DAILY FROM: AHMEDABAD, CHANDIGARH, DELHI, JAIPUR, KOLKATA, LUCKNOW, MUMBAI, NAGPUR, PUNE, VADODARA JOURNALISM OF COURAGE WEDNESDAY, JUNE 9, 2021, PUNE, LATE CITY, 12 PAGES `5.00 WWW.INDIANEXPRESS.COM SINCE 1932 DAY AFTER PM’S ANNOUNCEMENT ON CENTRAL PROCUREMENT, FREE VACCINATION 17 DIE IN FACTORY FIRE Centre tells states to ensure registrations on site, places orders for 44 crore vaccine doses Bill for free vaccines and extra foodgrains will be Rs 1.15 lakh cr in FY21 KAUNAIN SHERIFF M NEW DELHI, JUNE 8 ADAYafterthePrimeMinisterannounced that the Centre will directly procure 75 per cent of the total doses to vaccinate every adult in the country free of cost, the Ministry of Health placed an advanceorderTuesdaytosecure44 crore doses from the two vaccine manufacturers in the country. And moving to tide over vaccine registration problems as it expands the inoculation drive, E X P L A I NE D ‘Change in vaccination policy based on analysis, feedback, public narrative’ E Key to shots ● for all AANCHAL MAGAZINE ON-SITE REGISTRATION is critical to expanding vaccination, especially beyond urbancentres.Thiswasalso underlinedbytheSupreme Courtwhichaskedthegovernment if mandatory registration on CoWIN was practical given the digital divide in the country. NEW DELHI, JUNE 8 Lucknow shops reopened after 50 days Tuesday. Vishal Srivastav CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 THE PRIMEMINISTER’S decision Monday to providefree vaccines to states for all citizens over 18 years from June 21 is likely to cost the exchequer an additional Rs 15,000 crore compared with the Budget allocation of Rs 35,000 crore. “It is too early to give a cor- rect estimate with multiple suppliers and different prices. But the rough estimate is total expenditure for vaccines for this year may be Rs 45,000-50,000 crore. In the Budget, we had provided Rs 35,000 crore, and of this, the government has paid out about Rs 5,000 crore,” a senior government official who did not wish to be named told The Indian Express. CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 ` 120 per kilo New learning spaces to teacher postings: Punjab’s mantra for topping school ranking index ` 148 per kilo KANCHAN VASDEV ` 92 per kilo CHANDIGARH, JUNE 8 Prime Minister Narendra Modi with Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, his deputy Ajit Pawar (right) of the Nationalist Congress Party, and his Cabinet colleague Ashok Chavan of the Congress in New Delhi on Tuesday. PTI Narendra Modi Stadium is part of a mega sports complex. Archive Ahmedabad takes a long shot — puts out ad on Olympics infra RITUSHARMA AHMEDABAD,JUNE8 THEREISnoslotinsightforatleast 15 years, and it's a very long shot. ButAhmedabad,itappears,isgoing for it. On Tuesday, the city's developmentauthorityinvitedproposalsfromconsultantstoassessvenuesandinfrastructuretohostthe Olympic Games. “...Technically sound and experiencedconsultingengineering firmsforappointmentoftechnical assistance consultant/ agency for assessment of sports and non sportsvenuesandcityinfrastructure for hosting the Olympic Games,”saidanewspaperadvertisement issued by Ahmedabad Urban Development Authority (AUDA). According to the advertisement, the project will be jointly executed by AUDA, Sports Authority of India (SAI) and the Gujarat government. “With the aim of making Ahmedabad an international sports destination that can host events like Olympics, Asiad and CONTINUEDONPAGE2 Maratha quota, GST dues: Team Uddhav meets PM, hopeful of positive response On his separate meeting with Modi, CM: ‘Nothing wrong, didn’t meet Nawaz’ VISHWAS WAGHMODE MUMBAI, JUNE 8 IN ONLY his second meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi since he became the Maharashtra Chief Minister, Uddhav Thackeray on Tuesday held talks with the PM in New Delhi over state issues, as well as met him privately for about 30 minutes — setting political circles abuzz in the state. Speaking to the media, Thackerayexpressedsatisfaction overthemeetings,whereheand two Cabinet members raised 12 issues, key among them being reservationforMarathasandGST dues.“WemetthePMonimportant issues of the state and gave him notes on all. He heard us seriouslyandpromisedtolookinto them.WearehopefulthePMwill resolvetheissuespositively.”The CMsaidhealsothankedModion the change in vaccine policy, underwhichtheCentrewillnowdo the procurement. Apart from Deputy CM Ajit Pawar and PWD Minister Ashok Chavan, Thackeray was accompanied by Chief Secretary BUSINESS AS USUAL BY UNNY Sitaram Kunte. On his one-on-one meeting with Modi, the CM said: “Today we are not politically together, but that does not mean that the relationshiphas broken. There is nothing wrong if I meet him. I didn’t go to meet Nawaz Sharif." The Nawaz Sharif remark was apparently a reference to Modi's surprise visit to the former Pakistani PM in December 2015. However,Thackeray did not give