The great rush amid sharp spike Migrant workers stand in close proximity outside the Hatia railway station in Ranchi to board trains to go back home. Workers have been making a beeline for transport facilities amid a sharp rise in number of cases and fears of another complete lockdown leaving them stranded | PTI BHUBANESWAR l monday l april 19, 2021 l `7.00 l PAGES 36 l late city EDITION 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 The Second Wave Odisha logs 3,664 new cases, migrant arrival raises the ante E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @ Bhubaneswar NATIONWIDE Fresh cases Recoveries Deaths April 17 2,40,423 1,25,751 1,303 April 18 2,61,500 1,38,423 1,501 did in admitting that the present requirement of Covid beds and other healthcare facilities is more than the state administration’s capacity . In Madhya Pradesh, six critical Covid patients died at the Government Medical College Hospital ICU at Shahdol allegedly due to low oxygen pressure. The hospital though attributed it to co-morbidities. Social media sites were flooded with requests for help in arranging beds and oxygen. OXYGEN Express to plug Empty tankers demand-supply gaps to roll out from Mumbai today to bring liquid medical oxygen from Vizag, Jamshedpur, Rourkela and Bokaro Full-fledged service of Oxygen Express likely in a few days after green corridors are created E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @ New Delhi Former prime minister Manmohan Singh on Sunday wrote to incumbent Narendra Modi offering five suggestions to tackle the second wave of the pandemic. Highlighting the need for an intensified vaccination drive, Singh urged the Centre to look at percentages, not absolute numbers, to assess its impact. While over 12 crore people in India have been vaccinated as on April 18, in percentage terms it is below 9%, a far cry from 24% in the US, 56% in Israel or 28% in Chile. In the letter, Singh urged the Centre to data on doses ordered for the next six months and their scheme of distribution to help states appropriately plan. Singh appealed for greater leeway for states in defining frontline workers, who can be vaccinated even if they are below 45 years of age. He also advised the Centre to augment private facilities to improve production while allowing the import of shots cleared by credible international agencies without insisting on bridging trials. The decision follows proposals made by Maharashtra and MP governments requesting the Railways to help bridge the demand-supply gap Tankers would be placed on flat wagons (roll-on-rolloff) as part of the plan Heed them Publicise the number of doses ordered for the next six months. Place advance orders to meet the target Make distribution formula transparent so that states can plan their drive. Centre may retain 10% for distribution Let states define categories of frontliners who can be vaccinated Strengthen and expand the private manufacturing facilities Allow import of shots cleared by credible international agencies like USFDA The dimensions of the tankers were determined after a meeting between Railway Board, transport commissioners and industry representatives Ramps have been created at destination stations for smooth roll out Insurance cover ends for healthcare workers S u m i S u k a n ya D u t ta @ New Delhi The Centre has quietly decided not to extend an insurance scheme of `50 lakh for healthcare workers who die in the line of Covid-19 duty beyond a year, it has emerged even as the country is in the middle of a ferocious wave of the infection. A circular sent by Union health secretary Rajesh Bhushan to states last month said that the scheme had concluded on March 24. The Centre had last year announced the scheme to incentivise healthcare workers as part of its `1.7 lakh crore Covid-19 relief package. “Approximately 22 lakh ‘Sad and insensitive’ Doctors expressed dismay. “It’s really sad and insensitive on the part of the government,” said former IMA president Ravi Wankhedkar health workers would be provided insurance cover to fight this pandemic,” the official statement had said. “Safai karamcharis, ward-boys, nurses, ASHA workers, paramedics, technicians, doctors and specialists and other health workers would be covered.” It also covered workers in the private sector. While there is no official data on the number of frontline workers who died of Covid-19 in India, according to the Indian Medical Association, at least 739 MBBS doctors, including three doctors in the second and ongoing wave of the pandemic, have succumbed to it. The scheme was first implemented for 90 days and later extended for a year. Bhushan did not respond to queries by this newspaper on the content of his letter. Rahul bites the bullet, cancels poll rallies Israelis take masks off E x p r e ss N e ws Se r v i c e @ New Delhi Announcing the suspension of all his public rallies in West Bengal, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Sunday urged other leaders to consider the consequences of holding huge public