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2021, in a nutshell from Kerala

On the last day of 2021, we look back at people and places that made it to the headlines.

Published: 31st December 2021 07:04 AM  |   Last Updated: 31st December 2021 07:04 AM   |  A+A-

Tovino Thomas in the trailer of 'Minnal Murali'

Tovino Thomas in the trailer of 'Minnal Murali'

By Express News Service

KOCHI: 

January

Covid delays adoption of children

1,017 prospective adoptive parents in the state were continuing their harrowing wait for a child, as the pandemic has slowed down the adoption process in Kerala. The lockdown halted it for nearly three months. Couples who submitted their applications in 2018, were still on the waiting list.

Green signal for Ernakulam Junction station renovation 

A long-pending redevelopment project by the Indian Railways for Ernakulam Junction, the focal point of Kochi’s rail connectivity, was set in motion. The multi-crore project will upgrade the station to airport-like standards

Kerala man sets up secular matrimony platform

An unflinching believer of the principle ‘all humans are equal’, 31-year-old Thrissur native Manu Manushyajaathi (humankind) set up a community service Secular Marriage Matrimony’ on Facebook, as a platform for people who wish to marry outside barriers of caste and religion under The Special Marriage Act.

February

Gas Insulated Substation inaugurated in Kaloor

Overcoming many obstacles, KSEB’s much-awaited 220 kV Gas Insulated Substation in Kaloor was dedicated to the city by Electricity Minister M M Mani. The first-of-its-kind facility is providing seamless power supply to five substations in the city 

CIAL reopened, with flying colours

Cochin International Airport Limited (CIAL) recently handed over I133.49 crore as dividend to the state government and managed to restart 70% of its in-house services. The airport also put plans in place to further diversify its activities

IFFK gets warm response in Kochi

Owing to the pandemic, the state government decided to conduct the International Film Festival of Kerala (IFFK) in four different zones, and so, it returned to Kochi after 22 years. Movie buffs in the city deserve a permanent film festival, said Mayor M Anilkumar

March

Janaki Anand, the little skating wonder, goes viral

On March 11, Instagram account @skatekochi posted a reel of the little girl stair shredding on the premises of the JLN Stadium in Kaloor, Kochi, a haven for skateboarders. The short went viral in less than 24 hours 

Vaccination goes mobile 

As part of its efforts to ensure vaccination of the elderly people at old age homes in the state, the health authorities tied up with Kerala Social Security Mission and Social Justice Department to roll out mobile units that will cover over 20,000 people at 169 government-affiliated old age homes across the state

When Varsha sparred with Rahul Gandhi

Varsha Venugopal, a second -year BA English literature student at St Teresa’s College and second-degree black belt in karate, sparred with former Congress president and MP Rahul Gandhi when he visited the college

April

Covid 2.0: PVS turns Covid care centre again

As the second wave of the pandemic hit the city hard, the National Health Mission (NHM) informed that they are in the process of converting the PVS Hospital in Kaloor back into a full-fledged Covid hospital. 

First transgender shelter home in Ernakulam

As part of integrating transgender people into the mainstream, the state government rolled out its first shelter home in the district designed exclusively for the community. This is the second such government shelter home to come up in the state. 

100 years of amateur radios 

2021 marked the 100th anniversary of amateur radio in India. City Express tuned into some of the active hams across the state to know how their lives have changed after setting their frequencies with ham radios.

May

First smart police kiosk in Kadavanthra

India’s first complaint register kiosk started operating near the Kadavanthra Metro station as part of ‘Smart Policing’ project. It was inaugurated virtually by DGP Lokanath Behera on April 30

Kochi Corporation crowdfunds Covid aid

On April 23, while the election protocol was still in place, the Kochi Corporation took a bold step to source funds from its people to provide immediate support to Covid-hit families.By the time the government allowed fund collection on behalf of the secretary, the civic body has already supplied nearly 50,000 food packets to Covid-affected families 

Tribal hamlets get Covid shot

Riding through bumpy mud routes, the 60-member vaccination team called Tribvax Ekm launched by Ernakulam district administration vaccinated around 3,000 tribal people living off the digital grid vaccinated against Covid. 

June

Kerala chocolate brand will int’l award

Paul and Mike, an artisanal ‘bean to bar’ chocolate company located in Kerala, is relishing the taste of success. This Kerala-based chocolate maker won silver for their ‘64 Percent Dark Sichuan Pepper and Orange Peel Vegan Chocolate’ at the International Chocolate Awards 2021

Clubhouse — the new way  to socialise

Clubhouse, though launched in March 2020, was unavailable for Android users till May of 2021. As of June 2, the app had over one million Android downloads in India, and Malayalis had found their new virtual spell!

