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Karnataka’s 111-year-old pontiff recovers from liver operation

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Bengaluru, Dec 8 (IANS) Karnataka’s 111-year-old revered pontiff Shivakumar Swami of Siddaganga Mutt at Tumakuru recovered from a liver operation he underwent at a hospital in Chennai, an official said on Saturday.

“The pontiff has recovered from the effects of anaesthesia, administered for the liver operation earlier in the day, and is awake in the intensive care unit,” said Rela Institute of Medical Centre Chairman Mohamed Rela in a statement.

The pontiff was flown to Chennai from Bengaluru on Friday in an air ambulance for the operation to treat his liver and bile duct infection. Tumakuri is located about 70 km west of Bengaluru.

“We brought Swamiji to Bengaluru from Tumakuru in a signal-free corridor for airlifting him to Chennai so that he could rest ahead of the operation,” a mutt spokesman told IANS here.

Though the operation was for four hours, the seer was stable throughout the surgery, which involved exploring his bile ducts, removal of metal and plastic stents within the bile duct and a bypass between the bile duct in the liver and small intestine.

“The seer would be under observation in ICU till the surgical wounds are healed and his other vital organs function normally in commensurate with his advanced age,” said the mutt official.

The holy man has been in and out of hospitals of late for treatment of symptoms related to his advanced age.

–IANS
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Declaration of poll schedule to expedite candidate selection, alliances

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New Delhi, March 10 (IANS) With the Election Commission announcing the Lok Sabha poll schedule on Sunday, political parties are expected to expedite the process of candidate selection as also that of forming alliances in the next few days.

While the Congress has come with its first list of 15 candidates that includes names of party chief Rahul Gandhi and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi, the Bharatiya Janata Party is yet to come up with its first list, which is expected this week.

The opposition parties in Bihar have not yet announced their grand alliance in the state. There has also been no formal announcement of a tie-up in Jammu and Kashmir as also in West Bengal.

In Delhi, though the ruling Aam Aadmi Party has declared its candidates on most of the seats and Congress has declared its intentions to fight separately, there is still speculation of the possibility of the two parties coming together.

The notification for the first phase of Lok Sabha polls will be made on March 18 and the last date of filing nominations is March 25. The polling of the first phase for 91 seats across 20 states will be held on April 11, almost a month from now.

The political parties are expected to draw out a detailed schedule of campaigning by their top leaders over the next few days as also give final touches to their manifestos.

–IANS
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