Dear Express Explained readers,
The country’s drug regulator has cleared the Serum Institute of India’s Cervavac vaccine, the country’s first quadrivalent human papillomavirus vaccine (qHPV). It is an important development – providing a real chance to end cervical cancer (which is preventable but is estimated to kill a woman every eight minutes) in this country, if it is made part of the HPV vaccine, and offered at a lower cost than existing vaccines. Anuradha Mascarenhas writes about HPV and cervical cancer, available vaccines, and the benefits Cervavac offers. Separately, Anonna Dutt spoke to Dr Kishore Singh, director of the Delhi State Cancer Institute, which runs India’s only HPV vaccination program for school children, to learn about the development. Read it.
After losing most of its representatives in the Maharashtra Assembly and Parliament to the party led by Prime Minister Eknath Shinde, the Shiv Sena led by Uddhav Thackeray asked the Election Commission of India to hear its side before choosing the party’s ownership. -and-arrow symbol of choice. What happens when opposing factions of a party compete for the same election symbol? What does the ECI consider before making a decision – and how does it decide in such cases? Check out Ritika Chopra’s in-depth and informative commentary.
There was a political uproar this week after the Lok Sabha Secretariat released a 50-page compilation of statements deemed not to be used in Parliament. There was disbelief because the list contained innocent words such as abuse, shame, betrayal, deceit, corruption, coward, and criminals. Although Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla explained that no words were banned arbitrarily, and that the Chair would decide which words to remove from the bill, there is an impressive history of banning “unlawful” language in India. Liz Mathew wrote on repeal legislation, how to prepare a list of objections and sentences, and why the issue, as elsewhere, is important in Parliament.
The Supreme Court has fought hard for the law on bail to be changed, and has asked the government to introduce special laws on the matter on the lines of the United Kingdom. This is important, as courts across the country have been seen to vary widely on bail in what appear to be very similar cases. Apurva Vishwanath wrote about the existing law on bail, and what the Supreme Court has already said on the matter.