visakhapatnam l saturday l may 29, 2021 l `7.00 l PAGES 12 l late city EDITION 30 states, UTs seek shorter CBSE Class XII board exams Except Delhi and Maharashtra, all other states have written to the Centre saying these tests are crucial for students’ future Holding exams risky: Delhi, Maharashtra According to Delhi and Maharashtra, allowing gathering at examination centres could cause massive risks of infection to students and teachers and these tests could turn into superspreader events. The other states also asked the Centre to organise shorter, 90-minute exams for all subjects, in which most questions will be objective or short answer types ■ June 1 Examinations to results in 45 days ■ “Most states are in favour of conducting shorter versions of tests for all subjects and completing the process from examination to results within 45 days,” said an official The official added if the tests are taken at all CBSE schools, it will raise the number of centres and will reduce crowding Final decision on class XII board examinations expected by then Petrol Prices (`/lt) as on 28 May 2021 Positivity Rate Recovery Rate fresh cases Total cases Total deaths 84,224 May 27 May 5 May 17 73,749 1,16,367 1,15,784 May 4 April 16 May 27 May 17 May 7 April 16 May 27 May 17 May 7 May 17 MAy 5 May 4 April 16 May 27 May 7 April 16 may 27 may 17 6,096 35,962 10,531 9,481 8,519 7,373 16,43,557 14,54,052 9,48,231 April 16 12,45,374 16,167 May 27 18,561 22,304 20,034 87.99% 84.32% 95.46% 19.20% 25.56% 19.08% 13.35% may 4 April 26 COVID curve TPR declines to 19.2% from 25.56%, rate of recovery increases April 23 average cost of petrol on May 27 last year 16.95% It’s not just your grocery bill that has gone up this year after the second deadly wave of the pandemic. The cost of fuel and industrial commodities, too, has gone north, as the accompanying charts show, fuelling inflation April 16 Why you are spending more J73 25.81% 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 Total samples tested Jagan moots 16 health hubs in State Average Retail Price Food items Prices (`) Prices (`) (As on May 27, 2020) (As on May 27, 2021) % change 110.94 87.2 101.78 118.28 90.52 220.09 147.51 93.78 67.65 20.69 16.08 77 34.2 46.77 103.69 39.7 18.9 48.32 111.66 31.29 28.86 25.72 172.57 133.24 151.01 168.84 128.82 282.59 175.64 107.84 76.75 23.46 17.85 85.44 35.98 49.17 108.68 39.44 18.25 46.03 106.12 29.3 26 19.16 55.55 52.8 48.38 42.75 42.31 28.4 19.07 14.99 13.45 13.39 11.01 10.96 5.2 5.13 4.81 0.71 -3.44 -4.74 -4.96 -6.36 -9.91 -25.51 Sunflower oil (Packed) Palm oil (Packed) Soya oil (Packed) Mustard oil (Packed) Vanaspati (Packed) Loose Tea Groundnut oil (Packed) Tur/Arhar dal Gram dal Onion Salt (Iodised) Masoor dal Rice Milk (1 litre) Urad dal Sugar Tomato Gur Moong dal Atta Wheat Potato All prices in `/kg unless mentioned otherwise Source: Ministry of Consumer Affairs, commodity exchanges Steel (Hot rolled coil) 67,000 37,350 Copper 4,13,400 Nickel Aluminium Lead Zinc 1,94,350 1,32,000 1,78,550 1,34,250 2,33,500 1,56,200 84.61 91.87 87.46 89.39 89.70 92.24 92.25 90.93 93.75 90 93.59 express illustration New Delhi Mumbai Kolkata Chennai Bengaluru Hyderabad Bhubaneswar Thiruvananathapuram Vijayawada Patna Jaipur 93.68 99.94 93.72 95.28 96.80 97.36 94.46 95.66 99.43 95.99 100.17 Govt to allot land free of cost if private parties come forward to invest `100 crore to set up hospitals Diesel Prices (`/lt) as on 28 May 2021 THERE will be no immediate relief of GST on Covid-19 vaccine and medical supplies as the GST Council on Friday left taxes on these unchanged, though it decided to extend duty exemption on import of a medicine used for treatment of black fungus. The Council formed a Group of Ministers (GoM) to decide if any further exemption is required. “The GoM will submit its report on or before June 8. Any new rates will now be decided by the GoM,” Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said. Vaccines attract 5% GST now. “The consensus was that before agreeing to fitment committee, a Group of Ministers should study if zero rated tax can be levied or formal tax of @ Vijayawada Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy on Friday mooted 16 health hubs in the State, so that people need not rush to Bengaluru, Hyderabad or Chennai for tertiary care. He directed officials to come up with a health hub policy in one month, which includes vaccine production in the State under the government supervision. At a review meeting with senior officials on the Covid-19 situation in the State, he said the health hubs should be set up in all the 13 district headquarters and also in Municipal Corporations of Vijayawada, Tirupati and Rajahmundry . At least 30-50 acres of land should be acquired for each health hub and five acres should be allotted free of cost to J66 average cost of diesel on May 27 last year industrial commodities 13,16,000 Price in ` per tonne May 2021 May 2020 Data Compiled by: Sesa Sen 