NOTE IT! An above average rise in note circulation in FY21 was reported by the RBI due to the pandemic. A look at the numbers CIRCULATION 16.8% 7.2% Spike in value Rise in volume `500 HYDERABAD FRIDAY MAY 28, 2021 `7.00 PAGES 30 LATE CITY EDITION RBI SLOWLY WITHDRAWING `2,000 NOTES FROM SYSTEM Since 2018, `1.82 lakh crore worth notes have been pulled out of circulation. RBI had frozen printing of pink notes 2 yrs ago REDUCING DEPENDENCY ON HIGH-VALUE NOTES The move indicates RBI’s intent to reduce dependency on high-value bank notes. From 33,632 lakh notes in circulation in 2018, the number fell to 27,398 lakh notes in 2021, a decrease of 6,234 lakh notes. In value terms, `2,000 face value notes worth `6,72,642 crore were in circulation in 2018, which came down to `4,90,195 crore in 2021, a decline of `1,82,447 crore | P12 Notes were the most in circulation with a 31.1% share RBI STATS 85.7% Share of `500 and `2,000 notes in total value 9.7% Fall in note indent (reprinting) order 0.3% Fall in supply of banknotes REASON: PRECAUTIONARY HOLDING OF CASH BY THE PUBLIC DUE TO COVID-19 RAMPING UP PRINTING OF `500 NOTES ■ ■ ■ A former RBI official said the withdrawn notes could have been soiled ones, which were not indented (reprinted) by the bank RBI is ramping up printing of `500 notes to match the demand for cash. It now accounts for 68.4% of total notes in circulation Another reason for the withdrawal could be to dissuade hoarders 45.48 cr WORTH SOILED `2,000 NOTES DISPOSED OF BY THE RBI IN 2020-21 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 Bridging trials waived off for global vaccine manufacturers S U M I S U K A N YA D U T TA @ New Delhi THE Centre has now decided to exempt foreign Covid-19 vaccine makers from bridging trials in India completely, after announcing last month that the first 100 beneficiaries of foreign vaccines will be assessed for seven days for safety outcomes before the vaccine is incorporated in the immunisation drive. The development comes in the backdrop of the negotiations between the Centre and Pfizer on the import of its vaccine, which is likely to begin in July. V K Paul, member (health) Niti Aayog, said in a press conference on Thursday that Pfizer has indicated the availability of its vaccine for India while other terms of the agreement are under discussion. “They have requested indemnity from all nations. We are examining this request. There is no decision as of now,” he added. A document, released by Niti Aayog to issue a detailed clarification on the narrative that the government is not doing enough to ramp up the supply said the Centre ‘proac, tively’ eased entry of vaccines approved by US FDA, EMA, UK’s MHRA and Japan’s PMDA, and WHO’s emergency use listing into India in April. “These vaccines will not need to undergo bridging trials,” said the statement. “The provision has now been amended to waive off the trial requirement altogether for the well-established vaccines manufactured in other countries.” FIRST PUNCH We will continue our constructive dialogue... It is the collective responsibility of elected officials, industry and civil society to safeguard the interests of the publicr Twitter statement COUNTERPUNCH The only instance of scuttling free speech... is Twitter itself and its opaque policies, as a result of which people’s accounts are suspended and tweets deleted arbitrarily without recourse Both claim their goal is to protect user’s privacy @ New Delhi/Bengaluru GLOVES were off on Thursday as the spat between Twitter and the Union Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) turned ugly with the former calling , out the Centre’s new regulatory regime and the latter saying the platform has no locus in dictating India’s legal policy framework. Both claimed their goal was to protect the user’s privacy and the freedom of speech and expression. With Twitter claiming it was being intimidated by the Delhi Police for flagging BJP leader Sambit Patra’s tweet on an alleged Congress toolkit as ‘manipulated media’, the latter piled on it, calling the statement mendacious, “designed to seek dubious sympathy and impede a lawful enquiry”. “Twitter Inc. has taken upon itself, in the garb of terms of service, to adjudicate the truth or otherwise of documents in public space. Twitter is purporting to be both an investigating authority as well as an adjudicating judicial authority It has . no legal sanction to be either. The only legal entity... to investigate is the police and to adjudicate is the courts,” said Delhi Police spokesperson Chenmoy Biswal. The ministry said the company is refusing to comply with those very regulations in the intermediary guidelines on the basis of which it is claiming a safe harbour from any criminal liability in India. The Centre said that Twitter’s statement is an attempt to dictate its terms to the world’s largest democracy . The ministry charged Twitter with being complacent in taking action against those who incited violence during the Red Fort violence, promoting vaccine hesitancy through