04012021-TTB-01.qxd 1/4/2021 12:00 AM Page 1 13 chandigarh | gurugram | jalandhar | bathinda | vol.141 no.4 | 12 pages | ~5.00 | regd.no.chd/0006/2021-2023 established in 1881 CHINA’S NEW LAW EXPANDS ITS MILITARY POWER WORLD /thetribunechd FARMERS’ INCOME: CROP PRODUCTIVITY COUNTS INFOCUS TWO SCINDIA LOYALISTS BACK IN MP CABINET BACK PAGE /thetribunechd www.tribuneindia.com monday | 4 january 2021 DCGI nod to two Covid vaccines Farmers step up pressure, to Allays concerns, says Covaxin safe after Oppn questions efficacy Aditi Tandon Can vaccinate 4L a day: Pb Govt Tribune News Service New Delhi, January 3 The national regulator on Sunday approved two made in India Covid-19 vaccines setting the stage for the world’s largest inoculation drive as the government aims to vaccinate 30 crore vulnerable people by July. In what Prime Minister Narendra Modi called a “decisive turning point to strengthen a spirited fight”, Drugs Controller General VG Somani announced permissions for restricted use in emergency situations to AstraZeneca/Oxford University/Serum Institute of India’s Covishield and Bharat Biotech-ICMR’s Covaxin. While Covaxin is a wholly indigenous shot, Covishield has been manufactured in India. Covishield will only be available through the government to start with and not privately. Covaxin will only be used in extreme emergencies to handle mutation-related infections. Anyone receiving Covaxin will be treated like a participant in a clinical trial and monitored as such. Amid criticism of the nod to Covaxin, which is yet to show efficacy through phase 3 human trials, the regulator said both approved shots A dry run of vaccine on a health worker in Bhubaneswar. PTI ON ROAD TO SELF-RELIANCE: MODI It will make every Indian proud that the two vaccines that have been given emergency use approval are made in India! This shows the eagerness of our scientific community to fulfil the dream of self-reliant India. PM ❝ Chandigarh, January 3 Punjab has a capacity to vaccinate 4 lakh persons a day, said state Minister for Health and Family Welfare Balbir Singh Sidhu today, adding a robust storage capacity of 1 crore vaccines had been set up in state's own cold chain centres. Addressing a press conference, Sidhu urged the Centre to provide the Covid-19 vaccine free of cost to the state within a stipulated period. The Modi government cannot backtrack from its duty of supplying the vaccine, he said. INSIDE BJP, CONG SPAR OVER SAFETY OF COVAXIN A MILESTONE, SAYS BHARAT BIOTECH COVID-19CASES INDIA The BJP and Congress on Sunday clashed over the safety of Covaxin. After Congress leaders Anand Sharma, Jairam Ramesh and Shashi Tharoor said Covaxin had not completed the phase 3 human trials, BJP ministers hit back, calling the critics cynics. Bharat Biotech on Sunday said the approval of Covaxin for emergency use was a giant leap for innovation and novel product development in India. Chief of ICMR, collaborators in Covaxin, Balram Bhargava said it was a red letter day for Indian science. COUNT were 110 per cent safe. “Covaxin phase 1 and 2 trial results show it is safe and provides a robust immune response,” said Somani. The SII’s Covishield, with 70.42 per cent efficacy in phase 3 trials abroad and comparable safety data at home, will be the lead candidate of India’s vaccination plan, whereas Covaxin will RECOVERED 99,27,310 FRESH FATALITIES 217 TOTAL DEATHS 1,49,435 1,03,23,965 TOTAL RECOVERED DEATHS WORLD 8,52,25,353 6,02,75,931 18,47,507 work as a back-up plan, experts said. VK Paul, Chairman, Covid vaccine taskforce, said Covaxin worked against multiple viral proteins and continued on back page burn copies of 3 laws on Lohri 7th round of talks today | Unions ask Centre to discard obduracy Tribune News Service Sonepat, January 3 Ahead of the seventh round of talks with the Centre on Monday, Punjab’s farm unions announced that they would burn copies of the three contentious farm laws on Lohri (January 13) and celebrate January 23 — Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose’s birth anniversary — as ‘Azad Kisan Diwas’. Representatives of the unions at a press conference here condemned the lathicharge on farmers protesting against BJP leaders in Sangrur. Harmeet Singh Kadian said: “We will only focus on the repeal of farm laws and MSP during our meeting with the Centre on Monday.” In a statement, the All-India Kisan Sangharsh Coordination Committee said the success of Monday’s talks would depend entirely on the repeal of three farm laws. Union leader Onkar Singh urged the Centre to discard obduracy and repeal the “black” laws. Jangveer Singh Chauhan observed that the protest had been peaceful for the past 37-38 days but some political leaders were trying Amid rain, a farmer takes shelter inside a makeshift tent at the Singhu-Delhi border. PTI SHUN ARROGANCE: SONIA Over 50 