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Wednesday, June 23, 2021

Daily Briefing: Supreme Court asks govt for a vaccine roadmap; Five senior Air India pilots die of Covid in May

The Delhi High Court on Wednesday said some people need to be “charged with manslaughter” for sitting on the “untapped potential” of Covid-19 vaccine manufacturing.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi |
Updated: June 3, 2021 8:29:41 am
A look at the top news today, June 10, 2021.

Good morning,

The Big Story

Calling for a “fresh review” of the Covid vaccine policy, the Supreme Court said that asking the 18-44 age group to pay for vaccination was “prima facie arbitrary and irrational”. The apex court sought a detailed affidavit in two weeks on the Centre’s vaccine roadmap. 

And in another strong indictment of the Centre’s vaccine policy, the Delhi High Court said some people need to be “charged with manslaughter” for sitting on the “untapped potential” of Covid-19 vaccine manufacturing. 

At least five senior pilots at Air India died of Covid in May even as pilots below 45 years repeatedly demanded vaccination for crew and their families. After three vaccination camps were cancelled initially due to shortage of vaccines, they only commenced on May 15.

Only in the Express

Responding to a question at The Indian Express e.Adda on whether the Prime Minister welcomed negative feedback, Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said he was advised by him to introduce a concept like the ‘Zero Hour’ during Cabinet meetings where he will get to hear only the negative feedback about the government. “He (PM) listens to negative feedback, he rather encourages it,” Sarma said.

A relative sits with a patient at the Mucormycosis ward of Civil hospital in Ahmedabad. (Express Photo by Nirmal Harindran)

From the Front Page 

India, among the 14 countries that abstained from voting on a proposal to probe human rights violations around Israel action in Gaza, received a sharply worded letter from the Palestinian foreign minister who said “your abstention stifles important work.”

The Centre’s recent amendment to pension rules for civil servants have rattled the security community, with many calling it a virtual gag order. As per the amendment, retired intelligence officials are prohibited from publishing anything pertaining to their workplace without clearance from the head. 

Must Read 

Almost two centuries after a British military officer documented the Trirashmi Buddhist caves — also known as Pandav Leni — in a hill in Nashik, the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) has found three more caves in the same area. The archaeologists behind the discovery believe they could be even older than the Trirashmi caves, which date back to 2nd Century BC. 

Over 2,300 Uttarakhand Police personnel tested positive for Covid-19 during the second wave, despite 93 per cent of them having received both vaccine doses, according to data shared by state authorities. Among them, 2,204 have already recovered while five deaths were reported.

Despite the coronavirus-induced lockdown impacting sales across the country in May, Hyundai and its sister brand Kia were able to overtake the total passenger vehicle sales of Maruti Suzuki for the first time ever. While Maruti sold 32,903 units in the domestic market that month, the Korean players  recorded combined sales of 36,051 units. 

And Finally 

Rogue singers repeatedly interrupted the Delhi High Court’s virtual hearing on Juhi Chawla’s challenge to the rollout of 5G in the country. Joining the virtual courtroom using names like ‘Manisha Koirala’ and ‘Janhvi’, they sang songs from Chawla’s hit films of the 90s. Taking a strong note of the interruptions, Justice Midha ordered his staff to identify the persons so that contempt action can be taken. 

Delhi Confidential: With the pandemic situation improving, the BJP is set to return to active mode. First on its agenda is a two-day stock-taking meeting, which is likely to take place at the BJP headquarters. 

Until tomorrow, 

Leela Prasad G and Rahel Philipose

Express Cartoon by EP Unny.

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