Coronavirus Outbreak LATEST Updates: The MHA on Thursday said that state governments should "ensure night curfew or prohibition of all non-essential activities between 7 pm and 7 am".
"Proper delineation of containment zones, effective implementation of containment measures key to prevent spread of COVID-19," the statement added.
The BMC said that 47 new coronavirus cases were reported in Mumbai's Dharavi on Thursday, taking the total number of patients in the area to 1,425. However, no deaths were reported on Thursday.
Tamil Nadu health minister C Vijayabaskar said that 776 new coronavirus cases and seven deaths were reported in the state on Thursday, of which 567 cases are from Chennai. 400 patients have been discharged on Thursday.
The Jammu and Kashmir government said that 83,334 residents stranded in other states and UTs have been brought back. This includes 63,109 residents brought back by road, 19,724 by special COVID-19 and Shramik trains and 501 passengers including students through special flights.
Assam minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said that the state government will "implement a ruthless quarantine with a human heart".
He added that deputy commissioners can spend Rs 500 per day per head on food for people in institutional quarantine.
"Quarantine will now be divided into 7 day (institutional) and 7 day (home). Rs 13,000 will be spent per head in the entire period of quarantine for an individual. Needs during home quarantine will also be funded by the government," he said.
The Telangana director general of police Mahender Reddy on Thursday said that a police constable had passed away due to coronavirus in the state-run Gandhi Hospital in Hyderabad.
News18 reported that this is the first fatality in Telangana police force due to COVID-19.
"The constable, posted at one of the check-posts in the old city, had tested positive for Covid-19 on Monday and was undergoing treatment at the state-run Gandhi Hospital," the report said.
The Delhi government said that 571 new cases of coronavirus have been reported in the last 24 hours. Additionally, 375 people have also recovered. The total number of cases in Delhi stands at 11,659, including 5,567 recovered/discharged/migrated and 194 deaths, the statement said.
The civil aviation ministry on Thursday said that they have set minimum and maximum fares. "For Delhi-Mumbai minimum fare Rs 3500 for a 90-120 minutess journey and the max fare would be Rs 10,000. Within these bands, we have some other qualifiers."
Pradeep Singh Kharola, Secretary, Civil Aviation said, "For example if we take the Delhi-Mumbai route, the lowest fare prescribed is Rs 3,500 while the upper limit is Rs 10,000. How this works is airlines have a system of buckets, this fare band is split into buckets and then airlines allot seats in different buckets. Only a lower and upper cap may create problems as airlines may sell all at the highest price. So we are putting a second rider, that 40% of the seats have to be sold at a fare less the mid-point of the band, which is around Rs 6,000."
We have set minimum and maximum fares. For Delhi-Mumbai minimum fare Rs 3500 for a 90-120 mins journey and the max fare would be Rs 10,000. Within these bands, we have some other qualifiers, Union civil aviation minister Hardeep Singh Puri said on Thursday.
Union Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri while addressing the media said, 'Centre is planning to ramp up flights to bring back more stranded Indians from overseas. Private airlines to join efforts to bring back Indian citizens stranded abroad.' He announced that 20,000 stranded Indians brought back under Vande Bharat Mission.
A case has been registered against Congress president Sonia Gandhi in Karnataka in connection with a tweet posted on the party's official handle alleging misuse of PM-CARES Fund, police said.
Domestic flights will resume on 25 May with limited operations, with airlines operating one-third of their schedule. The government has asked airlines to adhere to 'the lower and upper limits of fares prescribed by the Ministry during the period of COVID- t9 pandemic'.
Almost 1.50 lakh tickets were booked within two hours of opening the bookings for the 100 pairs of passenger trains that the railways will operationalise on 1 June, officials said Thursday.
The Civil Aviation Ministry on Thursday has announced that only one-third of operations would be commenced on 25 May. Only passengers with confirmed web check-in can enter the airport, no physical check-in at airport counters, the ministry said.
The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation has directed civic officials to acquire at least 100 beds, including 10 in ICUs, of private nursing homes and small hospitals in all 24 wards of Mumbai in the wake of the rising number of COVID-19 cases in the city. The tally of cases in the country's financial capital thus reached 23,935 and toll rose to 841.
Aviation stocks on Thursday rallied up to 10 per cent in opening trade after the government announced that domestic passenger flight services will resume from 25 May in a calibrated manner. Meanwhile, Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri is set to hold a press conference at 3 pm on Thursday.
