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Veteran journalist Kanchan Gupta loses his father to Covid, shares experience

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On May 4, Kanchan Gupta, Veteran Journalist and former advisor to Atal Bihari Vajpayee narrated the saddening tale of his father battling Covid-19. While informing about the demise of his father, Gupta narrated how his father was a frontrunner in installing oxygen units in hospitals during his whole working life.

Gupta said that his father spent his working life setting up oxygen units at hospitals. In the 1960s, his work drew the attention of Tatas, who hired him to set up oxygen units at Tata Memorial Hospital and other hospitals.

He added that his father was rarely at home due to his busy work schedule. At that time, the technology was not advanced, and spare parts were often imported by a handful of suppliers. He said, “Those were low technology days. Something like a pressure gauge had to be sourced from a particular shop in Calcutta which imported them. He would go personally to check and buy.”

Kanchan Gupta thanked the doctors and healthcare workers

While remembering his father, Kanchan heartily thanked the ambulance driver who carefully shifted his father to the hospital. He thanked all the doctors, nurses and healthcare workers who tried their best to save him and eased his pain during his last hours. He said, “And my gratitude to the doctors, nurses and staff who tried their best, eased his pain, and remained by his side till the end.”

Guptas decided not to use a ventilator

One of the hardest decisions for a family would be to reject ventilator support. Kanchan said that he and his brother decided not to use the ventilator for their father as there was no hope of survival left. Putting him on a ventilator would have blocked the machine that could save someone else’s life. He said, “That machine would have been needlessly blocked. Better a #COVID19 patient with higher chances should get it. Baba would have wanted it that way. My late mother would have approved.”

Last rites will be done as per protocol

He added that they did not burden the already overwhelmed local cremation ground by insisting on last rites before others in the queue. Gupta decided to let municipal authorities book the slot at the electric crematorium and do the needful. He further added that the last rites of his father would be possibly done by a night of May 4 as per the Covid-19 protocols.

Kanchan Gupta is a veteran journalist and former advisor to former PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee. He is currently serving as Chairman, Raja Rammohun Roy Library Foundation, Kolkata, and is a member of the Prime Minister’s Committee on Netaji 125th Anniversary. Kanchan’s father, with his widowed mother and siblings, had fled to India during 1947-50. While working on a book on the plight of Hindu Bengali refugees from East Pakistan as perceived through Bangla literature, he wrote a tweet thread in which he mentioned that the refugees from East Pakistan were deemed as ‘Permanent Liability’ by Nehru Government that included his family.

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Russian-made Sputnik V launched by Dr Reddy, to cost Rs.995 per dose

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Dr Reddy’s Laboratories, the Indian partner of Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), said it has commenced Sputnik V’s India rollout, with the first doses being administered in Hyderabad on Friday on a limited basis.

Deepak Sapra,, the global head of Custom Pharma Services at Dr Reddy’s Lab became the first person to receive the Sputnik V shot at Hyderabad today.

According to the reports, the Hyderabad-based company said the Russian vaccine – Sputnik V would be priced at Rs 948 per dose with an additional 5% GST to be charged on it, putting the price at around Rs 995.4.

“As part of a limited pilot, the soft launch of the vaccine has commenced, and the first dose of the vaccine was administered in Hyderabad today on May 14, 2021. The imported doses of the vaccine are presently priced at an MRP of Rs 948 + 5% GST per dose, with the possibility of a lower price point when local supply begins,” the company said in its regulatory filing.

Further, the company also said that the first consignment of imported doses that landed in India on May 1, 2021, has received regulatory clearance from the Central Drugs Laboratory, Kasauli, on Thursday, May 13, 2021.

The pharmaceutical company expects more consignments of imported doses in the upcoming months. In later months, the supply of the Sputnik V vaccine produced by the Indian manufacturing partners is also expected to commence. Currently, the Russian vaccine manufacturing company is working closely with its six manufacturing partners in India to fulfil regulatory requirements to ensure a smooth and timely supply.

“Dr Reddy’s will work closely with stakeholders in the government and private sector in India to ensure the widest possible reach of the Sputnik V vaccine as part of the national inoculation effort,” the Hyderabad-based pharma company said.

The rollout of the Sputnik V vaccine at market rates, without any subsidy or philanthropic rate slash, comes at a time when left-liberals are waging war against Indian-made vaccines over its alleged ‘higher costs’ while batting for much costlier foreign vaccines.

Propaganda against Indian vaccines

Ever since various pharmaceutical companies developed vaccines for Covid-19, the left-liberals, joining hands with the opposition parties, have launched a vested campaign against Indian companies. The left-liberals have been attacking the Indian origin Covaxin made by Bharat Biotech and SII’s Covishield over its prices while forcing both the government and manufacturers to slash the prices.

The left-liberals had accused Indian companies of making huge profits at the expense of common people by keeping the prices of their vaccines high. In realilty the Indian made vaccines are among the cheapest in the wolrd.

It is interesting to see how the opposition parties and its left-wing media ecosystem reacts to the roll-out of Russian-made Sputnik V vaccines that cost around Rs.1,000, which is nearly costlier than the two Indian-made vaccines – Covaxin and Covishield.

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Madhya Pradesh Woman Killed for Giving Birth to 4 Girls, Over Dowry

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A 28-year-old woman was killed allegedly by her husband and in-laws for giving birth to four girls, last of which was born just three months ago, and also over dowry in Madhya Pradesh’s Shivpuri district, police said on Friday. Savitri Baghel was strangled to death allegedly by her husband Ratan Singh, his father Kilold Singh and mother Benoo Bai at their home in village Dindoli, some 80km from the district headquarters, on Thursday, Police Inspector Ramraja Tiwari said.

He said according to the deceased’s brother Krishna Baghel, Ratan Singh and his parents used to harass his sister for giving birth to four daughters and not bearing a male child. Krishna Baghel told the police his sister had given birth to the fourth daughter just three months ago, he added.

The family would also harass the woman for dowry, Tiwari said. The accused have been booked under IPC sections 302 (murder) and 304B (dowry death), but no arrest has been made so far, the police officer said.

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Pune Municipal Corporation receives consent to float global vaccine tender

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The Pune Municipal Corporation has finally received the consent of the state government to float global tenders to vaccinate its citizens. The approval from the Maha Vikas Aghadi Government came after the PMC threatened to move ahead with the process without their consent.

The consent by the Maharashtra Government comes more than three weeks after it was initially sought. The Pune Municipal Corporation had earlier decided to move ahead with the process saying that lives were more important.

Siddharth Shirole, BJP MLA from Shivajinagar constituency in Pune, on Thursday had slammed the state government for granting permission to the BMCV to float global tenders within 24 hours but not awarding the same to Pune despite 23 days having passed.

The Leader of the House in Pune Municipal Corporation is Ganesh Bidkar from the BJP. The BJP had accused the state government of discriminating against Pune. Pune wants 25 lakh vaccines to inoculate its citizens against Covid-19.

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