www.freepressjournal.in | twitter.com/fpjindia Reg. No. Mcs/048/2018-20; RNI No. 1541/1957 I M.p.c.s office Mumbai-400001 REGULATOR FINES RELIANCE, MUKESH AMBANI IN RPL CASE Pg 11 SUSTAINING RECOVERY IS KEY CHALLENGE FOR GOVERNMENT HINA KHAN GIVES A RARE PEEK INTO HER PERSONAL SPACE Pg 19 350c. 220c. Sunrise: 07:12 am Sunset: 06:13 pm Vol. 64 No. 210 | SATURDAY | JANUARY 2, 2021 | 15 Pages | EDITIONS: Mumbai*, Pune, Indore, Bhopal, E-Paper 8 BMC hospitals for jabs SwAPNIL MIShRA Mumbai FPj NEwS SERVICE New Delhi Treading warily, India has taken yet another baby step towards its first coronavirus vaccine with an expert committee recommending the use of the Oxford candidate, which will be manufactured by the Serum Institute of India. Now, the ball is in the court of the Drug Controller General of India which has to Pg 10 give the final nod for its emergency application. DCGI VG Somani’s approval will clear the decks for the vaccine's rollout in India, which has the highest caseload in the world, after the US. The rollout will begin from January 6, according to ministry sources. For the Government, Covishield (the Oxford vaccine) will cost around US $ 3 per dose, so US $ 6 [Rs 440] per person, but for the private LOVEBIRDS ARE BACK INDIA READY FOR A MILLION JABS market, it will cost around Rs 700-800," Serum Institute of India CEO Adar Poonawalla said on Friday . The Central government plans to vaccinate nearly 30 crore people in the first phase. There will be one crore healthcare workers in the queue, along with 2 crore frontline and essential workers and 27 crore elderly , mostly above the age of 50 years with co-morbidities. CONTD. ON P8 • Expert committee gives nod to Oxford vaccine to be manufactured by Serum Institute; • Now, Drug Controller General of India has to give the final nod • Vaccination may start as early as Wednesday • May cost Rs 440 per person for two doses, but for private market, the cost will be around Rs 700-800 Teen killed by pals in New Year's eve rage PRIYANKA NAVALKAR Mumbai The crowd was back on the Marine Drive waterfront a day after it was studiously ignored on New Year’s eve. Govt will cover cost of only 30 cr people T he government will cover the vaccination cost of only 30 crore people, not the entire population. According to Vinod Paul, a NITI Aayog member and head of the national Covid-19 task force, the government will bear the cost of inoculating 30 crore individuals belonging to priority groups in the first phase of its vaccination drive. In the ensuing 6-8 months, frontline workers, especially those working in the healthcare sector and the elderly , will be targeted. He added that 31 hubs had been set up to supply vaccines to 29,000 vaccination points in last-mile delivery Preparedness for inoculating other groups pri. oritised by the government is also in its advanced stages, he added. Unveiling the government strategy Dr Paul said: "We , want to ensure that the entire nation develops herd immunity The ultimate goal is to stall the spread of the dis. ease," he said. A 19-year-old girl was brutally murdered by two friends during a party on New Year's Eve in Khar on Thursday Police said, the . incident occurred around 2.30am, when the teenager allegedly spotted her boyfriend in a compromising position with another friend of hers. Angered at being discovered, the couple reportedly tried to reason with her first and then are alleged to have brutally thrashed her, grabbed her by the hair and dragged her downstairs from the terrace to the second floor, killing her in the process. Khar Police have arrested the 22-year-old man and the 19-year-old girl and are also interrogating the other attendees at the party . According to police, 19-year-old Janvi Kukreja was attending a rooftop party in Bhagwati Heights at 14th Road in Khar (W), when she caught her boyfriend, Shree Jogdhankar in an intimate moment with her friend Diya Padalkar. After the discovery , Kukreja stormed out but the couple chased her and caught her at the top of the stairs. A heated argument broke out among the trio, after which the duo is alleged to have brutally thrashed her until she was left bleeding. They then allegedly dragged her down the stairs to the second floor. She was rushed to the civic-run Bhabha Hospital in Bandra (W), but declared dead before admission. Police said that it was earlier suspected that Kukreja had fallen from the rooftop, but a probe revealed that she was murdered. Kukreja, a management student at a Bandra college, was best friends with Padalkar and they were also neighbours. CONTD. ON P8 The flight operations between India and the United Kingdom, which were suspended last month after detection of a highly infectious coronavirus strain in the UK, will resume from January 8, Union Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri said on Friday . Operations till January 23 will be restricted to 15 flights per week each for carriers of the two countries -- to & fro from Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru & Hyderabad. 