K Amarnath, a senior journalist known for his reportage in several Telugu publications and news channels, passed away due to COVID-19 on Tuesday in Hyderabad. The 69-year-old was admitted to the Nizamâ€™s Institute of Medical Sciences (NIMS) Hospital in the city 10 days ago to receive treatment for the disease.
During his 40 years of experience as a journalist, Amarnath was recognised for his prolonged stint with the Telugu daily Andhrabhoomi, apart from his contributions to other Telugu and national publications.
However, he will be remembered by the journalist fraternity for working as a union leader for journalists in the Telugu states of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh, and working towards bettering their working conditions.
During his career, Amarnath worked in different capacities at the United Andhra Pradesh Union for Working Journalists (APUWJ) and the Indian Union of Journalists (UJI). He was also a member of the Press Club of India (PCI).
The senior journalistâ€™s death was condoled by the Press Club of Hyderabad and other journalist associations. Several legislators, including state Health Minister Eatela Rajender, IT Minister KT Rama Rao and Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao expressed their condolences.
Congress leader and spokesperson Dr Dasoju Sravan Kumar also recalled Amarnathâ€™s contribution to the Telangana movement for separate statehood from Andhra Pradesh. In a statement released by his office, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y Jagan Mohan Reddy expressed condolences for Amarnathâ€™s death as well.
According to reports, the journalistâ€™s funeral rites will be performed at Mahaprasthanam in Hyderabadâ€™s Jubilee Hills.
Telangana is witnessing a surge in COVID-19 cases, with the state recording 4,009 cases on Monday, taking the total number of active cases to 39, 154. The Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) limits reported 705 fresh cases. The state government was forced to stop the ongoing third phase of vaccination on Sunday due to a shortage of vaccines.
However, Health Minister Eatala Rajender had appealed to the Union government to address the issue immediately, and the state received 2.7 lakh doses from the Union government. The state is also reporting a shortage in remdesivir, the drug used to treat COVID-19 patients.