350c. 280c. Sunrise: 06:00 am Sunset: 07:15 pm INDIA SET TO BENEFIT FROM 15% GLOBAL CORPORATE TAX Pg 7 FREEDOM OF SPEECH IS FREEDOM AFTER SPEECH YOU CAN’T RELY ON OTHERS FOR YOUR HAPPINESS, YOU NEED TO FIND IT WITHIN YOURSELF: NEENA GUPTA Pg 15 “When you are worshipping your Guru, then this master within you is also worshipped. You respect it, you glorify it, you awaken it and you manifest it” H. H. Mataji Nirmala Devi Vol. 65 No. 29 | MONDAY | JUNE 7, 2021 | 13 Pages | ` 4 | EDITIONS: MUMBAI*, Pune, Indore, Bhopal, E-Paper BETWEEN THE LINES Meghan Markle has given birth to a baby girl. To the world, she will be known as Lilibet ‘Lili’ Diana Mountbatten-Windsor. Her middle name was chosen to honour her late grandmother, Diana, Princess of Wales, the couple said. She has been named Lilibet after the family nickname for the Queen, the baby's great-grandmother. Despite Harry and Meghan quitting as senior working royals, the baby still has a place in the line of succession. PETROL IN CITY TOUCHES RS 101 After a day's pause, the stateowned oil marketing companies on Sunday increased fuel rates across the country. According to Indian Oil Corporation, petrol has become costlier by 27 paise from ₹94.76 per litre to ₹95.03 per litre, while diesel prices has soared by 29 paise from ₹85.66 per litre to ₹85.95 per litre in the national capital. In Mumbai, petrol has breached ₹101 per litre mark, currently standing at ₹01.25 per litre, after a hike of 27 paise; whereas diesel rates have gone up to ₹93.30 per litre, after a hike of 31 paise. NO MALAYALAM ORDER IS REVOKED A Delhi government hospital on Saturday issued a circular asking its nursing staff not to use Malayalam at work as "maximum patients and colleagues do not know this language" which it said causes a lot of inconvenience. However, it revoked the order a day later amid uproar from various sections. The circular issued by the Govind Ballabh Pant Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research (GIPMER), one of the leading facilities here, had asked its nurses to use only Hindi and English for communication or face "strict action". Responding to the diktat, Shashi Tharoor tweeted: “It boggles the mind that in democratic India a government institution can tell its nurses not to speak in their mother tongue with others who understand it." LOWEST SINGLE-DAY DELHI TALLY Delhi reported 381 new confirmed cases of infection on Sunday. This single day tally of fresh cases in the national capital is now the lowest since March 15. This is an improvement compared to June 5 when Delhi recorded 414 new cases and 60 Covid deaths. Covid-19 has claimed a total of 24,591 lives in Delhi, including 34 in the last 24 hours. The national capital had recorded its lowest casualties in a single day on April 8 of this year at 24. Case fatality rate (CFR) in Delhi now stands at 1.72 per cent. Positivity rate has dropped to 0.5 per cent, the lowest it has been between March 9 and now. DERA SACHA CHIEF TESTS POSITIVE Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh has tested positive for Covid-19. The controversial godman was on Sunday rushed to a private hospital in Gurugram from Sunaria jail in Haryana's Rohtak district, where he is serving a 20-year sentence on charges of rape and murder. On June 3, Singh had undergone some tests at the Post Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences (PGIMS), Rohtak, after he complained of abdominal pain. He had refused to undergo Covid test at PGIMS Rohtak. 2ND WAVE IN RECESSION NO LOCKDOWN, EDIT Pg 11 For the 10th consecutive day, there were less than two lakh new infections recorded nationwide, with 1,14,460 new cases being reported in the last 24 hours, the lowest in the last two months. Maharashtra and its capital too are faring well, with under 15,000 cases being recorded in the state in the last 24 hours, and fewer than 1,000 cases in Mumbai for the seventh consecutive day Pan-India daily tally Less than 1,000 cases lowest in 2 months for 7th day in Mumbai SANJAY JOG Mumbai There were 1,14,460 new corona infections reported in the last 24 hours, the lowest in the last two months. The country has recorded less than two lakh daily new cases for 10 continuous days now. According to the Union health ministry active cases , have been continuously falling, with the country’s active caseload dipping below the 15-lakh mark to 14,77,799 on Sunday For six days in . succession, the caseload has remained below 20 lakhs. A net decline of 77,449 was witnessed in the last 24 hours