A look at the headlines right now:

  1. Health minister accuses states of making ‘deplorable attempts’ on coronavirus vaccine shortages to spread panic: This came soon after at least six states – Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Haryana, Maharashtra, Odisha and Telangana – raised concerns about vaccine shortages. The Serum Institute has also warned that its existing capacity to manufacture Covishield was “very stressed”. Meanwhile, the Centre decided to allow vaccination in workplaces and asked states to prepare for launch by Sunday. Over 900 students at IIT in Gujarat received Covid-19 vaccines, despite being below 45 years. Earlier in the day, Rahul Gandhi backed vaccination for all, and said every Indian deserved the chance to a safe life.
  2. EC issues notice to Mamata Banerjee for urging Muslims to not vote for BJP in West Bengal elections: In Tamil Nadu, the EC also sent a notice to Udhayanidhi Stalin for his remark on Sushma Swaraj and Arun Jaitley.
  3. Facebook says data of 553 million users was leaked in 2019: The stolen data included phone numbers, birth dates and email addresses but not passwords or financial information, the company said.
  4. Rupee slides over 100 paise against US dollar to hit four-month low: Meanwhile, the RBI kept repo rate unchanged at 4%, growth rate projection for 2021-’22 maintained at 10.5%.
  5. Maoists claim missing CRPF officer in their captivity, demand appointment of mediators for release: The police are looking into the authenticity of the statement. Meanwhile, an Assam writer was arrested on sedition charges for her Facebook post on ‘martyrs’ of Chhattisgarh encounter.
  6. Centre dissolves Film Certification Appellate Tribunal, filmmakers call move restrictive, arbitrary: The statutory body was constituted to hear appeals of filmmakers who were not satisfied with the cuts suggested by the Central Board of Film Certification.
  7. Wearing a mask compulsory even while driving alone, says Delhi High Court: The national Capital reported its biggest single-day jump this year with 5,506 new cases. India also recorded its highest single-day rise so far with 1,15,736 new cases. As coronavirus cases continue to rise, prohibitory orders were imposed on Wednesday in Bengaluru, a complete lockdown was imposed in Chhattisgarh’s Raipur for 10 days, and a night curfew in Punjab. Meanwhile, in Indore, a driver was beaten up for not wearing a mask properly.
  8. England cricketers stand up for Moeen Ali after ISIS comment by Taslima Nasreen: The Bangladesh-born author had said: ‘If Moeen Ali were not stuck with cricket, he would have gone to Syria to join ISIS’. She later deleted it.
  9. Freedom of speech not a license to hurt religious feelings, says Allahabad High Court: The court rejected the bail plea of a Popular Front of India activist, who allegedly made comments against the foundation stone laying ceremony of Ram temple.
  10. Around 100 birds found dead in Himachal Pradesh as second wave of avian flu strikes: The first wave was contained in early February but the second one was confirmed after authorities found a dozen bird carcasses on March 25.