Nobel laureate Abhijit Vinayak Banerjee is likely to arrive in Kolkata on August 5 from Paris to attend the Global Advisory Board (GAB) meeting to discuss Bengal’s strategy to tackle the third wave. The eight-member GAB was formed in April last year by CM Mamata Banerjee to to formulate its medical and economic response to Covid crisis. The GAB has been informally meeting every week, helping the Bengal government with feedback and suggestions.
Banerjee had been in Kolkata in October 2019 as the city rejoiced his Nobel win. This will be his first visit to the city during the pandemic. According to sources, Banerjee, who is slated to arrive in Kolkata on August 5 morning, will attend the GAB meeting at 3.30 pm, which is likely to be chaired by CM Banerjee.
He will stay with his mother at the family residence in Ballygunge. On August 6, he is likely to attend a function at the Sonarpur-based Indian Institute of Liver and Digestive Sciences to inaugurate a new office building and the installed Liquid Medical Oxygen (LMO) plant. He is also expected to lay the foundation stone for a nursing training institute at the facility by Liver Foundation West Bengal. He will leave Kolkata for New Delhi on August 8 and fly out of the country on August 12.
The GAB has recommended several measures, including a gender reversal of Covid beds, where 60% of the beds will now be kept for women and 40% for men. It has also advised for scaling up of paediatric facilities state-wide, with paediatric doctors and nurses visiting and training all first responders in health facilities on paediatric emergency care. Another GAB suggestion, which the CM said the government is implementing, is categorisation of all mothers who have kids below 12 in the frontline vaccination group.