BHUBANESWAR l friday l may 14, 2021 l `7.00 l PAGES 12 l late CITY EDITION ‘Judiciary working under great stress due to Covid’ 100 judges, 2,700 judicial officers infected Chief Justice of India N V Ramana said on Thursday that the coronavirus has impacted SC judges and Registry officials At least 100 high court judges and over 2,700 judicial officers have tested positive for the virus, the CJI said, adding that three HC judges and 34 judicial officers have lost their lives. In the SC, around 800 Registry staff, six Registrars and 10 Additional Registrars were infected at different points of times. On Wednesday, Justice D Y Chandrachud had tested +ve ■ 37 Plan to live-telecast sc proceedings ■ ■ Ramana said he was actively considering the proposal to live-telecast the proceedings of the Supreme Court However, the CJI added that the programme will be rolled out only if there is a general consensus among his colleagues in SC The Gujarat High Court is already live-streaming its proceedings Three hc judges and 34 judicial officers succumbed to the virus 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 Lab quality Vaccine factsheet big hurdle for Covaxin mass production By year-end due to ramped up production Production / Vaccines availability Aug-Dec Doses Received/ Procured by the centre Source S u m i S u k a n ya D u t ta @ New Delhi Amid growing chorus for technology transfer to allow other vaccine makers in India mass produce Covaxin, the Centre on Thursday said the sticking point was the lack of sophisticated technological platforms to manufacture the jab. This vaccine, which is an inactivated version of Covid-19 virus and requires live virus to be cultured, can only be processed in laboratories categorised as biosafety level 3 (BSL 3), stressed V K Paul, member, health, Niti Aayog, who also heads the national Covid-19 task force. Covaxin was developed by Bharat Biotech with support from Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), which shares its intellectual property rights. The government health research body had invested about `35 crore in its pre-clinical and clinical trials. At present, only Bharat Biotech is a BSL 3 lab in India. “This suggestion (of technology transfer) has been welcomed by Bharat Biotech but it needs to be understood that Covaxin has been developed from inactivated SARS-CoV 2 and can only be developed at laboratories with BSL 3 standards, which none of the other companies in India has as of now,” said Paul. He, however, added that the government will support any firm that is interested in going for this major technical upgradation to scale up the production of Covaxin. Many experts, however, said that more than anything, it is the political will that would be required for an ambitious venture like this. Continued on: P8 Primer on biosafety level A biosafety level indicates a set of biocontainment precautions required to isolate disease causing pathogens in an enclosed lab. The levels of containment range from the lowest biosafety level 1 (BSL1) to level 4 (BSL-4). BSL 3 is appropriate for work involving microbes that can cause serious and potentially lethal disease via inhalation and requires certain features like special constructions and ventilation systems Gender skew 13,88,15,914 people had taken 17,78,82,695 jabs at the time of the study 7,30,07,844 Of them are male 6,57,88,899 Of them are female 19,171 others too took the jabs 72,18,945 More males than females took the shot | P7 Quantity 6.6 crore PM-CARES (Covishield 5.6 cr FUND & Covaxin 1 cr) GAVI COVAX 1 crore facility (Covishield) Status Covishield Covaxin Bio E Sub unit Zydus CadilaDNA SII -Novavax BB Nasal GennovamRNA Sputnik V TOTAL Utilised in full Utilised in full 86% 12 crore Procured (Covishield 10 cr received, rest for phase II expected by & Covaxin 2 cr) May-end Supply 16 crore beginning Procured for phase III (Covishield511 cr in May and & Covaxin cr) ending in July 35.6 crore Total (Covishield 27.6 cr & Covaxin 8 cr) 35.6 Cr 75.0 Cr 55.0 Cr 30.0 Cr 05.0 Cr 20.0 Cr 10.0 Cr 06.0 Cr 15.6 Cr 216.6 Cr Doses delivered/ to be delivered to the States in May Free doses supplied by Centre to states/UTs: 1.65 cr Free doses to be supplied by Centre to States/UTs: 2.35 cr Doses directly procured by states/UTs: 1.23 cr Doses directly procured by states/UTs & in pipeline: 1.27 cr Doses directly procured by private hospitals: 0.80 cr 51.6 crore Add 16 crore doses that are in the vaccine doses pipeline under direct procured procurement by states so far & private hospitals and the total is 51.6 crore doses Total: 7.30 cr Now, Covishield second dose only after 3-4 months E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @ New Delhi The Centre on Thursday accepted a proposal by an expert panel to raise the gap between two doses of Covishield to 12-16 weeks, deviating from the European Union and the UK’s suggestions for a 12-week interval between the two shots. Till now, a gap of 6-8 weeks was recommended between two doses of this vaccine in India. Spain alone prescribes a gap of 12-16 weeks between two shots, though it administers the AstraZeneca vaccine only to the 60+ age group amid concerns that in rare cases, it triggers blood clots in younger people. The Centre’s announcement immediately