CHENNAI SUNDAY JULY 05, 2020 `8.00 PAGES 24 LATE CITY EDITION MINISTRY REMOVES SALARY CAP ON INDIAN COACHES Sports minister Kiren Rijiju says elite Indian coaches will be eligible for over `2 lakh a month and four-year contracts REPRESENTATIVE PHOTO ATTRACTING FORMER ELITE ATHLETES TARGET CENTRES OF EXCELLENCE The ministry said future hirings will be like that of foreign coaches, for a four-year cycle in sync with Olympics. This move, according to ministry, has been taken “to attract ex-elite athletes into the high performance sporting ecosystem, and to use their experience and skill to train athletes bound for major international competitions, including the Olympics” ■ ■ All new coaches and existing coaches who are given the new contracts will be imparting training at national camps and SAI’s National Center of Excellence (NCOEs) The selection will be made jointly by the sports ministry and respective National Sports Federations 20 NUMBER OF NCOEs IN INDIA TO BENEFIT FROM THIS 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 EXPRESS READ I-T dept pushes for equalisation levy New Delhi: The I-T dept on Saturday notified changes to tax challans to make foreign e-commerce transactions liable for 2% equalisation levy. The first instalment of the tax is to be paid on July 7 | P10 ‘Most firms report revenue loss in Q4’ New Delhi: Companies across sectors suffered a 5% revenue dip and a 30% drop in operating profits in the 4th quarter of FY20, says a new SBI Ecowrap report | P10 3 Indian firms keen on monorail project Mumbai: BHEL, BEML and Titagarh have shown interest in manufacturing rakes for the monorail project, weeks after MMRDA scrapped the bids by two Chinese firms | P10 Kolkata bans flights from 6 cities Kolkata: No passenger flights will operate to Kolkata from Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Pune, Nagpur and Ahmedabad between July 6 and July 19, the Kolkata airport said on Saturday | P8 WITH THIS ISSUE THE FUTURE IS GREEN PLUS 12 PAGES ICMR defends vaccine China’s numerous border disputes push, says process in prove Modi’s point, say experts line with global norms P U S H K A R B A N A K A R @ New Delhi Clarifies its order to speed up clinical trial was meant to cut unnecessary red tape; statement mum on August 15 launch EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ New Delhi A day after the Indian Council of Medical Research was widely criticized for setting a deadline of sorts to develop an indigenous vaccine for Covid-19, the country’s apex health research body said on Saturday that its order to 12 hospitals to expedite clinical trials was in accordance with “globally accepted norms to fast track the vaccine development.” In a statement, the ICMR said its letter “to investigators of the clinical trial sites was meant to cut unnecessary red tape, without bypassing any necessary process, and speed up recruitment of participants.” It was, however, silent on the date of the launch of the vaccine, which had been fixed for August 15. ICMR director general Balram Bhargava’s July 2 letter directed the hospitals to get immediate approval by their internal research ethics committee and enroll subjects and complete the trial at the earliest as the government was looking to launch the vaccine for public use by August 15. It warned that “non-compliance will be viewed very seriously.” Saturday’s statement sought to defend the letter saying “after intense characterization and review of all data from BBIL, (the) ICMR is sup- porting the clinical development as the vaccine candidate appears to be promising.” The clarification said the “ICMR is committed to treat the safety and interest of people of India as a topmost priority Based on in-depth scruti.” ny of the available data from pre-clinical studies, the Drugs Controller General of India has accorded permission to conduct phase 1 and 2 clinical trial, the statement said, adding that in the larger public health interest, it was important for the ICMR to expedite the clinical trials with “a promising indigenous vaccine.” India’s nodal agency for Covid-19 management also said that just as red tape was not allowed to become a hindrance in the fast track approval of new indigenous testing kits or for introducing in the Indian market potential Covid-19 related drugs, the indigenous vaccine development process has also been sought to be insulated from slow file movement. The aim was to complete these phases as early as possible so that population-based trials for its efficacy could be initiated without delay, the ICMR said, adding that the trials would be done following the best practices and rigour and would be reviewed, as required, by a Data Safety MoniP7 toring Board. Trust our researchers, says ICMR The ICMR said that while criticism is welcome, one should not second-guess the best of India’s medical professionals and research scientists for their professionalism or adherence to the highest scientific rigour ‘Can’t expect a vaccine this yr’ A vaccine cannot be expected before early next year, as its development is a complex process, said Rakesh Mishra, Director of Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology 4,280 fresh cases, 65 deaths in Tamil Nadu E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ Chennai Tamil Nadu CM Edappadi K Palaniswami briefs Governor Banwarilal Purohit about the State’s Covid-19 response at Raj Bhavan on Saturday | EXPRESS LO C K D OW N R E L A XAT I O N S I N C H E N N A I IT/ITeS, private offices, industrial establishments, export-oriented units can operate with 50 per cent workforce in Chennai and parts of Tiruvallur, Kancheepuram and Chengalpattu. Organisations in other parts of the State can function with 100 per cent workforce from July 6 Except for malls, all showrooms and large format shops (viz. jewellery and textiles shops) can function between 10 a.m., and 6 p.m. with the guidelines already issued. e-pass