0.1%,” said sources. While there will be no immediate relief on GST over various medical sur prises, a number of specified Covid-19 related goods such as medical oxygen, oxygen concentrators and other oxygen storage and transportation equipment, diagnostic markers test kits, will be exempted from IGST. “The council has decided to exempt the import of relief items even if they are purchased. If these are meant for donating to the government or on recommendation of the state authority to any relief agents. Also. This exemption has been extended till 31st August 2021,” Sitharaman said. Further, in view of rising Black Fungus cases, the above exemption from IGST has been extended to Amphotericin B. YS Jagan Mohan Reddy, Chief Minister hospitals, which are ready to invest a minimum of `100 crore on the project over a period of three years. Through these health hubs, 80 multispeciality and superspeciality hospitals will come up in the State. These hospitals will support the 16 new teaching hospitals and 16 nursing colleges. “The health sector will be strengthened with health hubs and incentives being provided by the government will also pave the way for better hospitals in the private sector. The policy will ensure improvement of tertiary care as multispeciality and superspeciality hospitals will come up in the district headquarters and municipal corporations, so that people need not go to other places for highly specialised medical care,” he said and opined that it will also help those going to other places un- Covid 2nd wave renders 135 kids orphans @ Vijayawada No GST relief for Covid vax for now, GoM set up A N U RADHA SH U K L A @ New Delhi Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy directed officials of medical and health to come up with a health hub policy in one month, which includes production of Covid-19 vaccine in the State under the supervision of the government The health sector will be strengthened with health hubs. Incentives being provided by the State government will also pave the way for more multispeciality and superspeciality hospitals in the private sector. The health hub policy will ensure improvement of tertiary care in the State E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e P h a n i n d r a Pa pa s a n i 7,57,400 9,05,200 New policy in one month We collected the data of children who lost their parents due to Covid-19 and verified it with the help of field level staff Kritika Shukla, Director, Women Development & Child Welfare As many as 135 children in the State have become orphans as their parents fell victim to Covid-19 during the second wave. In all, 1,912 children have lost one of their parents due to Covid from March 1 to May 26. Women Development and Child Welfare (WD&CW) Director Kritika Shukla said the department sent a report to the Union Ministry of Women and Child Development on Friday on the orphaned children in Andhra Pradesh. The steps initiated for the rehabilitation of the orphaned children were also explained. “The Ministry of Women and Child Development is creating a centralised digital database so that it can monitor and help the orphaned children. The Union Ministry has initiated measures to support each and every orphan child. “We collected the data of children who lost their parents due to Covid and verified it with the help of field level staff, including Anganwadi workers and village volunteers,” she said. The National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) sought information from the States and Union Territories in the first week of May to provide data of the children who lost both their parents due to Covid-19 to the local child protection authorities and ensure their rehabilitation as per the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of ChilP4 dren) Act, 2015. E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @ Vijayawada @ Kakinada/Vijayawada The first case of an infant infected with black fungus in the State was reported in Kakinada Government General Hospital on Friday Dr Krishna Kishore, . incharge of black fungus cases, Jab-o-meter May 27 Take 26,58,218 doses your May 28 shot 28,07,411 doses Total doses: 20,86,12,834 NATIONWIDE Fresh cases Recoveries Deaths MAY 27 MAY 28 2,11,298 1,86,364 2,83,135 2,59,459 3,847 3,660 The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) has approved an annual plan with an outlay of `6,421 crore for the 2021-22 fiscal to expedite the NH (O) projects in Andhra Pradesh. For the first time, the State has received the highest sanction as an annual plan from the MoRTH for NH (O) projects. The MoRTH has sanctioned `267 crore for the State in 201920, which was later revised to `1,830 crore after Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy met Union Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari and explained to him the need for expediting the ongoing NH (O) projects in the State by allocating more P4 Central funds. Prime Minister