CMYK WEDNESDAY www.thestatesman.com 14 APRIL 2021 FIND US ONLINE Scan this with your smartphone twitter.com/TheStatesmanLtd facebook.com/thestatesman1875 Pages 12 |` 5.00|LC KOLKATA | NEW DELHI | SILIGURI | BHUBANESWAR KERALA MINISTER KT JALEEL RESIGNS HONG KONG ELECTIONS TO TAKE PLACE IN DECEMBER P9 WEATHER Generally cloudy sky. One or two spells of thundershower. Temperature will be in the range of 38-27 degrees Celsius. RAINFALL: 0.0 mm RELATIVE HUMIDITY Max.90% TEMPERATURE P4 P5 Foreign-made vaccines Sec 144 in Maha for 15 days from put on fast-track: Centre today: Uddhav Max: 37.5°C (+2) Min: 26.6°C (+1) SUN RISES SUN SETS 05:19 hrs 17:56 hrs MOON RISES MOON SETS 06:04 hrs 19:02 hrs Next moon quarter on 20 April 1,36,89,453 12,64,698 THUMBNAILS A medic administers vaccine to a woman at Rajiv Gandhi Super Speciality Hospital, in the Capital on Tuesday. SNS SNS & PTI NEW DELHI, 13 APRIL ith an aim to expand the basket of Covid-19 vaccines and enhance the pace of inoculation in India, the central government on Tuesday said it has fast-tracked emergency approval for foreignproduced jabs that have been granted similar clearances in other countries. The move is significant as it may make available several vaccines, including those made by Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson, in India with certain conditions. The first 100 beneficiaries of such foreign vaccines shall be assessed for seven days for safety outcomes before it is rolled out for further immunisation programme within the country, the Union health ministry said. The government has decided that Covid-19 vaccines which have been developed and are being manufactured in foreign countries and which have been granted emergency approval for restricted use by authorities in the W Delhi BJP Chief Adesh Gupta, Mayor North Delhi MCD Jai Prakash and others inaugurate a statue on the birth anniversary of Dr Bhimrao Ambedkar at North DMC HQ, in the Capital on Tuesday. SUBRATA DUTTA Remdesivir not for home use, says govt: The Centre on Tuesday said doctors should ensure “rational and judicious” use of anti-viral drug Remdesivir, underlining it is to be given only to Covid-19 patients admitted in hospitals and is not to be used in home settings. At a weekly press conference, NITI Aayog member (Health) Dr V K Paul said, “Remdesivir is to be used only in those who require hospitalisation and are on oxygen support. That is the precondition.” Air India disinvestment: The government has initiated the process for inviting financial bids for the sale of national carrier Air India and the deal is likely to conclude by September, sources said. Tata Group was among the “multiple” entities that had put in preliminary bids for buying loss-making Air India in December last year. The transaction has now moved to the financial bids stage, the sources said, adding that the deal is expected to conclude by September. P8 US, Europe, the UK, Japan or which are listed in the WHO Emergency Use Listing may be granted emergency use approval in India. They will be given emergency use approval mandating the requirement of post-approval parallel bridging clinical trial in place of conduct of local clinical trial under the provisions of the New Drugs and Clinical Trials Rules 2019, the ministry said. “This decision will facilitate quicker access to such foreign vaccines by India and would encourage imports including import of bulk drug material, optimal utilization of domestic fill and finish capacity, etc., which will in turn provide a fillip to vaccine manufacturing capacity and total vaccine availability for domestic (use),” the ministry said. The decision came following the recommendations of the National Expert Group on Vaccine Administration for Covid19 (NEGVAC). Currently, two vaccines-Covaxin by Bharat Biotech and Covishield 1,61,736 97,168 1,71,058 UNION HEALTH MINISTRY FIGURES AS OF 8.00 A.M. TUESDAY 13 APRIL 2021 by Serum Institute of India (SII)-are being used for inoculation in India. India’s drug regulator has also granted permission for the restricted emergency use of the Russian Covid-19 vaccine Sputnik V with certain conditions on Monday. The matter of augmenting the basket of vaccines available for fighting the pandemic as well as to accelerate the pace and coverage of domestic vaccination programme were discussed in the 23rd meeting of NEGVAC chaired by Niti Aayog Member (Health) V K Paul on 11 April. India is following a comprehensive approach to tackle the Covid-19 pandemic in a proactive and pre-emptive manner. In this context, as early as May 