any details regarding what he discussed with the PM. Chavan, who is the chairman CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 HC cancels ‘fraudulent’ SC certificate of MP Navneet Kaur-Rana, fines Rs 2 lakh OMKARGOKHALE MUMBAI,JUNE8 THE BOMBAY High Court on Tuesday cancelled and confiscated the “wrong caste certificate” obtained by Amravati MP Navneet Kaur-Rana in 2013, which was validated by Caste Scrutiny Committee in2017,and said that such an act may “deprive genuine and deserving persons from benefits prescribed in the law.” The court asked Kaur-Rana to Independent MP from Amravati surrender the certificate to the Committeewithinsixweeksand directed her to pay a cost of Rs 2 lakh to the Maharashtra Legal Services Authority within two weeks,addingthat“alltheconsequences in law provided upon cancellationofsuchafraudulently obtained certificate shall follow.” The court also pulled up the DistrictCasteScrutinyCommittee, Mumbai,whichvalidatedthecertificate in November 2017, saying it “did its job rather sloppily and shirked the obligations imposed onit”.Withtheorder,theMember of Parliament, who got elected in the 2019 general elections as an independentcandidate,mayhave to lose the seat which was reserved for a candidate from a Scheduled Caste. A first-time independent Parliamentarian, Rana, 35, had wonthe2019LokSabhaelections after the Congress-NCP combine decided to extend support to her, leading to her defeating then sitting MP, Shiv Sena’s Anandrao Adsul. But since the 2019 elections,Ranawassaidtobeincreasingly gravitating towards the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). A division bench of Justice RD Dhanuka and Justice VG Bisht on Tuesdaypassedthejudgmenton pleas filed by Adsul, along with RajuMankar,asocialworkerfrom Amravati, challenging the order CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 FROMRANKING 13thin2017-18 to climbing to the top of the latest school ranking index, from teacher-less schools to smart classrooms,Punjab’sgovernment schools have emerged a winner. On Sunday, when the Education Ministry released the latesteditionof thePerformance Grading Index or PGI, Punjab was right on top in the overall ranking, scoring 929 points out of 1,000 and leaving star performances such as Kerala (fourth) and Delhi (sixth position) behind. Chandigarh stood second, followed by Tamil Nadu. PGIisanindexthatmeasures the performance of states and Union Territories in school education across 70 parameters such as learning outcomes, enrollment and infrastructure. “We have very good teachers who are IT savvy and are keen to deliver. Four years ago, we CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 THE EDITORIAL PAGE ACORPORATE REVOLUTION BY MANISH SABHARWAL & GOPAL JAIN PAGE8 WORLD WTO PANEL CONSIDERS EASING PROTECTIONS ON COVID-19 VACCINES NETANYAHU FACES END OF RULE IN PARLIAMENTARY VOTE ON NEW GOVT PAGE7 Grieving familymembersof SunitaSatheatherhomein Bhalwadivillage.Sunita,28,isoneof the17persons presumed deadinthefire.Sunita’shusbandRahulandhisbrother Santosh,whowereinthefactoryatthetimeof theincident, survivedwithinjuries. Ashish Kale Factory stored large quantity of flammable chemicals without any permits, say officials Firemayhavestartedinpackaging machine;proprietorheld,twobooked SUSHANT KULKARNI PUNE, JUNE 8 THE CHEMICAL factory in Mulshi taluka, where a massive fire claimed the lives of 17 workers on Monday, used to store large quantities of various flammablechemicalsincludingsanitisers without requisite permits, said sources in the inquiry committee probing the incident. The fire was reported at the SVS Aqua Technologies, a company in Urawade, near Pirangut in Pune district's Mulshi taluka, around 3.30 pm on Monday. Four persons were injured in the fire. Theprobealsofoundthatthe chemicals, including sanitisers, were stored in the same space where the factory employees worked. On Tuesday evening, Pune Rural Police arrested the proprietor of the factory, Nikunj Shah, onchargesof culpablehomicide. Police have also booked his father Bipin Shah and brother Keyur Shah in the case, but they are yet to be arrested. At the factory, the day after. Ashish Kale An official who is part of the probe said the fire is suspected to have started in a packaging machine. It spread further and intensifieddueto stocksof flammablechemicals,includingalcohol-based sanitiser, he said. Police and local administration had earlier said that 18 persons were presumed deadin the fire. On Tuesday, officials clarified that 17 bodies and one body partwererecovered.Allthebodies were charred beyond recognition. DNA samples are being collected from the bodies and the next of kin to ascertain identities of the bodies. CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 Agra hospital shut down after owner’s video: ‘mock drill... cut oxygen supply’ AMIL BHATNAGAR & AVANEESH MISHRA AGRA, LUCKNOW, JUNE 