bhubaneswar l tuesday l june 08, 2021 l `7.00 l PAGES 12 l late CITY EDITION World Bank clears $500 mn to support MSMEs in India Providing working capital for small biz The $500-million Raising and Accelerating Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise Performance (RAMP) will provide better access to finance and working capital for MSMEs by strengthening the receivable financing markets. It will also scale up online dispute resolution mechanisms to address the problem of delayed payments, the World Bank said The multilateral development bank said it will support Indian government’s efforts to revitalise the Covid-hit MSME sector ‘MSMEs are Indian economy’s backbone’ ■ ■ “The MSME sector, a critical backbone of India’s economy, has been hard hit by the Covid-19 pandemic,” said Junaid Ahmad, World Bank Country Director in India He added that the RAMP programme will support MSMEs firms to return to pre-crisis production and employment levels 18.5 yrs is the maturity of the World Bank loan with a 5.5-yr grace period 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 Differential pricing for states chucked; govt to procure for 18+ too; new policy from June 21 Centre blinks, ‘arbitrary & irrational’ vax policy nixed M A N IS H A N A N D @ New Delhi Making a sharp course correction after widespread criticism, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday announced that the Centre will take full responsibility for free vaccinations across all age groups. Private hospitals, however, can continue procuring 25% of the manufactured vaccines and levy a maximum of `150 extra as service charge for administering the jab. The rollout of the policy rollback will begin on June 21. Modi also announced the extension of the PM Garib Kalyan Ann Yojna scheme till Deepavali, November 4, for 80 crore of the population to avail free foodgrains. In his address to the nation, Modi sought to put the earlier policy in place since May 1 in context, saying the decision to ask states to procure doses for the 18+ was taken in line with their demand that they be given greater flexibility . “From June 21, Monday, the Centre will provide vaccines for all citizens above the age of 18 years free of cost. The Centre will procure 75% of the vaccines manufactured and give them free to the states. No state in the country will have to bear any cost.” Modi added that the Centre and the states will work out the modalities of the rollout in the next two weeks. He also entrusted the states with the task of ensuring that private hospitals charge only `150 as service charge for vaccinations. The reverting to the pre-May 1 vaccination procurement policy came in the backdrop of a Ballpark fiscal cost of free vaccines Estimated total 94 cr number of adults Total number of doses required @ 188 cr two doses/person Doses administered as on 23.3 cr 6 June Total additional 164.7 cr doses required Cost of additonal doses at average `24,705 cr `150/dose 75% cost to be borne by the `18,528.75 cr Centre Total additional cost for the Centre A18,529 crore Note: We have assumed `150 per dose as Centre’s cost. This is excluding the logistics cost the Centre could incur number of chief ministers appealing the Centre to take full responsibility for the procurement besides the Supreme Court taking a hard look at the the policy formulation. Modi sought to project that the Centre is in full control of the situation to deal with the ongoing pandemic. Exuding confidence that India will be able to scale up vaccinations, Modi stated that seven vaccine candidates are at the trial stage, including three in advanced stages, while work is in progress for a nasal vaccine. He informed that trials of two vaccines are on at a fast pace for children amid the scientific community expressing concerns about them being vulnerable in the next wave of the pandemic. SC’s sharp posers & observations Why don’t you procure vaccines also for the states? Dual pricing and procurement policy prima facie discriminatory Why can’t Centre pay from `35,000 crore budgetary allocation for procurement for the 18+? Universal vaccination, including for all 18+, is Centre’ primary responsibility Submit files on how the policy was conceived, including file notings PM blames it on states, Opposition faults govt E x p r e ss N e ws Se r v i c e @ New Delhi Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday sought to point fingers at states that suggested decentralisation of the rollout, to deflect blame for framing the widely criticised Covid vaccination policy that came into effect on May 1. “The Centre had been running the vaccination since January 16, and the people were following all the protocol to get the jabs. But some of the states began demanding decentralisation, while there were questions about the age groups and the priority categories. Varied kinds of pressure tactics were employed, including questions about initial vaccinations of senior citizens,” he said. A similar line of argument earlier came from NITI Aayog member V K Paul, who had squarely blamed the states for messing up the campaign. But CPI (M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury criticised the PM’s reasoning. “The Union government and the BJP must learn to accept responsibility for its failures when people of this country have paid with their lives. This incessant focus on spin and PR is an assault on and insult to the millions who perished in the pandemic,” he said. Yechury attributed the latest policy shift to pressure from the Supreme Court’s observations. Opposition-ruled states broadly welcomed the PM’s decision. Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M K Stalin said “as the Prime Minister stressed multiple times that health is a state subject, it will be appropriate for each state to be given complete control over registration, validation and administration procedures.” Chhattisgarh health minister T S Singh Deo had a pithy oneliner: “der aaye durust aaye” (better late than never). Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh said he had written twice to the PM and the Union health minister for Central procurement and distribution of vaccines for all age groups. “This was the only feasiP7 ble solution,” he said. Hold Class 12 Naveen thanks Modi for making vaccination practicals in online mode, a ‘national mission’ ply of vaccines by the two do@ Bhubaneswar mestic manufacturers. Following the PM’s Chief Minister Naveen Pat- announcement, the State govnaik welcomed Prime Minis- ernment is now waiting for ter Narendra Modi’s an- guidelines from the Centre to n o u n c e m e n t o n t h e carry forward the vaccinacentralised vaccination drive tion drive. “There is no relefrom June 21 with all people vance of the global tender if over 18 years to be inoculated all vaccines are to be supplied free of cost. by the Centre. We are waiting “Every life is precious. No for official communication one is safe until everyone is from the Ministry of Health vaccinated. As a nation we and Family Welfare based on stand united in this the announcement fight against #Covby the Prime Minisid19 pandemic. ter,” said Additional Thank PM Shri Chief Secretary of @narendramodi ji Health PK for making vaccinaMohapatra. tion a national misMeanwhile, the sion,” tweeted vaccination drive Naveen. has picked up moTaking a lead on mentum after nearbuilding a national ly two months. As consensus on vaccimany as 1,68,352 n a t i o n s t r a t e g y, doses were adminEvery life is Naveen on June 2 istered on Monday precious. No one had written to chief through 1,097 cenis safe until everyone is ministers on centraltres. The last time vaccinated. As a ised procurement of Odisha had crossed nation we stand Covid vaccines in 1.5 lakh vaccination view of the challeng- united in this fight on a single day was against #Covid19 es faced by states. April 15. pandemic. Stating that the panSo far, 83.62 lakh Thank PM Shri demic was the great- @narendramodi ji vaccine doses have est challenge India been administered. for making vaccination a had faced as a nation While 89 per cent national mission since Independence, (pc) healthcare he had also emphaworkers and 94 pc Naveen Patnaik, sised that the execufrontline workers Chief Minister tion of the prohave been fully vacgramme has to be cinated, 46 pc peodecentralised and states be ple aged 45 years and above allowed the flexibility to de- have got their first shot. termine their own mechaThe State has a stock of nisms for ensuring universal 3.73 lakh doses of Covishield vaccination. and 2.08 lakh doses of CovThis was after the State axin under Central supply failed to get response to the along with 2.3 lakh doses of global e-tender for procuring Covaxin and 1.69 lakh doses 3.8 crore vaccine doses and of Covishield as part of its the inordinate delay in sup- own procurement. E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e NCLT clears Piramal group’s bid for home loan provider DHFL Dipak Mondal @ New Delhi AFTER many twists and turns including an acrimonious fight between Piramal and Adani groups, the corporate insolvency resolution process of DHFL has finally seen a closure with the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) approving Piramal Group’s bid for the distressed home loan provider. Piramal Group’s resolution plan offers `37,500 crore against creditors’ total claim of `86,700 crore. The creditors included banks, financial institutions as well as around 74,000 fixed deposit holders. As per Piramal’s plan, banks will have to take a haircut of 60-65% while it is even higher for fixed deposit holders at 75%. However, the NCLT order suggests that the Committee of Creditors reconsider the amount for deposit holders. DHFL was referred to the NCLT by the Reserve Bank of India in November 2019, making it the first financial service provider to be taken to the tribunal for insolvency RBI invoked the new . rule for insolvency of financial services providers to refer DHFL for insolvency, over its failure to repay a loan from State Bank of India. NCLT admitted the insolvency application on 3 December 2019 and appointed R Subramaniakumar as administrator. Also in the race for DHFL were Oaktree Capital, which had offered `34,000 crore, and Adani Group, which was ready to shell out `33,000 crore. While NCLT has approved Piramal’s bid, experts flag a few legal impediments. DHFL’s expromoter Kapil Wadhawan had offered for settlement and was ready to pay back `91,000 crore to creditors. After his offer was rejected, Wadhawan moved the Supreme Court. The hearing is pending. Another writ petition filed by a fixed depositor – Sasakawa-India Leprosy Foundation – challenging the constitutional validity of Financial Service Providers rule under the IBC Code, is also pending before the Delhi High Court. Welcoming the NCLT order, the Piramal group said it is a significant milestone in DHFL’s resolution and an affirmation of the sanctity of the IBC process in India. E x p r e ss N e ws Se r v i c e @ New Delhi THE Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) on Monday asked all schools affiliated with it to complete internal assessments by June-end and conduct practical examinations for