SATURDAY FACTORY OUTPUT SHRINKS FOR 5TH MONTH IN A ROW IN JULY 12 With industrial activities hit hard by Covid-19, the month’s Index of Industrial Production (IIP) contracted by 10.4% P10 SEPTEMBER, 2020 morningstandard.in 4.8 TEAM RAHUL GETS SLOTS IN CONG REJIG writers, has been included in the team of six, he is unlikely to go against her close aide Ahmed Patel,” said a senior party leader. Others axed as AICC general secretaries include Ambika Soni, Motilal Vora, Luizinho Falerio and Mallikarjun Kharge. But Soni has been included in the special committee along with Wasnik, Ahmed Patel, A K Antony, R S Surjewala and K C Venugopal. Both Venugopal and Surjewala are considered close to Rahul. Azad and two other letter writers, Anand Sharma and Wasnik, continue to remain part of the CWC. Jitin Prasada, another member of the group of 23, has been given the responsibility of West Bengal that goes to the polls next year and has been made a permanent invitee to CWC, a promotion from his special invitee position earlier. Wasnik has also been made in charge of Madhya Pradesh. According to sources, changes have been made keeping in mind that Azad, Sharma and a few others made public statements after the CWC meeting despite directives not to do so. R I C H A S H A R M A @ New Delhi IN a major organisational reshuffle, the Congress on Friday dropped Ghulam Nabi Azad, the senior-most among 23 letter writers, as AICC general secretary and , constituted a six member special committee — having a mix of both young and old leaders — to assist Congress chief Sonia Gandhi in running the party till a new president is elected. The reshuffle comes days after a group of 23 leaders wrote to Sonia, seeking collective leadership and organisational elections, starting with the Cong ress Working Committee (CWC). But with the reconstitution of the CWC, there is little scope for elections to the party’s highest decision making body . According to party sources, many of Team Rahul’s members have been suitably accommodated. “In a balancing act, the Congress president ensured that dissenters remain part of the CWC but also sent a strong signal to them by ensuring that Azad and Sharma are kept out of the special committee. Though Wasnik, one of the letter C O V I D STATUS OF CASES 2,754 1,78,154 21 4,687 -- 26,907 4,266 2,09,748 *2795 beds of CCC are occupied by persons under quarantine including travellers who came by Vande Bharat Mission and bubble flights 8,305 52,275 Rapid antigen test conducted in city 20,22,700 1,06,457 6,031 8,199 1,576 4,209* 463 138 HOME ISOLATION : 14,571 W A T C H RTPCR/CBNAAT/ True Nat tests conducted today (COVID-19) PATIENT MANAGEMENT 14,230 8,580 601 CONTINUED ON P8 TESTING STATUS Today Cumulative Total beds Occupied Vacant Total tests done so far Tests per million n Calls received in control room: 240 Containment zones as on date 1,329 n Total number of calls dispatched to ambulances: 1,498 SOURCE: DELHI HEALTH BULLETIN | DATA FOR SEPT 11 AGNIVESH PASSES AWAY Social activist Swami Agnivesh, 80, died of multiple-organ failure at a Delhi hospital on Friday | P7 l NEW DELHI Delhiites will breathe a sigh of relief as Delhi Metro is finally set to resume its full operations from Saturday after nearly six months. The process of stage-wise, cautious reopening of Metro that began on September 7 and will be complete with the resumption of services on Airport Express Line. The Covid-mandated lockdown had brought the Metro operations to a screeching halt in March. While the government started the Unlock process in June, the Metro remained suspended. Public l J8.00 l PAGES 12 THE Centre has planned several big-ticket plans for boosting air connectivity in several places of Uttar Pradesh, including Ayodhya and Kushinagar. The Lal Bahadur Shastri (LBS) airport in Varanasi has been chosen as the first among few to start paperless entry of passengers using facial recognition security system in India. Airports at Ayodhya and Kushinagar are important given their religious and spiritual 3.5 connection. Also an airport in Sonebhadra, the tribal district of eastern UP sharing borders with M a d hya P r a d e s h , Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand and Bihar, is expected to give a major boost to conventional tourism. Run by the AAI, the LBS air- General -29.2 Manufacturing -32.8 Electricity Mining General 2019-2020 2020-2021 *Figures in % India, China agree on reducing tension, analysts see it as the first big step towards disengagement; no aggression at LAC in past 24 hours PUSHKAR BANAKAR & M AYA N K S I N G H @ New Delhi External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar (left) and his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi ahead of their talks on the sidelines of the SCO meeting in Moscow | PTI A five-point mechanism to resolve the ongoing tension between India and China in eastern Ladakh along the Line of Actual Control became the talking point on Friday, with analysts seeing it as the first important step in the right direction, as it gives political guidance for disengagement. The mechanism was arrived at during a bilateral meeting between External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi in Moscow on Thursday on the sidelines of the SCO foreign ministers’ meeting. In