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News18 Afternoon Digest: India Sees Highest Single-day Covid Deaths; Kejriwal Doesn't Speak for India, Says Govt as Singapore Slams New Variant Remark

Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal

Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal

Here are the top stories of this afternoon: Kejriwal Doesn't Speak for India, Says Govt as Singapore Slams New Variant Remark; India Sees Highest Single-day Covid Deaths, 71,395 Fatalities Reported in May; Karnataka Reports 2nd Highest Covid Toll in India, Pips Delhi; Gadkari Bats for More Licenses as Vaccine Producers Doubt Centre's Claims of 2.6 Bn Doses by Year-End; Google Wants More Inclusive Smartphone Cameras That Represent Darker Skin Tones Better; Case Registered Against 'Taarak Mehta Ka Ooltah Chashmah' Actor Munmun Dutta.

Kejriwal Doesn’t Speak for India, Says Govt as Singapore Slams New Variant Remark

Singapore on Wednesday summoned the Indian envoy and conveyed “strong objection" to Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s remark on a “Singapore variant", the government said, adding that the envoy had told them Kejriwal “had no competence" on Covid variants. “Singapore and India have been solid partners in the fight against Covid-19. Appreciate Singapore’s role as a logistics hub and oxygen supplier. Their gesture of deploying military aircraft to help us speaks of our exceptional relationship. However, irresponsible comments from those who should know better can damage long-standing partnerships. So, let me clarify - Delhi CM does not speak for India," the Foreign Minister tweeted. READ MORE

India Sees Highest Single-day Covid Deaths, 71,395 Fatalities Reported in May

India recorded the highest single-day Covid fatalities as the death toll climbed to 2,83,248 with a record 4,529 new deaths. The single day rise in coronavirus cases stood at 2.67 lakh, taking the total tally of cases to 2,54,96,330, according to the Union Health Ministry data updated on Wednesday. The active cases have further reduced to 32,26,719 comprising 12.66 per cent of the total infections, while the national COVID-19 recovery rate has improved to 86.23 per cent, the data updated at 8 am showed. READ MORE

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With 6,790 Deaths in 17 Days, Karnataka Reports 2nd Highest Covid Toll in India, Pips Delhi

With a total of 6,790 in barely 17 days, Karnataka’s Covid-19 toll have now overtaken that of Delhi, which had been reporting maximum deaths since the last one month. On Monday, Karnataka, which is now the state with second highest number of deaths in the country, reported 22,313 deaths, compared to 21,846 in the national capital, Times of India reported. On Tuesday, it reported 525 more deaths, of which 317 were reported from Bengaluru. Overall, the state has reported a daily average of 400 deaths in the month of May. READ MORE

Gadkari Bats for More Licenses as Vaccine Producers Doubt Centre’s Claims of 2.6 Bn Doses by Year-End

Amid the ongoing Covid-19 vaccine shortage across the country and the Centre’s claim that India will have 2.16 billion doses by the end of 2021, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari said that more domestic companies should be given the licence to manufacture jabs and life-saving drugs. “If the demand for the vaccine is more than supply then it creates a problem. So, instead of one company, let 10 more companies be given the license to manufacture the vaccine. First let them supply in the country and later if there is surplus, they may export,” Gadkari said in a virtual address to vice-chancellors of universities. “There are two-three laboratories in every state. Let them make it, not as a service, but with 10 per cent royalty… It can be done in 15-20 days,” he said. READ MORE

Google Wants More Inclusive Smartphone Cameras That Represent Darker Skin Tones Better

The way cameras have represented skin has probably always been faulty. In the sense that skin tone representation for those with darker skin tones, hasn’t always been accurate. That’s something Google wants to change, at least on their Pixel phones as well as Android phones in the due course of time. The company announced at the annual I/O developer conference that they are reworking the image processing in smartphone cameras to better represent different skin tones, including changes to auto white balance and exposure handling. A standard problem with cameras is that depending on ambient lighting, they tend to either over-expose skin to avoid loss of detail or change colour saturation which alters the reality of the skin tone we see in photos. READ MORE

Case Registered Against ‘Taarak Mehta Ka Ooltah Chashmah’ Actor Munmun Dutta Over Casteist Slur

A case was registered against television actress Munmun Dutta of Taarak Mehta Ka Ooltah Chashmah fame on Tuesday evening after her video allegedly carrying objectionable words for the SC/ST community went viral on the social media over the past week, a report said. A case was registered against Munmun under the Scheduled Castes and Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act and investigations are underway. Munmun, while demonstrating her make-up techniques, is seen saying she wanted to look good, and referring to members of a particular Scheduled Caste to say she did not want to look like them in a YouTube video. READ MORE

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