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Latest News24.5 Lakh citizens register for COVID vaccine | Rs 1,13,143 crore gross GST revenue collected in Feb | A noble gesture to respect our protectors | Income Tax Department conducts searches in Hyderabad | Highest number of domestic flights witnessed since resumption | Mobile App monitoring prices of 22 essential commodities | PM Modi takes first shot of COVID Vaccine | TN extends lockdown | Details of next phase of COVID Vaccination | Amazonia 1 successfully separated from PSLV C51 |

24.5 Lakh citizens register for COVID vaccine


The next phase of the COVID-19 vaccination drive, which started on 16th Jan 2021, commenced yesterday for those who are over 60 years of age and for people aged 45 and above with specified co-morbid conditions.

As many as 25 Lakh potential beneficiaries registered on the Co-Win portal yesterday. Out of this, 24.5 Lakh are citizens and the rest are Healthcare Workers and Frontline Workers. About 6.44 Lakh appointments were booked by the citizen beneficiaries.

A total of 1,47,28,569 vaccine doses were given, as per the provisional report till 7 pm yesterday.

These include 66,95,665 HCWs who have taken the 1st dose and 25,57,837 HCWs who have taken the 2nd dose, 53,27,587 FLWs (1st dose), 1,28,630 beneficiaries more than 60 years old and 18,850 beneficiaries aged 45 and above with specific co-morbidities.

Total 4,27,072 vaccine doses were given till 7 pm yesterday, the forty-fifth day of nationwide COVID19 vaccination. Out of which 3,25,485 beneficiaries were vaccinated for 1st dose and 1,01,587 HCWs received 2nd dose of vaccine as per the provisional report.

#COVID19Vaccine #COVID19

Rs 1,13,143 crore gross GST revenue collected in Feb


The gross GST revenue collected in the month of February 2021 is Rs 1,13,143 crore, the Ministry of Finance informed in a statement.

Of the gross GST, CGST is Rs 21,092 crore, SGST is Rs 27,273 crore, IGST is Rs 55,253 crore (including Rs 24,382 crore collected on import of goods) and Cess is Rs 9,525 crore (including Rs 660 crore collected on import of goods).

The government has settled Rs 22,398 crore to CGST and Rs 17,534 crore to SGST from IGST as regular settlement. In addition, the Centre has also settled Rs 48,000 crore as IGST ad-hoc settlement in the ratio of 50:50 between Centre and States/UTs. The total revenue of the Centre and the States after regular settlement and ad-hoc settlement in the month of February 2021 is Rs 67,490 crore for CGST and Rs 68,807 crore for the SGST.

In line with the trend of recovery in the GST revenues over the past five months, the revenues for the month of February 2021 are 7 per cent higher than the GST revenues in the same month last year. During the month, revenues from import of goods were 15 per cent higher and the revenues from the domestic transaction (including import of services) were 5 per cent higher than the revenues from these sources during the same month last year.

The GST revenues crossed Rs 1 lakh the fifth time in a row and crossed Rs 1.1 lakh crore third time in a row post-pandemic despite this being revenue collection of the month of February. This is a clear indication of the economic recovery and the impact of various measures taken by tax administration to improve compliance.

The chart below shows trends in monthly gross GST revenues during the current year. The table shows the state-wise figures of GST collected in each State during the month of February 2021 as compared to February 2020.


A noble gesture to respect our protectors


Directorate of Indian Army Veterans (DIAV) and Mrs Veena Nayyar, wife of Late Vice Admiral KK Nayyar, former Vice Chief of Naval Staff inked a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to pledge Rs Two Crores for welfare schemes run by the Army, Navy and Air Force for Next of Kins of service personnel who are martyred in the Line of Duty.

Mrs Veena Nayyar presented a Cheque of Rs 2 Crores to three Services which was received by Admiral Karambir Singh, Chief of the Naval Staff, Gen MM Naravane, Chief of the Army Staff and Air Marshall VPS Rana, Air Officer In Charge of Administration at Army Headquarters, New Delhi, a release issued today by the Ministry of Defence informed.