and active cases are now only 5.13 per cent of the country’s total positive cases. The number of daily recoveries continued to outnumber the daily new cases for the 24th consecutive day A . total of 1,89,232 recoveries were registered in the last 24 hours. On the other hand, 74,772 more recoveries were reported during the last 24 hours, as compared to the daily new cases, with 2,69,84,781 people having recovered since the pandemic. This constitutes an overall recovery rate of 93.67 per cent, which is showing an upward trend. A total of 20,36,311 tests were conducted in the last 24 hours in the country and cumulatively India has , conducted over 36.4 crore (36,47,46,522) tests so far. CONTD. ON P10 SWAPNIL MISHRA Mumbai Actor Sunny Leone distributes food to the needy during the lockdown in Mumbai on Sunday. —ANI In the city too, less than 1,000 cases were recorded for the seventh day in a row, with 794 new cases and 20 fatalities being reported on Sunday, taking the total count to 7,11,601, with 15,038 deaths so far. The doubling rate has increased to 515 days, while the weekly growth rate has dropped to 0.13 per cent. According to Dr Subhash Salunkhe, adviser to the Government of Maharashtra on Covid-19 management, it indicates the decline in transmission of the virus. “We will see further decline in the coming days but then for that, daily monitoring is required. We need to remember that virus is still present and can rise again. It can nullify all the gains that we have achieved in the lockdown if we continue to remain casual and don’t adopt Covid-appropriate behaviour,” said Dr Salunkhe. CONTD. ON P10 with almost all the stakeholders in the last one week. Both the Sangh as well as the central BJP leadership have concluded that a change of guard at this juncture would be nothing short of a political hara-kiri. What then is the party plan? According to BJP insiders, the Sangh and the central leaders have decided to go in the assembly polls with Yogi Adityanath as the chief ministerial face, alongside state president Swatantra Dev Singh. However, looking at the unrest at the ground, there could be a reshuffle in the state cabinet in the ensuing NEW DELHI: A latest study suggests Covishield triggers more antibodies than Covaxin; as part of this study , doctors and nurses received both doses of either of the two Covid-19 vaccines. The study conducted by Dr AK Singh and his colleagues states that both vaccines elicited a good immune response. Unpublished data had earlier indicated that Covishield was found to be 70 per cent effective after the first dose. At the same time, preliminary data from its phase 3 trial put Covaxin's efficacy rate at 81 per cent. So, while both elicited a good immune response after two doses, seropositivity rates and median anti-spike antibody titre was significantly higher in Covishield as compared to that in Covaxin. On Sunday, 13,659 new cases and 300 deaths were reported in Maharashtra in the last 24 hours, pushing its tally to 58,19,224, with 99,512 fatalities till now. The recovery rate has touched 95 per cent, with 55,28,834 patients having been discharged since the pandemic outbreak. UP ceasefire for now, reshuffle is awaited RASHMI SHARMA Lucknow Barely seven months are left for the Uttar Pradesh assembly polls and the BJP the par, ty in the saddle, is going through its biggest political turmoil. On the surface, it seems the warring factions have agreed to a ceasefire, but a residue of resentment is still simmering; there are legislators as well as party leaders who are not at ease with the chief minister. The parent organisation of the BJP the RSS, as well as , the central leaders have held several rounds of meetings days. Infusing fresh blood and removing the deadwood would be the poll strategy of a party which is again eyeing the Hindutva plank. While many have been complaining about the arrogance of the top brass and the unbridled run of the bureaucracy the recent failure , in taming the second Covid wave has added fuel to the fire. It may be mentioned that in 2019 over 100 legislators belonging to the ruling BJP had staged a dharna inside the Assembly accusing their own government of not pay attention to the problems faced by them. CONTD. ON P10 FPJ EXCLUSIVE Covishield or Covaxin? Rs 1.81 lakh cr gamechanger projects Multi Modal Corridor will change the entire face of MMR & open up new areas of development: MSRDC VC&MD Radheshyam Mopalwar I SANJAY JOG / Mumbai n an exclusive interview with The Free Press