2021 in photos part 2 — Covid pyres burn all day, police of 2 states clash, a deadly ambush
An Assam Rifles Colonel was killed along with his wife, son & four other soldiers in a terrorist ambush in Manipur. This year also saw the Lakhimpur Kheri incident, which dominated headlines for weeks.
New Delhi: In 2021, the second Covid wave hit the country like a tidal wave. As the virus spread like wildfire, there was a shortage of hospital beds, medicines and oxygen. Countless people lost their lives gasping for breath, some even before they could access treatment.
The most heart-breaking sights were witnessed at hospitals, cremation and burial grounds where people queued up in hundreds to bid goodbye to loved ones. Crematoriums and burial grounds functioned round the clock to accommodate the dead. Mass cremations were held often.
As the second Covid wave ravaged the country, the government ramped up its vaccination programme. And healthcare workers worked extra hard to ensure the vaccines reached the remotest corners of the country.
Away from Covid, the news cycle threw up several significant events. The Kashi Vishwanath Dham Project — a pet project of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, which was launched in 2018 — went on in full swing. Spread across an area of 5 lakh square feet, the project aims to provide world-class facilities to pilgrims who visit the Kashi Vishwanath temple, a shrine to Shiva. The PM inaugurated the first phase of the project earlier this month.
One of the biggest news stories was a clash that erupted between the police forces of two states in the northeast. The clash between the Assam and Mizoram police left six personnel dead and 50 others injured.
Meanwhile, in a terrorist ambush in Manipur, an Assam Rifles Colonel was killed along with four other soldiers. What makes this ambush particularly heartrending is the fact that the colonel’s wife and eight-year-old son were killed in the attack as well.
Many a big story emerged from Kashmir too. Apart from the spate of civilian killings, a big controversy erupted over an encounter in Hyderpora in November that led to the death of a suspected Pakistani terrorist, and three local residents, of whom police have alleged militant links for two. However, the families of all three have described them as innocent. An investigation in the matter is under way.
Here’s a look at some of these events from the lens of ThePrint National Photo Editor Praveen Jain.