New Delhi, July 9 (IANS) A total of 56 restaurants and eateries in South Delhi can serve food and beverages in open-air spaces and terraces, a decision in this regard was taken by South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC).However, the permission to serve food and liquor in open space is permitted to those restaurants which have obtained permission from the civic authority after fulfilling certain criteria.A senior official privy with the development told IANS that as of now 56 restaurants have been permitted to serve food and beverages in open spaces like terraces. The proposal for permitting liquors and foods in open-air space with certain regulations was made by SDMC last year and the applications were invited to get permission.Out of total, as many as 39 applications were received from areas in the South zone which includes -- Hauz Khas, Green Park and Greater Kailash. Similarly, a total of 31 applications were received from Najafgarh zone, which comprises areas such as Dwarka and Aerocity.Fifteen applications were received from areas in the Central zone like Lajpat Nagar, Bhogal and Defence Colony. Nine applications were received from Western zone areas like Punjabi Bagh, Rajouri Garden and Tilak Nagar.As many as 23 licenses were granted in the South zone, 25 in Najafgarh and seven in the Central zone. Only one was granted a licence for open-air dining in the West zone.The SDMC had passed the proposal last year in view of Covid-19 pandemic in which the restaurants would be allowed to use open-air spaces and terraces abutting licensed eateries as service areas.Under the policy, open-air dining has been allowed only at those restaurants with privately-owned open spaces like terraces, balconies and lawns so that there is no encroachment on public land or pavements."Serving food and alcohol will be permitted in the open space, and the open-air area/terrace should not be covered. If the open space is visible from nearby residential premises, then additional measures to be taken to obstruct visibility," SDMC's proposal states.It also made it clear that the service area should also not be visible from adjoining residential areas. Live performances will not be allowed and music cannot be played beyond the permissible time of 11 p.m.The official said in the last nine months (till June-end), the civic body received 94 applications, out of which 56 were granted licences and 28 were rejected for not fulfilling the norms.SDMC Mayor Mukesh Suryan talking to IANS said, "For the past few years there has been consistent demand from the people in South Delhi to allow serving liquors and foods in open-air space and it has been done considering the demand of people. The step will also help to maintain social distancing during this Covid-19 pandemic."Suryan further added that as of now only 56 restaurants have been granted permission but this number can increase in the coming days if the applicants (restaurants and eateries owners) meet the certain rules.--IANSpd/dpb
Hyderabad, July 1 (IANS) Sputnik Light, the single-dose Covid-19 vaccine, can submit Russian safety data for approval in India, Dr Reddy's Laboratories said on Thursday.The Hyderabad-based Dr Reddy's, in a statement, said that the Subject Expert Committee (SEC) under Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) asked it to submit safety, immunogenicity and efficacy data from the Phase 3 clinical trial of Sputnik Light in Russia for consideration of marketing authorisation of Sputnik Light in India.The SEC, at its meeting on Wednesday, deliberated on the submission for marketing authorisation of Sputnik Light from Dr Reddy's. The company presented to the SEC, interim safety and efficacy data from the Phase 1/2 clinical trial of Sputnik Light in Russia, along with a clinical trial protocol for a Phase 3 trial of Sputnik Light in India.The SEC made the recommendation in view of the fact that Sputnik Light is the first dose component of Sputnik V, and Dr Reddy's has already generated safety and immunogenicity data on the first dose component in India through its clinical trial and a Phase 3 efficacy trial is currently underway in Russia on Sputnik Light."Further, the SEC also observed that in view of the safety and immunogenicity data already generated by Dr Reddy's in India on the first dose component of Sputnik V (in other words, Sputnik Light), there was no need for a separate Phase 3 trial of Sputnik Light in India," the statement said.Sputnik Light is a single dose Covid-19 vaccine from the makers of Sputnik V and is yet to be approved in India.--IANSms/vd
Hyderabad, June 21 (IANS) In what could be the light at the end of the proverbial tunnel, a research team from Department of Biochemistry, School of Life Sciences at University of Hyderabad (UoH), has demonstrated that an eye-independent system (extraocular) lining the periphery of the worm's body allows even a headless flatworm to move like an intact worm with incredible coordination.