its platform as well as showing Ladakh a part of China during the border disputes between two countries. It asked Twitter to stop beating around the bush and comply with the laws of land. “Twitter is just a social media platform and it has no locus in dictating what India’s legal policy framework should be,” the ministry said. Earlier in the day, Twitter said it is planning to advocate changes in the core elements of the recentlyframed social intermediary guidelines. “To keep our service available, we will strive to comply with applicable law in India. But, just as we do around the world, we will continue to be strictly guided by principles of transparency, a commitment to empowering every voice on the service, and protecting freedom of expression and privacy under the rule of law,” the company said in a statement. Full statements of Twitter, MeitY & Delhi Police on newindianexpress.com PANDEMIC CLOUDING NEAR-TERM ECONOMIC OUTLOOK, SAYS RBI S E SA S E N @ New Delhi WITH the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic continuing to wreak havoc on India’s healthcare infrastructure as well as the country’s economy, it could take several months before glimpses of an economic rebound could be seen. “The near-term outlook is clouded, with an accentuation of downside risks and potential externalities of global spillovers,” the Reserve Bank of India said in its annual report for 2020-21, released on Thursday. Even as daily new infections have started dropping, it still “remains high for comfort” and the macro-economic costs of this wave are likely to spill over into July the cen, tral bank noted. WHAT THE REPORT SAYS Sharp rally in the domestic equity markets despite expected GDP fall poses the ‘risk of a bubble’ Indian industry suffered deep losses due to the pandemic While the pandemic hit most sectors, it opened up vistas of expansion for domestic pharmaceutical firms The slow pace of inoculation and bleak global economic outlook also add to uncertainty . Already, most economists have trimmed India’s real GDP forecast to settle at 7-8% in FY22. RBI, which had projected 10.5% for the current financial year may also follow suit as its projection was based on the assess- ment done in March. For now, however, RBI has retained its projection. “This is the most optimistic scenario that can be envisaged at this juncture – it provides a limited window to establish strict pandemic protocols and logistics, ramp up vaccines production and medical supplies, fill gaps in the health infrastructure and build up stocks, especially of vaccines, in preparation for the next wave of infections. In all other outcomes, losses in terms of lives, jobs and output are likely to be adverse and long lasting” the RBI noted. Price instability the RBI said, , remains a key concern constraining monetary policy from utilising any available room to support growth. CASE OF NEGLIGENCE? Covid patient dies, kin attack Virinchi death and demanded that his licence to practice be scrapped FOLLOWING the death of Cov- forthwith. id-19 patient Vamshi Krishna, the The family of the deceased, who indignant family members created runs a boutique, Mughda Studio a ruckus at Virinchi Hosin Jubliee Hills, took to Fapital in Banjara Hills here cebook through their busion Thursday, alleging ness page and streamed wrong treatment, neglithe entire scuffle live. gence and fudging of his “We are here to ask the death report. doctor why he killed my The victim’s sister, brother with high doses of Sashy Bhavani Vangapalli steroids. Why was he Vamshi Krishna along with a group of 15 given medication for canmen stormed the hospital cer and depression when and entered into a fierce argument his HRCT report was merely 10/25 with the management over lapses which is a moderate disease,” she in treatment given to her brother asked. which she alleged led to his death. According to hospital records, They targeted Dr Dileep G, blam- Vamshi Krishna was admitted on ing him for Vamshi Krishna’s May 9 and died on May 22. The E X P R E SS N E WS S E R V I C E @ Hyderabad TELANGANA MAY 26 MAY 27 Fresh cases Recoveries Deaths Ministry’s statement Govt, Twitter turf fight gets nasty EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE NATIONWIDE MAY 26 MAY 27 Fresh cases 2,08,921 2,11,298 Recoveries 2,95,955 2,83,135 Deaths 4,157 3,847 family, however, produced documents that showed that the death report described Vamshi as a woman and said that he was admitted on May 14 with a complaint of breathlessness. “He was not breathless and he did not have fever for 10 days as mentioned in the report. The hospital is shielding the doctor,” said a relative. The police, after nearly one hour of ruckus, arrested them and took them to Panjagutta police station. Based on the complaint by the hospital, in which it was mentioned that the doctor was physically hurt, the police registered a case of assault, criminal trespass and damage to furniture under IPC and Disaster ManagePHOTO ON P4 ment Act. DISTRAUGHT 3,762 3,816 20 3,614 3,961 18 JAB-O-METER