Coronavirus LATEST Updates: Sharjeel Imam has tested positive for COVID-19, ANI reported. Delhi Police Special Cell had applied for his production warrant in Assam as he is lodged at Guwahati Central Jail and he was going to be presented before a Delhi Court on 25 July, but will not be produced now.
The annual Amarnath Yatra, the pilgrimage to a shrine in Jammu and Kashmir, has been cancelled in view of the coronavirus pandemic, reports said on Tuesday.
"Based upon the circumstances, the Board decided with heavy heart that it is not advisable to hold and conduct this year's Shri Amarnathji Yatra and expressed its regret to announce the cancellation of Yatra 2020," the Amarnath Shrine board's statement was quoted by NDTV.
Dr VK Paul, Member (Health), NITI Aayog on Tuesday said, "India's two COVID-19 vaccines are in phase 1 and 2 of trials. Discussions have already begun how will the vaccines be made available to all those who need it."
"The government will leave no stone unturned to ensure people of India and international community have access to an Indian vaccine as early as possible. Every possible facilitation will be ensured making sure trials conducted scientifically and ethically, and we arrive at an affordable option," he added.
The Union health ministry on Tuesday said that "aggressive" testing is necessary to reduce the spread of coronavirus in the country.
"Aggressive testing is necessary to bring down COVID-19 positivity rate; the aim is to maintain this level of testing so as to bring down positivity rate below 5 percent," said Rajesh Bhushan, OSD, Health Ministry.
He added that 19 States and Union Territories are performing more than 140 tests per day per million population.
Delhi's sero-prevalence study has discovered that 23.48 percent of the people have been affected by the novel coronavirus in the national capital, which has several pockets of dense population.
The Centre has written to all states and union territories warning against the use of N-95 masks with valved respirator by people, saying these don't prevent the virus from spreading out and are 'detrimental' to the measures adopted for its containment.
India reports 37,148 new cases, taking its total count to 11,55,191. The toll rises by 587 to 28,084. Total active cases are now more than 4 lakh.
The Serum Institute of India says it will seeking to get the licence to manufacture the vaccine developed at the Oxford University, reports NDTV. The vaccine has been found to be both effective and safe in early trials, according to a study in the medical journal The Lancet.
The total number of coronavirus cases crossed 11 lakh with a single-day spike of 40,425 cases on Monday, while the toll rose to 27,497 with 681 new casualties reported. It is the first time the number of new cases registered was above 40,000.
The total tally of 11,18,043 cases includes 3,90,459 active cases and 7,00,087 cured/discharged/migrated patients and the toll. The health ministry said that the recovery rate is now 62.62 percent.
Meanwhile, a vaccine candidate developed at the University of Oxford has shown encouraging results in early human testing and appears to be "safe well-tolerated, and immunogenic", according to a study published in The Lancet on Monday.
Oxford's COVID-19 vaccine produces 'strong antibodies', shows initial study
Trials by the Oxford University involving 1,077 people showed that the injection led to them making antibodies and white blood cells that can fight coronavirus. The vaccine, named 'ChAdOx1 nCoV-19', has been made from a harmless virus called 'chimpanzee cold virus'.
"Our preliminary findings show that the candidate ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 vaccine given as a single dose was safe and tolerated, despite a higher reactogenicity profile than the control vaccine, MenACWY," the researchers, led by Pedro M Folegatti and Katiet Ewer, wrote in the study.
"No serious adverse reactions to ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 occurred. The majority of adverse events reported were mild or moderate in severity, and all were self-limiting," the study said.
The clinical trials of a potential COVID-19 vaccine on humans began in April. The human vaccine trial has been developed by scientists at Oxford University's Jenner Institute.
Reportedly, the scientists also said that they "found their experimental COVID-19 vaccine produced a dual immune response in people aged 18 to 55 that lasted at least two months after they were immunised".
The study showed that the vaccine induced strong antibody and T-cell immune responses up to day 56 of the ongoing trial.
“We are seeing good immune response in almost everybody,” said Dr Adrian Hill, director of the Jenner Institute at Oxford University. “What this vaccine does particularly well is trigger both arms of the immune system,” he said.
