NEW DELHI: A vaccine for Covid-19 is expected early next year and of the six leading ones which are undergoing trials probably three of them will work, billionaire philanthropist
has said asserting that India has a
to play in scaling up manufacturing for these.
“If they succeed in their phase three, which is still underway, we want to be able to ramp up that manufacturing capacity,” Gates, who is the co-founder of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation told TOI in an interview over Skype.
Gates said India will play a major role in manufacturing these vaccines in high numbers as several vaccine companies in the country have the capacity to ramp up production.
“And, of course, India has a huge role to play in that. Because the highest volume vaccine manufacturers in the world, who have done a fantastic job, and partnered with us on many of these life-saving vaccines — including Serum, BioE, Bharat (Biotech) — they have capacity. We have been in lots of conversations with the companies, with the vaccines that look like they will be low-cost and very scalable, including
— Sanofi — and Johnson and Johnson,” said Gates.
He said the progress on reducing poverty across the world would be set back by a few years due to the pandemic and if all countries cooperate and the world is lucky to have some good vaccines health systems could recover fast.
“If we do a brilliant job, we end the pandemic in 2022 — if we are lucky to have a lot of good vaccines that are made in volume, I am sure the health system should be able to get back fairly quickly.
“We’ll have to do catch up vaccination. But the economic damage — particularly in countries that couldn’t borrow huge additional sums, like some of the rich countries — will have big setbacks. …Some of the extreme poverty type things could take us five to ten years to get back to where we were at the start of 2020,” said Gates.
PM Modi speaks to Japan’s Yoshihide Suga
NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke to his Japanese counterpart Yoshihide Suga and said they agreed that stronger India-Japan ties would help meet the challenges of the current regional and global situation.
“Had a very good conversation with PM Suga Yoshihide. We exchanged views on the tremendous progress in our relationship in the last few years, and the future direction of our Special Strategic and Global Partnership. @sugawitter,” Modi tweeted on Friday.
We agreed that stronger India-Japan ties would help meet the challenges of the current regional and global situatio… https://t.co/9PJijcN4jA
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) 1601034901000
He added, “We agreed that stronger India-Japan ties would help meet the challenges of the current regional and global situation. I look forward to working with PM Suga to further strengthen our all-round partnership.”
Opposition members boycotted last day of session due to some political compulsions: Om Birla
NEW DELHI: Opposition members boycotted the last day of the Monsoon Session due to some “political compulsions,” Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla said on Friday, noting that they conveyed they have no issues with him.
Birla said he called the floor leaders of all opposition parties for a meeting over a cup of tea and requested them to attend the valedictory proceedings of the house.
“The opposition leaders boycotted the last day of the session due to some political compulsions, while they conveyed to me that they had no issues with me,” the speaker said.
Birla was addressing a press conference here on the conclusion of the Monsoon Session.
Underlining that the productivity of the Lok Sabha was at a historic 167 per cent, he said that despite the threat of Covid-19, the average attendance of MPs in the Lower House, during this session, was more than 300 which sends a very positive message and strengthens peoples’ faith in democratic institutions.
He credited the cooperation from all political parties for higher productivity of the Lower House.
“The Lok Sabha sat for 60 hours instead of the allotted time of 37 hours. In fact, despite the curtailment of the session due to Covid-19, the Lok Sabha was able to function optimally with minimal loss of productivity,” Birla said.
Describing unruly scenes on the last day of the Rajya Sabha as “unfortunate,” Birla said he doesn’t want to comment on the proceedings of the other House and efforts should be made to further strengthen the democratic institutions.
On the issue of the Question Hour, Birla said that members were given ample opportunities to raise matters concerning peoples’ welfare through written questions and the Zero Hour.
Highlighting the enhanced participation of members during the Zero Hour, Birla said it shows that they were given enough opportunities to express their views and were encouraged to participate in the discussions.
Talking about curtailment of the session, Birla said the decision was taken with a consensus in view of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The Monsoon Session of Parliament, which started on September 14, concluded on September 23, eight days before the scheduled end on October 1.
When asked about new Parliament building, Birla informed that the construction work has started and it will be completed within 21 months.
DNA samples of 3 men killed in Shopian encounter match with families from Rajouri: J&K Police
SRINAGAR: The DNA samples of three men who were killed in an alleged fake encounter with the Army in Jammu and Kashmir’s Shopian district in July have matched with their families from Rajouri, a senior police officer said on Friday.
Asked whether the three men were indeed labourers, as claimed by their families, and not involved in terrorist activities, he said it is a matter of further investigation.
On July 18, the Army had claimed three terrorists were killed in Amshipura village in the higher reaches of south Kashmir’s Shopian. It initiated an inquiry after social media reports indicated that the three men were from Rajouri and had gone missing in Amshipura.
The families of the three men claimed they worked as labourers in Shopian and lodged a police complaint.
The police also launched an investigation and collected the DNA samples of the three families from Rajouri to match with the slain men.
“The DNA report has come and matching has taken place,” inspector general of police (IGP), Kashmir, Vijay Kumar told reporters here.
Asked if he meant that the DNA samples of the three men have matched with the families from Rajouri, he said, “There is positive matching with the families from Rajouri.”
On whether it had been established that the three men were labourers and not involved in any militant activities, Kumar said, “The police are now taking up further investigations in the case.”
The Army completed its inquiry into the matter in a record four weeks.
On September 18, the force said it had found “prima facie” evidence that its troops “exceeded” powers under the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) during the encounter and has initiated disciplinary proceedings.
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