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Mexico can learn about dealing with diaspora from India: Claudia Ruiz-Massieu Salinas

Photo: @MEAIndia

New Delhi: Among the things Mexico can learn from India is dealing with the diaspora, the Latin American country’s Minister for Foreign Affairs Claudia Ruiz-Massieu Salinas said on Friday.

“India has the largest diaspora at 16 million. Mexico has the second largest at 12 million,” Salinas, who arrived here on Friday on a two-day visit, said while delivering the 22nd Sapru House Lecture.

“India has a long tradition of recognizing the value of its diaspora abroad for public diplomacy,” she said.

In this connection, she also referred to the merger of the ministry of overseas Indian affairs with the ministry of external affairs.

On India-Mexico relations, she said that both countries shared a vision of the future and their place as a regional power and economic hubs.

“Back home we call it ‘Moving Mexico’. Here you call it ‘Make in India’,” Salinas said.

“Surprisingly, there are a lot of similarities and they run in parallel directions. One pillar of ‘Make in India’ is to attract and facilitating investments. In Mexico, we are trying to increase productivity and investments.”

She said “Make in India” was also aimed at training and creating jobs for students.

“In Mexico, we accomplished an ambitious education reform that is focusing not only on ensuring that all Mexicans, all children and young people have access to education but to quality education,” the minister said.

“We are focusing on permanent training of our teachers and giving our students the skills and abilities to become global citizens and to compete in a highly integrated and interconnected world.”

Salinas said while an integral part of “Make in India” was business facilitation for economic competitiveness, it was fiscal and financial reforms for “Moving Mexico”.

“An important objective of “Make in India” is to remove absolute limits to foreign direct investments. In Mexico, we have energy reforms, telecom reforms,” she said.

While India was planning to build 100 smart cities and provide affordable housing, Mexico was creating special economic zones.

“Mexico is a natural bridge for India to dive into one of the most dynamic regions worldwide,” the minister said.

“Our network of free trade agreements and strategic make us an entry way to North America and Latin America.”

Salinas lamented that trade between Mexico and India has only grown 19 percent in the last decade.

“Two G20 economies with the size of Mexico and India should increase trading figures,” she said.

Mexico is the 13th largest country and at $1 trillion is the 15th largest economy in the world.

“We have to work together and explore new opportunities to deepen our economic and trade exchange,” the Mexican minister said, adding that manufacturing and pharmaceuticals were among such areas.

She said that Mexico was India’s second largest Latin American investor.

“In Latin America, Mexico is the second destination for India in foreign direct investments. However, we acknowledge that the approximately 170 Indian firms, mainly from the automotive, pharmaceuticals and the IT sectors are established in Mexico,” Salinas said, adding that India was home to 11 Mexican firms from various sectors.

She mentioned automotive, mining, information technology, technology as sectors, Indian companies can invest in Mexico.

Earlier on Friday, after her arrival, Salinas called on Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

She is scheduled to hold bilateral talks with External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Saturday.(IANS)

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Pentavalent vaccine: Doctors raise red flag

In spite of the data presented in this paper from a large cohort, the authors point out that the evidence is merely circumstantial and not conclusive

the new Hepatitis B vaccine for adults is called Heplisav-B.
India's PV to be reexamined because of its harmful effects. .
  • Pentavalent vaccine was introduced in India six years ago
  • It is since then have been a cause of many deaths
  • Doctors want it to be reexamined before continuing its use

Pentavalent vaccine (PV), that was introduced by India a little over six years ago, doubled the deaths of children soon after vaccination compared to the DPT (Diphtheria-Pertussis-Tetanus) vaccine, according to a new study that calls for a “rigorous review of the deaths following vaccination with PV”.

Health officials have launched a campaign targeting nearly 24 million people with a one-fifth dose of the vaccine. Wikimedia Commons
PV has been cause of many deaths in past years. Wikimedia Commons

Government records show that there were 10,612 deaths following vaccination (both PV and DPT) in the last 10 years. There was a huge increase in these numbers in 2017, which the Health Ministry has promised to study. “The present analysis could be a starting point in the quest to reduce the numbers of such deaths,” authors of the new study say.

The study by Dr Jacob Puliyel, Head of Pediatrics at St Stephens Hospital, and Dr V. Sreenivas, Professor of Biostatistics at the All-India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), both in New Delhi, is published in the peer-reviewed Medical Journal of Dr D.Y. Patil University.

PV is a combination of the DPT vaccine and two more vaccines against Haemophilus influenza type B (Hib) and hepatitis B. Starting December 2011, PV was introduced into India’s immunisation programme to replace DPT vaccine in a staged manner with a view to adding protection against Hib and Hepatitis B without increasing the number of injections given to infants.

Doctors have raised concerns over these vaccines. Wikimedia Commons
Doctors have raised concerns over these vaccines. Wikimedia Commons

But sporadic reports of unexplained deaths following immunisation with PV had been a matter of concern. Puliyel, Sreenivas and their colleagues undertook the study to find out if these deaths were merely coincidental or vaccine-induced.

The authors obtained data of all deaths reported from April 2012 to May 2016 under the Right to Information Act. Data on deaths within 72 hours of administering DPT and PV from different states were used.

For their study, the authors assumed that all deaths within 72 hours of receiving DPT are natural deaths. Using this figure as the baseline, they presumed that any increase in the number of deaths above this baseline among children receiving PV must be caused by this vaccine.

Also Read: With Medicine Running Out, Venezuelans With Transplant Live in Fear

According to their analysis of the data provided by the government, there were 237 deaths within 72 hours of administering the Pentavalent vaccine — twice the death rate among infants who received DPT vaccine.

Extrapolating the data, the authors have estimated that vaccination of 26 million children each year in India would result in 122 additional deaths within 72 hours, due to the switch from DPT to PV.

“There is likely to be 7,020 to 8,190 deaths from PV each year if data from states with the better reporting, namely Manipur and Chandigarh, are projected nationwide,” their report says.

It is important to make sure that these vaccines are reexamined peroperly. VOA

The authors note that while the study looks at the short-term increase in deaths (within three days of vaccination) it does not calculate the potential benefits of PV on infant mortality, for example by protection against lethal diseases like Haemophilus influenza.

In spite of the data presented in this paper from a large cohort, the authors point out that the evidence is merely circumstantial and not conclusive. “These findings of differential death rates between DPT and PV do call for further rigorous prospective population-based investigations,” the study concludes. IANS