mandatory for inter-district travel; not necessary for travel within the district TAMIL Nadu recorded over 4,000 new Covid-19 cases for the third day in a row. The state saw 4,280 fresh cases against 35,426 people being tested. As TN’s caseload reaches 1,07,001, 65 deaths were also recorded, taking the toll to 1,450. Days before Chennai exits an intense lockdown, the city accounted for 1,842 of the new cases. Its surrounding districts of Chengalpattu, Kancheepuram and Tiruvallur accounted for 215, 133 and 251 cases respectively Together the capital in its surroundings . accounted for 57 per cent of new cases, compared to 90 per cent on June 7. Indicating the shift in caseload to the southern districts, Madurai reported another 352 cases on Saturday taking its tally to a whopping , 3,776. On June 4, the district’s total number of cases was just 283. On Saturday, the State government extended Madurai’s intense lockdown by another week till July 12. Including Chennai, 14 districts now have over 1,000 Covid cases. The city finally hit the 10,000-test mark, with corporation data showing it tested 10,142 people on July 3. With 2,214 more people being discharged, the total number of recoveries stands at 60,592, while 44,956 cases are still active. Among the 65 deaths recorded on Sunday 37 were from Chennai. , TRACING HISTORY Weighing stones unearthed from Keezhadi V I G N E S H V @ Sivaganga IN a span of two weeks, the State Archaeological department has unearthed four weighing stones from Keezhadi site. Sources said that the latest find is another piece of evidence for trade activities during the pre-historic era. Deputy Director of the archaeology department R Sivanandan said that all four stones weighing 8, 18, 150 and 300 grams, with a flat base, are made of basalt and are spherical in shape, black in colour and finely polished. “These stones could have All the four stones weighing 8, 18, 150 and 300 grams, are made of basalt and are spherical in shape | EXPRESS been used to weigh objects. They were found near a furnace along with iron and copper objects and glass slags. The presence of charcoal in all levels, especially in the furnace found 0.61 metre below the ground level, suggests this was a foundry or used for firing activities. This means the site could have been an industrial area to produce beads,” he said. Another significant factor is the stones’ weight in grams. “In the modern world, we still measure expensive items (like gold) in grams. So, the stones were used for measuring the weight of small items like beads. The department has so far not found any scale that could weigh the stones and beads. The weighing scale could have been ruined with the passage of time,” he P3 said. The new-found 300 gm stone During earlier excavations (both by ASI and State archaeology department) the stones were found but not the ones that weigh 300 grams. “On Saturday, we unearthed a stone weighing 5 grams,” Sivanandan pointed out. The 300 gram stone measures 57.88 mm in diametre CHINA on Friday refuted Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s remarks of expansionism but Beijing has an ongoing border/maritime dispute with 18 countries primarily because of its claims on the other country’s territory or waters. In the South China Sea, it has disputes with countries such as Vietnam, Taiwan, Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines. Despite a 2016 arbitration ruling against its claims, Beijing continues to push its claims for jurisdiction over the resource-rich region. China is also involved in a tussle with Japan over the ownership of the Senkaku Islands, known as Diaoyudao Islands in China. While the administration of the waters has been with the Japanese, China lays claim to the islands. As recently as Thursday, the Japanese had lodged a protest when two Chinese vessels entered their territory . China also lays claims to Mongolia, citing historical precedents. Beijing does not recognize its norther n neighbour. With India, apart from the Ladakh sector where it has a border dispute, China also does not recognize Arunachal Pradesh to be part of India’s territory Its maps . include India’s northeastern state. “Yes of course China is pursuing expansionism. But China is so hypersensitive about its perceived sovereignty that it forgets that it has another role to play as a modern nation,” said Debashis Chaudhari of the Institute of Chinese Studies. B R Deepak, Sinologist and chairperson of the Centre for Chinese and South Asian Studies at JNU, echoed his views saying China was quick to accuse others of imperialist expansionism but never accepted its own imperial expansionism. “Modi has struck the right chords when he talked about expansionism, no wonder China knew who the target was and came up with their explanations. China has laid huge territorial claims in the South China Sea where her claims are being fiercely contested by many other countries,” CONTINUED ON: P7 he said. I N T E R V I E W ‘We lost 26 lakh man-hours in last two months’ R A M U PAT I L @ Bengaluru MANY ongoing defence projects at the state-owned Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) are likely to be hit due to the Covid-19induced disruption in the supply chain in India and abroad. HAL Chairman and Managing Director R Madhavan told TNIE that getting materials from sub-contractors, mostly MSMEs, and some big firms is crucial for their projects. “We lost 26 lakh man-hours in the last two months. Currently, it is recoverable as long as material starts coming. But our main problem is with the supply chain,” Madhavan said while hoping for an improvement in the situation. The ongoing projects, including Light Combat Aircraft Tejas, Su-30MKI repair and overhaul, Intermediate Jet Trainer that is designed and developed by the PSU, and Advanced Light Helicopter, are likely to take a hit | P7
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