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Young girls play swing at their homes in Bhubaneswar.
Colours Of Raja In The Shadow Of Pandemic

It is this time of the year when unmarried girls don new clothes, makeup, mehendi and take to swings while merrymaking with friends. Raja Parba is a three-day festival to celebrate womanhood. Raja is a mass festival but due to the ongoing second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic, people in the State this year have preferred to celebrate at their homes with their dear and near ones. Let's take a tour across Odisha to find out how people are celebrating the festival while keeping with the pandemic protocol.

Odisha: Murals in Puri's Raghurajpur village
Welcome To Raghurajpur: Murals In Puri's Heritage Village A Visual Treat For All

Once the tourism sector in Odisha revives after the Covid pandemic, a visual treat would greet the tourists when they step into Raghurajpur, the heritage village of Puri. Amidst a raging pandemic that has drawn curtains on the livelihood of the artists, Odisha Lalit Kala Akademi in collaboration with the state culture department came up with an innovative idea and organised a traditional Mural camp (pattachitra) at Raghurajpur from June 9 to 13, 2021. Families of as many as 150 artisans participated in this camp by painting the walls and the front portion of their own houses. The Akademi will provide Rs 10,000 remuneration to each family while five best works would receive awards, informed Akademi president and acclaimed sand artist Sudarsan Pattnaik.

Cyclone Yaas
Cyclone Yaas In Odisha: The Devastation & Immediate Restoration

A very severe cyclonic storm Yaas pounded the coastal districts in north Odisha when it hit the coast around 9 AM on Wednesday. Several low lying areas were inundated and trees uprooted amid the storm surge. Apprehensive of an extensive damage, the Odisha government had evacuated over six lakh people from low-lying and vulnerable areas of north coastal and adjoining districts, which has reportedly ensured zero casualty in the calamity. After the landfall process was complete, immediate road clearance was done by NDRF, ODRAF and police personnel for restoration of normalcy. Here are some pictures of the devastation and the post cyclone restoration works carried out in all the affected areas.

Cyclone Tauktae
Cyclone Tauktae Batters India's West Coastal States

The extremely severe cyclonic storm ‘Tauktae’ weakened into a severe cyclonic storm and subsequently into cyclonic storm. But the cyclone has heavily battered and left behind a trail of destruction in the coastal states adjoining SE Arabian Sea. Several people have been killed, while more than a hundred are still missing. Strong winds uprooted large trees causing road blocks in some areas. As per latest IMD report, the storm will move north northeastwards and gradually weaken into a deep depression in next few hours.

Cyclone Tauktae
Cyclone Tauktae: Heavy Winds, Rain Pound Coastal States

The Cyclonic Storm 'Tauktae' is intensifying into a Severe Cyclonic Storm and is very likely to further intensify into a Very Severe Cyclonic Storm Saturday night. It is very likely to move north-northwestwards and cross Gujarat coast between Porbandar and Naliya in the afternoon or evening of May 18. Under its influence, heavy to very heavy falls will be witnessed at a few places and extremely heavy falls at isolated places over Kerala and over Coastal and adjoining Ghat districts of Karnataka on May 15 and heavy to very heavy falls at isolated places over the same area tomorrow. Heavy to very heavy falls also likely at a few places over south Konkan & Goa and heavy to very heavy falls at isolated places over north Konkan on the 15th.

Assam CM oath ceremony
Oath Taking Ceremony Of Himanta Biswa Sarma - The 15th CM Of Assam

Himanta Biswa Sarma was on Monday sworn-in as the 15th Chief Minister of Assam, a day after he was named as the leader of the BJP legislative party in the state. Sarma was administered the oath of office by Governor Jagdish Mukhi at Srimanta Sankardeva Kalakshetra in Guwahati. BJP national President JP Nadda, former CM Sarbananda Sonowal, Chief Ministers from other NE states, BJP national vice-president Jay Panda and a host of top dignitaries were present in the hour-long swearing-in-ceremony. Prime Minister Narendra Modi and many top leaders wished Biswa after Biswa took charge as the Assam CM.

Lockdown In Odisha
Lockdown Scenes From Across Odisha

Amid rising Covid-19 cases, the Odisha government imposed a 14-day strict lockdown across the state. The curbs began on May 5 and will remain in force till May 19. Emergency services have been permitted. Vegetable and grocery shops have been allowed to open from 6 am to 12 pm daily. Further, for the convenience of the public, the government has allowed to and fro movement from the hospitals, railway station and airport.

Weekend Shutdown In Odisha
Corona Spike: Weekend Shutdown In Odisha Districts

In view of public safety and to contain the spread of coronavirus, Odisha government imposed weekend shutdown in all districts on April 24 and 25. Police personnel were deployed in major places to ensure strict enforcement of Covid-19 norms.

Oxygen shortage
Covid-19 2nd Wave: The Crisis Of Oxygen & Bed Shortage Across India

Covid-19 patients with mild symptoms are being advised to stay at home in quarantine, yet the number of critical patients is so high that many hospitals are running out of Covid beds. There are thousands grappling with bed shortage, and now the oxygen supply crisis has doubled the woes of all and sundry.

Maharashtra Hospital Fire
Distressing Scenes: Fire At Covid Hospital In Maharashtra's Virar, 14 Dead

Chaos unfolded at the Vijay Vallabh COVID care hospital in Maharashtra's Virar after a major fire broke out in the hospital in the wee hours of Friday. At least 14 Covid patients including 6 women who were in the ICU during the incident perished in the flames. While some 90 patients were admitted to the hospital at the time of the incident, their friends and family members kept waiting outside the hospital worried about their health update. Distressing visuals of people mourning the loss of their loved ones have come to the fore.

Migrant Exodus
2020 Rerun! Migrant Exodus Begins Amid Fear Of Another Lockdown

India is, unfortunately, witnessing a rerun of last year’s events. Migrant workers have started returning to their home states fearing another lockdown. Hundreds and thousands of migrants were seen flocking back to the native places after enforcement of curfew and lockdown in some states to curtail the spread of Covid-19. However, addressing the nation on Tuesday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi urged migrant workers to stay where they are. The PM assured them that their livelihood will not be affected by the pandemic and that they will soon be vaccinated against Covid-19.