farmers have lost their lives. This is an arrogant govt. Leave alone people, it cannot even heal the suffering of the ‘annadatas’. Sonia Gandhi, CONG ❝ HRY COPS USE FORCE TO HALT MARCH The Haryana Police on Sunday fired tear gas shells to thwart a march by a group of farmers proceeding towards Delhi at the Masani barrage in Rewari. The farmers, who broke barricades, had been camping at the service lane of Delhi-Jaipur highway for several days. IMPASSE: UNION AGRI MINISTER TOMAR MEETS RAJNATH TO FIRM UP STRATEGY to provoke the farmers. He also said they had sent a letter on sugarcane rates to the Punjab Government but had yet to receive a response. “We will decide whether or not to hold a tractor march on Republic Day after tomorrow’s meeting,” Kadian said. Farmers camping at Singhu and Tikri had a tough time owing to overnight rains. Waterproof tents were of little help. Meanwhile, farmers from Maharashtra on Sunday left Nagpur for Delhi to join the protesters. edit: cold and cruel Forces oppose mapping by pvt firms 4 more farmers die, toll crosses 50 Geetanjali Gayatri Tribune News Service Ajay Banerjee SECURITY CONCERNS Tribune News Service CHINESE FIRM BAGS RAPID RAIL CONTRACT ■ Delhi-Meerut RRTS is the first of its kind in the country on which trains will attain a top speed of 180 kmph ■ As per the ADB norms, its members cannot be barred from participating in tenders. So the Chinese firm was allowed to bid for the project REPORT ON BACK PAGE New Delhi, January 3 Citing security reasons, the armed forces have opposed a proposal of the Ministry of Defence (MoD) seeking to permit geospatial mapping of border and coastal areas by private entities. At present, all areas up to a distance of 25 km from the land borders or from the coastline require special permission for terrain mapping. Google Maps, app-based taxi services, food or shopping portals, location services, etc. are among other applications ■ At present, all areas up to a dis- tance of 25 km from the land border or coastline require special permission for terrain mapping ■ Armed forces have opposed the proposal of doing away with the provision of special permission, citing security concerns ■ They want no change in the process, except for minimisChief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat during his visit to the “forward ing the time for okaying or most air maintained” post in Subansiri valley, Arunachal Pradesh. PTI rejecting such permissions that need mapping data. Service providers in coastal cities need permission from the MoD. Similar is the case with land borders in Punjab, Jammu and Kashmir, Ladakh, Himachal Pradesh and Rajasthan, etc. The proposal through the MoD is to “review the policy on geospatial and geophysical systems” and continued on back page Chandigarh, January 3 Four more farmers died at Tikri and Singhu near Delhi border over the past 24 hours even as the protesting unions are set to hold talks with the Centre tomorrow. As the toll of farmers from Punjab and Haryana alone crossed 50, union leaders slammed the ruling Haryana BJP-JJP alliance leadership for their “silence” on the loss of lives. “More than 50 farmers have died in around 40 days. No condolences have come from the ruling alliance leaders,” said BKU leader Farmers at Singhu protest site. Gurnam Singh Charuni. While Deputy CM Dushyant Chautala and Haryana BJP chief OP Dhankar remained incommunicado, CLP leader Bhupinder Singh Hooda said he had raised the demand for In Patiala, poultry feed 23 mourners die in UP Stranded tourists rescued in HP used in spurious milk crematorium mishap Stuck near Atal Tunnel, evacuated by BRO officials Dipender Manta Aman Sood Tribune News Service Patiala, January 3 The police have busted a milk adulteration racket wherein two unemployed youths of Kularan village in Patiala used poultry feed as an ingredient to double the quantity of milk. Behind bars, the accused, Harpreet Singh and Gurpreet Singh, ran a dairy business without actually owning any cow or buffalo. They would purchase the feed, a kind of dried white glucose powder, from Haryana and allegedly mix 10 kg of it in 100 litres of water at their two-room “dairy” in the village. They would then add this mixture to 100 litres of milk they procured from nearby villages. How much adulterated milk they daily prepared and sold was being ascertained, but 500 litres was supplied to Ludhiana’s Supreme Dairy alone, a police official said. Besides Ludhiana, they had customers in Khanna, Rajpura and other parts of Punjab, he said. Patiala SSP Vikramjit Duggal said the owners of Adulterated milk seized from a dairy at Kularan village, Samana. TWO ARRESTED ■ Accused mixed 10 kg of feed in 100 litres of water ■ They then added the mix- ture to 100 litres of milk ■ Was supplied in parts of Ludhiana, Khanna and Rajpura ■ Harmful, it could even