Here are the top 5 news of December 22, 2020:
1. Suresh Raina, Guru Randhawa, Sussanne Khan among 34 booked for partying at Andheri pub
Cricketer Suresh Raina, singer Guru Randhawa and celebrity Sussanne Khan were booked and arrested for violations of the lockdown norms after they were found partying at the Dragonfly Club at an Andheri-based upscale hotel in the wee hours of Tuesday. Police had booked a total of 34 people under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code for violating social distancing norms and later released on bail.
Acting on a specific information, police had raided the premises of Dragonfly club in Hotel JW Marriot near the Terminal 2 of the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport (CSMIA). Upon raiding, it was revealed that a party was underway at 2.50 am, way beyond the permissible time limit issued by the state government. Moreover, the people in attendance were found without face masks.
Accordingly, police registered a case and booked the 34 people present in the club, including seven staffers at the hotel for violating the COVID-19 norms.
Meanwhile, Suresh Raina has said that he was unaware of local timings and protocols. "Suresh was in Mumbai for a shoot which extended to late hours and was invited by a friend for a quick dinner post the same prior to him taking his flight back to Delhi. He was not aware of the local timings and protocols. Once pointed out, he immediately complied with the procedures laid out by the authorities and regrets the unfortunate and unintentional incident," a statement from Raina's management company read.
2. Night curfew in Maharashtra's 27 municipal corporation limits begins today
Reacting to the detection of a mutated strain of coronavirus in the United Kingdom, the Maharashtra government has announced the imposition of night curfew in 27 municipal corporation limits from 11 pm to 6 am from December 22 to January 5.
Additionally, the government has imposed a 14-day institutional quarantine for passengers arriving from Europe and the Gulf. Also, passengers landing in Mumbai from abroad will have to undergo home quarantine as a precautionary measure.
These decisions were announced after Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray chaired a meeting to review the new variant of the Covid virus detected in the UK. ‘‘Due to this new strain of coronavirus, extra precautions are being taken in the state and we must be more vigilant for the next 15 days. The new coronavirus strain found in the UK is spreading rapidly and the danger of the virus will be known in the next few days, so the state is being put on high alert,” said Thackeray.
He has asked the administration to keep strict vigil on international passengers landing in Mumbai and the rest of the state.
3. Donald Trump presents 'Legion of Merit' to PM Modi for elevating India-US ties
US President Donald Trump presented the prestigious Legion of Merit to Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his leadership in elevating strategic partnership of the two countries and emergence of India as a global power.
India's Ambassador to the US, Taranjit Singh Sandhu, accepted the award on behalf of the prime minister from the US National Security Advisor Robert O'Brien at the White House.
Modi was presented with the highest degree Chief Commander of the Legion of Merit which is given only to the Head of State or Government.
He was given the award in recognition of his steadfast leadership and vision that has accelerated India's emergence as a global power and elevated the strategic partnership between the United States and India to address global challenges.
4. New mutated strain of COVID-19 not seen in India yet: Govt
The new mutated strain of Covid-19 that is spreading at a much faster rate in the United Kingdom has not been seen in India so far, the government said today.
"The new strain or mutation of coronavirus seen in the United Kingdom has not been seen in India, so far," NITI Aayog's Dr VK Paul said.
"The new strain of COVID19 in the United Kingdom has increased transmissibility. This mutation is not affecting the severity of the disease. Case fatality is not affected by this mutation," he added.
Dr Paul further said that there is no cause for concern, no need to panic, and as for now we need to stay vigilant.
5. Sister Abhaya murder case: Kerala priest, nun convicted after nearly three decades
A CBI court in Thiruvananthapuram today found a catholic priest and a nun guilty in connection with the murder of 21-year-old Sister Abhaya, whose body was found in the well of a convent in Kottayam in 1992.
The verdict in this regard was pronounced by CBI special court judge J Sanal Kumar.
The quantum of sentence will be pronounced on Wednesday.
The court said the murder charges against Father Thomas Kottoor and Sister Sephy will stand. Both are in judicial custody.
Another accused in the case, Fr Poothrakayal was discharged earlier over lack of evidence.
The judgement comes 28 years after the young nun was found dead in the well of St Pius convent, where she stayed.
(With inputs from agencies)