BENGALURU TUESDAY JUNE 15, 2021 `7.00 PAGES 20 LATE CITY EDITION ANOTHER VAX CANDIDATE IN THE U.S. SHOWS HUGE PROMISE US-based Novavax said its vaccine had an efficacy of 90% against infection and 100% against moderate/severe disease NOVAVAX’s HIGH STRIKE RATE AGAINST ALPHA SERUM INSTITUTE’s BRIDGING TRIAL The firm, releasing its phase 3 clinical trial report, said the efficacy rates of its recombinant nanoparticle protein-based vaccine were based on trials on nearly 30,000 volunteers between January and April in the US and Mexico. The high efficacy rates were achieved predominantly against the infectious Alpha variant of the virus that was first detected in the UK ■ ■ After regulatory nod, Novavax plans to ramp up manufacturing capacity to 15 crore doses per month by December-end The results are significant for us, too, as the Serum Institute of India is a manufacturing partner. It is currently undertaking a bridging trial on 1,600 people before launching the Indian version 21-DAY GAP BETWEEN THE TWO DOSES OF THE VACCINE DURING THE PHASE 3 TRIALS 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 Food, fuel prices push wholesale, retail inflation May consumer price index-based inflation at 6-month high, wholesale prices break record E X P R E SS N E WS S E R V I C E @ New Delhi RISING fuel and food prices pushed retail inflation to a sixmonth high of 6.3% in May, breaching Reserve Bank of India’s targets, government data released on Monday showed. This is way above the projected levels, implying that the impact of the localised Covid-19 restrictions was more severe than expected. “The month-onmonth uptick in the CPI in May 2021, which saw widening statelevel restrictions, is nearly as high as the hardening seen in April 2020 during the nationwide lockdown, testing the assumption that supply disruptions have been limited in the second wave,” said Aditi Nayar, chief economist, ICRA Ltd. According to data by the Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation, food inflation shot up to 5.01% in May from 1.96% in April. While vegetable prices softened, fruit price zoomed 12% and the cost of pulses and products rose 9.4%. Even the prices of nonalcoholic beverages rose 15%. In non-food items, the rise was steep in fuel and light, registering an inflation of 11.6%, and transport and communication at 12.4%. With wholesale NATIONWIDE JUNE 13 JUNE 14 Fresh cases Recoveries Deaths 80,834 1,32,062 3,303 70,421 1,19,501 3,921 FEELING THE PINCH Item Infation rate Oil & fats 30.84% Egg 15.16% Transport & communication 12.38% Fruits 11.98% Fuel & light 11.58% Pulses & products 9.39% Meat & fish 9.03% Personal care & effects 7.99% Spices 6.86% Household goods & services 3.89% Milk & products 0.64% Figures are year-on-year provisional inflation rates for May 2021 price index (WPI)-based inflation also touching a whopping 12.94% – the highest since 2013 – experts warn that inflation will worsen in the coming months. WPI-based inflation in May was pushed by fuel and power basket, which shot up to 37.6% in the month against 20.94% in April due to hardening global commodity prices. “If wholesale prices are rising, eventually it will start finding its reflection in retail inflation as well,” said Sunil Kumar Sinha, principal economist with India Ratings and Research. He warned that this trend will make things worse for the RBI. June 13 TAKE 34,84,239 doses YOUR June 14 SHOT 22,15,947 doses TOTAL DOSES: 25,87,13,321 JAB-O-METER K’taka plans `1L compensation for BPL families that lost breadwinners E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ Bengaluru CHIEF Minister BS Yediyurappa on Monday announced a compensation package of `1 lakh to BPL card-holding families who have lost an adult earning member to Covid-19. This is an extension of the `1,850 crore economic relief package announced in two parts by the State Government earlier. “The Covid pandemic has killed earning members, pushing families into extreme financial distress. The scheme has been announced keeping this in Even as the Unlock Phase 1, after restrictions of a month and a half, came into effect, Bengaluru witnessed traffic jams, rush at markets and large gatherings of people near tea and TARGET FOR FISCAL YEAR D11,409 COLLECTIONS SO FAR D24,580 D4,284.05 in EXCISE crore TARGET FOR FISCAL YEAR COLLECTIONS SO FAR mind. It will be limited to one person per family Yediyurappa ,” said. The scheme is estimated to benefit around 25,000 to 30,000 CONTINUED ON: P7 There is a complete mismatch between death certificates issued across various districts and the official Covid count EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE WHILE the Centre recently bristled at an international news magazine pegging India’s excess deaths due to the pandemic at 5-7 times the official count, the fact that there is under-reporting cannot be brushed away . Under mounting pressure for an honest admission on the scale of the pandemic, Maharashtra and Bihar raised their fatality figures last week through data reconciliation after audit/validation by around 14,000 and 4,000, respectively But allega. tions that not all deaths in private hospitals or of patients on their way to hospitals in rural areas were recorded under the Covid category refuse to go away, prompting the Patna High Court to direct the Bihar government to confirm whether its data revision was full and final. E X P R E SS N E WS S E R V I C E @ Bengaluru Traffic jams return COMMERCIAL TAXES D76,473 such families incurring an expenditure of `250 crore to `300 crore to the state exchequer. “Given our financial situation, we have been able to announce the scheme and this tells us that our situation is better than most States during the pandemic. Nowhere in the country has such a scheme been announced,” Yediyurappa said, after Finance Department officials informed him that revenue targets are better this year as compared to the corresponding period last year during the first wave of Covid. INDIA’S FATALITY MATH MESS Prohibitory orders to continue in B’luru THE State Government has eased lockdown norms, but the prohibitory orders in Bengaluru will continue till the midnight of June 21, said City Police Commissioner Kamal Pant on Monday . The order prohibits assembly of four or more people in public places. However, it gives exemptions to purpose specified in the government order on the lockdown. Bus stands, railway stations and airports too are exempted from the order, Pant said. The number of Covid cases in Bengaluru is on the decline, but there is a need to be alert and follow all precautions to contain the virus spread, the order stated. TAX COLLECTION IN APRIL-MAY 2021 Death certificates issued by GHMC Apr 2019-Mar 2020 Plus 4% rise* Apr 2020-Mar 2021 *Bar indicates the assumption of a 4% normal rise from 2019-20 fatalities to 67,620 65,019 67,620 70,758 GHMC issued 9,235 additional death certificates for 2020-21, but only 3,496 deaths have been recorded as Covid in entire Telangana so far. Subtracting 4% normal rise (2,601) leaves 3,138 deaths not recorded as Covid in Hyderabad alone Note: 998 certificates are being processed Hyderabad: Data discrepancy, to put it mildly, is visible across the country and under all political dispensations. Take Hyderabad. There was a 14.2% jump in deaths within the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) limits in 2020-21, as compared to the same period in the previous year. A Right to Information que- ry by this newspaper on the death certificates it issued revealed that the corporation handed out 9,235 more certificates between 2020 March and 2021 April (see box). Besides, 998 other death certificates are under process. Also, data was available only for 18 erstwhile circles of GHMC, which have now been reorganised into 30 circles within the same area. Outrage over death of journo who feared for his life E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ Lucknow With some relaxations made to lockdown norms, vehicles seen caught in a traffic jam on NR Road, near Town Hall, in Bengaluru on Monday | VINOD KUMAR T coffee stalls, giving the impression that there are no Covid restriction in the city . A huge rush was reported at toll plazas, city checkposts and entry points like Tumakuru Road, Mysuru Road, Attibele and Old Madras Road.Salons, beauty parlours, mini-malls, footwear and garment retail stores, not listed to be opened under Phase 1 of Unlock, too were open. Meanwhile, in many of the 19 districts, where curbs have been eased, rain forced people indoors. In some districts, officials ensured that the curbs continued to be enforced strictly . Udupi, Kalaburagi and Karwar witnessed empty streets as torrential rains hammered the districts. But in Tumakuru and other towns, it was chaos as P4 people moved