Heavy rainfall continue to lash several part of Odisha under the influence of the low-pressure area over Northwest and adjoining West central Bay of Bengal which intensified into a deep depression on Monday morning. Heavy rain and thundershowers with one or two very intense spells of rain affected normal life in different parts of the State, including the Twin cities of Cuttack and Bhubaneswar since today morning. Puri received the maximum 341 mm rainfall followed by Paradip (210 mm), Bhubaneswar (195 mm), Gopalpur (64 mm), Chandabali (46 mm) and Balasore (24 mm) so far, informed the Met Centre. Here’s a glimpse of the rain battered Odisha:
Badminton was for the first time included as an official sport at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games, and Indian para-shuttlers put on a stunning show with some aggressive and tactical strategy of play, right from the word go. India had sent five shuttlers to Paralympics and all five reached at least the semis. Four players - Pramod Bhagat, Krishna Nagar, Suhas Yathiraj and Manoj Sarkar produced historic and magical performances in the para-badminton games to etch their names in record books.
History was created at Tokyo when para shooter Avani Lekhara became the first Indian woman to win a gold medal in the Paralympic Games. The 19-year-old girl from Rajasthan bagged gold in women's 10m Air Rifle SH1 with a world record score of 249.6 in the final. Her campaign did not end there. Avani clinched her second medal of the Tokyo Paralympics on Friday (Sept 3), a bronze in women's 50m rifle 3P SH1 event. With this, she has also become the first Indian woman to bag two medals in Paralympics.
Shops, schools and markets have been shut. Some heart-breaking scenes unfolded in Kabul as the Taliban overran the Afghan capital leading to widespread chaos across the city. The Taliban forces have also taken control of the presidential palace after Afghan President Ashraf Ghani fled the country on Sunday night. Nation witnessed the desperation of Afghans at Kabul airport when several people clung to the side of moving limitary planes and at least two persons apparently fell to their deaths from the undercarriage soon after flight took off. The insurgents are now in control of all the districts of Kabul while a night curfew has been imposed in Kabul reportedly to prevent further violence. A Taliban spokesperson has said the war in Afghanistan is over, and a new power structure will soon be clear.
Independence Day is a festival of freedom for the countrymen. Today marks the beginning of the 75th year of India’s Independence and has a special significance as the entire nation is celebrating ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav’. This was made possible by generations of struggle of freedom fighters, some known, and many unknown, who made great sacrifices for the country. Today, people are breathing under fresh skies because of the heroic deeds of the freedom fighters. Here is a sneak peek into the I-Day celebrations across the country.
India's Javelin Man Neeraj Chopra scripted history by winning the country's first Olympic gold medal in athletics on the penultimate day of the Tokyo 2020 Games. With seven medal winners this Olympics, India has recorded its best-ever tally at the quadrennial event. Relive the glorious moments of the country's Olympic stars.
One of the most spectacular rituals of the annual Ratha Jatra, Suna Besha of the sibling deities - also called the Rajadhiraja Besha - is performed a day after the Holy Trinity return to their abode following a 9-day sojourn at the Gundicha. The divine triad of Bada Thakura Balabhadra, Mahaprabhu Jagannath and Devi Subhadra, atop their chariots on Puri Badadanda donned a resplendent attire of gold. Like previous year, the rituals were performed without congregation of devotees due to restrictions imposed in the wake of the current pandemic situation.
Quite similar to the Ratha Jatra festival, the return journey 'Bahuda Jatra' of the Holy Trinity from Gundicha temple to Srimandir in Puri also began almost two hours ahead of the schedule. After the nine-day annual sojourn at the Gundicha ended today, Bada Thakura Balabhadra, Mahaprabhu Jagannath and Devi Subhadra returned to Ratna Bedi on their majestic chariots. On way, the sibling deities were fed with their favourite offering of Poda Pitha.
The annual car fest of the Holy Trinity was held at the world-famous Jagannath Temple in Puri but without the participation of devotees for the second year in a row because of the pandemic restrictions. After the ceremonial Pahandi, Lord Jagannath and His siblings were placed atop their chariots for their annual sojourn. Millions of devotees in Odisha and across the world witnessed the traditional ceremony on their TV sets, mobile phones and computers during the live telecast and streaming of the rituals and grand procession on the Grand Road of the temple town.
Snana Jatra or the holy bathing ceremony of the sibling deities - Lord Balabhadra, Mahaprabhu Jagannath and Devi Subhadra - is performed at Puri Srimandir every year on Jyeshtha Purnima, i.e., on the full moon day of the month of 'Jyeshtha (May-June). Today, on this pious occasion, the Holy Trinity and Chakradhar Sudarsan took a ceremonial holy bath with 108 pitchers of sacred water and were later adorned in Gajanana Besha. All the rituals were carried out at the Snana Mandap. The Snana Yatra culminates after the Lords are taken to the 'Anasara Ghara' on Pahandi.
Yoga is considered India's one of the oldest traditions that brings mind and body in complete harmony with nature. Something which originated in India and is being practised for millennia, Yoga is one of India's finest gifts to the international community. Amid this pandemic, when anxiety and fear is looming over the world, Yoga can invoke much-needed inner strength and resilience in life. Today (June 21) on International Day of Yoga, India indulged in the harmony of nature, uniting the mind, body, thoughts and actions. The theme of the International Yoga Day event this year is 'Yoga for wellness'.
People across the globe and India, including Odisha, are observing the seventh International Day of Yoga on Monday. But the celebrations have remained subdued due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic restrictions. The International Yoga Day is being observed every year on June 21 since 2015. This year, the theme of the International Day of Yoga is 'Yoga For Wellness', and the focus will be on practicing Yoga for physical and mental well-being. Let's find out how the International Yoga Day 2021 is being observed across Odisha:
The construction of three gigantic chariots for Lord Jagannath's Rath Yatra, the annual car festival of the Holy Trinity scheduled to be held on July 12, is underway in Puri in full swing. The construction work is being carried out at the 'Ratha Khala' (traditional temple workshop) located on both sides of Bada Danda (Grand Road) in front of the Jagannath temple office and the Sri Nahar palace. The Jagannath temple office said that fixing of 'Kantaa' in the 'Pancha Dandaa', fitting of 'Garagara' and fixing of 4 Nahaka' in the chariots at the Ratha Khala is already complete. The making of 4 Potala Khambi', 2 'Saala' and 7 'Jokha' for Prathama Bhuin of the chariots is also being done.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Massive awareness and strict enforcement drives are continuing across Odisha during night curfew in a bid to contain the rapid spread of coronavirus in the State. In the wake of an unprecedented spike in Covid-19 cases, the Odisha government has announced a weekend shutdown at all the urban areas across the State, from April 24, 2021.
With the situation across India worsening amid the second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Archaeology Survey of India (ASI) on Thursday decided to shut all its monuments, museums, and protected sites till May 15 as a precautionary measure. In the order, ASI stated that due to prevailing Covid situation, it has been decided to close all the Centrally Protected Monuments, Sites and Museums under Archaeological Survey of India till May 15, 2021 until further orders.