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Assam logs 29 new COVID cases

Guwahati, Mar 5 (PTI) Assam's coronavirus caseload increased to 2,17,642 with the detection of 29 new cases on Friday, according to a bulletin issued by the National Health Mission (NHM). The COVID-19 death toll remained unchanged at 1,093 as no fresh fatality due to the disease was reported during the day, while 1,347 COVID positive patients have died due to other reasons. Altogether 41,515 people were administered the COVID- 19 vaccine during the day taking the total number of beneficiaries to 3,55,660 so far. The NHM said that 500 people with comorbidities, 4,389 senior citizens and 28,608 health care workers and front-line workers received the first dose of the vaccine. It said that 8,018 health care and front line workers also got the second dose. The cumulative total number of beneficiaries who received the first dose of the vaccine so far in the state is 3,10,820 while 44,840 got the second dose. The number of active cases in the state is currently 288, the NHM said. Among the 29 new positive cases detected during the day, nine are from Kamrup Metropolitan district, eight from Tinsukia and six from Dibrugarh. The new cases were detected out of 13,551 tests with a positivity rate of 0.06 per cent. The total tests conducted so far have reached 69,18,512. The bulletin said that 20 patients recovered from the disease during the day, taking the total number of cured people to 2,14,914. Three other patients have migrated out of the state. PTI DG NN..



'Methodology used to rank Hyd 24th in Ease of Living index improper'

Hyderabad, Mar 5 (PTI) GHMC Mayor Vijaya Laxmi R Gadwal on Friday took exception to the Urban Affairs Ministry ranking Hyderabad 24th in the 'Ease of Living Index' and alleged that the methodology used to determine it was improper. The people would not accept it "as the city is marching ahead in development and provision of basic facilities," she said. Several international survey agencies, public and private organisations have announced that Hyderabad, with its good living standards, basic facilities, law and order and rapid pace of development, meets the standards of being a best city, Gadwal said. Certain agencies have declared the city to be a best liveable city for five years in a row, she said. "Against this backdrop, it is felt that there is a political motive to the Ministry announcing 24th rank to the city," she said. The methodology and (information collection) questionnaire used for determination of ranks was improper, she alleged in a release. The Mayor questioned the relevance of giving only 35 marks for the criteria of education, health and drinking water and 15 to economic parameters. Citizen services, which has enormous significance, has not been mentioned in the survey, she said. She pointed out that Hyderabad, known as the 'city of pearls, is home to a number of multinational companies and reputed global firms. Gadwal said that while the report on crime rate prepared by the National Crime Records Bureau should have been taken into consideration vis-a-vis law and order, only the criterion of murders was considered. She suggested that the Ministry correct the "defects" in the methodology used for determination of ranks in the index. Highlighting various development initiatives in Hyderabad in the last five years, she said over 225 'basti dawakhanas' (clinics in residential localities) had been set up to serve the poor. Under the Strategic Road Development Programme (SRDP), several fly-overs, underpasses, railway over bridges and link roads have been taken up, she added. 'Ease of Living Index' is an assessment tool that evaluates the quality of life and the impact of various initiatives for urban development, the centre has said. A total of 32.2 lakh people residing across 111 cities participated in a 'Citizen Perception Survey' holding a weightage of 30 per cent. Performance of the cities was measured on four broad parameters, governance and social, physical and economic infrastructure. Bengaluru was adjudged the most livable among 111 cities in India in the 'Ease of Living Index' on Thursday, followed by Pune, Ahmedabad, Chennai, Surat, Navi Mumbai, Coimbatore, Vadodara, Indore and Greater Mumbai. PTI SJR APR ADMINISTRATOR..