VILLUPURAM WEDNESDAY JULY 22, 2020 `7.00 PAGES 12 CITY EDITION IPL READY TO FLY OFF TO UAE, MINISTRY APPROVAL SOUGHT Though not ruled out, uncertainty over Covid-19 situation casts shadow over T20 extravaganza taking place in India SITUATION BETTER IN GULF COUNTRY IPL 2014 ADDED ADVANTAGE FOR UAE Return of normalcy and resumption of flight operations from UAE to UK, Australia, US factors favouring Gulf nation. Request to stage IPL has been sent to ministries of home, external affairs and sports. IPL Governing Council chairman Brijesh Patel says state-of-the-art infrastructure is also a reason why the BCCI wants to stage the event in UAE ■ ■ ■ UAE is not a new destination for IPL. Part of the 2014 edition was held there due to the Lok Sabha elections in India Franchises and team owners to be informed about details and logistics after IPL Governing Council meeting Emirates Cricket Board to be approached after ministry approval 3 IF IN UAE, IPL MATCHES WILL TAKE PLACE IN SHARJAH, ABU DHABI, DUBAI 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 Part of Phase III trial of Oxford vaccine in India The Covid shot will be priced under `1,000, says Adar Poonawalla S U M I S U K A N YA D U T TA & S U D H I R S U R YA W A N S H I @ New Delhi/Mumbai THE Phase III clinical trial of a potential vaccine candidate against Covid-19, developed by Oxford University will also in, volve more than 1,500 volunteers across many hospitals in India and could begin as early as the first week of August. Its experimental vaccine AZD1222, which has been licensed to AstraZeneca, showed promising immune response in early-stage clinical trials, raising hopes that it could be available for public use by the end of the year. Adar Poonawalla, the CEO of the Serum Institute of India, which has entered into a manufacturing partnership with AstraZeneca, told this newspaper that based on the success of the trials, his company was expecting to launch the vaccine by the year-end. “We will start making one billion doses for India and other low-and-middle-income INSIDE Adar Poonawalla Warning on valve masks The Centre on Monday warned against inappropriate use of N95 masks with respiratory valves. “The use of valved respirator N95 masks ... does not prevent the virus from escaping out of the mask,” it said countries. I believe by the first quarter of next year it will start reaching the masses,” he said. Poonawalla claimed it was too early to comment on the vaccine’s price but “we will keep it under `1,000.” The Indian leg of the trial is important because of the normally higher pre-existing immunity levels in our population. If Indians happen to be 23.5% OF DELHI HAS PAST HISTORY OF COVID INFECTION, FINDS SURVEY I P7 immune to the common cold virus or adenovirus that infects chimpanzees — which has been genetically modified to become the building block of the Oxford vaccine candidate — volunteers taking the shot in India could possibly not develop a strong immunological response. “Pre-existing immunity may vary across the world. Some studies indicate that it could be 80% in India, 60% in South Africa and under 30% in the US, so it’s important to assess how the vaccine works among Indians,” an official explained. The Serum Institute will seek approvals from the Drug Controller General of India next week for the Phase III trials. “India has a very heterogeneous population and while the effect of the vaccine in Indian population may not be very different from the Western population, we will not know unless we test it here,” Dr Rajeev Dhere, the executive director told this newspaper. AMARNATH YATRA CANCELLED AMID COVID WORRY, AARTI TO BE TELECAST LIVE: SHRINE BOARD I P7 GEHLOT UNEASY AS COURT RESERVES ORDER TILL FRIDAY R A J E S H A S N A N I & R I C H A S H A R M A @ Jaipur / New Delhi THE Rajasthan High Court on Tuesday gave a larger window of comfort to deposed state Congress unit chief Sachin Pilot by reserving its order on disqualification notices till July 24, upsetting Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot who is in a tearing hurry to stamp out rebellion. For his part, Gehlot held a string of meetings on Tuesday dropping hints that he may soon test his strength in the Assembly He also kept up his attack . on Pilot despite the party high command asking him to temper his comments. Gehlot is worried about the delay in verdict as he has to continue keeping his MLAs in Fairmont Hotel to prevent defection. “Pilot will approach the Supreme Court if the HC decides in favour of the Speaker. That is why Gehlot is pushing for a session to CONTINUED ON: P7 end the political drama,” said a senior leader. Vaccine: screening for trial begins in TN S I N D U J A J A N E @ Chennai EVEN as the State’s Covid-19 tally inches towards two lakh, the SRM Medical College Hospital and Research Centre, Kattankulathur, has begun screening volunteers for human trials of Covaxin, the first indigenous Covid vaccine, before administering it to them. The SRM research centre is the only institute in Tamil Nadu to be given approval by the Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR) to conduct human trials of the Covaxin. COVID