India’s Vaccine Needs Becomes Europe’s Fear: India’s position as the ‘Pharmacy of the World’ is not being acknowledged quite as enthusiastically now, in the wake of the record spike in Covid cases in India. The present spike has brought a new awareness that vaccination begins at home. India has been off to a late start, with a long way to go. India’s need is turning out to be Europe’s fear, that the vaccines being produced in India may not come their way quite as swiftly as they would like. Several parts of Europe are in the grip of a third wave of the virus. India’s vaccine production is caught up between international commitments and national needs. India has of course no choice but to look after its own first.
Lord Mountbatten’s Car Collection: The car collection of Lord Mountbatten, the last Viceroy of India, emerged into the news again with the auction of a purpose-built Jaguar 420 designed particularly for him. The car that sold for 100,000 pounds was amongst hundreds of possessions of Lord Mountbatten’s late daughter Patricia Mountbatten to have been auctioned over the weekend. The collection sold for 5.6 million pounds, among more than 1400 bidders from 55 countries. Among other items to have drawn strong bidding was a diamond known as the Banks diamond, that sold for 110,000 pounds.
PIA requests for additional flights: Pakistan International Airlines has sought UK permission for an additional four flights ahead of a ban on flights from Pakistan due from April 9. The PIA has made the application in view of a very large number of Pakistanis who live in Britain seeking to return before the ban – the present scheduled flights for this week cannot cope. The travellers could be stranded indefinitely if the ban is not lifted soon. The ban has been imposed in view of a rise in the number of cases in Pakistan but more particularly following video reports circulating of Pakistanis travelling back home to party to get away from the UK lockdown. Social distancing at these functions has been visibly lacking.
Indian-Origin Doctor Honoured: Dr Shiv Pande, who has been practising in Britain for half a century now has been given the Citizen of Honour award by the Liverpool City Council. Dr Pande migrated to Britain in 1971. The award is conferred on those who have made a historic contribution to advance the position of Liverpool. Dr Pande, the first of Asian origin to be given the honour was recognised for “selfless and exceptional” services to the city. Acting mayor Wendy Simon called Dr Pande a “worthy and wonderful” pick for the award.
India’s BAFTA Nomination: Indian hopes are high for the film Manasanamaha, which is in the qualification phase of the British Academy of Film & Television Arts (BAFTA) awards for 2022. The film directed by Deepak Reddy tells a story unusually in reverse, of a man looking back on three relationships in his past. The recall of those memories is linked to the seasons. The film is hitting the UK screening circuit soon, it will be screened at the Carmarthen Bay Film Festival Wales next month.