rallies. “In view of the Covid-19 situation, I am suspending all my public rallies in West Bengal. I would advise all political leaders to think deeply about the consequences of holding large public rallies under the current circumstances,” he said on Twitter. In another tweet in Hindi, Rahul wrote: “One has seen such a crowd of the sick and the dead for the first time.” While the Congress has little stake in the West Bengal elections, it’s the biggies like the Trinamool Congress led by Mamata Banerjee and the BJP that are locked in a no-holdsbarred fight for power. Though both parties are yet to react, Trinamool candidate from Bhawanipur Sobhandeb Chattopadhyay said he has decided not to hold any major rallies in view of the Covid-19 situation. Bhawanipur goes to polls on April 26. It is the seat held by Mamata in the outgoing Assembly Both Mamata and BJP . leader Amit Shah held roadshows in different parts of Bengal on Sunday . Meanwhile, Congress spokesperson Jaiveer Shergill lauded Rahul Gandhi and said the BJP must follow him. Shergill said Rahul Gandhi was “leading by example” by cancelling his rallies in the interest of public health and safety . Shergill tweeted that BJP leaders must follow Rahul Gandhi’s footsteps to end this naked dance of death due to Covid case explosion. Israelis stepped on to the streets without masks on Sunday for the first time in a year, a key milestone as the country vaccinates its way out of the pandemic | P20 ODISHA April 17 Fresh cases Recoveries Deaths April 18 3,144 1,303 4 3,664 1,309 2 32-year-old from Sundargarh was suffering from obstructive airway disease with hypothyroidism, the other patient from Bargarh had no comorbidities. Health officials attributed the rising cases in Khurda and Cuttack districts to the arrival of migrants from the worst-hit states including Maharashtra, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Chhattisgarh and Delhi. The gover nment has also shared a list of over 400 people, who had registered with Uttarakhand government for Kum- 3,664 18 Apr 3,144 17 Apr 3,108 16 Apr 2,989 15 Apr 2,267 14 Apr 1,784 Bhubaneswar: Odisha government was forced to stop vaccination drive in eight districts, including five hotspots, while 70 per cent (pc) session sites ran dry on Sunday due to unavailability of vaccine doses | P2 7-day surge 13 Apr 24.24% 30.38% 2.38% Chhattisgarh Maharashtra Goa 5.17% 15.43% 23.33% Rajasthan 17.80% 18.99% 1.74% 4.30% Madhya Pradesh Ladakh 1.22% 15.97% Haryana 2.83% 15.86% 0.94% Dadra and Nagar Haveli 15.30% 3.58% Puducherry 14.47% 7.34% 13.54% 13.91% 0.57% 3.05% Expand jab drive, empower states, ex-PM tells Modi 8 districts, 1,054 sites run dry sans Covid vaccine 1,741 Amid dire scarcity of medical oxygen for Covid patients, the Centre on Sunday banned the supply of oxygen for industrial purposes — except in nine specified industries. The decision was taken based on the recommendations of the Empowered Group-II, Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla said, adding it will come into effect from Thursday . Parallelly, the Railways decided to roll out an Oxygen Express to ease transport bottlenecks (see graphic). Delhi is staring at an unprecedented health crisis as it has less than 100 ICU beds vacant in its hospitals, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal revealed. On a day when over 25,000 people tested positive for Covid, Kejriwal said: “I spoke to Home Minister Amit Shah today and informed him of our dire need of beds and oxygen. We are constantly in touch with the Centre and getting help from it.” Also, the case positivity rate jumped from 24% to 30% in just 24 hours, he informed. He wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi requesting him to increase the number of beds reserved for Covid patients in Central government hospitals from 1,800 to 7,000. Delhi also sought uninterrupted supply of oxygen, which has reached a critical stage. Another grim data point was the national case positivity rate, which doubled to 16.69% in 12 days. “The daily positivity rate in the last 12 days has doubled from 8% to 16.69%,” the Union health ministry said in a statement. And the national weekly positivity rate increased from 3.05% to 13.54% in the last one month (see chart). In Gujarat, Deputy Chief Minister Nitin Patel was can- People stand in a long queue for tests at Capital Hospital in Bhubaneswar | Express 12 Apr @ New Delhi Chandigarh E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e Delhi SOS as Delhi has less than 100 ICU beds; positivity rate doubles to 16.69% in 12 days ■ 11 Mar-17Mar ■ 11 Apr-17Apr India Oxygen ban on industry to save lives Change in weekly positivity rate of states/UTs 24.17% The deserted AIIMS during the weekend lockdown in New Delhi on Sunday; and a patient on oxygen and drips on a stretcher, apparently due to the lack of Covid beds, receiving primary care outside the Kanpur LLR Hospital | PTI Odisha logged 3,664 new Covid-19 cases, a jump of 520 cases from the previous day pushing , the active cases over 