Narendra Modi holding a cyclone review meeting with Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik; and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s no-show Mamata skips PM meet, Centre recalls Chief Secy PRA N A B M O N DA L a n d M A N ISH A N A N D @ Kolkata/New Delhi The optics of the first in-person meeting Prime Minister Narendra Modi had lined up with West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee at Kalaikunda, was as turbulent as cyclone Yaas itself, whose destruction they were expected to review, since the latter skipped the scheduled interaction. Defence minister Rajnath Singh expressed shock at the no-show, saying Mamata had violated the basic tenets of the Constitution’s federal system. The first fallout was the Centre’s order to recall Bengal Chief Secretary Alapan Banerjee, whose tenure was extended for three months on the CM’s request just four days ago. Bengal has been asked to send him to the Department of Personnel and Training’s office in Delhi by May 31 morning. Mamata has to relieve him first before he can be sent back. Mamata later met Modi for 15 minutes and presented a sheaf of papers containing the state government’s assessment of the cyclone damage. As for the meeting, the presence of the leader of Opposition Suvendu Adhikari was the trigger for Mamata’s anger, as Suvendu had defected from Trinamool to the BJP and defeated her in a tight race in Nandigram. But, the Centre claimed invites to other Opposition leaders like Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury (Congress) too had gone out. Adhir expressed his inability to make it as he was in Delhi for a meeting. However, he told this newspaper that he had been informed about the meeting only around 7.30 am on Friday. “It was not possible for me to attend it at 18-month-old girl infected with black fungus admitted to Kakinada GGH said the baby hailing from Tanuku in West Godavari district is being treated as per protocol in the ICU of Pediatric Ward as 48 black fungus patients with comorbidities are undergoing treatment in the GGH. According to sources, the andhra pradesh may 27 May 28 Fresh cases 18,285 14,429 Recoveries 21,385 20,746 Deaths 104 103 Samples tested 84,224 84,502 NH projects in AP get `6K cr from Centre first such case E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e der the YSR Aarogyasri for better treatment. On Covid-19, the officials informed him that the situation is steadily improving with positivity rate decreasing and recovery rate increasing. The active caseload has also come down over the last one week. There are 46,596 beds in 597 Covid hospitals and of the total, 32,567 have been occupied and 24,985 patients are being treated under Aarogyasri. There are 52,941 beds in 116 Covid Care Centres and of which 16,689 have been occupied. As many as 1,37,436 people are in home isolation, the officials said. When Jagan enquired about the functioning of 104 call centres, the officials told him that every call is being attended and a solution is being provided P3 within three hours. girl’s parents contracted Covid-19 15 days ago and underwent home quarantine. When the baby developed fever 10 days ago, she was treated by a pediatrician in Tanuku. She was brought to the Out Patient Department of Kakinada GGH with periorbital swelling. Though there is a rise in the number of black fungus cases in the State, there is an acute shortage of drugs to treat the infection. During a review meeting with Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy on Covid on Friday health officials in, formed him that a total of 808 cases have been reported across the State, but Amphotericin B vials to treat the fungal infection are not enough. A total of 5,200 vials were sent to the State by the Centre, which are not even 10 per cent of the drug required to treat the black fungus cases. As there is a need for 40,000 vials, the Chief Minister directed the officials to explore alternatives to overcome the crisis. He also instructed them to coordinate with pharmaceutical companies and procure adequate number of vials to treat the fungal infection cases. such short notice,” he said. The meeting in Odisha was attended by Chief Minister Navin Patnaik and also by Union ministers Dhar menda Pradhan and P C Sarangi, both hailing from the state. “The PM and the CM are not individuals, but institutions. Both discharge duties, swearing on the Constitution, for the public welfare. Such behaviour towards the prime minister is painful,” said Rajnath. Modi later announced financial assistance of `1,000 crore for Odisha, West Bengal and Jharkhand. Covid origin probe India on Friday supported calls for a full probe into the origins of Covid-19, days after US President Joe Biden asked American intelligence agencies to find out how coronavirus emerged in China | P7
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29-05-2021 of The New Indian Express-Vishakapatnam