The News Editorial Analysis 10th Dec 2021

The News Editorial Analysis 10th Dec 2021

The News Editorial Analysis 10th Dec 2021

Bird flu triggers alert in Alappuzha

8,000 to 10,000 ducks were culled by rapid response teams after the outbreak was confirmed

Alappuzha district was put on alert on Thursday after an outbreak of bird flu was confirmed at Kunnumma South (Ward 10) in the Thakazhy gram panchayat.District Collector A. Alexander said the H5N1 subtype of the Influenza A virus was reported in ducks. Mr. Alexander, who chaired a meeting to take stock of the situation, said steps had been initiated to check the spread of the disease.Joseph Cherian, a duck farmer from Purakkad, who was raising around 13,500 ducks close to the outer bund of a paddy field in Thakazhy with an eye on the Christmas season, lost more than 10,000 birds in the past two weeks.Following the mass death of ducks, the Animal Husbandry Department (AHD) last week sent samples of carcasses to the National Institute of High Security Animal Disease (NIHSAD), Bhopal, for analyses, which tested positive for avian influenza. AHD officials said that between 8,000 and 10,000 ducks belonging to five farmers within a one-km radius of the infected area were culled by rapid response teams as part of the containment measures. The carcasses were disposed of as per norms.

Sale banned

The Collector has issued an order banning movement and sale of duck, chicken, quail and other domestic birds, their eggs, meat and waste (manure) in 12 local bodies (within the nine km radius of the hotspot) of Champakulam, Nedumudi, Muttar, Edathua, Veeyapuram, Karuvatta, Thrikkunnappuzha, Thakazhy, Purakkad, Ambalappuzha South, Ambalappuzha North, and Haripad Municipality.Besides, the place in Ward 10 of the Thakazhy grama panchayat where the disease was confirmed has been declared a containment zone. The movement of people and vehicles to and from the place has been banned.Mr. Alexander directed the Assistant Conservator of Forests to monitor migratory birds for avian influenza.Apart from Thakazhy, duck mortality has been reported from Nedumudi in Alappuzha and Vechoor and Kallara in Kottayam district in recent days. The AHD has sent samples from these places for analyses.Earlier this year, avian flu caused by the H5N8 strain of the Influenza A virus was detected from six places in Kuttanad, and Kainakary in Alappuzha district and Neendoor in Kottayam district.

A tragic loss

India must realise Gen. Rawat’s plans for genuine tri-service operational capabilities

India has lost a capable and experienced military leader in the tragic death of the country’s first Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), General Bipin Rawat, in a helicopter crash near Coonoor in the Nilgiris on Wednesday. His wife, Madhulika, and 11 others also perished when the Indian Air Force’s Mi-17V5 helicopter came down in a heavily wooded area. Defence Minister Rajnath Singh has announced in Parliament that a tri-service inquiry, headed by Air Marshal Manvendra Singh, Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Training Command, of the IAF, will take place into the incident. The IAF chief, Air Chief Marshal V.R. Chaudhari, has already visited the crash site; the cockpit voice and flight data recorders have been recovered, which would give investigators insights into how the crash occurred. It is imperative that the inquiry be done both thoroughly and speedily. Without speculating on the cause, it needs to be stressed that speedy course corrections in training or hardware are imperative given that these Mi-17VF choppers are being used to ferry top military leaders across the length and breadth of the country.Gen. Rawat had not even completed two years as CDS when the Coonoor tragedy happened. After completing his tenure as Army Chief on December 31, 2019, he slipped into his new role as CDS the very next day. Many of his plans to give India genuine tri-service operational capabilities are still to be realised. In such a situation, the Government should not lose time in appointing his successor to ensure that the plans on the drawing board do not suffer. An aggressive China and a still belligerent Pakistan define India’s security challenges. The situation along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) continues to be tense with Indian and Chinese troops staring down each other. Gen. Rawat, known to have been proximate to the ruling establishment, had never minced words while speaking about the challenges facing the country and had waded into political controversies. Though the concept of having a CDS was recommended by a Group of Ministers in 2000 after the Kargil war, it took another 20 years for one to be appointed. The CDS, who functions as Principal Military Adviser to the Defence Minister, is expected to work in tandem with the three service chiefs who continue to operate in their respective domains — a role and function that is still in the making. To ensure that the new CDS and the service chiefs function as a team, the Government would do well to keep in mind the principle of seniority while choosing Gen. Rawat’s successor.

Two years on, CAA rules not notified

The News Editorial Analysis 10th Dec 2021

The legislation cannot be implemented if the Government fails to do so

Two years after the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019 (CAA) was passed by Parliament, the Union Home Ministry is yet to notify the rules governing the Act. The legislation cannot be implemented without notifying the rules.After the CAA was passed, 83 persons were killed in protests and riots from December 2019 to March 2020 in Assam, Uttar Pradesh, Karnataka, Meghalaya and Delhi.The CAA was passed by the Lok Sabha on December 9, 2019 and by the Rajya Sabha on December 11 and was given assent to by the President on December 12. The Ministry issued a notification later that the provisions of the Act will come into force from January 10, 2020.The CAA provides citizenship on the basis of religion to six undocumented non-Muslim communities from Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh who entered India on or before December 31, 2014.The Ministry had earlier written to the committees on subordinate legislation of both Houses to grant extension of time up to January 9, 2022 to frame the rules.As per the Manual on Parliamentary Work, in case the Ministries/Departments are not able to frame the rules within the prescribed period of six months after a law is passed, “they should seek extension of time from the Committee on Subordinate Legislation stating reasons for such extension” which cannot be more than for three months at a time.The MHA did not respond to questions on the delay.On Thursday, the Minority Affairs Ministry told the Lok Sabha that “the constitutional and legal validity of the CAA has been challenged in the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India” and the “the matter is sub judice.”The Governments of Rajathan and Kerala have filed petitions under Article 131.The Act has been opposed by many States too. The Central Government has received resolutions adopted by the Assemblies of Meghalaya, West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Punjab against the Act.Rajathan and Kerala have filed petitions in the Supreme Court.

Clarify tax relief rule for SEZ projects with WfH’

Ease compliance burden: Nasscom

The National Association of Software and Services Companies (Nasscom) has submitted recommendations for the upcoming Budget, including clarification on availability of income tax relief in projects for which staff Work-from-Home (WfH), reduction in compliance burden and certainty to taxpayers.Nasscom said the industry had potential to grow twofold in revenue to $350 billion by FY26, and favourable consideration to the suggestions would help reach the goal. It sought clarification as to whether WfH by employees of units in Special Economic Zones (SEZs) would not affect eligibility for tax holiday available under to Sec. 10AA of the Income Tax Act (I-T Act).“Emerging from the pandemic, industry is implementing a hybrid working model … work will happen both onsite and remotely as a matter of routine. Earlier, this was considered ‘temporary’… but now it will just be a way of working.”Nasscom also pitched for lowering the compliance burden, urging amendments to allow depreciation on goodwill from transactions that took place before April 1, 2021.

Dr. Reddy’s to sell Prestige’s cancer drug

Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories (DRL) has entered into a partnership with Prestige BioPharma under which it will get exclusive rights to supply and commercialise the Singapore firm’s proposed trastuzumab biosimilar in select Latin American and Southeast Asian countries.Prestige BioPharma’s trastuzumab (HD201) is a proposed biosimilar to Roche’s Herceptin.It can be prescribed for treatment of HER2 positive breast and metastatic gastric cancer, the two companies said in a release.The license agreement grants Dr. Reddy’s exclusive rights to commercialise the proposed biosimilar in the select countries.



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