Kerala is witnessing heavy rains and a total of six people have died and many are feared missing. The deaths have been reported from Thodupuzha and Kokkayar in Idduki and Koottikkal in the Kottayam district. The officials said that heavy floods have been reported in the hilly areas of Kottayam, Idukki, and Pathanamthitta and also said that the rivers Meenachal and Manimala are now overflowing.
Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan said that the situation is serious and further stated that IMD has warned of heavy rains in the state due to a low-pressure system that has formed over the Arabian Sea. He urged the people to keep vigil over the next 24 hours and asked not to venture out.
In a Facebook post, he mentioned that rain had hit the south and central districts and it would intensify in the northern districts by the evening. The water level is likely to increase in some rivers and urged the people who are living in the catchment areas to follow the instructions given by the officials.
The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has sounded a ‘Red Alert’ for Pathanamthitta, Kottayam, Ernakulam, Idukki, and Thrissur districts and an ‘Orange Alert’ for Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Alappuzha, Palakkad, Malappuram, Kozhikode and Wayanad districts.
The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has sounded a ‘Red Alert’ for Pathanamthitta, Kottayam, Ernakulam, Idukki, and Thrissur districts. An ‘Orange Alert’ was also issued for Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Alappuzha, Palakkad, Malappuram, Kozhikode, and Wayanad districts.
Chopper carrying CDS, other top Army officials crashes; Official announcement tomorrow
An IAF chopper carrying Chief of Defence Staff Bipin Rawat, his wife and 12 others crashed in Tamil Nadu on Wednesday. The IAF Mi-17V5 helicopter was airborne from Sulur for Wellington. “An IAF Mi-17V5 helicopter, with CDS Gen Bipin Rawat on board, met with an accident today near Coonoor, Tamil Nadu. An Inquiry has been ordered to ascertain the cause of the accident,” the Indian Air Force tweeted.
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh has informed Prime Minister Narendra Modi about the developments. According to sources, Singh will brief Parliament on the incident tomorrow. Sources said that at least three injured people from the crash have been taken to a nearby hospital, but their identities are not confirmed yet. The crash took place in the Nilgiris, shortly after the Mi-series chopper took off from the army base in Sulur.
The chopper carrying Bipin Rawat, the first Chief of Defence Staff of India, crashed near the upper Coonoor region at around 12.20 pm. Top sources in Tamil Nadu police and the Indian military facility at Coonoor said four survivors were shifted to Coonoor military hospital. “All of them had burn injuries. The first batch of six senior doctors from Coimbatore general hospital has reached Coonoor hospital,” said an army source.
The crash happened at a distance of about 10 km from the helipad where it was to land with CDS Rawat, who was to attend a cadet interaction programme today afternoon at the Defence Services Staff College, Wellington.
Visuals showed the badly damaged chopper in flames, possibly under the impact of the crash. The accident site was a scene of despair with trees being reduced to broken pieces under the impact of the crash, flames from the chopper engulfing the wooden logs resulting in billowing smoke and personnel scurrying to douse the fire, including using buckets and water hose.
It is being reported that Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin, DGP C Sylendra Babu and Chief Secretary V Irai Anbu are taking a chartered flight to Coimbatore after 5 pm. Their travel plans from Coimbatore to Coonoor will depend on the communication from the Union defence ministry, a source said.
Nagaland Ambush: Amit Shah calls it mistaken identity
Nagaland Ambush: The Nagaland ambush by Army personnel killing 14 civilians has already created enough ruckuses in the country so much that both the houses in the Parliament echoed this incident. The opposition targeted the Union government and its ways. Calling it a blatant failure of intelligence, the opposition parties demanded explanation from Union home and defence ministers.
Union home minister Amit Shah today told Parliament the Union government regretted the deaths of 14 civilians in Nagaland after a botched Army operation. Amit Shah read out statements in both Houses as opposition MPs shouted objections and demanded repeal of AFSPA. “Government of India expresses regrets over the incident and condolences to those killed… a SIT has been formed and has been directed to complete investigation in a month. Situation is tense but under control. All agencies have to ensure such incidents do not happen in future,” Amit Shah told.
Also Read: Nagaland Ambush: Will a new rebellion start?
In the Lok Sabha, after Amit Shah made his statement, furious opposition MPs protested the perfunctory nature of the home minister’s speech and reiterated demands for a discussion on the Nagaland violence, as well as repeal of the contentious AFSPA. Several Opposition parties including Congress, DMK, SP, BSP, NCP walked out after Home Minister Amit Shah delivered a statement on the Nagaland incident in Lok Sabha on Monday.
“Army had received info on the movement of extremists in Oting, Mon. On that basis, 21 commandos laid an ambush in suspected area. A vehicle reached there, it was signalled to stop but it tried to flee. On suspicion of the vehicle carrying extremists, it was fired upon,” Shah said. Underlining that it was a case of mistaken identity, Amit Shah said that the Army has taken up an investigation into the reasons behind the incident at the highest level.
“Government is monitoring the incident minutely and necessary remedial measured are being taken to ensure peace in the area. In a bid to avert any more incidents in the affected area, additional forces have been deployed,” the Union Home Minister further said. “Further, it has been decided that all agencies should ensure that such unfortunate incidents do not take place again in the future while taking up such drives,” he added.
NV Ramana: CJI expresses concern over degrading Telugu films!
NV Ramana: Supreme Court of India Chief Justice NV Ramana, is not just a Telugu man but lover of Telugu language. He has always given time for the language and never minced words to talk about the greatness of the language and how people could benefit with the proper usage of the language. He has always got high regards for veteran Telugu poets and scholars and quotes them on several occasions. But for a change the CJI was pained by the way Telugu was being treated by film industry!
Ramana is said to be feeling sad over the thinning off the importance of his mother tongue Telugu. He also made some interesting pieces of advice to Telugu filmmakers, writers, actors and singers, and suggested them that they shouldn’t look down upon the local language. The CJI wants them to learn and speak it in an appropriate way and pass it on to the upcoming generations with proper pronunciation and diction through the movies, dialogues and songs.
Indeed something that is totally lacking on Telugu film industry. Unfortunately the industry is dependent on imports and these are just artists without lip. So it is difficult to expect actors to learn Telugu, but definitely the writers, filmmakers and lyricists should respect the language and deliver their work that would be looked upon by people.
He reportedly regrets that our filmmakers and actors are not giving importance to our language, tradition and culture these days despite it being their duty, being in such a powerful audio visual industry. Ramana adds that one should not forget their roots and quotes an example from veteran actors NTR and ANR that they too lacked lots of skills in their initial days, but overcame it by paying some special attention. Therefore the CJI suggests having some training sessions for the people who are bad at the language so that it can help and survive our culture.
“Our youngsters are in the negative view that learning a couple of International languages can get them bigger jobs and can make a great career, whereas it is not the case with the local language,” which CJI Ramana said “is an complete myth.”
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