Class 12 students online. The directive comes a week after the Centre, following a high-level meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, decided to cancel the board examination this year in view of the pandemic. Nearly 12 lakh students had registered for the examinations, traditionally held in the month of March every year. The government has said students will be evaluated instead through a “well-defined” and “time-bound” criteria for an assessment plan, which is now being drafted and will include internal assessment among others. CBSE sources said many schools had approached it saying carrying out internal assessments was proving to be difficult as conducting practicals was a problem due to the Covid situation. “Schools with pending internal assessment and practicals should complete them through online mode and submit to the board by 28 June,” read the CBSE circular. The earlier deadline for uploading marks was June 11. The latest order gives schools extension for conducting practical work while underlining that no further extension will be given. Schools have also been asked to strictly adhere to Covid protocols while conducting the assessments. HC upholds OAT abolition E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @ Cuttack What will happen to DHFL shares? The shares of DHFL would be delisted from stock exchanges post acquisition by Piramal Capital and Housing Finance, say experts citing IBC guidelines and Sebi delisting norms. According to sources, the company may merge itself with DHFL for which a call would be taken after all legal and regulatory clearances are obtained says CBSE 18 DEAD IN PUNE CHEM FACTORY FIRE Fire bellows out of a unit at SVS Aqua Technologies at Ghotawade Phata in Pune on Monday | PTI | P8 15 women workers among those killed At least 18 people, including 15 women, were charred to death in a devastating fire at SVS Aqua Technologies, a chemical factory located at an industrial area in Pune district on Monday afternoon. Many workers are still missing NATIONWIDE Fresh cases Recoveries Deaths june 6 june 7 1,14,460 1,00,636 1,89,232 1,74,399 2,677 2,427 Fire breaks out after machine exploded Maha govt, Centre announce `7L ex-gratia The fire broke out after a machine exploded. Thirtyseven people, most of them local residents, were working at the plant, which manufactures chlorine dioxide, a disinfectant used to treat drinking water Maharashtra deputy CM Ajit Pawar announced an ex-gratia of `5 lakh to the families of those who died, while Prime Minister Narendra Modi offered `2 lakh each for the next of kin of the deceased, and `50,000 to those injured in the accident Jab-o-meter Take your shot June 6 33,53,539 doses June 7 31,04,989 doses Total doses: 23,59,39,165 odisha Fresh cases Recoveries Deaths june 6 7,002 7,358 42 june 7 6,118 8,429 41 E X P R E SS R E A D Hyatt Regency Mumbai suspends operations 1-yr property tax waiver for Guj hotels, resorts Pre-monsoon showers arrive, more rain likely Mumbai: Hyatt Regency Mumbai is set to shut down as it is unable to pay salaries. GM Hardeep Marwah said Asian Hotels (West), which owns the 5-star hotel, has not sent money for operations | P10 Ahmedabad: The Gujarat government on Monday announced property tax waiver for one year for hotels, resorts, restaurants and water parks due to the coronavirus pandemic Bhubaneswar: Much to the delight of people amidst the prolonged hot and humid spell, many parts of the State on Monday received pre-monsoon showers | P3 The Orissa High Court on Monday declined to interfere with the notification on abolition of Odisha Administrative Tribunal (OAT) issued by the Central government on August 2, 2019. While dismissing six petitions, the division bench of Chief Justice S Muralidhar and Justice BP Routray said the correspondence between three main actors in the present case - the State government, Centre and High Court - reveals that several factors were taken into account in arriving at the conclusion that the OAT required to be abolished. “Therefore, there was sufficient material to support the view of the State government that OAT has not served the purpose of delivery of speedy justice to litigants”, the bench said. Further, it is evident that the Central government agreed to go ahead with notifying the rescinding of earlier notification of establishment of the OAT, thus bringing about its abolition, only after the High Court conveyed its concurrence and not otherwise. “The court is, therefore, unable to accept the submission of the petitioners that this pro- cedure was extra-legal and invalidated the decision to abolish the OAT”, the bench said, adding, “For all of the aforementioned reasons, the court is of the view that no ground has been made out for the court to interfere with the impugned notification.” In light of the above conclusion, since all the pending cases before the OAT would automatically stand transferred to this court, the interim order on August 7, 2019 is no longer required to be continued. It is accordingly vacated. The State Cabinet had approved the decision to abolish OAT on September 9, 2015 after it was felt that the very objective of the institution to give quick justice to employees could not be achieved. The Centre acted on the State government’s request after taking concurrence of the High Court and abolished OAT on August 2, 2019. Fresh, clear guidelines on Covid care The Directorate General of Health Services, under the Union health ministry, has revised patient treatment guidelines in an order dated May 27 | P12
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