CHENNAI TUESDAY JUNE 09, 2020 `7.00 PAGES 20 LATE CITY EDITION INDIA, CHINA STAND-OFF TALKS POSITIVE, SAYS RAJNATH Defence Minister Rajnath Singh called Saturday’s high-level talks to end the ongoing military standoff at LAC positive THRUST ON MODI-XI CONSENSUS Rajnath said the two countries agreed to resolve disputes, present and future, through talks. His comments came on a day when China’s foreign ministry said, “the two sides need to implement the two leaders’ consensus,” referring to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President agreeing on not letting border differences become disputes 3,488 km STAND-OFF MAY STRETCH LONGER ■ ■ “The India-China border dispute is a long-standing dispute. We want this border dispute to get resolved quickly.” In no case we will let anyone hurt our respect and pride, Rajnath said Saturday’s talks, however, failed to end the stand-off, which Army sources now say could stretch for another month IS THE LENGTH OF THE INDIA-CHINA LINE OF ACTUAL CONTROL (LAC) CHENNAI ■ MADURAI ■ VIJAYAWADA ■ BENGALURU ■ KOCHI ■ HYDERABAD ■ VISAKHAPATNAM ■ COIMBATORE ■ KOZHIKODE ■ THIRUVANANTHAPURAM ■ BELAGAVI ■ BHUBANESWAR ■ SHIVAMOGGA ■ MANGALURU ■ TIRUPATI ■ TIRUCHY ■ TIRUNELVELI ■ SAMBALPUR ■ HUBBALLI ■ DHARMAPURI ■ KOTTAYAM ■ KANNUR ■ VILLUPURAM ■ KOLLAM ■ WARANGAL ■ TADEPALLIGUDEM ■ NAGAPATTINAM ■ THRISSUR ■ KALABURAGI Bank credit growth may crash to 1% in FY21, warns Crisil EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ New Delhi WITH the Covid-19 pandemic almost certain to result in GDP contraction this fiscal year, the rate at which banks disburse loans is likely to slow down drastically. According to domestic ratings agency Crisil Ratings, bank credit growth is likely to nosedive to a multidecade low of just between zero to one per cent in the current financial year (FY21). This number had stood around 6% in the previous year. “This crisis is unprecedented and so will its economic fallout be,” said Krishnan Sitaraman, senior director, CRISIL Ratings, noting that subsequent lower capital expenditure demand and lower discretionary spends will slow down credit disbursal significantly . In fact, credit growth is expected to remain positive only due to lower repayments due to the moratorium and capitalisation of accumulated interest. “The corporate loan portfolio, which constitutes almost half of total credit, is expected to be the worst-hit, and de-grow this fiscal. The lockdown has led to significant disruption in operations with limited capacity utilisation across sectors,” he added. The new estimates are a far cry from Crisil’s rather opti- SHARE OF ECONOMIES IN RECESSION 1871-2021 60 40 20 0 1871 1901 1931 1961 1991 2021 S U M I S U K A N YA D U T TA @ New Delhi Shaded areas refer to global recessions. Data for 2020-21 based on forecast THE first population-based serosurvey in India, conducted to assess the extent of exposure to SARS-CoV-2, the pathogen behind Covid-19, found that as many as one-third of the population in various containment zones in hotspot cities may have already been infected and quietly recovered. The survey conducted by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), whose preliminary findings have been shared with the Union cabinet secretary and the Prime Minister’s Office, found that in several containment areas in high case load districts, 15 to 30% population has been exposed to the infection, government sources told this newspaper. Serosurvey involves collection of blood samples of people to test for the presence of antibodies specific to a pathogen. In this case, it was meant to test for IgG antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 that normally appear 14 days after the infection and continues to be present in the blood serum for months. The ICMR, with the help from the National Centre for Disease Control, World Health Organization’s India office and state governments, had collect- Source: World Bank World Bank projects India’s GDP growth at -3.2% for 2020-21 SPILLOVER IMPACT From 4.2% in FY20 to -3.2% for FY21, the contraction projected by the World Bank for India is rather steep. The pandemic and the multiphased lockdown have clearly choked the economy. The contraction in the Indian economy will have a spillover impact in South Asia, says World Bank ADVANCED ECONOMIES It expects economic activity among advanced economies to shrink 7% in 2020 WHY RECESSIONS ARE SCARY Deep recessions are likely to do long-term damage to investment, erode human capital through unemployment, and hurt global trade and supply linkages WORST RECESSION SINCE WORLD WAR-II Global economy has experienced 14 recessions since 1870 -- in 1876, 1885, 1893, 1908, 1914, 1917-21, 193032, 1938, 1945-46, 1975, 1982, 1991, 2009 and 2020. This year’s is going to be the worst since World War-II, the World Bank warns WORLD GDP TO CONTRACT 5.2% Global economy will shrink by 5.2% this year, representing the deepest recession since the Second World War LOCKDOWN IMPACT Shutdown measures to contain the coronavirus pandemic have plunged the global economy into a severe contraction as demand and supply, trade, and finance have been severely disrupted EXPRESS CENTRAL PROBE CONTINUED ON: P14 ‘PVT BANKS HESITANT