Non-Payment of Civic Staff Salaries Turns into Political Tussle
As the mayhem of the outbreak of COVID-19 continues across the world, China has officially agreed to develop the first-ever nasal-spray vaccine for the novel Coronavirus. The trials are likely to begin this week, according to Hindustan Times.
The nasal-spray vaccine does not require painful injections as opposed to other vaccines proposed by pharmaceutical companies, whose clinical trials had to come to a halt after people refused to volunteer for it. This week, the vaccine was approved for Phase-1 of human testing. It is being jointly developed by Xiamen University and Hong Kong.
Image: AAP supported the unpaid employees by protesting on their behalf. (Source: The New Indian Express.)
According to The Times of India, Yuen Kwonk-yung, a microbiologist from Hong Kong University claims that the vaccine vitalizes the natural infection pathway of the viruses in the respiratory system to trigger the immune response. He added that it could also rectify influenza viruses such as H1N1, H3N2, and B in the system if present—providing double protection.
Yung speculates that it would take another year to complete the three phases of trials. In addition, he suspects that the vaccine may have side-effects in the respiratory system such as asthma and shortness of breath, although there may not be systematic side-effects.
Rafale Jets Inducted Into the IAF
Indian air force formally inducted 5 Rafale jets on 10th September, in a ceremony at Air force station Ambala, one of the oldest bases in the IAF. The new fleet will be a part of 17 Squadron of the IAF which was resurrected in Ambala in 2019.
"The induction of Rafale into IAF also represents the strong ties between India and France. The strategic ties between our two countries have also strengthened,” Defence Minister Rajhnath Singh said. The unveiling of Rafale jets was followed by a 'Sarva Dharma Puja'. The ceremony was attended by the French defence minister Florence Parly. She backed India's candidacy for the UN security council. CDS Bipin Rawat and Air chief Rakesh Kumar Singh Bhaduria were also present. The display in the air by Rafale and Tejas aircraft, and by 'Sarang Aerobatic Team', was followed by a traditional water cannon salute given to the jets.
India had purchased 36 new Rafale fighter jets for 7.87 billion euros in a deal inked with the French government in September 2016.
Delhi Records Second-Biggest Spike in Fresh COVID-19 Cases
On September 10 2020, Delhi witnessed its second-biggest single-day spike in COVID-19 cases. As per the health bulletin released by the Delhi government a fresh case count of 4,266 has taken the total number of cases to 2,09,748.
On the previous day, Delhi had recorded what is now its second highest single-day spike of 4,306 cases. The city has been
august with an upwards trend.
Mohalla clinics to promote aggressive testing in Delhi. (Source: Indian Express)
experiencing a daily rise in COVID-19 cases since mid-
According to India Today, this rise in cases could possibly represent a second wave of COVID-19 in Delhi. Before this, the first wave peaked in late June with an approximate of 3,000 cases recorded per day. Fortunately, the number of cases fell steadily at the beginning of July, and by the end of the month, Delhi was recording only 1,000 cases per day.
As stated by India Today, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal requested the citizens of the capital not to panic in few of the rising number of cases recorded. He mentioned that the rise in new COVID-19 cases is a result of aggressive testing strategies. “The number of people tested during Delhi's first peak is almost half of what it is during its second peak”. he mentioned in the same statement.
PM Modi's Speech on NEP 2020 at Student Conclave: Highlights
On 11th September 2020, Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed students at the School Education Conclave hosted by the Education Ministry about the new changes brought about by the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020.
According to Deccan Herald, the Prime Minister addressed the importance of holistic development through nature and learning. "Currently the education is restricting, this is the main reason for dropouts. Hence, the NEP would allow the students the independence to choose what they like," he conveyed to the students at the School Education Conclave.
The Prime Minister listed the essential skills the NEP will enhance, such as critical thinking, creativity, curiosity, and communication. He added that the NEP's curriculum would focus on understanding artificial intelligence, coding, Internet of Things (IoT), cloud, data science and robotics—subjects which will be of the utmost importance in the future.
The Quint reports that PM Modi spoke about the excessive focus put on mark sheets to judge a child's academic potential. He termed the document a 'prestige sheet' for parents and a 'pressure sheet' for students.
"Students learn even while playing, but parents never ask them about such learning. Marksheets have become the only decisive factor. Can students be judged on the basis of one mark sheet?" Prime Minister Modi expressed to the audience at the conclave.
As reported by Deccan Herald, Modi emphasised the importance of teaching primary school students in their mother tongue so that children did not spend their energy on translating but rather understanding the concepts. Until Class 5, the medium of study will be the regional languages or the students' mother tongues.
According to The Indian Express, the Education Ministry has received over 15 lakh suggestions on its implementation. "I urge all stakeholders to come together to implement NEP by 2022," the Prime Minister stated. Lastly, he stressed the importance of instilling the norms of social distancing, safe sanitisation to the Indian teachers and encouraged them to battle the deadly pandemic.
(Sources: The Indian Express, The Quint, Deccan Herald)
Edited by Nayana Dhanya