Compassionate French professor aids animals

Fadette Badie d’Arcis, a 46-year-old French professor at St Theresa’s College, regularly gives biscuits and cooked food to strays at High Court Junction. We also found her helping out people in need and giving them food and essentials

July

Historic Woodlands Hotel nears its end

Woodlands hotel, the landmark eatery has been struggling with mounting debt worsened by the pandemic. In July, the City Union Bank sent a notice to its partners for defaulting on I2 crore loans they took from the establishment

Jafar Malik is the new Ernakulam Collector

Jafar Malik, the  new Ernakulam District Collector, assumed charge in July. He took charge from outgoing collector S Suhas. After taking over, Jafar said the district administration will unveil measures for the welfare of the marginalised sections in society

Ananya’s death triggers discussion on trans lives

Ananya Kumari Alex, the first transgender radio jockey in the state died by suicide after drawing attention to her harrowing experiences of undergoing a sex reassignment surgery (SRS) in a city hospital in Kochi. Protest and debates followed 

August

Ernakulam vaccinates highest number of migrant labourers

According to district labour officer P M Firoz, the campaign called Guest Vax vaccinated 10,916 migrant labourers in the district. Palakkad was in second place after vaccinating 3,200 workers

Green signal for I344 crore Save Chellanam project 

The state government gave administrative sanction for the H344.20-crore coastal protection project at Chellanam, the 630km coastal line of the state that has been consistently struggling with sea erosion 

First trans couple gives consent to donate body after death

Thripthi Shetty, a trans woman and her husband Hrithik M, a trans man, became the first trans people to donate their bodies after death for medical research. Earlier, laws enabled only a biological male or female to do so

September

Lone woman’s protest against LPG price hike

Raising the problems caused by the hike in cooking gas price, a 57-year-old woman named Suma, from Anchumana in Kochi, went on a single-woman dawn-to-dusk protest 

NFT takes over digital realm

Non-Fungible Token, a digital asset that belongs solely to the digital space and cannot be tampered with, became mainstream around the world earlier this year. In Kerala, the market saturated some time in September, with local digital artists started dealing on Indian and international NFT platforms

Praveen Nath becomes the first trans Mr Kerala Praveen Nath, a  24-year-old from Palakkad became Kerala’s first trans bodybuilder to  make history by winning the  Mr Kerala title in the special category

October

Pattanam excavation resumes

The work at trench number 67 at Pattanam resumed after the Delhi High Court stayed the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) decision withdrawing the approval given to Dr P J Cherian for excavation at Pattanam sites in Ernakulam.

Error 404: Social media not found

People across the globe got a taste of a ‘disconnected’ world on October 5, when data giant Facebook Inc went offline for around six hours, taking its undertakings Instagram and WhatsApp with it. The services were restored in India on the next day during early morning hours

Koottikkal landslide: need for mental aid

A team of psychologists led by Dr Henna N N, clinical director, mental and behavioural health of Kothamangalam-based Peacevalley Foundation started providing mental health aid to victims of Koottikkal landslide, kickstarting conversations on the need for psychological first aid in the face of natural disasters

November

Schools reopen, attendance high

Attendance of students in schools following the state syllabus rose by over 25,000 across the state on the third day after schools reopened on November 1. From 12.08 lakh students on the reopening day, the number increased to 12.33 lakh on  November 3

CBSE schools launch unique anti-dowry campaign

The National Council of CBSE Schools (NCCS) announced that students in high schools, higher secondary and vocational  higher secondary schools, colleges, and other  educational institutions will take a pledge not to receive or  give dowry as part of the observation of Dowry Prohibition Day

December

Kerala women’s football returns

After a seven-years of hiatus, Kerala’s women football league returned this year to provide a professional platform for women footballers. Eight professional clubs across the state participated in the league

77-year-old fashion design student

We caught up with dDiligent uniform-clad septuagenarian Ammini K N, a second-year student at the Fashion Designing and Garments Technology in Government Technical Secondary School at Pampady in Kottayam district

Minnal 

Murali - an international phenomenon Minnal Murali, directed by Basil Joseph, tells the story of an ordinary man — tailor Jaison — from a small town called Kurukkanmoola in Kerala. The Netflix release soon became the most celebrated superhero movie not just in Kerala, but all over the world

Shehreen Aman gets help from many

14-year-old Shehreen was selling FASTags after school to support her family that comprises her mother, a temporary staff at the Ernakulam Medical College, and a 10-year-old ailing brother. City Express put her family’s plight under spotlight, getting them the help they deserve



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