Indian farmer who fasted for Trump’s recovery dies

Indian farmer who fasted for Trump’s recovery dies
Bussa Krishna Raju.
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Updated 13 October 2020

Indian farmer who fasted for Trump’s recovery dies

Indian farmer who fasted for Trump’s recovery dies
  • The village of Konne, in the Jangaon district of southern Telangana state, has been mourning his death

NEW DELHI: An Indian farmer who died after fasting for US President Donald Trump’s recovery is being mourned by his village.

Bussa Krishna Raju, who changed his name to Trump Kriss in honor of his idol, had been abstaining from food and drink following news of Trump’s coronavirus infection.

He broke his fast on Saturday upon learning that the president was better, only to collapse the following day while drinking tea. 

The village of Konne, in the Jangaon district of southern Telangana state, has been mourning his death.

“The death of Trump Kriss is news in this area,” local journalist Veera Gaud told Arab News. “He used to worship Trump and, because of his devotion to the US leader, he changed his name to Trump Kriss from Bussa Krishna Raju.”

Raju was 32 when he died. His relatives said it was a cardiac arrest.

“He was so disturbed for five days that he stopped eating,” Bukka Vijay Kumar, Raju’s cousin, told Arab News. “He came out of his room only when he heard that Trump had recovered. However, he collapsed when he was having tea in the morning. Raju did not have any medical history. We believe that he died from exhaustion caused by the fast.”

But a normal body could resist hunger for 30 days, according to Noida-based pulmonologist Dr. Loveleen Mangla. “He might have died because of any underlying cardiac cause,” Mangla told Arab News. “It must have been there for a long time, and no one had seen it.”

Raju’s journey to becoming Trump Kriss started in 2016, after Trump’s election victory.

The story goes that, one day around four years ago, Trump came into Raju’s dreams and the farmer decided to worship the US leader. He even erected a statue of him. 

“He spent INR200,000 ($3,000) to build the statue and he would worship him,” his cousin Bussa Sanjay Kumar told Arab News. 

Konne village has a population of 3,000 people and a literacy rate of less than 50 percent. It is located nearly 100 km away from the state capital, Hyderabad. Most Konne residents had not heard of Raju until a few years ago when he changed his name.

“Soon after he changed his name to Trump Kriss, people in the area started calling him by this name,” Sanjay said, adding that Raju had been pinning his hopes on the US president winning November’s election.

Raju even set out to meet Trump during his visit to India earlier this year, village chief Venkat Verumalla Gaur said.

“Raju went to the Hyderabad consulate and requested them to fix a meeting with the US president, but that never happened and he was sad,” Gaur told Arab News.

On Sunday night villagers held a candlelit march to express their sorrow over Raju’s death.

“Konne village and the surrounding areas are in a state of mourning at the loss of our Trump,” Konne resident Srinivas Reddy told Arab News.

Gaur echoed this sentiment.

“Sadly, we lost our Trump,” he said. “He brought national attention to our village.”


Olympic fans from aboard may have health tracked by app

Updated 02 December 2020

Olympic fans from aboard may have health tracked by app

Olympic fans from aboard may have health tracked by app
  • Japan has controlled the virus better than most countries with just over 2,100 deaths attributed to COVID-19
  • But Tokyo has seen record numbers of infections in recent weeks

TOKYO: A mobile app could be among the measures used to track the health of fans from abroad if they are permitted to attend next year’s Tokyo Olympics.
An interim report on contingencies for holding the Tokyo Games was released on Wednesday. It was compiled by the Japanese government, the Tokyo city government and local organizers.
The portion concerning the app was leaked earlier in the day by Japanese newspaper Nikkei. It was met on social media by unhappy replies from Japanese citizens who fear the Olympics could put their health in jeopardy.
Japan, with a population of 125 million, has controlled the virus better than most countries with just over 2,100 deaths attributed to COVID-19. But Tokyo has seen record numbers of infections in recent weeks.
Toshiro Muto, the CEO of the local organizing committee, explained some findings of the report. But he was short on specifics in the online briefing. Some proposals might be discarded as conditions change, and almost everything is subject to revision.
“In general, I think we would like to be able to work out the details by next spring,” he said, suggesting the groundwork had been prepared for many contingencies with the possibility of vaccines and rapid testing on the horizon.
It was in the spring eight months ago when organizers and the International Olympic Committee finally decided to postpone the Olympics after repeatedly saying they would go ahead this year.
Muto hinted again that the Tokyo Olympics may not be much fun. Athletes will compete and then be expected to to go home.
“The basic principle is that the accommodation period in the Athletes Village is supposed to be minimized as much as possible,” Muto said. “We want to be sure that the Athletes Village doesn’t get too dense. And after the games we would like them (athletes) to go back (home) as early as possible.”
He was asked point-blank if the Olympics would have a “celebratory atmosphere.”
“If the games are to be held under the COVID-19 pandemic, I don’t think the Olympics will be as festive as they have been in the past,” he said. “We decided to hold a simplified Olympics. Therefore, as you can see in the planning for the opening ceremony, the Tokyo Olympics will be simplified rather than celebratory.”
Muto was also asked about the cost of the one-year postponement, but said he didn’t know yet. Some Japanese newspapers reported several days ago, citing unnamed sources close to the organizing committee, that the cost of the delay will be about $3 billion.
“We are in the process of the calculation of how much the cost is,” Muto said. “We would like to reach a decision as soon as possible but when it will come — I can’t give you a specific date. But by the end of the year we’d like to make an effort to come up with an answer.”
He was also asked if fans from abroad would be required to be vaccinated.
“This is a scenario we will start to examine once the vaccine is actually available,” he said.