Tuesday, August 4 2020

Dive In

I thought the demand was for an outstanding British person of colour to be on our currency, not an Indian nationalist hero… To select Gandhi instead is a cop out.

That’s a leading historian’s less-than-enthusiastic response to a proposal to put Gandhi-ji’s face on a set of British coins commemorating Britain’s diversity. It is reportedly being pushed by UK Chancellor Rishi Sunak—best known in India as Infosys founder Narayana Murthy’s damaad. But other South Asian Brits are confused and unimpressed—as would the father of the Indian nation if he were alive. Illustration: Parth Savla.

Big Story

India hits a new Covid high

The TLDR: On Sunday, we recorded 52,972 cases—adding the highest number of daily cases in the world. Other estimates put that number at 53,641. Either way, the grim achievement remains the same: We have sped past both the US (47,511) and Brazil (25,800). But that number is likely still an underestimation. The reasons: decline in testing and faulty tests. Here’s a quick guide on how to read these numbers.


First, the bad numbers

  • India became #1 in the world on Sunday in the number of cases added in 24 hours.
  • But we are still behind both the US and Brazil in our overall total, which stands at 1,855,745 as of Tuesday. 
  • Now, our numbers dipped to 49,134 on Monday—but that slight post-weekend decline has been a consistent trend for over three months. It likely reflects lower testing numbers on Sundays. 
  • Otherwise, we’ve consistently added 50K-plus cases every day for a week.


The hotspots: Delhi is showing clear signs of recovery—with a continuous decline in the number of active cases for nearly a month. Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra appear to be stabilising. Maharashtra’s number of recoveries is on the rise, and exceeds the number of new cases. Tamil Nadu is following a similar trend.


So why are the numbers still rising?


In today’s edition

Headlines That Matter

  • Trump takes aim at H-1B workers, again
  • Sushant Singh Rajput’s father issues video appeal
  • Who will get the vaccine?
  • South Koreans are dumping their paisa in washing machines
  • Amit Shah’s treatment raises eyebrows


Smart And Curious

  • Hello, cosmic butterfly!
  • A lesser known truth about the best-known pirates
  • Flirting whales, anyone?

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