Morning Digest | 180 deaths following vaccination reported in India; MI-RCB clash in IPL-14 opener today, and more

A select list of stories to read before you start your day.

According to a presentation made to the National AEFI Committee during a meeting held on March 31, there have been 617 severe and serious (including deaths) adverse events following immunisation (AEFI). As on March 29, a total of 180 deaths (29.2%) have been reported following vaccination across the country. Complete documentation is available only for 236 (38.3%) cases.

With 1,31,787 new COVID-19 cases reported as of 11.45 p.m. on April 8, India registered the highest single-day spike in infections since the beginning of the pandemic. As many as 802 deaths were also recorded on the day.

The ‘double mutant’ virus that scientists had flagged last month as having a bearing on the spread of the pandemic in India, has a formal scientific classification: B.1.617.

A local court in Varanasi on Thursday directed the Archaeological Survey of India to conduct a survey of the Gyanvapi Mosque compound adjacent to the Kashi Vishwanath Temple to find out whether it was a “superimposition, alteration or addition or there is structural overlapping of any kind, with or over, any other religious structure”.

Amid growing concerns over vaccine shortage, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday told Chief Ministers of States that the surge of COVID-19 — crossing peak levels of the first wave — required a firm strategy of “Test, Track and Treat” while seeming to rule out any kind of large scale lockdown.

Arms dealer Sushen Gupta, charge sheeted by Enforcement Directorate (ED) in the AgustaWestland VVIP chopper deal, supplied classified documents to Dassault Aviation on the Indian negotiating team when talks were gridlocked over benchmark pricing in the €7.87 bn Rafale deal, according to French media outlet Mediapart.

The Indian and Pakistani High Commissions in Islamabad and Delhi, respectively, are an “effective channel of communication” said the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), sidestepping a slew of media reports on a “back-channel dialogue” between the two countries that are discussing a number of initiatives.

The Trump administration damaged the U.S.’s credibility on climate change issues, which the Biden administration is trying to restore now, said U.S. special envoy John Kerry here on Thursday, promising to fulfil Washington’s earlier commitments towards developing countries including a $3 billion contribution to the Green Climate Fund.

The CBI on Thursday recorded the statement of former Mumbai police chief Param Bir Singh, assistant police inspector Sachin Vaze and others in connection with a preliminary enquiry into the allegations of corruption against former Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh.

U.S. President Joe Biden, in his first gun control measures since taking office, announced a half-dozen executive actions onThursday aimed at addressing a proliferation of gun violence across the nation that he called an “epidemic and an international embarrassment.”

Turkey on Thursday strongly rejected accusations that it snubbed Ursula von der Leyen — one of the European Union’s most powerful executives — because of her gender after a protocol gaffe during a meeting at the Turkish presidential palace ignited a public uproar.

Much has changed over the last few months and when the Indian Premier League gears up for its 14th season with the first match pitting reigning champion Mumbai Indians against Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) on Friday, fans have been kept away as a strict bio-bubble is in place.


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