TESTS Madurai officials told to file status report EX P R ESS N E WS S E RV I C E @ Madurai AWAY FROM HOME A marmoset, a mammal native to South America, was among the several exotic animals that were seized from a Howrah-origin freight train at Chennai on Tuesday. Four people have been detained in connection with the incident | P JAWAHAR EXPRESS READ Spl scheme for veggie farmers launched Chennai: Giving effect to an announcement made by Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami recently, the State government has launched a special scheme for providing incentive to farmers who cultivate vegetables during the off-season. A sum of `2,500 per hectare will be given as incentive to them. ENS Senior IAS officer from TN to join PMO in Delhi Chennai: P Amudha, a senior IAS officer from Tamil Nadu who is currently on a deputation to the Central government, has been appointed as Joint Secretary at the office of the Prime Minister (PMO) in New Delhi. Currently, she is a professor at Lal Bahadur Shastri National Academy of Administration at Mussourie. ENS TAKING suo motu cognisance of media reports on the delay in getting Covid-19 results in Madurai district, the Madurai Bench of Madras High Court directed the dean of Government Rajaji Hospital (GRH) and the special monitoring officer of Madurai to file a detailed report on the availability of resources to tackle the pandemic in the district. Replying to the questions raised by the Court in the suo motu case, Additional Advocate General (AAG) K Chellapandian told the Court that so far, 1,07,167 persons had undergone Covid-19 test in Madurai and 8,358 of them tested positive. The AAG also informed that the Covid ward in GRH has 1,461 beds, of which 723 are occupied. “In addition to this, 30 private hospitals, including one each in Thirumangalam and Usilampatti, have been permitted to treat Covid patients. The private hospitals have 878 beds in total and 182 of them are vacant,” he added. Regarding the district’s capacity to conduct Covid tests and treatment, he said that GRH has six machines, 150 lab technicians, 19 microbiology experts and 120 doctors (including PG students). There are five private labs as well. There are four Covid Care Centres with a total capacity of 2,720 beds in the district. The AAG said that among these, 495 are occupied and 2,225 are available. FIRST IN TN Assam jumbo to return home after 6 years SV K RISHN A CH AITANYA @ Chennai DEIVANAI made several headlines ever since she stepped into Tamil Nadu in 2014. The female elephant was just sixyears old when she was brought to the South on a three-year lease from Assam. Her violent behaviour towards caretakers soon made her notorious among the temple elephants in Tamil Nadu. The Forest Department has now decided to send her back to Assam, almost three years after her lease period had expired. Now aged 12, Deivanai, if allowed to return to Assam, would be the first elephant in A file photo of Deivanai | EXPRESS Tamil Nadu to be sent back to its native State. Animal rights activists are keenly watching the procedures as Deivani’s return would set a precedent for sending back other illegally kept jumbos in the State. The move to send the animal back was revealed by Madurai forest division in an RTI reply to activist Antony Clement Rubin. On May 24 this year, Deivanai had trampled to death her assistant mahout S Kalidasan (32) at Subramaniya Swami Temple in Tiruparankundram, following which she was shifted to the elephant rehabilitation centre at MR Palayam in Tiruchy. However, on July 17, Deivanai attacked another assistant mahout Charan (24) while he was giving her a bath. The severely injured mahout is undergoing treatment. Activists have welcomed the decision to send the jumbo back, but have also raised sevP5 eral questions. Activist questions delay Rights activist Rubin said Deivanai should not have been held in illegal possession after expiry of her lease. Had the bad temper of the elephant been monitored properly, a death would have been avoided. Speaking to Express, an official source in the research centre said that they have received calls and mails from many volunteers who expressed willingness to participate in the human trial of Phase I. “We have selected some volunteers and begun screening them. Once we get all their test reports, we will begin to adFRESH CASES DEATHS Daily figure hovers around 5K-mark Tamil Nadu’s daily caseload hovered around the 5,000mark for another day after 4,965 people were confirmed positive for the viral infection on Tuesday. As many as 75 deaths were reported on the day TOTAL CASES TOTAL TOLL 4,965 75 1,80,643 2,626 minister the Covaxin dose to them,” the source said. The ICMR has partnered with Bharat Biotech International Limited to fast track the clinical trials of the vaccine In another development, Health Minister C Vijaya Baskar, who is visiting Coimbatore to take stock of the containment measures, said the Tamil Nadu Medical Services Corporation (TNMSC) would soon place an order for 60,000 Remdesivir vials and termed it as a live-saving drug to treat P4 Covid-19 patients.
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