QBengaluru: Lockdown in Nine Districts; Cubbon Park, Lalbagh Shut
1. Karnataka Intensifies Lockdown in 9 Dists; 6 Test +ve, Total 26
Karnataka announced an intensified lockdown in nine districts affected by Covid-19 as the state recorded six more cases on Sunday — the highest in a day — taking the total to 26. The new measures include sealing borders with neighbouring states and screening domestic passengers arriving in Bengaluru and Mangaluru airports.
The intensified lockdown will be in force till 31 March in Bengaluru Urban, Bengaluru Rural, Chikkaballapura, Dakshina Kannada, Mysuru, Kalaburagi, Dharwad, Kodagu and Belagavi districts. Though no positive case has been reported from Dakshina Kannada, the district faces restrictions as a man from Bhatkal (Uttara Kannada district) tested positive had arrived in Mangaluru from Dubai on 19 March. Three fresh cases were from Bengaluru, and one each from Chikkaballapura, Dharwad and Uttara Kannada districts.
2. Coronavirus: Karnataka Closes Borders, Postpone SSLC Exams, and Elections
The Karnataka government will close all borders with its neighbouring states to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic. An executive order to that effect detailing the duration of the lockdown is expected soon.
It has also decided to postpone SSLC and other exminations – save the last PUC exam scheduled on 23 March.
Over 8 lakh students had registered to write the examination. Initially, the Department of Primary and Secondary Education had decided to take precautionary measures including allowing children to write the examination with masks, keep sanitisers in classrooms and change the seat arrangements to ensure that there was sufficient distance between the students.
3. Cubbon Park and Lalbagh Garden in Bengaluru Closed
The two age-old and iconic lung spaces in Bengaluru — the Lalbagh Botanical Garden and Cubbon Park — have been shut since Saturday in a bid to prevent public gathering amid the COVID-19 pandemic. This decision has been taken by the Horticultural Department as an extension to the partial lockdown put in place by the state government.
Earlier reports have said that there was already a steady dip in the number of visitors to these parks in wake of the pandemic.
Following Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa’s order, Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) Commissioner BH Anil Kumar had also asked people to refrain from using the open gym facilities or walk in the city’s parks.
(Source: The News Minute)
4. Greens Fret as Two-Decade-Old Rail Proposal Threatens Western Ghats
A controversial railline project that had been stuck for over two decades is now moving at speed after clearance from Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa, who is facing criticism from environmentalists.
The proposed broad-gauge line between Hubballi-Ankola will cut through large swathes of forest in the Western Ghats. Yediyurappa gave the green signal to the project at a meeting of the Karnataka Wildlife Board in Bengaluru on Friday. The meeting was the second in less than two weeks, and activists believe they were organised only to push the project proposal through. They are particularly baffled by the timing of the decision – the state is in the middle of its biggest health emergencies, the spread of coronavirus, in decades – and have vowed to start a campaign to oppose the project.
5. Passenger Loses Both Legs After Mugger Pushes Him out of Train
A man lost both his legs after a mugger allegedly pushed him out of a moving train. Syed Yaseer (31) of Lashkar Mohalla, Mysuru, was travelling by the Cauvery Express to visit his sister in JC Nagar on 16 March.
Around 6 am, as the train neared the Malleswaram railway station, he got up from his seat to wash his face. As Yaseer stood at the wash basin, a stranger suddenly appeared near the door and tried to snatch his bag.
Yaseer put up resistance. The mugger got desperate and pushed him out of the train, trapping Yaseer’s legs between the platform and the coach. Hearing Yaseer’s screams, the railway police rushed to his rescue and took him to a hospital.