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Akhilesh dares BJP to withdraw his security cover

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Akhilesh Yadav

Lucknow, Feb 18 (IANS) Samajwadi Party President Akhilesh Yadav has dared the BJP to take back his security cover.

When asked about the threat to his security, Akhilesh Yadav said, “I do not need security. I want to live freely. This is not a matter of security. I want to ask how a local intelligence inspector can come to my press conference. How can someone come in a programme in the party office.”

Akhilesh Yadav had recently claimed that he faced a threat from a BJP leader. He made the allegations after a youth disrupted a meeting addressed by him by shouting a religious slogan.

“Why was my NSG cover removed? They (BJP) have taken back my house and vehicle. They are free to take back my security also. I love to cycle alone. Now the time is coming when cycle is going to run fast,” he told reporters on Tuesday.

It may be recalled that the Leader of the Opposition, Ram Govind Chaudhary of the Samajwadi Party, had raised the issue of security threat to Akhilesh Yadav in the state Assembly on Monday.

“There is a threat to my life from a BJP leader. I have received a threat call and a message from him. I have saved the message in my phone and will address the media in this regard in Lucknow in a day or two,” he had said.

“Just two days ago, a BJP leader threatened me and now this man is trying to jump inside the security cordon. He could have taken my life. What action will you take against him and under which act you will book him,” he had asked.

Akhilesh Yadav was addressing party workers on rising inflation in the country when a youth from the crowd interrupted him and asked him what he planned to do about it if he returned to power.

The SP chief asked the youth to come closer as he was not audible.

At this, the youth shouted “Jai Shri Ram” before Akhilesh Yadav asked him if he had any association with the Bhartiya Janata Party.

Following the incident, Yadav claimed that there was a threat to his life from a BJP leader.

Parliamentary Affairs Minister Suresh Kumar Khanna had said in the Assembly that Akhilesh Yadav has been provided ‘Z-Plus’ category security which comprises 182 security personnel and even accused the SP of blowing the incident out of proportion.

Health

BHU women scientists develope corona testing kit

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Banaras Hindu University, BHU

Varanasi, April 1 (IANS) Women researchers at the Banaras Hindu University (BHU) have developed a new testing method for COVID-19. The team has already patented the method.

According to reports, a group of women scientists at the Department of Molecular and Human Genetics, Institute of Science, Banaras Hindu University, have developed a novel test method-based on RT PCR (Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction) for COVID-19 with 100 per cent accuracy.

Geeta Rai, the doctor who leads the research team comprising Doli Das, Khushbu Priya and Hiral Thacker, said: “Through this low-cost method, the results would be available within a few hours. We have got this method patented and approached the Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO) and Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR) for further guidance and support in the matter so that it can be taken to the masses.”

According to her, this RT PCR (qualitative)-based detection method for coronavirus guarantees accuracy, low cost, rapid detection and no requirement for a probe or high cost machines.

The union government had given a call to startups, incubators and scientists to accelerate their efforts at finding solutions to the Covid-19 crisis that has met with overwhelming response.

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Business

Banks to recycle inward currency notes only after 48 hours on corona threat

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Rupee

New Delhi, April 2 : As the corona pandemic turns multifaceted, concerns are arising over the use of currency notes and banks have been advised not to recycle inward currencies and do so only after 48 hours.

As a per a circular issued to banks in Kerala, all member banks of the SLBC that the inward currencies at branches should not be recycled. The inward currencies are to be separately wrapped in packets with date and to be recycled only after 48 hours.

“We infer that currency notes are a probable threat for spread of coronavirus. Health Department has also opined that coronavirus could sustain on infected currency notes for about 12 hours.”

Canara Bank has issued a circular today to the SLBC member banks in Kerala.

The staff in the branches have been asked to take precautions including wearing masks, gloves, using sanitisers and ensuring social distancing.

Earlier, Indian Banks’ Association (IBA) has made an appeal to people to wash their hands after touching or counting currency.

IBA had also asked customers to use online and mobile banking channels for making their transactions and avoid visiting bank branches.

“Wash your hands with soap for at least 20 seconds before and after physical banking/currency counting/AEPS (Aadhaar-enabled payments),” IBA had said in a public appeal.

Traders body, the Confederation of All India Traders had also flagged these concerns to Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman about the possible spread of coronavirus through currency notes.

CAIT had said that usage of paper currency which is (the) most dreaded carrier for different viruses and infections due to rapid change of hands between unknown people and thus becomes a health hazard.

It cited the safety of polymer currency, mentioning 13 countries who have switched entirely to these notes, ditching paper variants, and more than 15 countries in line to do so.

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COVID-19: 5 more positive cases found in Gujarat; state total 87

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Coronavirus Spray
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Gandhinagar, April 1 : Wednesday recorded the highest COVID-19 positive cases in a day, 13 in Gujarat, taking the total positive cases in the state to 87.

Jayanti Ravi, the principal secretary, Health and family welfare Department, Gujarat said, “Apart from the eight positive cases registered on Wednesday morning, during the day, we have had five more positive cases in the state. Two are from Surat, two in Porbandar and 1 in Panchmahals.”

With this, the total positive cases in the state have climbed to 87 with 6 deaths. The highest positive cases are in Ahmedabad -31, followed by Surat -12, Gandhinagar -11, Rajkot -10, Vadodara -9, Bhavnagar -6, Porbandar -3 Gir-Somnath -2, Kutch, Mahesana and Panchmahals one each.

Seven positive cases, after undergoing treatment have been discharged.

Eight new positive corona cases were recorded in Gujarat on Wednesday morning, all of them in Ahmedabad which has been declared as a hotspot for the outbreak by the ministry of health and family welfare.

“Out of the 8, male (52) having inter state travel history to Indore, male (18) travel history to Indore, female (45) interstate travel history and a female (65) having got infected locally have been admitted in Ahmedabad Civil hospital. A male (68) with inter state travel history, male (54) with an international travel history and a female (58) infected locally have been admitted in Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel (SVP)AHospital. Another male (67) who got infected locally has been admitted in the Sola Civil Hospital,” Ravi said.

The total persons under quarantine are 19,206. The persons quarantined at home are 18,487 and those in government institutes are 743 while 253 are quarantined in private facilities. 418 FIR have been filed against persons violating the quarantine conditions. “We have conducted test of 1,586 samples out of which 1,501 have turned negative, 82 positive and the results of three are pending,” added Ravi.

So far, six deaths have been reported in Gujarat due to the coronavirus infection. First case was that of a male from Surat with comorbid conditions. On Wednesday night an 85-year-old female from Ahmedabad died also due to comorbid conditions . A 70-year-old male from Bhavnagar with a travel history to Delhi, succumbed to the virus on Thursday. Three more deaths were reported on Saturday, Sunday and Monday, a male (47) and female (46) from Ahmedabad and a female (45) from Jesar block in Bhavnagar respectively.

All the deceased patients were suffering from comorbid conditions like diabetes, hypertension, cardiac ailments and other several complications.

“Even before the central government had declared Ahmedabad as a hotspot, we had identified Ahmedabad, Surat, Vadodara, Rajkot and Gandhinagar as hotspots for the outbreak and started working on the cluster containment strategy,” said Ravi.

The health authorities with the help of the police department, is cordoning the clusters in densely populated areas of these five cities, where positive cases have been found and started surveillance.

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