Safety Of COVID Vaccine Is Suspect
BOTH manufacturers of COVID-19 vaccines ‘Covishield’ and ‘Covaxin’ – Serum Institute of India and Bharat Biotech International Ltd respectively – have advised people against getting vaccinated, if they are allergic to several factors which include ingredients of the dose or those who are on blood thinners, bleeding disorders and other health-related issues. How is the common man expected to know which are the ingredients in the dose that trigger allergies and a host of side effects that are alarming and life threatening? The manufacturers have undoubtedly played safe by warning people against side effects, but the list of such adverse reactions is too serious to ignore, considering the number of people who have died worldwide after getting vaccinated. Lately, around 23 people died in Norway after the first dose, a Portuguese nurse died two days after being vaccinated, and now it has been reported that more than 12,000 people in Israel have tested COVID positive after the first dose of the vaccine. Clinical trials are still on in laboratories to prove the efficacy of these doses. So, in such a frightening and uncertain scenario, the overall feeling is that it would be better to play safe and refrain from being vaccinated, till the situation is under control.
A F NAZARETH, ALTO PORVORIM
Cricket Upstarts Win The Day
Much has been – and will continue to be – written about how India went on to script one of the most sensational comebacks in international Test cricket history to clinch a resounding 2-1 series victory Down Under. This historic win will long be remembered by the connoisseurs of the game not as much for the individual performances and the records that tumbled along the way, as it will be for the determined show put up by a band of cricketing rookies who made the impossible come true through a rare exhibition of sheer grit and mental toughness that only seemed to improve with every outing. Shrugging off the morale-shattering defeat in the first Test to cruise through to a comfortable and convincing win in the second Test, India managed to valiantly battle out a draw in the third before pulling off the sensational win at the Gabba. But it needs to be said that if Douglas Jardine’s English team has been much maligned for using the ‘Bodyline’ bowling to intimidate and unsettle the Australian batsmen in the infamous series of 1932-33 Down Under, the current 11 under Tim Paine fared no better – and that too on its home turf! Using tactics more-or-less similar to the one devised by the visiting English side then, the current Australian team came across as a side that lacked the sporting spirit to uphold gentlemanly traditions that the game is known for.
PACHU MENON, MARGAO
Giving New Teeth To IAF
IN a landmark decision, India’s cabinet committee on security approved a much-awaited Rs 48,000-crore proposal to buy 83 advanced Tejas jets from Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd to bolster the Indian Air Force’s combat potential. The first batch is expected to join the IAF in 2023-24. The technology applied in Light Combat Aircraft will definitely boost IAF’s combat potential and may become the workhorse of the future for IAF. MiG-21s of Russian manufacture have been phased out, and Tejas jets will fill the gap left by them. If optimum efficiency is achieved in the production of the Tejas Mk 1-A by HAL, India can save a large amount of foreign exchange spent on importing costly fighter planes from other countries. If HAL succeeds in bringing Tejas up to standard, it may win export orders. However, achieving export is dependent on political, strategic and economic factors. Tejas is capable of air-to-air refuelling. It is a lightweight, single-engine, highly active, all-weather multirole fighter plane. Another distinctive characteristic of the plane is that it has ‘beyond visual range ‘ missile capability. It is a welcome news that LCA Mk-2 version with more powerful engine is in its developing stage and is likely to be ready for trials next year. The approval for the deal will definitely send a strong message to India’s neighbourhood. It will boost the Atmanirbhar mission. The capabilities of Mk 1-A along with their modern weapons will augment the strength of the IAF. The induction of Tejas into the IAF will be advantageous to India at a time when the country is faced with a two-front war with its arch rivals – China and Pakistan.
VENU G S, KOLLAM