The discovery of such sensitive natural light sensing proteins has potential applications in equipping visually challenged people with the ability to 'sense' light and to control inner working of cells/tissues with light (optogenetics), according to the authors.
In their studies, the team headed by Dr Akash Gulyani, found that the worm body is dotted with a whole array of very unique light sensing cells that are patterned all over the worm, especially at the periphery of the worm.
Cells within this eye-independent system produced light-sensitive proteins called opsins which help the flatworm to respond to light even in the absence of eyes. However, the eye-independent system only responds to a limited range of ultraviolet light at 365 to 395 nm, whereas the flatworm eyes can detect a broad wavelength of visible light (365 to 625 nm).
"Interestingly, the eye-independent system only arises in the adult organisms, unlike the standard set of eyes that develop in the embryo", notes the study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (USA).
This discovery of such an array of body-wide light sensing cells that link to the body-wide nervous system and allow headless worms to move, may constitute the uncovering of a new kind of body-wide organ system for sensing light. This discovery is likely amongst one of the most sensitive eye-independent light sensing systems in nature, a UoH statement read.
Intriguingly, these newly discovered light sensing cells appear unique as they do not resemble any neuron-like cells but are more similar to a distinct cellular class (parenchymal cells) that includes glia-like cells, which are generally thought to have a supporting rather than a sensory role. This seems very distinct from all light sensing systems known so far across the animal kingdom.
Planarian flatworms are light-aversive and are known to rely on two sensitive eyes connected to a simple brain to sense light and play a crucial role in controlling their behavior and movement.
The team comprising Nishan Shettigar, Anirudh Chakravarthy, Suchitta Umashankar, Vairavan Lakshmanan, Dasaradhi Palakodeti, followed up on previous research that shows planarians can survive decapitation (removal of the head) and retain the ability to move away from the light source when exposed to low doses of ultraviolet light.
New Delhi, April 27 (IANS) Congress General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi has penned an emotional note on Facebook on the Covid pandemic saying, "we shall overcome." She alleged that the government has failed the people and abdicated its responsibility.She said that she is writing with a heavy heart as many of you have lost ur loved ones in past few weeks and many have family members who are struggling for life, and many are grappling with the disease at home, anxious and afraid of what is to come."There is not a single one of us who has not been affected by this scourge. People across our country are gasping for air, struggling to access medical care or simply to get the next dose of life saving medicine," she wrote.She said that the government has failed us all. "Even those of us who oppose and fight them could not have foreseen a complete abdication of leadership and governance at a time as devastating as this. In our hearts, we too are still hoping that they will rise up and take steps that are imperative to save lives."But even though those given the sacred task of governing this nation have let our country down at this time of great crisis, we must not lose hope, she said.She said humanity has risen to the challenge of adversity time and again. India has seen great pain and suffering in the past as well. We have weathered cyclones and droughts, massive earthquakes, famines and devastating floods,yet our spirit has not been broken. Every time we have faced a calamity, ordinary people, people like you and me, have come forward. Humanity has never failed us.She praised the doctors, nurses and healthcare workers across the country who are working endless hours under tremendous pressure, risking their own lives to save those who are suffering. The business community is diverting resources towards helping hospitals gain access to oxygen and other supplies."There are organisations and individuals in every village, district, town and city who are doing whatever they can to assist and comfort those who are in pain. This basic goodness exists within each one of us. By reaching into it at times of great anguish our spirit as a nation can rise into its true grace and power," she said.She added that this is a turning point in our lives in which we are being asked to push beyond all limits to find our own unlimited courage. We are being challenged to set aside feelings of helplessness and fear and stay brave."We are together as one in this fight, regardless of our religion, our caste, our class or any other distinctions. The virus does not recognise them."Let us show each other and the world the compassion and resilience that makes us Indian. We will be each other's strongest support at this crossroads in our lives."By gathering up our strength amidst despair, by doing whatever we can to provide comfort to others, by refusing to tire and persisting with the will to carry on against all odds, we shall overcome."Out of the darkness that surrounds us, we will emerge into the light once again," she wrote at the end.--IANSmiz/bg