The main objective of the MoU is to facilitate various welfare schemes instituted for Next of Kins of servicemen who die in the Line of Duty. The welfare schemes include Education Scholarships and Computer Grant for the wards and widows of deceased service personnel, Grant for Higher Education of widows and Marriage grant for widows and daughters, the release informed.

The Chief of the Naval Staff and the Chief of the Army Staff conveyed their gratitude to Mrs Veena Nayyar for her benevolent contribution to the three Services and said that her noble gesture would support more than one lakh widows and wards in leading a respectful life. 

DIAV is one of the primary organisations of the Indian Army which looks after the Rehabilitation and Welfare of the families of Service personnel who have died in harness. DIAV has disbursed approximately Rs 86 Crores to about 76,000 beneficiaries over the past 20 years towards various welfare schemes, the release added.

#MinistryofDefence #IndianArmy #IndianNavy #IndianAirforce

Income Tax Department conducts searches in Hyderabad


The Income Tax Department carried out search and seizure operations on 24th February 2021 on a major Pharmaceutical group based out of Hyderabad. 

This Pharmaceutical group is engaged in the business of manufacturing intermediates, Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (APIs) and formulations. The majority of the total manufactured products are exported to various countries i.e. USA / Europe. The search operation was carried out at about 20 locations in 5 States.

Searches have resulted in the seizure of cash amounting to Rs 1.66 crore. During the search action incriminating evidence in the form of digital media, pen drives, documents, etc. have been found and seized. Incriminating digital pieces of evidence were gathered from SAP @ ERP software maintained by the assessee group.

During these searches, issues relating to purchases made from bogus and non-existent entities, artificial inflation of certain heads of expenditure, along with suppression of receipts relating to by-product sale were detected. Further, evidence of on-money payment for the purchase of lands was also found. Multiple other legal issues were also identified such as personal expenses being booked in the company’s books and land purchased by related concerns/individuals below govt. SRO value.

The search has led to the unearthing of evidence relating to unaccounted income of around Rs 400 crore out of which the assessee group has admitted an additional income of Rs 350 crore.

Further investigations are in progress.

#Hyderabad #IncomeTaxDepartment

Highest number of domestic flights witnessed since resumption


The number of domestic passengers on 28th February 2021 rose to 3,13,668 on 2,353 flights, Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep S Puri said. He further stated that this is the highest since the resumption of domestic flights on 25th May 2020.

Total flight movements on 28th February 2021 were 4,699. The total number of footfalls in airports was 6,17,824.

In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, domestic flight operations were ceased with effect from midnight (11:59 pm) of 24th March 2020. The operation resumed after two months on 25th May 2020.

#HardeepSinghPuri #COVID19

Mobile App monitoring prices of 22 essential commodities


Monitoring and predictive analysis of prices of essential commodities has taken a giant step ahead with the launch of India Mobile App for price monitoring of 22 essential commodities by the Department of Consumer Affairs. The App provides effective real-time information about retail and wholesale prices of essential commodities from 127 locations across the country.

To improve the quality of prices data for reporting daily prices by the price reporting centres, the Department of Consumer Affairs launched the Mobile App on 1st January 2021.

The Department has also proposed to DEA for Technical Assistance Fund under CARES Progamme of Asian Development Bank (ADB) for improving price monitoring and analysis. The activity components under the technical assistance are upgradation of price monitoring portal, capacity building for price reporting centres and price monitoring cell, identification of long-term improvements for food commodity supply chain & market efficiency. DEA has approved the proposal.

The Department of Consumer Affairs monitors the price of 22 essential commodities viz., rice, wheat, Atta (wheat), Gram Dal, Tur/Arhar Dal, Urad Dal, Moong Dal, Masoor Dal, Sugar, Milk, Groundnut oil, Mustard oil, Vanaspati, Soya oil, Sunflower oil, Palm oil, Gur, Tea, Salt, Potato, Onion and Tomato.

Daily report of retail and wholesale prices are obtained from 127 price reporting centres located in State Food & Civil Supplies Departments across the country. The daily report of prices and indicative price trends are analysed for taking appropriate decisions such as release of stocks from the buffer, export-import policy etc. 

