China withheld data from probe team, says WHO chief bhubaneswar l wednesday l march 31, 2021 l `7.00 l PAGES 12 l late CITY EDITION BIG CHANGE IN AUTOMATIC PAYMENTS FROM APRIL 1 3 1 New RBI rules require banks to send a notification to the customer 24 hours before the transaction is slated. The amount will be debited only after the customer gives his nod 2 Auto-debit payments for utility bills and subscription-based services will come to a halt 3 Standing instructions on credit or debit cards will get deactivated WHAT WILL BE AFFECTED Mobile and utility bill payments, subscription for online streaming services such as Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hotstar etc WHAT WILL NOT BE AFFECTED Standing instructions on bank accounts for recurring payments such as EMIs, payments or mutual funds etc will continue as usual WHY THE NEW RULES To safeguard customers from data leaks, hacking of confidential data and payment frauds For `5,000banksauto-debit a payments above this amount, must send one-time password to customer to authenticate express read Focus on high risk groups Bhubaneswar: Odisha government on Tuesday announced to conduct two lakh vaccinations a day from April 1. It has prioritised high risk groups among citizens of 45 years and above for the vaccination. The government has asked all Collectors, Municipal Commissioners and CDMOs to ramp up vaccination efforts | P2 A day after the WHO-China final report on the origin of Covid rejected the Wuhan lab leak theory, WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus tore into it, saying the international probe team did not get access to raw data in China Tedros did not want to smoke out the lab leak angle, as he called for further investigation on all hypotheses, with additional missions back to China “I do not believe that this assessment was extensive enough,” Tedros said. “Further data and studies will be needed to reach more robust conclusions.” He also spoke about the withholding data. “In my discussions with the team, they expressed the difficulties they encountered in accessing raw data.” CHENNAI ■ MADURAI ■ VIJAYAWADA BENGALURU ■ KOCHI ■ HYDERABAD ■ VISAKHAPATNAM ■ COIMBATORE ■ KOZHIKODE ■ THIRUVANANTHAPURAM ■ BELAGAVI ■ BHUBANESWAR ■ SHIVAMOgGA ■ MANGALURU ■ TIRUPATI ■ TIRUCHY ■ TIRUNELVELI ■ SAMBALPUR ■ HUBBALLI ■ DHARMAPURI ■ KOTTAYAM ■ KANNUR ■ VILLUPURAM ■ KOLLAM ■ WARANGAL ■ TADEPALLIGUDEM ■ NAGAPATTINAM ■ THRISSUR ■ KALABURAGI ■ ■ Situation is going from bad to worse, vaccinate 45+ in 2 weeks: Centre S u m i S u k a n ya D u t ta @ New Delhi The Centre on Tuesday warned that the Covid-19 situation in India is getting from bad to worse and asked districts with high caseloads to ensure 100% vaccination of all above 45 within the next two weeks. The warning came as the country recorded over 4 lakh new cases over the past one week, registering nearly 58,000 daily cas- es on an average and a growth rate of nearly 7% active cases. On Sunday over 68,000 new cases , were reported — the most in a day since October and about half of them were from Maharashtra. “We are facing an increasingly severe and intensive situation in some districts but the whole country is potentially at risk. All efforts to contain the virus and save lives should be taken,” said V K Paul, member, health at Niti Aayog and chairman of the national Covid-19 task force. “Trends show the virus is still very active and enter our defences, just when we think we can control it, it sparks back,” he added. With the Covid vaccination window for all above 45 years of age opening from Thursday the Union , health ministry said those without pre-registrations (walk-ins or onsite registration) can get vaccines only after 3 pm and not in the forenoon session. Top 10 districts with active cases Pune 59,475 Mumbai 46,248 Nagpur 45,322 Thane 35,264 Nashik 26,553 Aurangabad 21,282 Bengaluru Urban 16,259 Nanded 15,171 Delhi 8,032 Ahmednagar 7,952 Odisha to monitor movement of people from C’garh E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @ Bhubaneswar AMID the surge in Covid-19 cases in districts bordering Chhattisgarh, Odisha government has decided to enhance surveillance on movement of people from the neighbouring State besides, focusing on aggressive testing and t r a ck i n g o f p o s i t ive c a s e s within. The State reported 218 new cases in last 24 hours, nearly 40 per cent (pc) of which were from three districts bordering Chhattisgarh. Maximum 34 cases were detected in Bargarh, followed by 29 in Nuapada, 26 in Sundargarh, 25 in Khurda, 16 in Cuttack, 13 in Kalahandi and 12 in Angul. This has come as a big challenge for the health administration. Of the six bordering districts, there has been a spurt in cases in Nuapada, Sundargarh, Bargarh and Jharsuguda. Nuapada has recorded highest 194 cases, including 29 from one cluster in a village, in the last one week. Similarly, Sundargarh, Bargarh and Jharsuguda have registered 123, 118 and 51 new cases respectively. Most of the cases from Sinapali and Komna blocks in Nuapada district have Chhattisgarh link. Health officials said the movement of people from the high-risk states has to be restricted or closely monitored apart from aggressive testing and localising containment measures. As the Central guideline prohibits restriction on movement of inter-State bus services, the State government has decided to hold talks with the Collectors and SPs of bordering districts of Chhattisgarh on Wednesday to decide on further course of action. Additional Chief Secretary of Health department PK Mohapatra said the rise in cases of bordering districts and educational institutions has fuelled the Covid-19 surge in the State. “Movement of people from the neighbouring states had led to the rise in cases in Odisha during the initial days of the pandemic last year. This time too, the bordering districts have become a concern. We have called a meeting with the officials of the neighbouring State to decide on enhanced surveillance,” he added. Meanwhile, the test positivity rate (TPR) rose to one pc on Tuesday. The State conducted 21,648 tests in last 24 hours with a drop of over 25 pc due to holidays. With the 218 fresh cases from 24 districts, the Covid tally soared to 3,40,620 of which 3,36,930 recovered and 1,921 succumbed. Active cases stand at 1,716. STATE TALLY 218 3,40,620 New cases Total confirmed cases 3,36,930 Recovered 1921 1716 Death Active cases Intense heatwave To grip State in next 2 days E x p r e s s N e w s Se r v i c e @ Bhubaneswar Heatwave conditions are expected to aggravate in the next two days even as many parts of the State sizzled in hot and humid weather with temperature going beyond 4 0 d e g re e C e l s i u s o n Tuesday . Baripada was the hottest place in the country, recording 44.6 degree Celsius. Sixteen places in Odisha recorded temperature above 40 degree Celsius on the day . Talcher reported 42.7 de g ree followed by Boudh at 42.5, Balangir and Jharsuguda at 42.2 degree each. Bhubaneswar and Cuttack recorded 39.8 degree and 40.5 degree respectively There will be no . respite over the next few days with India Meteorological Department (IMD) issuing a yellow warning for as many as 20 districts. The districts include Khurda, Cuttack, Nayagarh, Sundargarh, Jharsuguda, Bargarh, Sambalpur, Deogarh, Angul, Dhenkanal, Keonjhar, Mayurbhanj, Nuapada, B a l a n g i r, K a l a h a n d i , Sonepur, Boudh, Jajpur, Bhadrak and Balasore. Maximum temperature is likely to rise by around 2 degree during the next 48 hours. It is, however, expected to come down by 2 to 3 degree after three days. CONTINUED ON: P5
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