2020, India constituted a Task Force to have two “Made in India” vaccines for domestic vaccination drive, the ministry said. UP records highest-ever daily spike of 18,021 cases LUCKNOW, 13 APRIL Uttar Pradesh on Tuesday reported the highest-ever single-day spike of 18,021 coronavirus cases and 85 deaths, a senior official said here. With this, the state’s infection tally stands at 7,23,582 and the death toll at 9,309. The state’s previous biggest jump of 15,353 cases was recorded on 11 April. Lucknow reported the highest number of fresh cases at 5,382, according to a health bulletin. Meanwhile, Union labour minister Santosh Kumar Gangwar and his wife tested Covid positive, his private assistant Alok Mathur said. Meerganj MLA DC Verma and BJP district president Pawan Sharma have also tested PTI positive. headed by the Principal Scientific Advisor to encourage research and development for vaccine manufacture and constituted in August 2020 an Expert Group headed by Member, NITI Aayog to assist in roll-out of the Covid vaccination programme. It was because of these strategies that India became the first country India records 1,61,736 infections, 879 deaths A total of 1,61,736 new Covid cases have been reported in a day pushing India’s tally of cases to 1,36,89,453, while the national recovery rate dropped further to 89.51 per cent, according to data updated by the Union health ministry on Monday. The death toll increased to 1,71,058 with 879 new fatalities, the data updated at 8 am showed. Registering a steady increase for the 34th day in a row, the number of active cases rose to 12,64,698. The number of people who have recuperated from the disease surged to 1,22,53,697, while the case fatality rate has dropped further to 1.25 per cent, the data stated. The 879 new fatalities include 258 from Maharashtra and 132 from Chhattisgarh. A total of 1,71,058 deaths have been reported in the country so far, including 58,245 from Maharashtra, 12,941 from Karnataka and 12,927 from Tamil Nadu. Bengal cases:West Bengal logged the highestever daily spike of 4,817 fresh cases and 20 deaths today. The total Covid caseload is 6,24,224 and toll is 10,434 in the state with 29,050 active cases. Kolkata recorded 1,271 cases and 11 deaths. PRESS TRUST OF INDIA NEW DELHI, 13 APRIL Chief minister Mamata Banerjee at a sitting demonstration and protest against Election Commission in front of Gandhi DETAILS ON P3 Statue in Kolkata on Tuesday. The Election Commission on Tuesday barred BJP leader Rahul Sinha from campaigning for 48 hours and slapped a notice on its West Bengal chief Dilip Ghosh over their “provocative” remarks on the killing of four people in firing by CISF during poll violence in Sitalkuchi, saying such statements could have a serious impact on law and order. Strongly condemning Sinha’s reported remarks that central forces “should have killed eight rather than four people”, the EC said he made “highly provocative statements mocking human life and inciting the forces that could have serious law and order implications”. BJP leader Rahul Sinha barred from campaigning for 48 hours; Bengal BJP chief Dilip Ghosh gets an EC notice and Suvendu Adhikari “warned” for certain statements. EC found the remarks of the BJP leaders violating model code, various provisions of Representation of People Act and the Indian Penal Code. The ban on Sinha begins at 12 noon on Tuesday and will remain in force till 12 noon of 15 April, the order said. On Monday, the poll panel barred West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee from campaigning for 24 hours for her remarks against central forces and a statement that allegedly had religious over- tones. The EC, in another order, has let off BJP candidate from Nandigram Suvendu Adhikari with a light rap for his remarks that “if people vote for Begum there will be mini Pakistan”. “Now, therefore, the Commission hereby warns Shri Suvendu Adhikari and advises him to desist from using such statement during the period when Model Code of Conduct is in force,” the order issued on Monday night said. The EC took suo motu cognisance of Sinha’s remarks and said it decided to issue the order without giving any notice to him due to the urgency of the matter. After the Trinamool Congress approached the Commission against Ghosh over his reported remarks that Modi calls for united global efforts to defeat Covid STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE We understand fully that the mankind will not defeat the pandemic unless all of us, everywhere, regardless of the colour of our