triggered speculation of it being tied to vaccine shortage, but Dr V K Paul, who heads the National Expert Group on Vaccine Administration for Covid-19, said the decision was based on science. Real life data following mass vaccinations in the UK, said Paul, has shown that the larger gap between two doses of AstraZeneca vaccine raises its efficacy The decision came after . a recommendation by the National Expert Group on Vaccine Administration for Covid-19 (NEGVAC), which in turn relied on the scientific input by the Covid working g roup chaired by N K Arora. The NEGVAC also suggested that those who have recovered from their Covid infection, should get the vaccine against the coronavirus six months after the recovery The ministry . is yet to formally accept the second recommendation. The gap of 12-16 weeks for Covishield, originally developed by AstraZeneca-Oxford University and being manufactured by the Serum Institute of India locally has not been tested in clinical trials, experts pointed out. The beneficiaries Healthcare workers 1st dose 96,16,697 2nd dose 66,02,553 Frontline workers 1st dose 1,43,14,563 2nd dose 81,12,476 Age group 18-44 yrs 1st dose 1st dose bordering Balasore has recorded over 500 cases for the first time. At least 15 districts accounted for over 200 cases each. Of the fresh cases, 5,965 were in quarantine and 4,684 local infections. Even as new cases saw a decline in some western districts, the infection is on an upward spiral in districts like Cuttack, Angul, Balasore, Mayurbhanj, Nayagarh and Puri. While the positivity rate in most of the districts bordering Chhattisgarh was above 20 pc, Boudh for the first time topped the list with a TPR of 42 pc. Of the 552 tests, including 342 through RT-PCR, 232 have been detected positive. Other 10 districts with high TPR included Sambalpur (39.1 pc), Angul (38.8 pc), Bargarh (31.1 pc), Kalahandi (30.8 pc), Nuapada (30.6 pc), Khurda (30.1 pc), Deog- E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @ Bhubaneswar The Covid-19 situation continued to remain grim in Odisha as the State reported over 10,000 cases in seven of the last eight days, taking the active cases closer to one lakh. As many as 10,649 people tested positive for the virus and 19 persons succumbed in last 24 hours. The test positivity rate (TPR), however, came down slightly to 20.7 per cent (pc) from 22.3 pc a day before as the number of tests rose to 51,451 including 17,659 RT-PCR tests. Odisha now has 91,648 active cases with the highest 13,740 in Khurda and 10,838 in Sundargarh. Khurda recorded the highest 1,557 cases, including 1,108 from Bhubaneswar, followed by 930 from Cuttack, 774 from Sundargarh, 557 from Angul and 503 from Balasore. The West Bengal arh (28.8 pc), Sonepur (25.6 pc), Jharsuguda (25.4 pc) and Sundargarh (20.8 pc). As per the statistics released by the Ministry of Health, 29 districts in the State have a positivity rate of above 10 pc in the week from May 6 to 12. At least 20 districts have a TPR of over 20 pc. Of the 526 districts in the country having a TPR of above 10 pc, 29 are from Odisha. Three deaths were reported from Angul district and two each from Sundargarh and Puri. One patient each from Balasore, Bargah, Khurda, Balangir, Boudh, Ganjam, Jagatsinghpur, Kandhamal, Malkangiri, Nuapada, Rayagada and Sambalpur died of the disease. With this, the Covid-19 caseload in the State mounted to 5,76,297 and 19 fresh fatalities pushed the death toll to 2,251. Oxygen shortage killed 15 patients: BJP Bhubaneswar: The BJP on Thursday lodged an FIR against Keonjhar district collector Ashish Thakare and the medical officer of Covid hospital alleging “murder” of 15 Covid-19 patients undergoing treatment due to oxygen shortage. A five-member delegation of BJP visited the hospital where 15 Covid patients allegedly died due to disruption in oxygen supply | P3 MAY 13 Fresh cases Recoveries Deaths 3,62,727 3,52,181 4,120 3,48,421 3,55,338 4,205 May 12 ODISHA Take your May 13 shot 19,75,176 doses Fresh cases Recoveries Deaths Jab-o-meter NATIONWIDE MAY 12 17,72,261 doses Total: 17,91,77,029 MAY 12 10,982 8,547 17 MAY 13 10,649 8,665 19 E ja z K a i s e r @ Raipur Amid Opposition pressure on the Centre to suspend the `20,000-crore Central Vista project till the pandemic is brought under control, the Chhattisgarh government appears to have done the right thing by nixing plans to build the new Assembly building at a cost of `245 crore. On Thursday, the Congressgoverned Chhattisgarh government cancelled tenders for the new Assembly building and halted construction works of all ongoing major projects. The state has also adopted stringent austerity measures, a government spokesperson said. Consequently, the ongoing construction works for the new Raj Bhawan, Assembly House, Chief Minister’s House, bungalows for ministers and senior officials, and the New Circuit House at the Nava Raipur capital city stand suspended. The foundation-laying ceremony of these works was performed on November 25, 2019. The Chhattisgarh government’s decision comes a day after 12 Opposition leaders wrote to Prime Minister Narendra @ Bhubaneswar Nonagenarian Annapurna Biswal of Chandrashekharpur in the city is now back home from SUM Covid hospital having defeated the virus. Amid the