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Wednesday, June 16, 2021

Daily Briefing: Study Covid spread in young, PM Modi tells states; Centre makes Covid-linked ‘black fungus’ notifiable

The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has given its approval to the country’s first home-based, self-use rapid test for Covid-19, the creators of the test, MyLab Discovery Solutions, announced.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi |
Updated: May 21, 2021 9:11:13 am
A look at the top news today, June 2, 2021.

Good morning, 

The Second Wave 

During a video conference with district collectors and field officials of 10 states, PM Narendra Modi highlighted the rising concerns over the youth and children falling victim to the second wave of the pandemic and urged officials to collect and analyse the data on the infection and its severity among these two groups.

The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has approved the country’s first home-based, self-use rapid test for Covid-19 developed by Pune-based MyLab Discovery Solutions.

Bharat Biotech is set to ramp up its Covid vaccine capacity by 17 million doses a month as it prepares to manufacture additional doses of Covaxin at its rabies vaccine facility in Gujarat. With this, by the fourth quarter of 2021, the company plans to produce an additional 200 million doses. 

Amid a surge in Covid-linked ‘black fungus’ cases in several parts of the country, the Health Ministry made the infection notifiable, making it mandatory for states to report both suspected and confirmed cases to the Integrated Disease Surveillance Programme (IDSP).

Only in the Express 

Reiterating that the relationship between India and China is at a crossroads, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said that the direction of bilateral ties depends on whether Beijing adheres to various agreements on maintaining peace along the border.

During Cyclone Tauktae, ONGC’s Barge P305 crashed into a rig off Mumbai and sank, leading to the death of at least 49 people. According to top sources in the Ministry of Shipping, the barge had broken free of its anchor on May 16, but the ministry was informed of this only the next day. Had the information been relayed in time, many lives could have been saved, ministry sources said. 

Pratap Bhanu Mehta writes on the UP governance model: “The peculiar challenge for Indian democracy is that the Adityanath brand of politics could be a threat both if it succeeds and if it fails. We are reaching a stage in Indian democracy when we should not be complacent about peaceful transitions of power.”

Must Read 

Working long hours in close proximity with Covid patients, hospital staff in Karnataka are calling for their family members to also be included in the priority group for receiving coronavirus vaccines. Earlier this week, Odisha became one of the first states to include families of healthcare workers in its vaccination priority group after it procured doses independently. 

From a 28-year-old who lost both his parents to Covid, to a 60-year-old with Covid symptoms who was afraid to get tested — over the last week, a team of counsellors and clinical psychologists fielded by the Rachakonda police in Hyderabad has provided counselling to over 150 people facing mental health issues due to the pandemic. 

And Finally

Old books, pictures and evening walks in his lawn have been keeping legendary sprinter Milkha Singh company in isolation, as he fights Covid-19. “ I am thankful to my fans for their wishes, which has kept me in high spirits,” he said. 

In today’s episode of 3 Things, we look at 2DG, the DRDO’s new oral drug for Covid, the ONGC vessels disaster off Mumbai coast, and the recently-approved home-testing kit for Covid-19. 

Until tomorrow, 

Rahel Philipose

Express Cartoon by EP Unny.

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