New York, Jan 26 (IANS) Light pollution, based on a direct measure of skyglow, could increase the likelihood of preterm birth, a new study suggests.The study, published in the Southern Economic Journal, examined the fetal health impact of light pollution based on a direct measure of skyglow -- an important aspect of light pollution. Using an empirical regularity discovered in physics called Walker's Law, the team found evidence of reduced birth weight, shortened gestational length and preterm births."While greater use of artificial light at night (ALAN) is often associated with greater economic prosperity, our study highlights an often neglected health benefit of 'darkness'," said researcher Muzhe Yang from the Lehigh University in the US.Specifically, the likelihood of a preterm birth could increase by approximately 1.48 per cent points (or 12.9 per cent) as a result of increased nighttime brightness, according to the researchers. Nighttime brightness is characterised by being able to see only one-fourth to one-third of the stars that are visible in the natural unpolluted night sky.One possible biological mechanism underlying the findings, based on the existing literature, is light-pollution-induced circadian rhythm disruption, Yang said.While essential to a modern society, ALAN can disrupt a human body's circadian rhythm and therefore become a "pollutant". The societal benefits of ALAN, for example, through increased economic activity, may be offset by ALAN's negative externalities such as adverse health effects, the authors said.The contribution of ALAN to the alteration of natural nocturnal lighting levels is often referred to as light pollution. Light pollution is considered a worldwide ongoing problem.--IANSvc/arm
London - A new research adds to the growing body of evidence that ultraviolet C (UVC) lighting can be a new solution to kill aerosolised Covid-19 in enclosed environments such as hospitals and long-term care facilities.
Computational modelling has shown that low dose far-ultraviolet C (UVC) lighting can be used to disinfect in-room air, increasing disinfection rates by 50-85 per cent compared to a room's ventilation alone, the study published in the journal Scientific Reports, reported.
Unlike typical UVC -- which has been used to kill microorganisms for decades, but is extremely harmful to humans, potentially causing cataracts or skin cancer -- evidence has shown that far-UVC is safe to use around people.
"In indoor environments where it may not be possible to socially distance, aerosolised coronavirus released through breathing increases the chance of spreading the disease," said study author Liang Yang from the Cranfield University in the UK.
Infection controls focus on a combination of personal hygiene and the correct use of personal protective equipment, which has been in short supply in many countries.
This research has shown that far-UVC lighting could provide an alternative, safe and inexpensive way to mitigate SARS-CoV-2 transmission.
"We found that far-UVC illumination in poorly ventilated spaces can be as effective as N95 masks in preventing transmission," the researchers wrote.
"With detailed and accurate computational fluid dynamics modelling, we were able to track and eliminate the airborne transmission of pathogens," they noted.
UVC light is a subtype of one of the three types of electromagnetic radiation with wavelengths shorter than visible light rays.
At 100 to 280 nanometres (nm), UVC has a shorter wavelength than UVA and UVB. Human-safe far-UVC falls in the 207 to 222 nm range and can be produced by special bulbs and lamps and used to disinfect pathogens.
"Far-UVC is safe because it has the unique property of interacting more readily (and loses energy more rapidly) than lower wavelength UVC but is not energetic enough to reach living human cells," the authors wrote.
Researchers are now hoping to uncover new sources of funding for further investigation and to address outstanding issues necessary to expedite far-UVC light into service. (IANS)