gloom and despair over the fierce Covid-19 second wave across the country, the 98-year-old woman with several comorbidities walked out of the hospital on Wednesday evening. A diabetic for over last two decades Annapurna also suffers @ Bhubaneswar In a significant move, the State government on Thursday declared employees of various important departments, financial sector as well as essential service providers as frontline Covid wo rk e r s f o r p r i o r i t y i n vaccination. In a letter to district collectors, Additional Chief Secretary of Health PK Mohapatra said forest officials and guards, railway staff, all banking staff, employees of insurance companies, National Payments Corporation of India, payment system providers, operators and vendors, staff of cash logistics companies, ATM maintenance personnel and banking correspondents will be categorised as frontline workers for vaccination. He said the employees of district child protection units, staff of Child Line (1098), 181 helpline, onestop centres and all categories of staff of child care institutions, oxygen plant employees, filling stations and call centre employees will also be treated as frontline workers. The government veterinary doctors, livestock inspectors and para-veterinarians were also included. Modi asking him to halt the Central Vista project and use the money to the fund the fight against coronavirus. Meanwhile, the Delhi High Court is hearing a petition seeking an interim stay on the project saying the construction workers are exposed to the deadly coronavirus on a daily basis during the peak phase of the pandemic. 5,65,82,401 Over 60 yrs Total 2nd dose 85,14,552 1st dose 5,42,32,598 2nd dose 1,72,86,501 17,91,77,029 The NEGVAC endorsing a six month gap for Covid-19 vaccination following recovery from the infection is also being met with some skepticism. Just a few days ago, ICMR director general Balram Bhargava said those who have battled Covid-19 successfully, can get the vaccine six weeks following their recovery. “So far, I have not come across any scientific evidence which suggests that people who have had infection before should wait for six months for their shots against Covid-19,” said immunologist Seyed Hasnain. Israel pummels Gaza as its troops stand by The hostilities between Hamas and Israel are escalating relentlessly even as mediators try to step in. Hamas sent a heavy barrage of rockets deep into Israel on Thursday as Israel pounded Gaza with more airstrikes and called up 9,000 more reservists, with the country’s military talking of a possible ground attack. Meanwhile, Jews and Arabs are fighting in the country’s streets. In the picture on the left, Israeli airstrikes hit a building in Gaza city. Above, an Israeli artillery unit at the border fires toward targets in the Gaza Strip | P9 98-year-old Annapurna defeats Covid, heaps praise on docs from filaria and hypertension. She was admitted to the hospital after she tested positive on May 5. Despite her comorbid condition, she responded to the medication and recovered within a week’s time. Hospital sources attributed her recovery to a strong willpower and never say die attitude. Though her oxygen saturation was fluctuating, she was never nervous and cooperated well with the treating doctors and attending nurses. “She was the eldest woman patient of the E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e C’garh suspends work on new Assembly, pressure on Centre to halt Central Vista B eatin g the v i r u s Hemant Kumar Rout More sectors get frontline worker status in Odisha 39,14,688 Age group 45-59 yrs Odisha inches closer to 1 lakh active cases Annapurna Biswal State to have battled the virus and defeated it. She was our strength inside the hospital. She inspired many others who are under treatment,” said a nurse. Her family members had all praise for the healthcare workers at the hospital. “The dedicated care extended to my mother has helped her recover. We were apprehensive about her condition as she was diabetic having high blood pressure. Thank God and the doctors who treated her,” said her son Kula- mani Biswal. Annapurna is believed to have contracted the infection from her home nurse, who takes care of her. She was diagnosed with the disease a day after the nurse tested positive. Other family members had tested negative except her grand-daughter-in-law, who was, however, asymptomatic. Though she knew about Covid before getting infected, her family did not let her know until she was admitted to the hospital. Her grandson Jyoti Ran- jan had even accompanied her in the ambulance to the hospital to ensure that she does not get nervous. “We used to see her twice a day via video conferencing set up by the help desk which was regularly updating us with her health condition. She remained quiet for hours after arriving home from the hospital. Now she has started talking to us. She advises us to use mask and warns not to touch her,” said her grand-daughter-in-law Rajashree Biswal. Surge in cases makes mockery of lockdown in city Strange as it may sound but the State capital reported its maximum number of cases in the last nine days of lockdown including the two-day weekend shutdown on May 8 and 9 | P2
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