passports, come out of it NEW DELHI, 13 APRIL Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said the Covid-19 pandemic has presented the global community an opportunity to reshape the world order and create systems which address the problems of today and challenges of tomorrow. “We must think of the entire humanity and not merely of those who are on our side of the borders. Humanity as a whole must be at the centre of our thinking and action,” he said, inaugurating the “Raisina Dialogue”, the annual signature event of the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) on geopolitics and geo-economics. Acknowledging that the world today was under-pre- SNS & AGENCIES MUMBAI, 13 APRIL Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray today announced a 15-day ban on large gatherings in the state from tomorrow to break the chain of infections, stressing that cases were “exploding dangerously” and “the war has begun again”, as he addressed people of the state on the unprecedented surge in Covid infections. Thackeray said from tomorrow, Section 144, which bans gathering of more than four people, would be in place across Maharashtra and only essential travel would be allowed. He also said from 7 am to 8 pm, only essential services would function. “Unnecessary travel should be stopped. Non-emergency travel should be stopped,” he said, adding that while he was not stopping public transport, trains and buses should be used only for essential travel. Services that will be allowed are medical, banks, media, ecommerce and fuel. “Last year on Gudi Padwa we had hoped for a coronafree festival this year… But now the war has begun again. And this time the cases are exploding dangerously,” Thackeray said. Maharashtra had recorded 60,212 new cases and 281 Covid-19 deaths today, the Chief Minister said. Thackeray requested the army’s help in tackling the oxygen and medicine shortage in the state. “Now we have 1,200 MT production of oxygen and we are using it all for medical purposes. We are using it to the hilt. I told the PM (Prime Minister Narendra Modi), BJP leaders face EC’s wrath NOVEL PROTEST NEW DELHI, 13 APRIL Delhi has reported over 13,500 cases in 24 hours, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said on Tuesday and appealed to the Centre to cancel the Class 10 and 12 board exams and explore alternative methods, including online exams. Warning that conducting the exams may contribute to the large-scale spread of the virus, he said the centres could emerge as major hotspots. “Six lakh children in Delhi are going to write CBSE exams. Nearly one lakh teachers will be a part of it. These (the centres) can become major hotspots leading to large-scale spreading of corona. Children’s lives and health are very important to us. I request the Centre to cancel the CBSE exams,” he said at a press conference today afternoon. The Central Board of Secondary Education can explore other methods, including online exams and promoting students on the basis of internal assessments, he said. “Several countries have done it, some states in India are doing it too. Some alternative methods could be thought of. Children can be promoted this time on the basis of either an online method or internal assessment. But the exams should be cancelled,” he added. The CBSE Class 10 and 12 exams are scheduled to begin on 4 May. With the exponential increase in cases, the chorus for cancellation or postponing the board exams PTI is growing. P12 First 100 beneficiaries of foreign vaccines will be assessed for a week for safety outcomes Min. 38% Delhi: 13,500 cases in 24 hrs, Kejriwal urges Centre to cancel board exams ‘BIG BOY WON’T BE MISSED IN TEST SERIES’ TRIANGULAR CONTEST IN BENGAL: HARIPRASAD NARENDRA MODI PRIME MINISTER pared to handle Covid-19, Modi said, “We understand fully that the mankind will not defeat the pandemic unless all of us, everywhere, regardless of the colour of our pass- ports, come out of it.” Modi noted that for over a year now, the best minds of every society have been engaged in battling the pandemic. All the governments of the world at all levels were trying to contain and control it. “Why did it come to this? Is it perhaps because in the race of economic development the concern for welfare of humanity has been left behind?” he wondered. India, he noted, has tried to “walk the talk” in its own humble way in the larger interest of humanity during the pandemic. “We have tried to protect our own 1.3 billion citizens from the pandemic. At the same time, we have also tried to support the pandemic response