Connect with us



Russia’s Sputnik V will be India’s third vaccine against Covid-19, if approved by DCGI; country records highest coronavirus spike with 1.68 lakh fresh cases.



Russia’s Sputnik V has been recommended by an expert committee and is likely to be India’s third vaccine against Covid-19, if approved by the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI). Sputnik V has an efficacy of 91.6% and will be manufactured in India by Dr Reddy’s.

In its last meeting, held on 1 April, the experts’ committee had asked the pharma company for data on how the shot activates the body’s immune response against the coronavirus. The panel had also asked for “unblinded data” of all serious adverse events (“unblinded” means when subjects know whether the shot administered to them was the vaccine or a placebo). A comparative analysis of Phase III data in India and in Russian studies has also been sought.

Russian Ambassador to India Nikolay R. Kudashev said, “We note the reports that a committee of experts recommended Sputnik V for use in India. This step would definitely contribute to the efforts of the Indian government to counter the Covid-19 pandemic. We hope the approval by the DCGI will be completed soon.”

However, the Russian Direct Investment Fund said, “RDIF confirms it is awaiting imminently the recommendation by the Subject Expert Committee (SEC) of Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO) of India to approve the use of the Russian Sputnik V vaccine against coronavirus in India.”

The vaccine, if approved, will be the third vaccine in India after the Serum Institute’s Covishield and Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin.

Speaking about the advantages of Sputnik V, former ICMR director Dr N.K. Ganguly said, “This vaccine is based on human adenoviral vectors that cause the common cold. It uses two types of different vectors for the two shots and can be stored at temperatures of 2 to 8 degrees C. Sputnik V is affordable, has more efficacy, the trial of the vaccine has been done. When India is going through a mutant variant wave, this vaccine will be more effective.”

The most recent wave of the infection has been causing massive daily spikes and adding to the country›s death toll. In the last 24 hours, India recorded 1,68,912 new Covid-19 cases, its highest daily count, and 904 deaths, taking the total number of cases to 1,35,27,717 and deaths to 1,70,179.

There are now 12,01,009 active cases in the country, while 1,21,56,529 people have recovered from the infection. As many as 10,45,28,565 people have also been administered the Covid-19 vaccine.

Delhi reported 11,491 new Covid-19 cases, marking its highest single-day jump, and 72 deaths in the last 24 hours, which is the highest number of fatalities in the past four months. The cumulative caseload of the national capital has risen to 7,36,688. Asserting that the Covid-19 situation in Delhi is «very serious», chief minister Arvind Kejriwal said the government is closely monitoring the situation but is not in favour of a complete lockdown.

Maharashtra reported 51,751 new coronavirus cases, 52,312 recoveries and 258 deaths in the last 24 hours. Meanwhile, Mumbai recorded 6,905 new cases, the lowest single-day count so far in April, which took the financial capital›s Covid-19 caseload to 5,27,119. Meanwhile, 43 more patients succumbed to the infection as the death toll jumped to 12,060.

Madhya Pradesh reported 6,489 fresh coronavirus cases, the biggest spike in a single day, while 37 patients died of the infection. The state›s case tally has reached 3,44,634, while the death count is at 4,221. Madhya Pradesh is now left with 38,651 active cases. A total of 3,117 people were discharged from hospitals in Madhya Pradesh in the last 24 hours, taking the overall count of recoveries to 3,01,762.

Rajasthan recorded 5,771 fresh Covid-19 cases that took the state›s total to 3,69,564, while 25 more fatalities pushed the death toll to 2,951. Jaipur reported the highest number of fresh cases at 961, followed by 709 in Udaipur, 683 in Kota and 628 in Jodhpur.

Uttar Pradesh reported 13,685 new Covid-19 cases while 72 fatalities took the death toll to 9,224. The total number of cases in the state stands at 7,05,619 and the active caseload is 81,576.

Andhra Pradesh reported 3,263 fresh cases of coronavirus, 1,091 recoveries and 11 deaths in the last 24 hours. Consequently, the total positive cases went up to 9,28,664, recoveries to 8,98,238 and deaths to 7,311. The state now has 23,115 active Covid-19 cases.

Karnataka reported 9,579 fresh Covid-19 cases and 52 related fatalities, taking the total caseload to 10.74 lakh and the toll to 12,941. Bengaluru Urban alone accounted for 6,387 of the fresh cases. The day also saw 2,767 patients getting discharged after recovery. Cumulatively, 10,74,869 Covid-19 positive cases have been confirmed in the state, which include 12,941 deaths and 9,85,924 discharges.

The Daily Guardian is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@thedailyguardian) and stay updated with the latest headlines.

For the latest news Download The Daily Guardian App.





The Managing Trustee of Mathuradas Mathur Charitable Trust, Vishal Mathur, observed the auspicious day of Avtar Divas by donating oxygen concentrators to Shri Gurdwara Sahab in Vaishali Nagar, Jaipur, amid the Covid-19 crisis.