TO GIVE MSME LOANS’ While state-owned banks such as State Bank of India have started extending loans under the `3 lakh crore credit scheme for the MSME sector, private lenders are dillydallying in implementing the Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme, RSS-affiliated industry body Laghu Udyog Bharti told Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday 15-30% people living in containment zones could be infected, cured: Survey 100 80 mistic earlier prediction, made in February of 8-9% bank cred, it growth for the current year. “In other words, the impact of the pandemic on credit growth will be a whopping 800 basis points (bps),” the agency warned. Crisil Ratings expects GDP to contract by 5% during FY21, toeing the general line taken by most economists that negative GDP growth this fiscal is a near certainty . ed nearly 24,000 samples from 70 districts in the country from randomly picked individuals. These included the 10 hotspot cities — Mumbai, Ahmadabad, Pune, Delhi, Kolkata, Indore, Thane, Jaipur, Chennai and Surat — that contribute nearly 70% to India’s total case load. Five hundred samples each from 10 randomly chosen containment areas in every city were taken. In addition, 400 samples each from other 60 districts across 21 states — categorised on the basis of low, medium and high case load — were also collected. “Barring the two hotspot cities of Surat and Kolkata and six other districts, we now have results from all other sites. It shows that infection size in many containment areas in the worst-hit districts is 100-fold to 200-fold higher than the cases reported at those sites,” an official privy to the survey report said. Data for eight districts are still being analysed and will be added to the final report. Another official said the 100200 times higher infection size were mainly found in Mumbai, Pune, Delhi, Ahmadabad and Indore among others, which have been the hardest hit by the CONTINUED ON: P11 virus. ANIL SHAKYA Key questions What is serosurvey? It means testing blood samples in a population for a specific purpose. In this case, the samples were tested for presence of antibodies against SARSCoV-2, the virus that causes Covid-19. The presence of antibodies would confirm the person was exposed to the virus and has since recovered How was this serosurvey conducted? Nearly 24,000 samples from 70 districts across 21 states - including 10 hotspot cities - were to be collected and tested. Data analysed for 62 districts or cities so far What are the findings? * Very high exposure level in some cities; very low exposure in rural areas. In some areas, 15-30% of the population exposed to infection. In some spots, infection size is 100-200 times higher than the cases reported there so far What are the implications? It gives policy makers and epidemiologists data that can be used for disease control and mitigation. In some badly hit areas, the population is closer to herd immunity than elsewhere. Herd immunity for Covid-19 is expected when 60-70% of the population is exposed to it State tally reaches 33,229 The Statewide tally stands at 33,229, while the number of active cases, 15,413. Death toll stands at 286. The number of discharged patients so far is 17,527 Ranipet 6 Vellore 32 Dharmapuri 13 Salem 3 Erode 2 Dindigul 9 Madurai 5 Theni 2 Virudhunagar 4 Tenkasi 3 Thoothukudi 26 Tirunelveli 3 Kanniyakumari 7 1,562 286 deaths due to Covid Seventeen more people died due to Covid-19 on Monday. Twelve of those who died were from Chennai. The total number of deaths in the State stood at 286 HC asks govt to consider pushing boards The Madras High Court on Monday asked the State government to consider postponing the Class-X board examinations. It also asked for a comprehensive report on the arrangements that have been made by the school education department. A division bench heard petitions seeking postponement of the examinations for another two months. NAGARAJA GADEKAL Tiruvallur 57 Kancheepuram 18 Chennai 1,149 Chengalpattu 134 Tiruvannamalai 11 Villupuram 3 Kallakurichi 9 Cuddalore 7 Ariyalur 1 Nagapattinam 5 Thiruvarur 3 Thanjavur 4 Pudukkottai 3 Sivaganga 7 Ramanathapuram 6 cases; health min scotches rumours on bed shortage E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ Chennai ON a day when the State recorded 1,562 fresh Covid-positive cases — including 1,149 in Chennai — and 17 deaths, Health Minister C Vijayabhaskar rejected rumours that there aren’t enough hospital beds in the city Assuring that . adequate beds are in place, he warned of strict action against those spreading rumours. “In Chennai alone, we have 5,000 beds in five government hospitals with ventilator capacity. Chennai Corporation’s care centres have 17,000 beds. There are 75,000 beds across the State,’’ the minister said on Monday . However, a look at the bed status on the government’s www.stopcoronatn.in website revealed that six of 25 private hospitals in Chennai were full while some hospitals were filled up to 75 per cent capacity. Among them, ICU beds in at least eight hospitals were full. But, more than 10 private hospitals which recently started treating Covid-19, have vacant beds. Among the government facilities, officials at KMC and Stanley