ICC postpones Men's T20 World Cup due to COVID-19 pandemic
The International Cricket Council (ICC) announced the postponement of this year's Men's T20World Cup in Australia due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The T20 World Cup was slated to be played in Australia from 18 October to 15 November this year.
"The IBC Board (the commercial subsidiary of the ICC) agreed to continue to monitor the rapidly changing situation (regarding coronavirus pandemic) and assess all the information available in order to make a considered decision on future hosts to ensure the sport is able to stage safe and successful global events in 2021 and 2022," ICC said in a statement.
"The IBC Board will also continue to evaluate the situation in relation to being able to stage the ICC Women's Cricket World Cup 2021 in New Zealand in February next year. In the meantime, planning for this event continues as scheduled," the statement added.
ICC Chief Executive Manu Sawhney said their number one priority was to protect the health and safety of everyone involved in the sport.
Delhi seems to have reached COVID-19 peak, says AIIMS chief
Certain areas of Delhi have hit their peak of the COVID-19 pandemic, while certain other areas in the city are yet to reach the peak, said AIIMS director Dr Randeep Guleria on Monday. He added that there is not much evidence of community transmission happening at the national level.
"Certain areas have hit their peak in COVID-19 cases. Delhi seems to have done so because the cases have declined significantly. Certain areas have yet to reach the peak. They will reach the peak a little later," Guleria said, while addressing a press conference.
The National Capital had witnessed a surge in the cases of novel coronavirus cases over the past one month. However, the number of active cases has seen a dip over the past few weeks.
Bengal govt to enforce lockdown for two days every week
In light of the rising number of COVID-19 cases in the state, the West Bengal government announced a lockdown in the state for two days every week starting from 23 July.
In a press meet, the West Bengal home secretary said, "There will be a two-day complete lockdown every week starting from Thursday. Lockdown will be on Thursday and Saturday this week. This lockdown has been imposed in addition to running a broad-based containment zone approach."
The two days of lockdown will be decided on a weekly basis.
"All views have been taken into account and it has been decided the days for the lockdown will be announced each week. There will be complete lockdown in offices and transport," the official added.
State-wise cases and deaths
Maharashtra reported 176 deaths and 8,240 new COVID-19 cases on Monday. The total count of cases now stands at 3,18,695, including 1,75,029 recovered cases and 1,31,334 active cases.
Meanwhile, Mumbai reported 1,043 new COVID-19 cases, 965 cured patients and 41 deaths. The total number of cases in the city stands at 1,02,267, including 23,865 active cases, 72,650 discharged patients and 5,752 deaths.
A total 4,985 COVID-19 cases and 70 deaths were reported in Tamil Nadu. The total number of cases has risen to 1,75,678, including 51,348 active cases and 2,551 deaths.
Delhi reported 954 new COVID-19 positive cases, 1,784 recovered /discharged/migrated patients and 35 deaths. The total count of cases has risen to 1,23,747 including 1,04,918 recovered/discharged/migrated and 3,663 deaths.
Karnataka reported 3,648 COVID-19 cases and 72 deaths, taking active cases to 42,216 and toll to 1,403. Kerala reported 794 COVID-19 cases on Monday, taking the number of active cases to 7,611. A total of 5,618 patients have been discharged so far in the state.
Punjab reported 411 new COVID-19 positive cases and eight deaths. The total number of cases has risen to 10,510, including 3,130 active cases, 7,118 discharged patients and 262 deaths.
Telangana recorded 1,198 new COVID-19 cases and seven deaths. The total count of cases has risen to 46,274, including 11,530 active cases and 422 deaths.
Uttar Pradesh reported 1,924 COVID-19 cases and 46 deaths in the last 24 hours. The active cases stand at 19,137 and the toll has risen to 1,192. A total of 30,831 patients have been discharged so far.
Rajasthan reported 956 new COVID-19 cases and nine deaths till 8.30 pm on Monday. The total number of cases has risen to 30,390, including 7,627 active cases and 568 patients have died due to the disease.
A total of 998 COVID-19 cases and 20 deaths were reported in the last 24 hours in Gujarat. The state's count of cases has risen to 49,439, including 11,613 active cases, 35,659 cured/discharged patients and 2,167 deaths.
Manipur's COVID-19 case count has risen to 1,925 with 14 new cases reported today. The number of recovered cases is 1,320 and there are 605 active cases.
With inputs from agencies