Journal, the Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation VC & MD Radheshyam Mopalwar, who received a fourth term extension last week, explained the strategy to execute projects worth Rs 1,81,000 crore. Q. What is the present status of the 701km Mumbai-Nagpur Samruddhi Mahamarg? A. After the decline in cases in the second wave of Covid-19, work on Samruddhi Mahamarg has resumed with renewed pace. Workers are returning to the site, oxygen availability is taken care of. So, all structural works are now being taken up in right earnest. Usually it is during the monsoon that , structural works are completed. There is not much of embankment work left, so upper layers of the expressway like granular surface, drylean-concrete and the final layer of pavement-quality concrete will be taken up during the monsoon also. MSRDC has completed 65 per cent of the work, all the seven tunnels which are very important, are through. Of the 1,700 structures, 1,300 are already complete and the remaining 400 are at the upper level of completion. Tunnels are a big task but they are open at both ends. Tunnel finishing will take six months. Q. What other projects are currently being undertaken by the MSRDC? A. Apart from this, work on the Rs 6,600-crore Mumbai Pune missing link is in full swing and it should be complete by the end of 2022. Work on the Rs 775-crore Thane creek bridge is being executed by L&T and it will be completed in the next two years. The government has assigned some new responsibilities to MSRDC, comprising the Pune Ring Road (Rs 26,000 crore), the Jalna-Nanded spur to Samruddhi Mahamarg (Rs 7,000 crore), the Konkan Expressway (Rs 72,000 crore), the Sagari Mahamarg (Rs 10,000 crore) and the Virar-Alibaug Multi Modal corridor (Rs 40,000 crore). In addition to this is the long-term Versova-Virar project (Rs 32,000 crore). Q. What is the progress so far on these projects? A. Land acquisition for the Pune Ring Road is currently in progress. In the case of the Multi Modal Corridor, of 106 villages, land measurement has been completed in 66 villages. Land acquisition has already been set in motion in these projects. In another fortnight, MSRDC will kickstart the land acquisition process for the JalnaNanded spur to Samruddhi Mahamarg. The Sagari Mahamarg is actually a highway hugging the coast - a two-lane highway - and it will make for an experience of its own kind, like California’s coastal highway This will boost . tourism and its first phase, which comprises 10 bridges on various creeks, will be taken up after Diwali. The Konkan Expressway is presently in the DPR stage. The DPR and clearances will take around two years. The Jalna-Nanded spur too is at the DPR stage. The Versova-Virar is a long-term project, which will take 10 years. The DPR and clearances itself will take two to three years. These are all revenue earning and tollbased projects. Therefore, raising debt will not be a big challenge. They are going to change the entire face of Maharashtra and will be a game changer. CONTD. ON P10 PETROL ` 101.25 Per litre DIESEL ` 93.30 Per litre www.freepressjournal.in twitter.com/fpjindia Reg. No. Mcs/048/2018-20; RNI No. 1541/1957 M.p.c.s office Mumbai-400001 NO KNOCKDOWN Uddhav urges industry to follow Covid rules and help state set an example in running units during pandemic SANJAY JOG Mumbai Urging industry representatives to follow Covid rules during the lockdown if they didn’t want a knockdown, Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray exhorted them to set an example in the country that Maharashtra’s industry has operated with complete care even during the pandemic. “We don't want both - lockdown and knockdown, so we should follow all Covid-related protocols,” said Thackeray on Sunday in an interac, tion with leading industrialists. “We are taking a calculated risk while unlocking, so be careful. The government has not relaxed all curbs and opened up all activities at one time. There are some criteria and levels that have been set for unlocking. At the local level, the district administration will decide how much to relax or tighten restrictions,” he noted. RPG Group Chairman Harsh Goenka, who participated at the interaction, dubbed as ‘very sensible and scientific’, graded opening of the lockdown from Mon- day “The Maharashtra mod. el is worth emulating by all states. CM Thackeray has put it across very well today it’s a balance between lockdown and knockdown - the disease has to be contained and the economy has also to prosper,” he said. CONTD. ON P10 been diagnosed