What Britain Talks About This Week – Free NHS Prescriptions Axed | Novak Djokovic | Return to Hogwarts | Wordle | Kazakhstan

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Free NHS Prescriptions for all over 60 – may be ‘Axed’ from April 2022 in England.

For more than 25 years, prescriptions that have been free from the NHS for Brits over the age of sixty could come at a cost from April 1, as reported by the Daily Express.

The controversial Government proposal aims to raise the age for a free prescription to 66.

Moreover, the current per prescription price of £9.35 may also increase.

This move could come as a blow to millions of people especially those with chronic conditions, though many will still be exempt from charges.

Professor of Accounting and Member of House of Lords of the UK, Prem Sikka, tweeted about the news, calling the Government ministers ‘billionaires who have no idea how people survive’.

The NHS prescription charge reforms will come on top of a wave of tax increases and price hikes over the next few months that will include higher income tax bills, energy prices, national insurance charges, and rail fares.

In Scotland and Wales, no matter the age, residents are still eligible for a free prescription through NHS.

However, the discrepancy that England residents will have to pay until 66 has drawn quite an outrage on social media.

A Twitter user posted about this being like a robbery and not what people had worked for their whole life.

A Senior Reporter from iNewspaper, Serina Sandhu, pointed out that this decision could cost more and do lasting damage to the nation’s health.

After Being Denied Entry in Australia, Unvaccinated Djokovic Fights Deportation

After a 10-hour stand-off with Australian Border Force (ABF), Novak Djokovic’s visa was cancelled and he was denied entry at Melbourne Airport early Thursday.

The world’s current tennis No. 1 and three-time defending Australian Open Champion appears not to have taken the Covid19 vaccine but had applied for a medical exemption with the Victorian State Government and Tennis Australia.

However, he was denied entry by ABF, which operates under the Australian Government, on grounds of insufficient evidence for the exemption.

Scott Morrison, Prime Minister of Australia, tweeted that ‘rules are rules and no one is above it.

The Serbian tennis star now faces the prospect of deportation and has launched an appeal, while he waits in an immigration detention hotel.

Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic rallied in support of Djokovic and called this a ‘political witch hunt’.

A chief sportswriter for The Telegraph, Oliver Brown, called the incident a show trial and pointed out that Novak Djokovic was approved to board on the plane.

However, Broadcaster and Journalist Piers Morgan commented that sports stars should play by the same rules as others and the Australian Government has a full right to deny him entry.

Meanwhile, supporters have taken to the streets and social media to protest the denial. The stunning saga has also unleashed a wave of memes around ‘Djokovic’, one such coming from Australian cricket all-rounder Neesham.

The decision on the legal appeal will be announced on Monday according to Australian government officials.

Return to Hogwarts, A Heart-Warming Reunion on the 20th Anniversary of Harry Potter

Generations of fans cried and laughed together with the cast of Harry Potter who got together in a reunion for the first time since the release of Deathly Hallows Part 2 in 2011.

The whole cast including Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, Helena Bonham Carter, Robbie Coltrane, Tom Felton, James, and Oliver Phelps showed up.

The special showed behind-the-scenes footage, exclusive interviews of the star cast, and a recap of all the emotions that spanned a decade of filming together. It also paid tribute to the cast and crew members who have passed away.

Tom Felton, who played Draco Malfoy, called on all the teary-eyed fans on Twitter.

Spoiler Alert! Watson revealed she had a crush on Tom Felton and Radcliffe said ‘I wish I’d just been born 10 years earlier while revealing he had a crush on Helena Bonham Carter.

In the episode, Rupert Grint reflected all our sentiments when he said, ‘We’re family, and we’ll always be a part of each other’s lives.”

Jason Isaacs, who played Lucius Malfoy, joked about Dobby the elf on Twitter.

However, due to a recent controversy about her views on gender and sex-based rights, JK Rowling was not invited to the reunion. Instead, snippets from her old interview were included in it.

Piers Morgan criticized the Potter star cast calling them ‘ungrateful’.

Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts is streaming now on HBO Max.

Wordle, an Online Word Game that Has Taken the Internet by Storm

British software engineer Josh Wardle created a word-guessing game for his partner Palak Shah and as a play on his last name, called it Wordle. After playing it for months, he shared it on his family WhatsApp group before sharing it with the world.

Since then, the game has become a sensation that has reached thousands. On November 1, there were 90 players, and just 2 months later more than 300,000 players were guessing the words!

The most frequently searched questions on the internet these days are:

  • What is wordle?
  • How do we play wordle?

The once-a-day game gives you 6 chances to guess a 5-letter word, at the end of which it tells you whether any of your letters are in the word and whether they are incorrect place.

Author and illustrator Jonny Sun tweeted about the game’s success, making him lost for words.

London-based influencer Jemma Styles called the game ‘a letter-based fight club’.

The game has no distracting ads, banners, or pop-ups asking for money, just pure love for words and a good quiz or puzzle.

Citing similar reasons, Anil Dash, CEO of Glitch, a software development start-up company, said the success of Wordle is well deserved.

Russian ‘Peacekeeping’ Forces Arrive in Kazakhstan after President Seeks Help to Quell Unrest

According to Russian news agencies, Russian paratroopers have reached Kazakhstan as part of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) after the country’s president sought help in controlling violent clashes between protestors and the police.

Russia issued a statement viewing the protests as externally provoked.

The protests that initially erupted on the weekend due to rising fuel prices, gave way to calls for broader political reforms before turning bloody and leading to dozens of people losing their lives, as reported by local news agencies.

Economist at the John Hopkins University Steve Hanke tweeted a video of the protests.

Authorities in Almaty, the country’s largest city, claimed on Thursday that 12 police and security personnel had been killed and 353 injured. Thousands of protestors have reportedly been arrested and many are in intensive care.

President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev has sacked Kazakhstan’s government and declared a two-week national emergency, blaming foreign-trained ‘terrorists’ without giving any evidence.

NetBlocks, a watchdog organization monitoring the governance of the internet, confirmed a national-scale blackout of internet services in Kazakhstan.

The UK Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office issued a statement condemning the acts of violence and calling for calm as well as the resumption of internet services in Kazakhstan.

UK Minister of State for South Asia and the Commonwealth, Lord (Tariq) Ahmad of Wimbledon shared the statement on Twitter.

Meanwhile, the US has warned that the world is watching Russian conduct for any violation of human rights. United States Secretary of State, Antony Blinken expressed their commitment to a peaceful and diplomatic resolution of disputes.

The new year is certainly starting off on a controversial note.

Post curated by Nidaa Koreishi & Manuela Willbold

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