around. A day after writing to the UP additional DGP for security cover, a 42-year-old TV channel journalist died under mysterious circumstances in Pratapgarh district on Sunday late night. While preliminary probe indicated Sulabh Srivastava died in what appeared to be an accident, his family alleged foul play claiming Sulabh was , killed by the liquor mafia for running a news story against them. Sulabh was found injured near Katra Crossing and was taken to a hospital, where he was declared ‘dead on arrival’. On Saturday Sulabh had written , to ADGP-Prayagraj Zone, expressing fears that his family and he could be targeted over his news report on illicit liquor dens. His report was telecast days after 22 people died in Aligarh district after consuming spurious liquor. Hours after claiming Sulabh had died in an accident, Pratapgarh East ASP Surendra Dwivedi said the police were looking into other angles as well. FAMILY TO DONATE SANCHARI VIJAY’S ORGANS M G C H E TA N & A S H A R A D H A A @ Bengaluru FAMILY members of national award winning Kannada actor ‘Sanchari’ Vijay, who was declared brain dead on Monday after he met with a tragic road accident on Saturday night, have decided to donate his organs. His relatives and friends said that it is a fitting tribute to the talented artist, who distributed food packets and helped the n e e dy d u r i n g t h e C ov i d lockdown. In the health bulletin re- leased by the hospital at 8.20 pm Arun L Naik stated in the on Monday, the doctors con- bulletin. firmed that Vijay was brain Vijay’s younger brother Siddead. desh Kumar, trying “Vijay’s apnea tests hard to control his were perfor med at emotion, said, “He 12.25 pm and 7.50 pm was known to give today (Monday) and back to society That . are found to be posiis why we decided to tive. This means that donate his organs”. there is irreversible The mor tal recomplete damage to mains of Vijay will the brain. The next be kept at Ravindra Sanchari Vijay step is the retrieval of Kalakshetra campus organs and then transbetween 8 am and 10 plant procedures will follow at am on Tuesday for the public to various hospitals, including pay their last respects. Apollo,” neurosurgeon Dr. “The final rites will be con- Covid 3,496 ducted with full state honors at his birthplace, Panchanahalli in Kadur taluk on Tuesday,” said director Mansore. Sanchari Vijay aka Vijay Ku m a r B h a i l e d f r o m Chikkamagaluru district. He was an engineering graduate and worked as a lecturer in a college before moving to Bengaluru. After playing minor roles on stage, he came to be popularly known as ‘Sanchari’ after his association with Sanchari Theatre, run by actor Rangayana Raghu and his wife Mangala. CONTINUED ON: P2 Very hurt to hear the news about Vijay. Knew him as a great human being and a good actor as well Shiva Rajkumar, Actor Yet, the cumulative count of Covid deaths recorded in the entire Telangana as on June 14 is just 3,496, though there were humungous crowds at the state’s burial and cremation grounds when the second wave was at its peak. A municipal officer in Hyderabad said an year-on-year increase of 3-4% in death certificates is normal because of continued migration and rising awareness of the need for death certificates. However, a 14.2% increase in a year when for three months the city was under lockdown was concerning, he said. “During lockdown there were hardly any road traffic deaths, which is one of the major contributors to daily toll,” he added. Mysuru: Sa Ra Mahesh, a legislator from Mysuru, disputes the district administration’s Covid-19 death figures. CONTINUED ON: P10 EXPRESS READ Five MPs oust Chirag Paswan as LJP leader New Delhi: Five of the six Lok Janshakti Party MPs in the Lok Sabha have joined hands against their leader Chirag Paswan and elected Pashupati Kumar Paras, the youngest brother of Paswan’s late father and party founder Ram Vilas Paswan, in his place, causing a big churn in Bihar politics. P9 Used tech to beat Anand in chessgame: Bizman Bengaluru: Nikhil Kamath, an entrepreneur, has grabbed headlines for the wrong reasons. He used fraudulent means to defeat Grandmaster Viswanathan Anand in a charity chess stream on Sunday. Kamath conceded on Monday that he took help from the engines. P15 KARNATAKA JUNE 13 JUNE 14 Fresh cases Recoveries Deaths 7,810 6,835 18,648 125 15,409 120
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