4 MORE MUTANT CASES: Four more people have tested positive for the new UK variant of Covid, the Union Health Ministry said on Friday With . that, the tally of such cases in India – all UK returnees -has gone up to 29. All of them are in physical isolation in health facilities. Meanwhile, a person, who was travelling in the same flight with a youth who tested positive for the mutant coronavirus strain on his return from the United Kingdom, has been diagnosed with COVID-19, a senior health official said on Friday . However, it is yet to be ascertained whether the person is infected with the variant or not, as the outcome of the genetic analysis of his sample is awaited. The person, a resident of central Kolkata, is in institutional quarantine in the Beliaghata Infectious Disease Hospital and his condition is stable. CONTD. ON P8 At Rs 1,15,174 cr, highest-ever GST revenue collection in Dec; Maharashtra tops list with Rs 17,699cr SANjAY jOg Mumbai The new year has begun with a big bang for the buck, as 2020 departed leaving behind a bonanza for the exchequer. The GST revenue collection in December 2020 was reported at a whopping Rs 1,15,174 crore, the highest amount since the introduction of the new tax regime in 2017. It is also for the first time that GST revenue collection was above Rs 1.15 lakh crore. The collection in December was more than "Mumbaikars abided by the rules and kept the new year celebrations a low key affair, adhering to the norms set by the state government and the police. This year only 35 cases of drink-anddrive were registered, which too we were not expecting. Of these 35 violators, all men, 26 violators were bikers, one auto rickshaw driver and eight drivers of fourwheeler," said Yashasvi Yadav, Joint Commissioner of Police (Traffic). While the police impounded 15 vehicles, 20 vehicles were released. According to the data procured, the police registered a total of 4,056 traffic violations: most violations -- 812 vehicles -- were recorded because the driver was not wearing a helmet; 390 motorists failed to produce a valid license; 253 were found driving without valid license; and 304 were found to have parked their vehicles illegally . CONTD. ON P8 PRIYANKA NAVALKAR Mumbai Mumbaikars seem to have sobered up this new year's eve as only 35 motorists were caught driving under the influence of alcohol, even as 4,056 motorists were caught for different traffic violations. This is the first time that the cases of drunk driving are in double digits; the incidence was as high as 778 last year. Moreover, 24 days after call centers were started by traffic police, a recovery of over ₹1.12 crore was made. This low incidence of drunk driving can be attributed to the night curfew imposed in the backdrop of the pandemic and the decision to not use the breathalyzers this year. Rohit takes over from Pujara as Rahane's deputy LAST WORD R KUShAN SARKAR / New Delhi ohit Sharma, who has been languishing in quarantine since his arrival in Australia, has been picked as vice-captain of the Indian team for the last two Tests. Rohit has not played any competitive cricket since leading Mumbai Indians to title victory in the Indian Premier League (IPL) in early November; he had arrived in Australia in mid-Decem- ber and had been under quarantine for the past two weeks in Sydney . He will be replacing Cheteshwar Pujara, who was entrusted with the responsibility for the Boxing Day Test in Melbourne. After regular captain Virat Kohli went on paternity leave after the first Test in Adelaide, Pujara was named Ajinkya Rahane's deputy for the second match. However, it is learnt that the team management was always clear that once Rohit is fit and able to join the squad, he will be Rahane's deputy . "There was never an iota of doubt about who will be India's vice-captain once Virat To have tremendous power and still be humble – that is greatness. His Holiness Radhanath Swami Maharaj PRAVIN'S WIFE gave Varsha a Rs 55 lakh interest-free loan, which was allegedly part of funds siphoned off in PMC scam ED links Varsha Raut loan to scam PRATIK SALUNKE Mumbai The Enforcement Directorate has provisionally attached properties worth Rs 72 crore belonging to Pravin Raut under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002, (PMLA) in the PMC bank scam case. In the same case, the agency had recently summoned Varsha Raut, wife of Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut, for recording her statement. Pravin Raut has been associated with Guruashish Constructions, which is linked to Housing Development Infrastructure Limited (HDIL). Over 73 per cent of the PMC Bank’s loan exposure was to HDIL. The ED investigation has revealed that Varsha Raut received an interest-free loan of Rs 55 lakh from Madhuri, the wife of the accused Pravin Raut. This money was then used to purchase a flat in Dadar. The agency has alleged that the loan amount was part of the funds siphoned off in the multicrore PMC Bank scam case. The ED has further alleged that Madhuri Raut provided loans to Varsha Raut from "proceeds of crime". The PMLA defines proceeds of 2020's parting gift for State UK, India flights New low: Only 35 cases will start Jan 8 of drunk driving on 31st OUR BUREAU New Delhi •Nearly 30 cr people to be inoculated in the first phase. PIC : BL SONI The BMC is likely to complete the preparations for distribution, storage, and administration of the vaccine in the city this week. These preparations will eventually entail inoculation of 1.25 lakh frontline healthcare workers who have registered themselves on CoWin-20. Once the vaccine arrives in Mumbai, it will be stored at a facility being created especially for this purpose at Kanjurmarg. Since this facility is still work in progress and the BMC does not want to take any chances, ten bulkcapacity refrigerators have been placed at the F-south ward office in Parel and in medical colleges to store the vaccines, just in case. From either the Kanjurmarg facility or the Fsouth ward office, the vaccines will be moved to eight BMC-run hospitals where the frontline workers will be inoculated. The eight hospitals are KEM, Sion, Nair, Cooper, Bandra-Bhabha, Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Municipal General Hospital, Kandivali, Rajawadi, and V N Desai Hospital. Each of the eight designated hospitals has formed sixmember teams headed by a senior doctor. Other four members of these teams will comprise a head nurse and four support staff, including a guard to control access to the area earmarked for administering the vaccine. Moreover, the civic body has received 17 ice-lined refrigerators from the state government and the same has been placed at the eight designated hospitals. Each refrigerator can store up to 48,000 vaccines vials. The corporation has also placed orders for 40-cubic meter and 49-cubic meter walk-in refrigerators, which, between them, will be able to hold 60 lakh vials. The vaccination areas will have three enclosures — waiting area, vaccination area and observation area. CONTD. ON P8 FINALLY, DOSE OF GOOD NEWS EDIT takes a break and Ajinkya is elevated. It was always going to be Rohit and Pujara was just a stop-gap arrangement till the former joined the squad," a senior official privy to the development told PTI on conditions of anonymity . "Rohit has been India's long-time white ball vicecaptain, so it was only imperative that in Virat's absence, he will be a part of the team's leadership group," the official added. It is still not clear whether Rohit will prefer opening the innings alongside Shubman Gill, with Mayank Agarwal being dropped from the playing eleven due to his prolonged bad patch, or bat in the middle-order in place of Hanuma Vihari, who looks like a certain casualty in terms of team combination. The Indian team will be leaving for Sydney on January 5 for the New Year's Test which is scheduled to start on January 7. last month’s Rs 1,04,963 crore, a rise of 9.72 per cent and 12 per cent higher than in the same period in 2019. GST revenues have crossed the Rs 1.1 lakh crore-mark three times since inception. This is the third month in a row in 2020-21, with the economy having been showing signs of recovery as the pandemic seems to be on the wane. The average growth in GST revenues during the last quarter has been 7.3 per cent, as