitors here can enjoy Tunday Kabab as well as taste many delicious dishes. Kerala The southern state of India, Kerala, is known for its unique blend of traditions and Eid ul Azha is celebrated here with special enthusiasm. The Malabar region, especially cities like Kozhikode and Malappuram, offer a rich cultural experience during Eid. Kolkata Eid is celebrated with great enthusiasm in Kolkata, the capital of West Bengal. The celebration of Bakrid here reflects the rich multicultural heritage of the city. Nakhoda Mosque is located in the bustling Burra Bazaar and is the focal point of prayers and celebrations. Hyderabad The historic Charminar area is the heart of the festivities, where lights and hustle-bustle activities increase on the occasion of the festival. Tourists can enjoy mouth-watering Hyderabadi delicacies like Haleem and Biryani here. Visitors can also visit the nearby Mecca Masjid to offer Eid prayers. Srinagar The festival of Eid ul Azha holds special significance in Srinagar, the capital of Kashmir. The historic Jama Masjid of Srinagar is the focal point of the celebrations, where devotees gather to offer prayers and celebrate the festival. The stunning backdrop of the Himalayas and the spiritual atmosphere on the occasion add to the festive fervour. (PC: Google)

Kalam Times 11 Jun 2024 3:43 pm