The Hindu Newspaper Analysis – 06 February 2021

India Sri Lanka Developments

  • In a recent turn of events, we have seen Sri Lanka overturn the tripartite agreement between Japan, India and Sri Lanka to develop the East Container Terminal at Colombo. This was an important collaboration for the three nations as it saw investment on millions of dollars in it.
  • Apart from this we also saw India and Japan come together for this joint venture as vital partners of the Indo Pacific, also of the Quad. These nations aimed to provide South Asian nations with sustainable, viable and transparent alternatives.
  • Sri Lanka backing out has made these nations express deep disappointment in this regard and it is seen as a downturn in the Indo Sri Lanka relations.
  • Alleged involvement of China has been questioned in this regard but it is not proven as Sri Lanka has provided domestic reasons for the same.
  • Looking at this from the lens of Indo Sri Lanka relations, our relations had just bettered in the Rajapaksa regime where we provided line of credit, signed currency swap agreement, COVID 19 assistance and even vaccines.
  • This move shouldn’t alter the relations very deeply but yes, the ramifications will be felt; Sri Lanka has to find a compromise formula to salvage a deal that has far reaching consequences in the region.

Sero Survey findings

  • The Serological surveys are conducted to test the presence of antibodies in the human population that would help in fighting the virus the COVID 19 and this also helps us to analyze the amount of the population that has already battled with the virus.
  • The third round of serological survey was conducted by the ICMR and this shows that about one in 5 Indians which is about 270 million may have been infected with the virus.
  • In comparison to the second round conducted, we saw that there has been a three-fold rise in infections, also a five-fold rise in percentage terms for those infected in the age group of 10-17 years.
  • The third edition has included people like doctors, nurses, paramedics among others.
  • The survey also points out there has been no spike in the cases also there is a growth of herd immunity which means one set of population has fought the virus successfully and are able to defend the other segments of the population.
  • We need to note the fact though we have made progress we shouldn’t be complacent and must continue to have public safety norms like wearing a mask, sanitization, maintain social distancing norms among others.
  • We need to understand that 80% of India is still vulnerable to the virus and a lot of people, especially in the rural areas are still vulnerable to it.
  • Let us look forward to how the findings of the serological survey will affect the vaccination policy of the Govt for the other rungs of the population like children among others.

Indian Pharma Sector

  • Indian Pharma sector is the largest supplier of the generic drugs in the world.
  • It meets 50% of demand globally for various vaccines.
  • It meets 40% of the generic drug demand of the US and 25% of all medicines of the UK.
  • In the next year, it is expected to be one of the top 3 nations which have the best pharma market in the world.
  • It is the third largest pharma industry in terms of volume.
  • It is the thirteenth largest pharma industry in terms of value.
  • Its manufacturing cost is lower than nations like USA, EU etc.
  • The fixed dose combinations (FDC) which is two or more drugs combines in a single dose format for a disease in an Indian innovation. It is used in diseases like HIV, Parkinson’s etc.
  • 80% of the antiretroviral drugs for AIDS among others are supplied by India.
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