compared to (-) 8.2 per cent during the second quarter and (-) 41.0 per cent during the first quarter of the financial year. CONTD. ON P8 Rubina Memon will step outside jail after 13 years Gets parole to attend daughter's wedding NARSI BENwAL Mumbai Observing that the "human rights" of her daughter must be considered, the Bombay High Court on Thursday granted seven days' parole to terror convict Rubina Memon, the sister-in-law of the deceased terrorist Yakub Memon, to attend her daughter's wedding and other related ceremonies. The HC has asked her to deposit Rs one lakh towards the police bandobast charges. Rubina, who has been behind bars for the last 13 years, will be visiting her home for the first time in as many years. She is also the sister-in-law of Tiger Memon, who reportedly escaped to Pakistan after conspiring in the execution of the serial blasts that had rocked the city on March 12,1993, claiming 257 lives and injuring more than 700 others. Rubina was sentenced to life imprisonment along with three of her family members by a special TADA court in 2006. Her husband Suleman was acquitted, for lack of evidence. A vacation bench of Justices Sambhaji Shinde and Abhay Ahuja granted seven days' temporary leave for Rubina after noting the "satisfactory" report filed by the Yerwada Jail authorities on her conduct. In her plea through advocate Farhana Shah, Rubina pointed out that she had applied for parole in October and till mid-December the authorities had not decided her application. She accordingly petitioned the bench , led by Justice Shinde. Before Justice Shinde, the prosecutor for the state had cited a report submitted by the Mahim Police station, where Rubina's family resides. The report recommended a parole for only two days. However, Shah pointed out that her client has not stepped out of the prison and neither had she gone home from more than a decade. Having noted the contentions, the judges considered the report submitted by the jail authorities, which stated that Rubina's conduct had been "satisfactory ." CONTD. ON P8 crime as “any property derived or obtained, directly or indirectly by any person as a , result of criminal activity relating to a scheduled offence or the value of any such property”. “The PMLA investigation revealed that Rs 95 crore had been siphoned off through HDIL by accused Pravin Raut in active conspiracy and connivance with various persons. The source of the funds were illegal availed loans/advances etc. by HDIL from the PMC Bank. There was no document/agreement etc. in support of these payments made to Pravin Raut,” the ED said on Friday . It added, “Further, as per the ledger of M/s. HDIL, the funds were given to Pravin Raut for acquiring land in the Palghar area. CONTD. ON P8 ECO RADAR URBAN JOBLESS AT A 4-QTR HIGH Unemployment in urban areas jumped to a four-quarter high of 9.1% in the first quarter of 2020, data released by the National Statistical Office shows. The government had imposed one of the strictest lockdowns in the world from March 25 to curb the transmission of COVID-19, resulting in economic activity coming to a complete halt for nearly two months. In Oct-Dec 2019, the urban unemployment rate was at 7.9%. While the annual survey covers rural and urban areas, the quarterly bulletin is only for urban areas. IMPORT/EXPORT OF VACCINES The government has allowed import and export of COVID19 vaccines without any value limitation, in order to ensure speedy clearance and distribution. The Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs has amended the regulations to facilitate the import/export of COVID-19 vaccines through courier, at locations where the Express Cargo Clearance System is operational. The regulation further states that since the vaccines will be imported in durable containers equipped with the requisite temperature monitoring and tracking devices, the export of the durable container, including accessories thereof, imported for COVID-19 vaccines, has also been permitted. TRUMP FREEZE TO HIT I-T WORKERS US President Donald Trump on Thursday extended an order suspending the issuance of certain types of work visas for another three months due to the raging coronavirus pandemic. Among the work visas to be frozen are the most sought-after H-1B visa by Indian IT professionals. The rationale is to protect American workers and also because the pandemic conditions have not changed. Needless to say Indian professionals will be hit.