Price reporting through Mobile App ensures reporting from the market location as data are geo-tagged thereby displaying the location from where price data are reported.

Reporting of static data from office desktop is ruled out through the application of Mobile App. Therefore, the condition to operationalise Mobile App is that each Price Reporting Centre has to furnish market details such as names and addresses of the shops and markets from where prices are being collected daily.

As per the guidelines for retail price reporting, prices of the same variety of a commodity are to be collected from three markets, viz., High Income Market, Middle Income Market and Low Income Market, and the average of the three prices is to be reported. The Mobile App has an inbuilt feature to calculate and report the average price. This helps in avoiding human errors in calculation.

Market information from Agmarknet, Agriwatch, NAFED and trade associations also constitute inputs for price analyses. The department is utilising the services of Agriwatch for providing market intelligence, predictive analysis of prices and to develop price forecasting model.


PM Modi takes first shot of COVID Vaccine

Prime Minister Narendra Modi took the first dose of COVID-19 vaccination today.

Informing about the same in a tweet today, PM Modi said, 

"Took my first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at AIIMS. Remarkable how our doctors and scientists have worked in quick time to strengthen the global fight against COVID-19. I appeal to all those who are eligible to take the vaccine. Together, let us make India COVID-19 free!"

The countrywide vaccination exercise, which is underway since 16th of January, has been exponentially expanded to include those above 60 years of age and those above 45 years with co-morbidities from today.

#COVID19Vaccine #NarendraModi #COVID19

TN extends lockdown

Tamil Nadu Government has extended the COVID-19 related lockdown till 31st March 2021.

All international air travels will remain prohibited, except for purposes permitted by the Home Ministry.

All the directives related to containment zones, COVID appropriate behaviours and necessary prohibitions will continue.

#COVID19 #TamilNadu

Details of next phase of COVID Vaccination


The next phase of COVID-19 vaccination drive for the age-appropriate population groups will commence from 1st March 2021 (tomorrow).

Registration will open at 9:00 am on 1st March 2021 (at Citizens will be able to register and book an appointment for vaccination, anytime and anywhere, using the COWIN 2.0 portal or through other IT applications such as Arogya Setu etc.

This information was shared during the orientation workshop organised by the Union Health Ministry and the National Health Authority (NHA) for the 10,000 private hospitals under Ayushman Bharat PMJAY, more than 600 hospitals empanelled under CGHS and other private hospitals empanelled under State Government's Health Insurance Schemes, on Co-WIN2.0. The modalities of the new features integrated with the CoWIN2.0 digital platform were explained to them. The private empanelled COVID Vaccination Centers (CVCs) were also trained on various aspects of the process of vaccination and management of adverse events following immunization (AEFI) through video conference with the support of the National Health Authority (NHA).

The participants were explained that all citizens who are aged or will attain the age of, 60 years or more as of 1st January 2022 are eligible to register, in addition to all such citizens that are aged, or will attain the age of, 45 years to 59 years as on 1st January 2022, and have any of the specified 20 comorbidities (as annexed).

There will be only one live appointment for a beneficiary at any point in time for each dose. Appointments for any date for a COVID Vaccination Center will be closed at 3:00 pm on that day for which the slots were opened.  For example, for 1st March the slots will be open from 9:00 am till 3:00 pm on 1st March, and the appointments can be booked anytime before that, subject to availability. However, on 1st March an appointment can also be booked for any future date for which vaccination slots are available. A slot for the second dose will also be booked at the same COVID Vaccination Center on the 29th day of the date of appointment of the 1st dose. If a beneficiary cancels a first dose appointment, then the appointment of both doses will be cancelled.