cause cancer, say experts Supreme Dairy had been summoned for questioning. Attempts to contact the dairy’s owners proved futile. “Chicken feed being used continued on page 9 Ghaziabad, January 3 Twenty-three persons, most of them attending a funeral, were killed and around 20 injured when the roof of a shelter at a cremation ground in Uttar Pradesh’s Muradnagar collapsed on Sunday, the police said. Several persons had taken shelter under the structure due to rain. Most of them were relatives of Jai Ram, who was being cremated at that time, officials said. Rescue workers sifted through the rubble for hours to rescue people and Tribune News Service Roof of a shelter caves in due to heavy rain in Ghaziabad dist extricate bodies. A team of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) was sent to the spot in Muradnagar’s Ukhlarsi village. The injured were admitted to various hospitals, officials said. They said the number of the injured could be higher as some others were taken away from the site by their relatives. — PTI Mandi, January 3 Fresh snowfall in Himachal Pradesh played a spoilsport for tourists heading towards the Lahaul valley as over 300 of them got stranded near Atal Tunnel on Saturday evening. They were later rescued by the authorities. A large number of tourist vehicles crossed the tunnel on Saturday morning to visit the Lahaul valley but in the evening, they could not find any resting place in Lahaul due to heavy snowfall and were stranded midway while Vehicles stuck in heavy snow in Manali on Sunday. PTI returning to Manali. The vehicles were caught in a long traffic jam due to snow and slippery roads. The Kullu district administration continued on page 9 33 Judges short, Pb & Hry HC pendency up 1L in a year Saurabh Malik Tribune News Service Chandigarh, January 3 The Punjab and Haryana High Court reopens on Monday after a short winter break with pendency of over six lakh cases — up by more than a lakh since January 2020. Facing a shortage of 33 Judges, litigants may have to wait for decades for justice. As of now, the Allahabad High Court has the highest number of pending cases at 7.46 lakh, followed by the Punjab and Haryana High Court. The virus from Wuhan, that struck the world hard, also left the justice delivery mechanism afflicted. The early signs of slowing down came soon after the High Court went into restrictive functioning mode in March-end. But Covid’s NATIONAL JUDICIAL DATA GRID 15.15% of pending cases up to a year old 36.35% pending between one and 3 years 14.53% pending between 10 and 20 years 1.65% awaiting adjudication for 20-30 years effect on the already ailing system manifested itself with full force in January this year with a pendency of 6,37,188 cases against 5,28,340 last year. The National Judicial Data Grid — the monitoring tool to identify, manage and reduce pendency — indicates the pendency of 2,64,191 criminal cases, predominantly involving life and liberty. Otherwise, 96,503 (15.15 pc) of the pending cases are up to a year old; 2,31,637 (36.35 pc) have been pending between one and three years; 92,551 (14.53 pc) between 10 and 20 years and 10,519 (1.65 pc) have been awaiting adjudication for 20-30 years. The data, however, does not reflect the severity of ailment. The High Court is continued on page 9 compensation and a government job to the next of those who died in the agitation. AICC general secretary Randeep Singh Surjewala said, “This conspiracy of silence has meant that CM Manohar Lal Khattar and his Cabinet colleagues have not said a word of condolence on the deaths. Such leaders have no right to continue in power even for a day.” Punjab BJP chief Ashwini Sharma, however, expressed regret over the deaths. He said they had been urging the unions to send children, women and senior citizens home. “We expect the matter to be resolved soon,” he said. At Pong, curbs on fishing, tourists as avian toll rises Nurpur, January 3 With the number of migratory birds dying in the Pong wetland continuing to rise, the Kangra administration has restricted fishing, tourism, movement of livestock and humans in the Pong area. One-km area around the wetland has been declared an “alert zone”, thus banning all activities there. An order in this regard was issued by Kangra Deputy Commissioner Rakesh Prajapati last evening. The authorities will maintain a strict vigil in 9-km area, which has been declared a “surveillance zone”. The number of migratory birds dying in the Pong wetland touched 1,700 today. INSIDE IN BRIEF Bird flu alert in Raj after crow deaths JAIPUR: A bird flu alert has been sounded in Rajasthan after the presence of the dreaded virus was confirmed in dead crows in Jhalawar and more avian deaths were reported in other districts, including Jaipur, officials said. INSIDE
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