May 26 17,19,931 doses Relatives attend to a woman who passes out while mourning the loss of a family member who succumbed to Covid-19, at a crematorium in Jammu on Thursday | PTI TAKE YOUR May 27 SHOT 26,58,218 doses TOTAL DOSES: 20,54,51,902 Eatala sports saffron glow as ED hurls Revanth into gloom R P R I D H V I R A J @ Hyderabad IN a significant development, on the very day the path for former minister Eatala Rajender to join the BJP was made clear, the Enforcement Directorate took over the investigation of the infamous 2015 “Cash for Vote” scam from Telangana ACB in which Congress MP A Revanth Reddy is the main accused. If one puts two and two together, one gets the impression that besides fortifying the BJP state unit by inducting Rajender, the party’s central leadership appears keen on discrediting Revanth in the public eye so that the only beacon of hope the grand old party has, would be extinguished for good. After Rajender’s hectic confabulations with the BJP national and State leaders, the green light has flashed for the former minister to join the saffron brigade and acquire a new sheen. The saffron party too is looking for a powerful leader from the BC community to shore up its fortunes as the State moves closer to the next Assembly elections in 2013. After Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao sacked Rajender from the Cabinet and began gunning for him every day with one enquiry or the other into his assets, the Mudiraj leader apparently decided that joining the BJP was a better bet than being hounded by TRS. The saffron party seems to be having its own strategy as far as admitting Rajender into its fold is concerned. The BJP which wants Congress to be wiped out, as it is a national party that could bounce back any time if favourable conditions return, wants to kill politically the only hope it has in youthful MP A Revanth Reddy As . Eatala finds his way into the BJP, the ED nforcement Directorate took over the investigation of the note for vote scam from the ACB in which Revanth Reddy is the prime accused. The scam dates back to 2015 when Revanth was caught while offering a bribe of `50 lakh to nominated MLA Elvis Stephenson to vote in favour of Vem Narender Reddy in the Telangana Legislative Council elections. CASH FOR VOTE: ED FILES PROSECUTION COMPLAINT AGAINST REVANTH REDDY | P5 GOOD RESPONSE AstraZeneca, Sputnik show interest in TS’ tender for vax V V BA L A K R I S H N A @ Hyderabad THE response for the global tenders invited by the State government to procure one crore Covid-19 vaccine doses has been encouraging. Several companies participated in the pre-bid meeting and evinced interest in submitting bids. The last date for submission of the bids is June 4. The bidders are willing to provide the vaccine doses directly to the State government. Representatives of BritishSwedish multinational firm AstraZeneca and Russia’s Sputnik participated in the pre-bid meeting. Apart from them, local players like Bharat Biotech and Serum Institute of India also participated. Telangana State Medical Services Infrastructure Development Corporation (TSMSIDC) managing director K Chandrasekhar Reddy told Express the response for the pre-bid meeting had been very encouraging. According to sources, representatives of the companies asked generic questions at the pre-bid meeting. They inquired about the permissions required for the supply of vaccine doses, the State government’s payment methods, flow of funds and others. They also inquired about the guidelines of Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) and about the cold-chain system in the State, along with and other questions on technical aspects. RIGHT PRIORITY Keeping patients’ health in mind, jr docs call off strike EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ Hyderabad AFTER striking work for a day, suspending all Covid-19 emergency and elective services, all the 3,500 junior doctors and Senior Residents (SRs) called off their protest. Though only two of their four demands were met, that too partially, the doctors decided to return to duty considering the plight of the Covid-19 patients at hospitals. “After talks with the principal secretary and DME, TJUDA members expressed their gratitude to Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao and health authorities for hiking stipend for Interns, PGs and SRs and also allocation of beds for doctors and their family members at NIMS,” said the doctors in a statement. “Keeping in view the patient’s health as our first priority and also the responsibility to serve in the present crisis, we have called off our s t r i ke, ” t h e s t a t e m e n t added. The doctors reported to duty at 9 p.m. They however, maintained , that though they had no job security and were not well off, they decided to return to duty considering the positive response they got from the Chief Minister. CONTINUED ON P4 AIG HOSP TO STUDY IF MONOCLONAL ANTIBODIES ARE EFFECTIVE AGAINST INDIAN STRAIN | P4
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