20,000 in a fortnight. Two more also succumbed to the disease in last 24 hours. The test positivity rate (TPR) also shot up to 10.63 per cent (pc) from 8.44 pc a day before even as the number of tests was more. As many as 34,450 samples, including 13,000 through RT-PCR, were tested during the period. While it had taken almost four months to reach at 10 pc TPR level during the first wave, the infectivity of the virus is so high this time that the rate zoomed past 10 pc in less than a month in the second wave of the pandemic. Of the fresh cases, 2,127 were among the people in quarantine and 1,537 were local infections. Five districts recorded over 200 new cases each with the maximum 704 people testing positive in Khurda followed by 340 in Sundargarh, 324 in Kalahandi, 221 in Nuapada and 210 in Bargarh. Five other districts logged more than 100 cases each and nine districts over 50 each. One of the worst-hit districts Sambalpur reported 199 cases, Cuttack 198, Jharsuguda 183, Puri 143 and Mayurbhanj 119. As many as 1,680 infections were detected from 10 districts bordering Chhattisgarh accounting for around 46 pc of the caseload. With more than 1,000 active cases, seven districts - Sundaragrh, Khurda, Sambalpur, Bargarh, Cuttack, Nuapada and Kalahandi - have been categorised as Covid hotspots. Of the 3,68,258 confir med cases, 3,46,134 have recovered so far leaving 20,127 active cases. Two women patients, aged 32 and 72, succumbed taking the death toll to 1,944. While the Districts have been directed to ensure that not a single returnee is allowed to go home directly without proper screening PK Mohapatra, Addl Chief Secy bh Mela, with five district administrations. “Apart from the registered pilgrims, those who had attended the religious congregation and are expected to return within next one week will have to undergo mandatory RT-PCR tests and 14-day isolation. Districts have been directed to make all arrangements to ensure that not a single returnee is allowed to go home directly without proper screening,” said Additional Chief Secretary of Health department PK Mohapatra. Trinity undergoes purification after blood spills inside Srimandir E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @ Puri In an unprecedented incident, Lord Jagannath and his siblings had to undergo the ritualistic purification through Maha Snana (bath) on Sunday as a fight between two police personnel led to blood spilling on the temple floor. Soon after offering of ‘Madhyahna dhupa’ (lunch) at around 1.20 pm, a scuffle broke out between two Jagannath temple police (JTP) personnel identified as Gangadhar Pradhan and Manoj Panigrahi. In a fit of rage, Gangadhar allegedly hit Manoj with a wooden stump. Manoj sustained bleeding injury on his head. As blood spilled on the floor at Beheran Dwar (door) near ‘Bhitar Kath’, servitors had to perform the ‘Maha Snana’ ritual. As per the temple tradition, if blood stains are found in the ‘Garbha Gruha’, ‘Bhitar Kath’ or ‘Bahar Kath’, the purification is observed and the interior of the shrine cleansed in a ritual called ‘Sodha’. Sources said Manoj was rushed to the district headquarters hospital and is being treated for head injury Till filling of . the report, no complaint was lodged by either of the JTP pers o n n e l w i t h S i m h a dw a r police. Only the servitors were present in the temple discharg- express read 100 pc rural tap water coverage by 2024 ing their duty when the incident took place as the shrine is closed for devotees on Saturdays and Sundays due to the prevailing Covid situation. JTP is the security wing of Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA). There are over 100 JTP personnel along with regular police deployed by the State government in the temple. Taking a serious note of the incident, chief administrator of SJTA Dr Krishan Kumar has asked the temple officials to investigate the matter and file a report fixing responsibility by Monday . Scuffle broke out between two JTP personnel identified as Gangadhar Pradhan and Manoj Panigrahi. In a fit of rage, Gangadhar allegedly hit Manoj with a wooden stump. Manoj sustained bleeding injury on his head - Sources Bhubaneswar: With only 27.15 per cent (pc) of the rural population having access to tap water so far, the State government has planned to provide functional tap connection to all households by 2024. Putting the number of rural households at 85.66 lakh, the government claimed to have covered 23.25 lakh under tap water connection | P3 US, China to cooperate on climate crisis Seoul: The US and China are “committed to cooperating” on climate change, the two sides said on Saturday, issuing the pledge days ahead of a key summit hosted by President Joe Biden. The joint statement came after a trip to Shanghai by US climate envoy John Kerry, signaling hopes the two sides could work together on the global challenge | P17 WITH THIS ISSUE THE ESSENTIAL CAMPUS DIGEST 36 PAGES, INCLUDING 16 OF edex (TABLOID) YOUR LIFE COACH
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