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Tuesday, July 07, 2020

Daily briefing: Chinese consignments face Customs hurdle; Only 6% ventilators under PM-CARES manufactured so far

From importers in India seeing their Chinese consignments held by at Customs to the latest on coronavirus, here are the top reads from The Indian Express print edition.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Published: June 24, 2020 9:02:30 am
india lockdown, india lockdown 4.0, india flights resumption, shramik trains, indian railways, coronavirus india, covid treatment, satyajit ray, p chidambaram June 24, 2020: A look at the top news today.

Dear Reader,

The Conflict

The good news from the Corps Commanders’ meeting is that both India and China have mutually agreed to disengage after the bruising Galwan Valley encounter. However, the two sides have not set a timeline for the sector-wise disengagement on the Line of Actual Control (LAC). Another positive is the meeting involved discussions on “all friction areas”, including Pangong Tso.

There are no standing instructions from the Customs authorities, but it appears importers are being nudged to stop bringing in consignments from China. If they continue to persist then they can expect their cargo to be held up by the Customs for an inordinate amount of time. A Mumbai-based industry source said that clearances are being skipped for Chinese consignments, especially non-essential goods. .

After testing the waters at LAC, China is now probing our cyber defences. According to the Maharashtra Police cyber wing, more than 40,000 searches for vulnerabilities in the banking sector, information technology and infrastructure have originated from Chengdu city in China.

It has been more than a year since the Lok Sabha elections and yet, the Congress continues to grapple with the idea of mounting a concerted attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi in light of the tensions with China. A suggestion from a party leader at the Congress Working Committee meeting that they should target Modi’s “policies and wrong decisions”, but desist from making it personal, has led Rahul Gandhi to “wrongly interpret it”.

The Pandemic

Plans to manufacture 50,000 ‘Made in India’ ventilators with funds from PM-CARES have hit a hurdle. So far, only 6 per cent of the total order has been delivered as Indian companies are dependent on importing critical components needed for the machine. Non-availability of these have caused severe delays in production and supply.

Yoga guru Ramdev claimed Patanjali’s ‘Coronil tablet’ and two other cures for Covid-19 had shown “100 per cent favourable results” during clinical trials. Now, the AYUSH Ministry has sought details about the medicine and has directed Patanjali and Ramdev to stop advertising such claims. The ministry also directed that “a warning may be issued and if not complied in one week time, FIR may be filed in blatant cases of violation”.

The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has removed all restrictions for testing symptomatic patients, and advised states to scale up testing for Covid-19. Testing was previously restricted to those in hospitals, containment zones and hotspots, contacts of a confirmed Covid-19 case, healthcare and frontline workers, and those with history of international travel.

Beyond Covid-19

India has asked Pakistan to reduce the strength of its High Commission in New Delhi by half, and said it would do the same at its own mission in Islamabad within a week. The last time a 50 per cent downgrade of the two High Commissions took place was in December 2001.

The Bihar government has raised concerns over Nepal stalling repair work on the Gandak barrage as well as a key embankment on the Lalbakeya river. The state has taken up the matter with the External Affairs and Jalshakti ministries.

And Finally…

Panchfula was 53 when she went missing on a winter morning in 1979. A Muslim family took her in, but given her mental disability, she could not remember where she is from or who her family members are. Now, 41 years later, she has been reunited with her family.

🎧 In today’s episode of Three Things Podcast, we look at how US pause on H1-B visas will impact Indian companies

🎥 Explained: What are air shields that may protect flyers from infections

Until tomorrow,

Leela Prasad G

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