efforts of others,” he added. Modi said, “In our neighbourhood, we have encouraged our coordinated regional response to the crisis. Last year, we shared medicines and protective equipment with over 150 countries. This CMYK year, despite many constraints, we have supplied vaccines to over 80 countries.We know that the supplies have been modest. We know that the demands are huge. We know that it will be a long time before the entire humanity can be vaccinated. At the same time, we also know that hope matters. It matters as much to the citizens of the richest countries as it does to the less fortunate.” He said India would continue to share its experiences, its expertise and also its resources with the entire humanity in the fight against the pandemic. He called upon the participants at the “Raisina Dialogue” to emerge as a powerful voice for a human centric approach to grapple with the pandemic. there would be “Sitalkuchi in several places”, the EC asked him to respond to its notice making his stand clear on the issue by 10am on Wednesday. The notice said the Commission is of the considered view that Ghosh has in violation of various clauses of the Model Code of Conduct and provisions of the Representation of the People Act, 1951 and the Indian Penal Code “made statements that are provocative and can seriously incite the emotions”. This could “lead to a breakdown of law and order thereby adversely affecting the election process”, the notice said. The EC notice against Ghosh cited his alleged “nuaghty boys” remarks. looking at the condition, that in the coming days we will need Oxygen,” he said. “We are requesting the PM that instead of bringing oxygen by road, if we can take the military’s help and get it via air.” Thackeray said that while the state had postponed board exams, “we can’t postpone the exam we are giving currently and we have to pass this with flying colours.” Speculation of a lockdown led to panic buying by people. Vegetable vendors and general stores selling fastmoving consumer goods saw higher buying from around 5.30 pm when the CM’s office informed of Uddhav’s virtual address on Tuesday. “There is no certainty about the length of a lockdown or how strictly will it be implemented. It is better to buy essentials,” said a harried shopper in the suburb of Thane. Resort to Sec. 144: A Division Bench of Calcutta High Court Chief Justice TBN Radhakrishnan and Justice Arijit Banerjee today directed the West Bengal administration may, so far as possible, resort to the provisions of Section 144 of CrPC. The Chief Electoral Officer, West Bengal may issue such further guidelines as he may deem necessary to check the spread of Covid-19 due to gathering and rallies. The matter was listed for next hearing on 19 April when the CEO will file an affidavit. PM to virtually address AIU annual meet NEW DELHI, 13 APRIL Prime Minister Narendra Modi will virtually address the Association of Indian Universities’(AIU) 95th Annual Meet and National Seminar of vice-chancellors through video conferencing on 14-15 April. The main theme of the National Seminar of VCs will be ‘Implementing National Educational Policy-2020 to Transform Higher Education in India’. The seminar will seek to work out implementation strategies for the“National Education Policy-2020 with a clear-cut action plan on effectively implementing the policy in the interest of its primary stakeholders, the students,” a PMO press note stated. SNS Sushil Chandra takes over as 24th CEC STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE NEW DELHI, 13 APRIL Sushil Chandra assumed charge as the 24th Chief Election Commissioner on Tuesday. Chandra was appointed as an election commissioner on 15 February 2019, ahead of the Lok Sabha elections and was also an ex-officio member of the Delimitation Commission since 18 February 2020 looking after the process in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir. He would demit office on 14 May 2022. Under him, the EC will hold Assembly polls in Goa, Manipur, Uttarakhand, Punjab and Uttar Pradesh. He has served several posts in the Income-Tax Department for nearly 39 years and was also Chairman of the CBDT from 1 November 2016 to February 2019 where he had played an active role in unearthing illegal money often used during Assembly elections. With his continuous monitoring the seizures of cash, liquor, freebies, narcotics have increased substantially in recent elections. Chandra has constantly emphasised the concept of “inducement-free” elections.
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