The eligible persons will be able to register at the Co-WIN2.0 portal through their mobile number, through a step by step process. With one mobile number, a person can register as many as four beneficiaries. However, all those registered on one mobile number will have nothing in common except for the mobile number. The Photo ID Card Number for each such beneficiary must be different. Either of the following Photo Identity Documents can be used by citizens for availing of online registration–

  1. Aadhar Card/Letter
  2. Electoral Photo Identity Card (EPIC)
  3. Passport
  4. Driving License
  5. PAN Card
  6. NPR Smart Card
  7. Pension Document with a photograph

A User Guide for the Citizen Registration & Appointment for Vaccination has also been uploaded on the websites of the Union Ministry of Health & Family Welfare and the National Health Authority (NHA).

A list of all these private hospitals has been uploaded on the website of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and the National Health Authority. 

It was also explained that the Central Government shall procure all the vaccines and supply them free of cost to the States and UTs who in turn will disburse them further to the Government and Private COVID Vaccination Centres (CVCs). It was re-iterated that all vaccines provided to beneficiaries at the Government Health Facilities will be entirely free of cost, while Private Facilities cannot charge the beneficiary a sum above Rs. 250 per person per dose (Rs 150/- for vaccines and Rs 100/- as operational charges). Private Hospitals are to remit the cost of vaccine doses allotted to them in a designated account of the National Health Authority (NHA). The payment gateway for the same is being enabled by NHA on their website.

The Government of India has supplied two COVID-19 vaccines, Covishield & Covaxin, free of cost to the States/UTs to vaccinate Health Care Workers (HCWs) and Front Line Workers (FLWs) and will also be able to cover the next priority group i.e. 60 years plus age group and the age group of 45 to 59 years suffering from Pre-Specified Co-Morbidities.

The States have been requested to operationalize the linkages between the COVID-19 Vaccination Centres (CVCs) (both government & private empanelled facilities) with the nearest cold chain points for ensuring smooth vaccine delivery to COVID Vaccination Centres (CVCs).

List of Specified Comorbidities for determination of eligibility of citizens in age group 45 to 59 years


SN - Criterion

1 - Heart Failure with hospital admission in the past one year

2 - Post-Cardiac Transplant/Left Ventricular Assist Device (LVAD)

3 - Significant Left ventricular systolic dysfunction (LVEF <40%)

4 - Moderate or Severe Valvular Heart Disease

5 - Congenital heart disease with severe PAH or Idiopathic PAH

6 - Coronary Artery Disease with past CABG/PTCA/MI AND Hypertension/Diabetes on treatment

7 - Angina AND Hypertension/Diabetes on treatment

8 - CT/MRI documented stroke AND Hypertension/Diabetes on treatment

9 - Pulmonary artery hypertension AND Hypertension/Diabetes on treatment

10 - Diabetes (> 10 yearsORwith complications) AND Hypertension on treatment

11 - Kidney/ Liver/ Hematopoietic stem cell transplant: Recipient/On wait-list

12 - End-Stage Kidney Disease on haemodialysis/ CAPD

13 - Current prolonged use of oral corticosteroids/ immunosuppressant medications

14 - Decompensated cirrhosis

15 - Severe respiratory disease with hospitalizations in the last two years/FEV1 <50%

16 - Lymphoma/ Leukaemia/ Myeloma

17 - Diagnosis of any solid cancer on or after 1st July 2020 OR currently on any cancer therapy

18 - Sickle Cell Disease/ Bone marrow failure/ Aplastic Anemia/ Thalassemia Major

19 - Primary Immunodeficiency Diseases/ HIV infection

20 - Persons with disabilities due to Intellectual disabilities/ Muscular Dystrophy/ Acid attack with the involvement of respiratory system / Persons with disabilities having high support needs/ Multiple disabilities including deaf-blindness.


Amazonia 1 successfully separated from PSLV C51


Amazonia-1 satellite has been successfully separated from PSLV C-51 and placed into orbit today.

"In this mission, India and ISRO, feel extremely proud to launch the first satellite designed, integrated by Brazil. The satellite is in very good health. I congratulate the Brazilian team," ISRO Chairman K Sivan said about Amazonia-1 after the launch.

PSLV-C51/Amazonia-1 is the first dedicated commercial mission of NewSpace India Limited (NSIL), a Government of India company under the Department of Space. The NSIL is undertaking this mission under a commercial arrangement with Spaceflight Inc. USA.