Free Press Bulletin
Free Press Bulletin

Here are the top 5 news updates of May 20, 2021:

1. Centre asks States/UTs to make 'black fungus' notifiable disease under Epidemic Act

The Union Health Ministry today asked States and Union Territories (UTs) to make Mucormycosis a notifiable disease under the Epidemic Disease Act, 1897. This comes after a number of states reported increasing cases of Mucormycosis. The ministry, in a letter, said that in recent times a new challenge in the form of a fungal infection namely Mucormycosis has emerged and is reported from many states amongst COVID-19 patients, especially those on steroid therapy and deranged sugar control. "This fungal infection is leading to prolonged morbidity and mortality amongst COVID 19 patients," Joint Secretary in the health ministry Lav Agarwal said in the letter.

2. 'Wasting even one vaccine dose means denying someone protection': PM Modi holds meeting with local officials

Prime Minister Narendra Modi today held a virtual meeting with district officials from 10 states and discussed the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and associated issues. The PM discussed several topics, from vaccine wastage and hoarding of essentials to the lessons we have learnt over the last year or so. Speaking about the issues India faces alongside the rise in cases, the PM said, "We must stop people from hoarding essentials and provide the poor and needy with foodgrains." Citing reports of vaccine wastage, Modi said that the loss of even a single dose meant that one person was being deprived of their shield. It was imperative, he added, to stop this from happening.

3. Pune's Mylab Discovery Solutions launches India's first-ever self-testing kit for COVID-19

Pune's Mylab Discovery Solutions today launched India's first-ever self-testing kit for COVID-19, which has received the approval of the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR). "This test is for self-use. If you test positive via this there's no need for the RT-PCR test as per ICMR. Any adult can use this kit by reading our manual," Director of Mylab Discovery Solutions, Sujeet Jain told news agency ANI. The testing kit can be used by any common person at home without the assistance of any lab or health official. The kit named 'CoviSelf' delivers the result just in 15 minutes. The kit will cost Rs 250 in the market.

4. ONGC barge tragedy: MVA seeks Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan's resignation

As the toll in the Arabian Sea barge tragedy rose to 37, Maharashtra's ruling Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) allies today demanded that Union Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan must be held accountable and should quit over the loss of precious human lives. Hitting out at the Centre, Shiv Sena MP and senior leader Arvind Sawant said, "The ONGC is under the Petroleum Ministry headed by Dharmendra Pradhan. Why don't the BJP leaders seek his resignation? Who will be held accountable for the huge loss of lives in this tragedy, give compensation and other relief... Merely pointing fingers won't do?" Sawant said. Congress State Spokesperson Sachin Sawant and NCP Minister Nawab Malik have also demanded Pradhan's resignation.

5. Sensex tumbles 338 points; Nifty slips below 15,000

Equity benchmark Sensex tumbled 338 points today, dragged by losses in index majors HDFC Bank, Reliance Industries and ICICI Bank amid weak global cues. Slipping below the 50,000 mark, the 30-share BSE index ended 337.78 points or 0.68 per cent lower at 49,564.86. The broader NSE Nifty declined 124.10 points or 0.83 per cent to 14,906.05. ONGC was the top loser in the Sensex pack, shedding around 3 per cent, followed by Sun Pharma, PowerGrid, Axis Bank, HDFC Bank, Bharti Airtel and Kotak Bank. On the other hand, M&M, IndusInd Bank, Titan, L&T and Bajaj Finserv were among the gainers.

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