8 THEDISTRICTadministrationon Tuesday ordered the sealing of Shri Paras Hospital, a prominent private hospital in Agra, following a purported video clip of its ownerwherehetalksabouthow the hospital cut off oxygen supply to Covid-19 patients for five minutes as part of a “mock drill” to find out “who will die”. He says that 22 patients were “filtered out” during this “experiment” as they “turned blue”. Speaking to The Indian Express, Agra District Magistrate Prabhu Narain Singh confirmed that the person in the video clip was the hospital owner, Dr Arinjay Jain. The incident is reported to have occurred on the morning of April 26, and the video was made on April 28. While Jain talks about 22 pa- Notice at Shri Paras Hospital Tuesday. Praveen Khanna tients who “turned blue”, Singh said four Covid-19 patients died onApril26andthreeonApril27. In the video clip, Jain says the “biggest supplier” of Agra warned him at midnight that he had limited oxygen stock, only enough to last till the morning (of April 26). He says he informedthe96patientsaboutthe situation, and asked them to make arrangements by (April 26) 10 am, but nobody was CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 Low-cost charging system could be game-changer for electric bikes and 3-wheelers PAGE 1 ANCHOR AMITABHSINHA PUNE,JUNE8 ALOW-COSTchargingsystemfor two- and three-wheeler electric vehicles,expectedtohitthemarket in about six months, could prove to be a game-changer for electric mobility in the country. Two- and three-wheelers accountforabout80percentof vehicle sales in the country, and are amajorsourceof vehicularemissions. Government officials said the adoption of electric mobility in this segment could be much faster if a low-cost and easily accessible charging system was made available. The new charging system, developed as a government-industry partnership, could be priced as low as Rs 3,500. Existing charging solutions cost anywhere between Rs 15,000 to Rs 20,000. A prototype has already been developed and at least half a dozen companies are currently working to manufacture it on scale, officials said. The new system has been the result of an initiative led by the Department of Science and Technology(DST),theofficeofthe Principal Scientific Advisor to the government,andindustryandresearch groups. The all-weather charging device can be installed in any place withaccesstoa220-volt,15-ampere power line. Parking lots of Metroandrailwaystations,shopping malls, hospitals, office complexes, apartments and even small coffee shops or kirana outlets could be ideal spots. The charging system has a charger, a smart electric socket capable of communicating with a mobile phone, and mobile apps with provisions to make payments. “One of the biggest hurdles in thewidespreadadoptionof electric vehicles in India has been the At the opening of two EV charging points at NITI Aayog in 2018. The big hurdle for EV technology in India has been the limited availability of charging points. Amit Mehra/Archive limitedavailabilityofchargingstations. This proposed solution seeks to address that problem. It is designed to be installed almost anywhere at an affordable cost. People can charge their vehicle batteries in a few minutes. The hesitancy with regard to electric vehicles, even cars, has typically stemmed from ‘range anxiety’ — can I get my battery recharged whenever I want, the way I can get my petrol tank filled? I think thischargingsystemcouldbethe solution we have been waiting for," said V Sumantran, a veteran auto industry leader and chairman of a government committeeforcreatingcharginginfrastructure. Afullcharge,from0to100per cent, can be done within half an hourto45minutes.Withcurrent batteries, a full charge is enough to travel 80 to 100 km in a city. As Sumantran pointed out, if these charging systems are available easily, users won't always lookforfullcharge."Itislikecharging your mobile phone, or filling your petrol tank. You want to be inacomfortableposition,notnecessarily always at full capacity, provided there is an assurance thatyouwillgetarechargewhen you need it. So a 15-minute charge, for example, would be enough to take the battery from 30percentto70percent,"hesaid. Calling the charging system a significant breakthrough, DST Secretary Ashutosh Sharma said, "Two- and three-wheelers comprise a large majority of vehicles in India. They also contribute the majority of emissions from the passenger vehicle segment. It is thereforeimportanttolookforinnovativesolutions.Thegoodthing aboutthisisithasbeendeveloped to cater to the very unique requirementsof theIndianmarket. Charging systems available in othercountriesarenotbestsuited for us," he said. The government committee hasalsofinalisedstandardsforthis deviceenablingmultiplecompanies to start manufacturing their own products. Pune
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