kannur l thursday l December 24, 2020 l `7.00 l PAGES 14 l city EDITION Covaxin’s early trials show promising results Bharat Biotech’s coronavirus vaccine has shown dual immune response, according to phase 1 & 2 results released on Wednesday Vaccine candidate currently in Phase-3 High Antibodies in Phase-1 volunteers The vaccine has proceeded to phase 3 trial and the company has planned to test it in 26,000 individuals aged between 12 and 65 years across several states in the country. The Hyderabad-based firm, which has developed the vaccine in collaboration with the ICMR, has already sought P7 emergency use approval from the Drug Controller General of India ■ ■ In a double-blind, multi-centre, phase 2 clinical trial, 380 healthy individuals were randomised to receive two vaccine formulations and two intramuscular doses of vaccines four weeks apart In a follow-up of the phase 1 trial, Covaxin produced high levels of neutralising antibodies that remained elevated in all participants 6-12 months Researchers claim Covaxin’s antibodies could last that long 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 Talks ball back Teacher who wrote & fought for nature and weaker lot in Centre’s court as farmers seek concrete ideas E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @ T’Puram E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @ New Delhi/Chandigarh The weeks-long deadlock over the new farm laws continued on Wednesday with farmer unions demanding that the Union government offer concrete proposals, abandon its stubbornness and accept their demands to end their agitation. Both sides have now indicated they are ready for talks without budging on their core agenda. After a meeting of their umbrella body, the Sanyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM), farmer leaders said they were ready for talks but are waiting for the Centre to come to the table with an open mind. In a letter addressed to Vivek Aggarwal, Joint Secretary in the Union agriculture ministry, they said there was no clarity on various sticking points like guaranteeing the minimum support price mechanism, electricity amendment (ordinance) and ordinance on air quality . The Centre is already on record as saying that it is ready to discuss and address all concerns of the agitating farmers. And Prime Minister Narendra Modi will continue his outreach by interacting with farmers from six states on Friday . The day will also see nine crore farmers receiving `18,000 crore in their bank accounts through direct transfer as part of the PM Kisan Saman Nidhi Yojna. Farmers gesture during their ongoing protest against the new farm sector reform laws, at the Singhu border in Delhi on Wednesday | Parveen Negi Committed to reforms Union agriculture minister Narendra Singh Tomar said the government will continue with reforms in the farm sector. “However old and strong the protest is, a solution can be arrived at only through talks,” he said “We urge the government not to repeat the meaningless amendments we have already rejected but come up with a concrete proposal in writing so that the process of negotiation can be started as soon as possible,” Swaraj Abhiyan chief Yogendra Yadav said. He is a member of the SKM. “The government is constantly holding talks with socalled farmer leaders and org anisations who are not associated with our movement. This is an attempt to break our movement. It is dealing with protesting farmers, the way it deals with the Opposition,’’ Yadav added. EXPRESS READ Shanavas dies of heart attack Kochi: Sufiyum Sujathayum director Shanavas Naranipuzha, who suffered a massive heart attack on the sets of a movie at Attappadi, Palakkad, died at a hospital in Kochi on Wednesday. P5 Teachers decry harsh action over valuation errors T’Puram: After the Higher Secondary Directorate said action would be taken if a variation of five marks or above occurs during examination valuation, teachers expressed concern regarding the ‘harsh measures’ against them. f ace i t Full declaration of ingredients, not cosmetic, must S u m i S u k a n ya D u t ta @ New Delhi It has now become mandatory for manufacturers of cosmetics and make-up products in India to declare all ingredients, even those with concentration of less than 1%, to help buyers make more informed choices. Thus far, there was no Central law mandating them to declare the full composition of their skin and make-up products — though there is such a rule for drugs — and licences were granted without getting detailed information. In order to ensure greater quality control of cosmetic products being manufactured, imported and used in India, the government has also decided to set up the first Central Cosmetics Laboratory and appoint inspectors across states. Till now, there have been very few instances of crackdown on makers of spurious cosmetics. Under the new cosmetics rules, 2020 notified by the Union ministry of health and family welfare recently following consultations with the drug technical advisory board, hair dyes containing paraphenylenediamine or other dyes, colours and pigments should be labelled with specified warnings. Special provisions have been introduced on fluoride content in toothpaste as well. It not be more than 1000 ppm and the fluoride content shall be mentioned on the tube and carton. According to the new norms, no cosmetic, the manufacture, sale or distribution of which is prohibited in the country of origin, can be imported. B Sugathakumari, who touched the hearts of millions with her