a joint statement issued early on Friday the two leaders , said that they should not allow differences to become disputes. “The two Foreign Ministers agreed that the current situation in the border areas is not in the interest of either side. PLAIN TALK AT BILATERAL MEET The Chinese side has not provided credible explanation for the massive deployment of forces, Jaishankar told Wang. “The provocative behaviour of Chinese frontline troops also showed disregard for bilateral agreements and protocols,” a source said They agreed therefore that the border troops of both sides should continue their dialogue, quickly disengage, maintain proper distance and ease tensions,” the statement added. “Indian partners expressed commitment to cooperation and dialogue for deescalating tensions. We are ready to take conciliatory steps. The most important thing is to avoid new violations of the obligations on the border. Troops and equipment should be withdrawn from the LAC,” Wang Yi said at a joint press conference with Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov a day after his meeting with Jaishankar. “Both reiterating that channels of communication will remain open and that soon the SR level meeting will take place, demonstrates that there is a silver lining as regards solving the standoffs through diplomacy. This ultimately may pave way for another Modi-Xi meeting that could be a face saver to both the sides,” said B R Deepak, Sinologist and Chairperson of the Centre for Chinese and South Asian Studies at JNU. Sources said during the meeting, Jaishankar highlighted India’s strong concerns at the amassing of Chinese troops with equipment along the LAC. The conciliatory tone seems to have trickled to the ground with sources saying both sides have exercised restraint on the LAC and there has been no aggressive action for the past 24 hours. CONTINUED ON P7 Covaxin better at protecting monkeys from Covid-19 S U M I S U K A N YA D U T TA @ New Delhi AN Indian Covid-19 vaccine candidate, Covaxin, jointly developed by Bharat Biotech and the ICMR, can protect animals from the virus, if the first results of its animal challenge study are anything to go by . The study by the National Institute of Virology (NIV) scientists suggests that vaccinated groups of rhesus macaques had significantly lower disease burden compared to the placebo group. In challenge studies, animals are first vaccinated and then deliberately exposed to a pathogen to assess the efficacy of a vaccine or a drug. I n t e r e s t i n g l y, C o v a x i n showed better results compared to the animal challenge of the vaccine candidate developed by Oxford University and AstraZeneca. Animals that took the Oxford shot, when exposed to Covid, did not develop severe disease, but did contract the infection and were found capable of transmitting it to others. The NIV study involved 20 macaques—in four groups of five animals each. One group movement was gradually allowed in a phase-wise manner, albeit with social distancing and mandatory face mask rules, but commuters had been facing a lot of inconvenience as the Metro has become the lifeline of a large number of Delhiites over the past decade or so. P4 One more month Covaxin is in phase 2 trial across 12 centres in 10 states. Sources say it could take nearly a month before it can enter phase 3 trial in which the vaccine can be tested on thousands of volunteers for population level results was given a placebo while three groups were immunised with three versions of Covaxin, derived from killed SARS-CoV-2, at 0 and 14 days. All the macaques were then challenged with SARS-CoV-2 14 days after the second dose. The protective response was observed with increasing antibodies from 3rd-week post-immunization. “The two-dose vac- cination regimen of inactivated SARS-CoV-2 vaccine candidates was found to induce a strong immune response and protection of animals from the infection of SARS-CoV-2,” the authors have reported. The presence of viral RNA was observed in the placebo group until 7 days post infection. The vaccinated monkeys had no detectable viral RNA indicating the ability of the vaccine candidates to limit upper respiratory tract viral replication, a key factor determining virus transmission. Also, viral RNA was not detected in lung fluids from day five post infection suggesting that the vaccination hindered virus replication and enabled faster clearance from lower airway, protecting the animals. “Viral RNA was found in multiple organs in the placebo groups, but not in the vaccinated groups. The vaccinated groups had significantly lower disease burden compared to the placebo group.” Significantly no evidence of , pneumonia — a symptom in serious Covid cases — was observed in vaccinated groups, unlike the placebo group. EXPRESS READ Five from Delhi get 100 percentiles in JEE-Main New Delhi: Twenty-four candidates have scored 100 percentiles in the Joint Entrance Examination (Main). The National Testing Agency declared the results of the exams organised between September 1 and 6 and final merit list based on the January and September cycles of the examinations on Friday night. While Telangana (8) had the maximum toppers, 5 students from Delhi have scored 100 percentiles followed by Rajasthan (4), Andhra Pradesh (3), Haryana (2 ) and one candidate each from Gujarat and Maharashtra. Several stakeholders, including several states, were not in favour of the exams right in the middle of Covid-19 pandemic. Varanasi among 4 airports to get paperless entry facility N A M I TA B A J PA I @ Lucknow 6.8 3.0 Five-point mechanism to defuse tension Metro to begin full ops from today E X P R ESS N E WS S E RV I C E @ New Delhi 3.4 -20.2 A CAPITAL VIEW OF NEWS PAGE 7 Electricity Centre passes order to help states beat Oxygen shortage Manufacturing Mining NO RESTRICTION ON SUPPLY Hospital Care centre Health centre April-July -12.5 -13.0 OXYGEN Recovered Death Active cases Positive cases -11.1 instagram.com/themorningstandard 4.9 -10.4 twitter.com/TheMornStandard D E L H I 5.2 -2.5 facebook.com/TheMorningStandard July 4.9 port in PM Narendra Modi’s parliamentary constituency Varanasi is likely to turn paperless by this year end. This came out during a virtual review meeting, which was chaired by UP CM Yogi Adityanath and Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri, of civil avia- Ayodhya airport will be developed in a phased manner. The central and state governments are constantly working to develop the infrastructure facilities for Ayodhya, Chitrakoot, and Sonbhadra Hardeep Singh Puri, Union Aviation Minister tion projects in the northern state. Varanasi was among the four airports covered by the Centre’s Digi Yatra scheme facilitating paperless entry through facial recognition. However, Yogi focused mainly on the development of infrastructure facilities at three proposed airports – Ayodhya, Chitrakoot and Myorpur in Sonebhadra district. He claimed that three-and-ahalf years ago, the state had only two active airports, but now seven airports were functioning and the state government was working on 17 airports in the state. “Once all the 17 airports become functional, the state will get a connectivity boost, upswing in tourism, employment generation adding to the state’s development,” Yogi said, thanking PM Narendra Modi and Puri for the projects. He also urged the Centre for assistance in resolving issues related to works at Bareilly, Hindon, Saharanpur, Meerut, Lucknow and Varanasi. Maken moves SC on slum demolition; Delhi govt plans review plea And then, too, only 1,060 flats , in Sultanpuri will be ready to move in while for the rest, it THE Delhi government is will need time till March 2021. planning to file a review peti- These premises are being curtion in the Supreme Court rently used as Covid centres. over its order for demolition The SC order of August 31 of 48,000 slums along the rail- barred any court in Delhi way tracks while Congress from issuing a stay on the leader Ajay Maken has al- eviction proceedings after ready challenged the order, Railways complained of poterming the demolition move litical interference in the as inhuman. past. The court gave the RailIn his petition filed on Fri- ways three months to comday, Maken said no slum plete the proceedings. dweller should be evicted Maken, in his plea, said the without alternative housing order violated the principles as per the Delhi Slum & Jhug- of natural justice as the afgi Jhopri (JJ) Rehabilitation fected slum dwellers were not and Relocation Polheard individually icy 2015. , Humanitarian or collectively. He Seeking an uradded that the orangle gent hearing in the der violated a rulMaken, in his plea, case, Maken said ing of the Constitusaid the order the railways has altion bench in Olga violated the ready issued noticTellis v Bombay principles of natural es to the slum clusMunicipal Corporajustice as the ters and plans to tion case of 1986, affected slum carry out the demowhich held that dwellers were not lition drive from there can be no jusheard individually Friday to Monday . tification for denyor collectively. The D e l h i g ove r n ing slum dwellers 48,000 slum ment of ficials, l iv i n g o n p ave clusters are in meanwhile, said ments or public existence for 30-40 the matter was disproperties an opyears and are home cussed at a meeting por tunity to be to over 240,000 held recently by CM heard. The 48,000 people, it added. Arvind Kejriwal. slum clusters The Delhi Urban sought to be erased Shelter Improvement Board have been in existence for 30(DUSIB) has written to the 40 years and are home to over Northern Railways, which 240,000 people, it added. states, “As per the (Special Justice Arun Mishra (now Provisions) Second Act, JJ retired) led the three-judge Bastis that have come up be- bench that passed the order. fore 1/1/2006 are protected CJI SA Bobde will have to conand shall not be removed stitute a new bench to hear without orderly arrangement Maken’s application. for relocation and rehabilitaA political blame game has tion of JJ dwellers.” also started in Delhi over the The DUSIB, which is the SC order. The ruling AAP has nodal agency in such matters, blamed the BJP-led Centre also listed in its letter the while the latter has accused housing complexes available the Delhi government of not for relocation, but said the creating alternative accomearliest that arrangements modations for slum dwellers. can be made is in December. CONTINUED ON P5 KANU SARDA & S I D D H A N TA M I S H R A @ New Delhi
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