with bilateral pleural effusion along with a drop in oxygen saturation. But he is stable and not in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU),” said Dr Parkar. Earlier in the day a tweet , was shared on the actor’s Twitter handle, clarifying that he had not been admitted for Covid-19. CONTD. ON P10 NEW DELHI: The screening of children for clinical trials of Covaxin will start at AIIMS in Delhi on Monday days after similar , trials started at AIIMS in Patna, sources said, reports NDTV . The vaccine made by Bharat Biotech will be tested on children between two and 18 years old. Experts have warned that a possible third wave can bring as much devastation as the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic if enough people are not vaccinated against the virus, and that children could be its prime target. CONTD. ON P10 jewellery , in retaliation against New Delhi imposing Digital Services Tax (DS) on tech giants. US Trade Representative Katherine Tai announced on June 2 the plan for the 25 per cent increase in the tariffs on 26 items from India, but said that the hikes will be on hold till December. India imposed a two per cent tax starting in April last year on earnings in the coun- try by foreign technology and e-commerce companies like Amazon, Facebook and Google. It was opposed by the administration of former President Donald Trump, and Biden has picked up the baton. The Trade Representative's Office said: "India's DST is unreasonable or discriminatory and burdens or restricts US commerce." CONTD. ON P10 Dilip Kumar stable, on oxygen support SWAPNIL MISHRA Mumbai Actor Dilip Kumar, 98, was admitted to the PD Hinduja Hospital, Khar, on Sunday morning, after he complained of breathlessness. He was diagnosed with bilateral pleural effusion, but his condition was stable and he was on oxygen support, doctors said. He is likely to be discharged in the next two to three days. Pulmonologist Dr Jalil Parkar confirmed the diagnosis. “Kumar has been put on oxygen support. He has Clinical trials on children US holds out tariff threat Indian tax on tech giants ARUL LOUIS New York The US tariff war against India has been reinvigorated with President Joe Biden threatening to increase import duties on a range of imports, from prawns and Basmati rice to furniture and Snoop officers on vessels Latest controversy in Lakshadweep FPJ NEWS SERVICE Kochi Despite the simmering protests on the ground, the Lakshadweep administration has taken yet another controversial decision to depute government officials onboard local fishing boats for intelligence gathering. Yet another decision, though less controversial, pertains to managing cleanliness and hygiene: the islanders have been accordingly instructed to scientifically dispose of coconut shells, tree leaves, coconut husks, and tree trunks in and around dwellings and public places. CONTD. ON P10 El Salvador declares Bitcoin as legal tender TAILPIECE FPJ NEWS SERVICE San Salvador The president of El Salvador has declared bitcoin “legal tender”, allowing it to be used as an official form of currency in the country . President Nayib Bukele is the first world leader to formally adopt bitcoin or any other decentralised cryptocurrency and emphasised his enthusiasm for the digital currency by adding “laser eyes” to his Twitter profile picture. El Salvador is a largely cash economy where rough, ly 70% of people do not have bank accounts or credit cards. Remittances, or the money sent home by migrants, account for more than 20% of El Salvador’s gross domestic product. Incumbent services can charge 10% or more in fees for those international transfers, which can sometimes take days to arrive and that sometimes require a physical pick-up. The U.S. dollar is El Salvador's official currency . About one quarter of El Salvador's citizens live in the United States and last year, despite the pandemic, they sent home more than $6 billion in remittances. Bitcoin could be "the fastest growing way to transfer these remittances." A big chunk of those money transfers are currently lost to intermediaries and with advent of Bitcoin more than a million low-income families could benefit. President Nayib Bukele, he 39-year-old president, who has maintained approval ratings above 90% and made Twitter his preferred way of communicating, characterized it as an idea that could help El Salvador move forward. Most of the world's central banks are looking into the possibility of creating their own digital currencies alongside cash and bank deposits.