“Our Sikh brothers and sisters always come first to serve the people of India whenever there is any calamity and it’s time to serve them as a small token of appreciation,” he said.

More oxygen concentrators shall be provided to hospitals and community centres as and when they are arranged, he added.

Mathur is also engaged in distributing nutritious meals for paramedics and frontline workers in some leading hospitals in Jaipur. Hardeep Singh Arora, Mathur’s friend who owns the restaurant Suryamahal, is supplying meal boxes to hospitals to support this philanthropy.

Vishal Mathur is currently working with SES Satellite as Senior Sales Director for Asia Pacific and residing in Singapore. He is the grandson of the late Mathuradas Mathur, former Finance and Home Minister for Rajasthan.

In January 2020, Vishal also organized the Mathuradas Mathur Memorial Polo Cup to promote the sport amongst special schoolchildren. War windows were also honoured at the event, which was attended by Chief Minister of Rajasthan Ashok Gehlot among other dignitaries.

Continue Reading


Naidu demands probe into ‘third degree’ methods used on Narsapuram MP

Lokeswara Rao



TDP chief and former Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu demanded a full-fledged inquiry into the alleged ‘third degree’ methods used by the CID against Narsapuram MP K. Raghurama Krishnam Raju.

Naidu asked whether the senior officials were violating the laws of the land and resorting to third degree methods against a Member of Parliament only to see happiness in the eyes of the Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh. If anything would happen to the life of Raghurama Raju, the Andhra government should be held responsible, he said.

In a statement, the TDP chief said that a high-level probe should be ordered into the third degree methods used against the MP and required action should be taken against the CID officer concerned. “The injuries inflicted on Raju in CID custody would hold a mirror to the oppression being perpetrated by the government in the state. How can an honourable MP be put to physical punishment while in police custody?” he questioned.

The TDP chief said that it was inhuman on the part of the police to use third degree methods despite the Supreme Court’s orders against the same. “It would be understandable how the police treated Raghurama Raju since he was not even able to walk with comfort. All the democratic-minded people should condemn this incident and good medical treatment should be given to the MP immediately,” he demanded.

Naidu also said that the Andhra police went in crowds, violating the Covid guidelines issued by the Central Government. “The sole purpose of the state police was to arrest and harass Raju. As per the law, the police had no right to beat up even a common citizen. In this case, a Member of Lok Sabha, elected by lakhs of voters, was subjected to physical punishment. The incident would remain a blot on the entire police machinery in the state,” he said.

Naidu said that such incidents were only exposing how a faction-ridden system would perpetrate injustice on people of all sections. If the police physically attacked a person of MP status, then the plight of a common citizen in the state would be unthinkable, he claimed.

Continue Reading





Guru Jambheshwar University of Science and Technology, Hisar donated medicines for Covid to five villages, as part of its initiative to help during the pandemic period.

The university has adopted five villages, namely Bahbalpur, Satrod Kala, Mirzapur, Nangthala and Deva.

Vice Chancellor Prof. Tankeshwar Kumar said that it is very important to make villagers aware of the disease in time and for this universities will have to discharge their responsibility.

The university has also set up a counselling helpline in these five villages. For this, Prof. Sandeep Rana, a psychologist from the university, will advise villagers and be available on his phone throughout the week, except for Sundays, from 4 pm to 6 pm.

University Registrar Prof. Avinash Verma stated that there is a need to take steps for villages during Covid and GJU is playing an important role.

The sarpanch of Bahbalpur village, Bhajanlal, informed that the university has made proper arrangements for medicines and sanitizing sprays. He thanked the VC and university administration.

Continue Reading





Stressing the need to avoid the kind of situation prevailing in the villages of Uttar Pradesh, Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Sunday announced a unique Covid Fateh programme as part of a ‘Corona Mukt Pind Abhiyaan’ to tackle the worrying spread of Covid in rural areas.

Terming it a war that needed the involvement of all sections of the community, the Chief Minister directed the Health and Rural Development departments to spearhead the campaign with large-scale mobilisation of the community in the state’s villages.

The entire staff should be utilised to spread awareness among villagers about the dangers of Covid, he said, adding that Health & Wellness Clinics should become the fulcrum, and Community Health Officers, panchayats, school teachers, Anganwadi and ASHA workers, village police officers, youth volunteers etc. must be mobilised on a large scale to steer the programme.

The Guardians of Governance and the police force should work closely to make this programme a success, he said, adding that the idea is not just to spread awareness and dispel any myths but also ensure that there is adequate sampling and vaccination carried out in the rural areas as well as early identification of infected people to ensure early treatment.

Symptomatic persons should be given basic medicines like paracetamol and cough syrup, and Vitamin C, at their doorsteps, he directed, and said they should be encouraged to get tested and supported in home isolation if they test positive. He directed the Health Department to provide additional Rapid Antigen Test kits exclusively for the purpose of testing in rural areas.