soulful verses on nature and weaker people, and fought firmly for their causes, passed away here on Wednesday noon. The mortal remains of the 86-year-old, who breathed her last at the Thiruvananthapuram Medical College Hospital, was laid to rest with state honours at Santhikavadom. She was admitted to the MCH on Monday, after developing complications due to Covid-19. She died due to multiple organ failure. Sugathakumari, who started writing poems as a college student in 1957, soon replaced her B Sugathakumari 22 Jan 1934-23 Dec 2020 lyrical style with rather grim themes --- those that dealt with social and environmental issues. As she starkly depicted the lives of the vulnerable, loneliness and despair often became the underlying themes. She became a poet of compassion as her poems offered solace to the hurt. Many of them also echoed the concern for nature and the love lost between human beings and mother earth. Her works ‘Rathrimazha’, ‘Ambalamani’, ‘Paavam Manavahridayam’, ‘Swapnabhoomi’, ‘Irul Chirakukal’, ‘Manalezhuthu’ and ‘Pathirapookkal’ all found immense connect with the people as she herself had recounted an experience while travelling in the Middle East. A Keralite who was toiling in the sun came up to her car, touched her hand and sang the lines of ‘Rathrimazha’ before crying out loudly . Through her poems and activism, ‘Sugathakumari Teach- Case of sex and murder, says court. Priest, nun get life term E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @T’Puram “A case of sex and murder indeed”, said the CBI Special Court in Thiruvananthapuram while delivering the sentence against the culprits in the Sr Abhaya murder case on Wednesday The court . has sentenced Fr Thomas Kottoor and Sr Sephy to life imprisonment, a day after pronouncing the duo guilty of murdering the young nun who accidentally witnessed them engage in sexual acts. Special Court Judge K Sanilkumar also imposed a fine of `6.5 lakh on first accused Kottoor and `5.5 lakh on third accused Sephy. The CBI court had discharged second accused Fr Jose Poothrikkayil Fr Thomas Kottoor and Sr Sephy being taken to prison after the court sentences them | Express WHAT THE Judge SAID K also imposed 1 Judge ofSanilkumaron first a fine C6.5 lakh accused Kottoor and C5.5 lakh on third accused Sephy 2 The court had discharged secondaccused Fr Jose Poothrikkayil The court reached the conclusion by relying on the statements of social worker Kalarcode Venugopal, ex-thief Adakka Raju, medical report and circumstantial evidence 3 two years ago for want of evidence. “The fact that the accused persons were caught in flagrante delicto (“in blazing offence”) provoked (them) to do away with the deceased,” read the judgment, which backed the prosecution’s “copper bottomed allegation” that the case was one of sex and murder. Abhaya’s death was a homicide, and it has been proved that the “sexual act was the cause of the murder and murder was the effect of the sexual act”, the judgment said. The court reached the conclusion by relying on the statements of social worker Kalarcode Venugopal, petty thief Adakka Raju, Sephy’s medical examination report and circumstantial evi● More on P5 dence. er’, as she was fondly called, made people realise several problems that left unaddressed and united them to raise their voice and seek justice. Her concern for nature made her take up the fight to preserve the evergreen forest in Silent Valley, the very existence of which was under threat in the late 1970sfollowing a proposal to build a power generation project there. ‘Save Silent Valley’ became a successful nationwide movement and more importantly was instr umental in the formation of the Forest Conservation Act. Silent Valley was declared a national heritage in ● More on P4 1986. sarah joseph : she had a life devoted to others | P4 A poet who stood for humanity, Sugathakumari believed that wherever people are suffering, a poet should reach there. If she could not reach personally, her mind reached out to them. She was a poet who bore the pain and sufferings of this era. This is a big loss to us M T Vasudevan Nair, writer Guv replies to CM: Your duty to keep me informed E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @ T’Puram Budget on Jan 15, to unveil grand plan Kochi: Finance Minister T M Thomas Isaac will present the LDF government’s final budget on January 15. He projected it as a “watershed budget that builds on the strength of Kerala’s local self-government”. GOVERNOR Arif Mohammed Khan has responded to Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan’s letter, saying he rejected the cabinet’s recommendation to convene a special assembly session on Wednesday because the government failed to convey the factors that necessitated it. He also sought to remind the chief minister that it was his duty to keep the governor informed of the government’s decisions. In his letter to the governor on Tuesday the , CM had said that Khan’s decision was contrary to the constitutional scheme. In his reply the governor said the farmers’ protest in , Delhi was an issue in which the state had no jurisdiction so as to offer any solution. Khan also expressed his displeasure over the contents of the CM’s letter to him -- which was marked “confidential” -- being released to the media. The governor said the government had on December 18 recommended convening of the budget session of the assembly on January 8 for which approval was given on De● More on P5 cember 21.
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