Hospital said beds for Covid patients were almost fully occupied, whereas in Omandurar, 160 beds are available out of the total capacity of 500. “In KMC, the bed capacity is 400 and it’s almost full,” said a hospital official. Officials at Stanley said that only eight beds are available while close to 800 beds are occupied. “We are sending stable patients to care centres,” the official added. Officials at RGGGH too said the beds were “almost full” and they were moving patients to care centres. With 17 more deaths, toll in the State went up to 286 while cases reached 33,229. Active cases stood at 15,413. Twelve of those who died were from Chennai and the state capital’s overall tally touched 23,298. The Minister said that the recovery rate is 56 per cent and currently, only six patients are there on ventilators in the State. Total discharges (17,527) are higher than active cases (15,413). PARVEEN NEGI PATIENT HACKED TO DEATH INSIDE GH Elephant might have accidentally chewed explosive pineapple: MoEF V I G N E S H V @ Madurai E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ Kochi PRIMARY investigations have revealed that the pregnant elephant that died in Kerala might have accidentally consumed a fruit stuffed with explosives, the Environment Ministry said on Monday . The ministry said locals in Kerala resort to an illegal act of planting explosive-filled fruits to stop wild boars from entering plantation farms. The 15-year-old elephant had suffered grievous injuries as the fruit exploded in its mouth in the Silent Valley forest. It died in the Velliyar River a week later on May 27. In a series of tweets, the ministry said one person has been arrested in connection with the incident. Mannarkkad DFO K K Sunil Kumar, who is leading the investigation, told TNIE that a search was on for the two others who are absconding. Minister of State for Environment Babul Supriyo requested people not to believe ‘rumours’. The ministry also observed the Kerala government seems to be handling the matter in an unbiased manner. TA M I L N A DU COV I D -1 9 BAT T L E HARDLY ANY FOOTFALL AS FRESH ACTIVITIES OPEN (From left) The Devi temple at Devi Chowk in Andhra Pradesh’s Rajamahedravaram waits for devotees; Muslims step out of Jama Masjid after offering Zohar namaz; very few people at the UB City mall in Bengaluru; and sparse customers at the Cha Bar restaurant in New Delhi’s iconic Connaught Place. All of them opened for the first time on Monday after two months of lockdown AN armed gang in Madurai murdered a 40-year-old patient inside a hospital, right in front of his wife and other patients. The incident happened early in the morning at the Government Rajaji Hospital. The deceased, V Murugan (40) from Karumbalai in Madurai, was admitted after he suffered a stroke on June 5. Murugan was accused in the murder of 27-year-old S Rajasekar, on July 19, 2019. He was out on bail when he was hospitalised. Police sources believe the assailants may have entered through the kitchen gate. The assailants wore face masks and carried sharp weapons. Police say the murder could be the result of a gang rivalry between Rajasekar and one Chandru for whom Murugan was working in the past. HOTSPOT WOES Bookings full: At Kasimedu crematorium, the departed face long wait H A R I S H M U R A L I & N I R U PA M A V I S W A N AT H A N @ Chennai CREMATIONS in the gasifier crematorium at Kasimedu are running into delays with residents having to wait hours to cremate their kith and kin. As deaths related to Covid-19 are on the rise in the area and its surroundings, corporation officials are now scheduling bur- ials and cremations, asking residents to come at the prescribed times. Tondiarpet has been one of the most-affected zones in the Chennai city corporation’s limits with 23 deaths while Royapuram has recorded the highest number of deaths at 45. H o w e v e r, o f f i c i a l s a t Royapuram said cremations in the zone were currently done only at Moolakothalam, resulting in many cremations of Royapuram residents being performed at Tondiarpet zone’s Kasimedu Hindu crematorium. N Lakshmikanth, a resident of Royapuram whose 75-yearold uncle passed away at Stanley hospital due to Covid-19, said he had to wait almost a day to cremate him. ‘Time slots given’ Corporation officials in Tondiarpet told Express that timings were being given to residents to keep residents from waiting. “We can only perform up to eight cremations a day. So the rest will have to be done the next day,” the official said. “I was handed the body at 12.30pm on Sunday an hour af, ter he died but it was difficult to get his body cremated by evening at the Kasimedu crematorium. Already seven bod, ies of Covid-19 victims were waiting for funeral proceedings,” said Lakshmikanth. He further added that he was directed to Mullai Nagar cremation ground by corporation authorities. However, after reaching there, he found that five bodies were waiting to be cremated, leading to anxiety among the grieving family . Lakshmikanth said he was told by officials to take the body back to the mortuary and come back at 11:30am on Monday His uncle was finally cre. mated by noon at the Kasimedu crematorium.
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