The department should also consider opening Covid Care Centres (L1) whereever required with the support of NGOs, he said.

Continue Reading


Covid curbs in Punjab extended till 31 May, CM orders strict enforcement



With the state continuing to report high Covid positivity and CFR, Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Sunday ordered the extension of all existing restrictions up to May 31, with directions for their strict enforcement.

The Chief Minister said the DCs will continue to determine the opening of shops in a staggered manner and enforce other curbs to check the spread of Covid-19, especially in rural areas. They can also make suitable amendments based on local conditions as long as they do not dilute the state’s overall restrictions, said the Chief Minister.

The district authorities shall continue to ensure strict implementation of all the directives of the MHA/state government on Covid-appropriate behaviour, including social distancing norms, regulating crowds in marketplaces and public transport, and the imposition of penalties prescribed for violation of norms.

Reviewing the state’s Covid situation at a high-level meeting, the Chief Minister said that while the restrictions so far had shown results, with some decline in day-on-day positivity and cases coming down from to 6000 in this period, there was a need to extend them in view of the high positivity rate of 13.1% and 2.4% CFR.

Singh also directed the district administrations to investigate complaints of private hospitals overcharging patients and directed the police department to crack down on those found hoarding or black-marketing any Covid-related essentials or medicines.

The Chief Minister also expressed concern over the spread of the new fungal disorder associated with Covid and directed the health department to ensure that medicines to treat it are procured beforehand and to re-examine the SOP to see if there is anything that can be done to prevent the disease from occurring.

On the availability of oxygen, the Punjab CM said that while the state, through judicious measures, had been able to prevent any mishap, the situation should be closely monitored by the Health Department. The state government had successfully arranged for PSA plants, oxygen concentrators, etc. which will further help tackle oxygen shortages, he added. The state is expecting over 2500 oxygen concentrators on the ground within this month, he said, directing the department to ensure the best use of the same.

Captain Amarinder further directed the Health and Medical Education departments to continue to ensure that there is no problem at any point with respect to hospital capacity, especially with regard to L-3 beds.

He asked the DCs to ensure that food kits are delivered to those in quarantine, reiterating that nobody should be allowed to go to sleep hungry. He also complimented the DGP on the successful launch of the `Bhojan Helpline’.

The Chief Minister also directed DGP Dinkar Gupta to ensure strict compliance of the restrictions, while appreciating the efforts of various departments.

Continue Reading



17 youths were counselled and released by the police later; harsh punishment avoided to protect their futures.



Several young boys were arrested across Srinagar after they participated in pro-Palestine protests. The J&K Police also arrested a local artist and preacher along with the youths.

Former chief minister Mehbooba Mufti reacted on Sunday by calling Kashmir an “open prison”. Mehbooba in a tweet said “People all over the world are protesting against the atrocities committed by Israel on Palestine. But in Kashmir its a punishable offence where an artist is booked under PSA & a preacher is arrested simply for expressing solidarity with Palestinians.”

In another tweet on Sunday, Mehbooba said, “Kashmir is an open air prison where people’s thoughts are being monitored & they are punished for it. There is no outlet left to express one’s opinion & this is a deliberate attempt to push Kashmiris to the wall.”

17 boys who had been picked up by the police for indulging in protests over the Israel-Palestine situation have since been counselled and handed back to their families. The move aims at avoiding harsh punishment so the boys’ futures are not spoiled.

The boys had been arrested for participating in protests in violation of Section 51 of the DM Act during the ongoing Corona Curfew in Kashmir, which has been extended to 24 May.

A police spokesperson said that the parents of the young boys assured that they will guide their children not to engage in any activities which are against the law and can lead to the spread of infection in times of Covid.

SSP Srinagar Sandeep Chaudhary appealed to the youngsters to concentrate on their studies and career building. He told them that there is a section in society who manage to have the best facilities and life opportunities for themselves and their families but use boys from humble backgrounds as fodder for furthering their careers and agendas. “Those who push young boys on the path of violence never show up to help the parents of those whose careers get destroyed through engaging in illegal activities,” he said.

He also assured the parents that the Jammu and Kashmir Police are duty bound to release their wards after counselling in a transparent manner. “The larger goal of preventing youngsters from taking a greater leap of criminality is the sole motto of the ‘community bond’ because parents and elders of the localities take responsibility for better conduct on the part of these boys,” he said.

SP South Srinagar Sajjad Shah, SP North Srinagar Mubashir Bukhari and other officers of district were also present during the interaction.

In downtown Srinagar, a local journalist working with an English daily and some young boys were also arrested by the police after a Friday prayer protest against Israel. According to family members, Safakadal police station of Srinagar booked them under various sections and, despite assurances by the respectable locals in the city, the police refused to release them.

Shayib Bhat, who is working very actively in the field for the local English newspaper, is still under detention in the Safakadal police station. The locals say he was performing his duties while the protest was going on in Srinagar.

Continue Reading