NEWS
17/04/2020 9:11 AM IST | Updated 17/04/2020 10:16 PM IST

Serum Institute CEO On Covid-19 Vaccine, Maharashtra's Rent Order: 9 Things To Know Today

Karnataka deputy CM wants to take action against HD Kumaraswamy for son’s wedding during lockdown.

Hindustan Times via Getty Images
A Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) team prepares a drone during a sanitisation drive in the Hauz Rani Village containment zone, on April 16, 2020 in New Delhi.

India has confirmed 13,835 coronavirus cases, with 11,616 patients currently under treatment, the Union health ministry’s last update said on Friday.

The death toll has reached 452, while 1,766 people have recovered from the disease.

The government’s numbers showed an increase of 1,007 fresh COVID-19 cases and 23 deaths in last 24 hours.

According to Press Trust of India’s tally of state government figures as of 9.55 pm, India’s confirms cases stand at 14173 with death toll at 479.

What you need to know today:

1. Landlords in Maharashtra asked to postpone rent collection for 3 month: CMO

Maharashtra State Housing Department has issued instructions to landlords to postpone rent collection by at least 3 months. During this period, no tenant should be evicted from the rented house due to non-payment of rent, the chief minister’s office said

2. Serum Institute of India should have a vaccine for COVID-19 by 2021, will not patent it, says CEO

Vaccine major Serum Institute of India said it is not going to patent the vaccine it is developing for COVID-19, which is expected by 2021.

When the vaccine is developed, whosoever does it will need to partner with multiple firms to manufacture it so that it is available across the world, Serum Institute India (SII) CEO Adar Poonawalla said.

”... whosoever makes and develops the vaccine will need multiple partners to manufacture the vaccine. I hope that whichever company develops the vaccine will not hide behind patents and makes it available even on royalties or some commercial understanding to as many manufacturers across the world to make billions of dosages very quickly.

“I can speak for my company, SII. We are not going to patent this product and we will make it available to as many people as we can to manufacture this drug because we don’t want to make money from and commercialise something beyond a sustainable level in such a public health epidemic....

”...we are able to do this because we are a private limited company and that is part of why we didn’t list, because we are not accountable to shareholders...,” Poonawalla said.

“By 2021, at the very latest, we should have a vaccine against COVID-19 from SII,” Poonawalla said.

Earlier in February this year, Serum Institute of India, the world’s largest vaccine manufacturer by number of doses produced and sold globally, had announced that a vaccine candidate for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is expected to progress to human trials phase within 6 months. (PTI)

3. Jharkhand HC allowed bail to a former MP

Jharkhand HC has allowed bail to a former Member of Parliament and five others on the condition that they shall deposit an amount of Rs 35,000 eacf to PM-CARES. 

They were also directed to download the Aarogya Setu app immediately upon release.

4. Govt says India has 1,919 dedicated COVID-19 hospitals

The health ministry claimed that the national lockdown had slowed the rate of cases doubling to 6.2 days against the three days it was before lockdown.

The ministry said 5 lakh rapid antibody test kits had been distributed to states.

It said the country had 1,919 dedicated COVID-19 hospitals with 1.73 lakh isolation beds and 21,800 ICU beds.

ICMR said 3,19,400 tests had been conducted so far with 28,340 tests conducted on Thursday.

The government said it was working with global partners on speeding processes for viral sequencing and vaccine development. 

5. Karnataka Deputy CM wants to take action against Kumaraswamy for son’s wedding during lockdown

6. RBI announces new measures

RBI said it was proposing new measures to maintain adequate liquidity in system, facilitate bank credit flow, ease financial stress and enable formal functioning of markets.

— Will reduce reverse repo rate by 25 bps from 4% to 3.75%. Policy repo rate remains unchanged at 4.4%.

— To conduct targeted long-term repo operation (TLTRO) 2.0 of Rs 50,000 cr to begin with. At least 50% will go to mid and small-sized corporates.

— Rs 50,000 cr special finance facility to be provided to financial institutions such as Nabard, Sidbi, NHB

— Liquidity Coverage Ratio for banks to decline from 100% to 80% with immediate effect,

— NBFC loans to commercial real estate projects delayed can be extended by 1 more year without treating it as restructuring

— Banks not to make any further dividend payout in view of financial difficulties

— 90-day NPA norm not to apply on moratorium granted on existing loans by banks

7. RBI Governor’s briefing

In his address on the country’s financial situation, RBI governor Shaktikanta Das said:

— IMF projection of 1.9% GDP growth for India is highest in G20

— India is expected to post sharp turnround in 2021-22 by growing at 7.4%

— Economic activity came to standstill during lockdown

— Payment infrastructure is running seamlessly. ATM operations working at 90% of its capacity

— RBI has injected liquidity worth 3.2 percent of GDP into economy

— 25-30% sharp decline in electricity demand due to virus

— Contraction in exports at 34% has turned out to be much worse than in global financial crisis (2008)

8. China’s coronavirus epicenter Wuhan revises death toll after ‘mistaken reporting’

China’s Wuhan has raised its number of COVID-19 fatalities by 1,290, with state media saying the undercount had been due to the insufficient admission capabilities at overwhelmed medical facilities at the peak of the outbreak.

The official Xinhua News Agency quoted an unidentified official with Wuhan’s epidemic and prevention and control headquarters as saying that during the early stages of the outbreak, “due to the insufficiency in admission and treatment capability, a few medical institutions failed to connect with the disease prevention and control system in time, while hospitals were overloaded and medics were overwhelmed with patients. (Read more)

9. 68 medical staff quarantined at Delhi hospital after death of patient

Sixty-eight staff members including doctors and nurses of the at the government-run Bhagwan Mahavir Hospital in Delhi have been sent to home quarantine after a 25-year-old pregnant woman admitted there died possibly due to coronavirus, officials said.

The hospital claimed that the patient “did not disclose her travel history” despite repeated verbal queries at the time of admission and submitted “wrong information” in the prescribed form.

She later disclosed her travel history and that she was exposed to COVID-19 positive co-travellers, and also about her four family members being on home quarantine from April 10 for 14 days.

The deceased patient’s coronavirus test reports are awaited.