With 45,300 COVID-19 patients cured, India's recovery rate reaches 40.31 percent. The total cases rise to 1,12,359, according to the Health Ministry. The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has said that 26,15,920 samples were tested for COVID-19 in the country till 9.00 am today. About 1,03,532 samples were tested in the last 24 hours.
The Airports Authority of India has issued Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) to all its airports for recommencement of domestic commercial flight operations from 25 May. As per the guidelines, all passengers must compulsorily be registered with the Aarogya Setu app on their phones. Children below 14 years have been exempted.
83 new COVID19 cases and 3 deaths were reported in Rajasthan today, as of 9 am. The total number of cases in the state is now at 6098, including 2527 active cases and 150 deaths, reports ANI.
The total confirmed COVID-19 cases in India have risen to 1,12,359, according to the latest update from the Union Health Ministry on Thursday. The toll due to the novel virus has risen to 3,435. With 39,297 confirmed cases of COVID-19 so far, Maharashtra remains the worst-affected state in the country, followed by Tamil Nadu (13,191) and Gujarat (12,537).
Andhra Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation (APSRTC) vice-chairman and managing director Madireddy Pratap on Wednesday informed that the intrastate bus services will start from Thursday except in the containment zones amid the coronavirus lockdown.
People in the age group of 50-59 years constituted over 26 percent of the total COVID-19 fatalities in the National Capital, according to official figures. At least 176 people have died in Delhi due to the coronavirus, authorities said.
Ninety-six people tested positive for COVID-19 in Bihar on Wednesday, raising the total number of coronavirus cases confirmed in the state so far to 1,675, an official said in Patna. Meanwhile, the United States has recorded 1,561 coronavirus deaths in the past 24 hours, bringing the total to 93,406, according to Johns Hopkins University.
The nationwide total of confirmed COVID-19 cases rose to over 1.06 lakh on Wednesday as India witnessed the highest single-day spike of 5,611 new cases. The country also reported 140 deaths in 24 hours, taking the toll to 3,303.
The Union health ministry said the recovery rate among those having tested positive has risen to nearly 40 percent, from about seven percent before the lockdown began on 25 March. It also said that than less seven percent of patients require hospital support.
The Ministry for Civil Aviation announced a gradual resumption of domestic flights from 25 May amid mounting worries over the country's economy.
Highest single-day increase in cases takes total to 1,06,750
According to the 8 am update issued by the health ministry, the COVID-19 toll has risen to 3,303 as 140 more deaths were reported in the last 24 hours. The country also witnessed a sharp increase of 5,611 new cases, taking the total number of infections to 1,06,750.
Of the 140 deaths reported since Monday morning, 76 were from Maharashtra, 25 from Gujarat, six each from West Bengal and Madhya Pradesh, five each from Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh, three each from Tamil Nadu Karnataka and Telangana, two each from Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Jammu and Kashmir and one each from Odhisha and Punjab.
India registered the highest single-day spike in COVID-19 cases with 5,611 in the 24 hours since Tuesday morning, taking the nationwide count to 1,06,750.AP
Of the 3,303 fatalities, Maharashtra has reported the highest number of deaths with 1,325 fatalities, followed by Gujarat at 719, Madhya Pradesh at 258, West Bengal at 250, Delhi at 168, Rajasthan at 143, Uttar Pradesh at 123, Tamil Nadu at 84 and Andhra Pradesh at 52.
The toll reached 40 in Karnataka, 38 each in Punjab and Telangana. Jammu and Kashmir has reported 17 fatalities due to the disease and Haryana 14. Bihar has registered nine deaths and Odisha five. Kerala and Assam have reported four deaths each.
Jharkhand, Chandigarh and Himachal Pradesh each have recorded three COVID-19 fatalities, while Meghalaya, Uttarakhand and Puducherry have reported one fatality each, according to the data shared by the health ministry.
As per the health ministry data updated in the morning, the highest number of confirmed cases in the country are from Maharashtra at 37,136. The state is followed by Tamil Nadu at 12,448, Gujarat at 12,140, Delhi at 10,554, Rajasthan at 5,845, Madhya Pradesh at 5,465 and Uttar Pradesh at 4,926.
The number of COVID-19 cases has gone up to 2,961 in West Bengal, 2,532 in Andhra Pradesh and 2,002 in Punjab. It has risen to 1,634 in Telangana, 1,498 in Bihar, 1,397 in Karnataka, 1,317 in Jammu and Kashmir and 978 in Odisha.
Haryana has reported 964 coronavirus infection cases so far, while Kerala has 642 cases. A total of 231 people have been infected with the virus in Jharkhand and 200 in Chandigarh.
Health ministry joint secretary Lav Agarwal said the total active COVID-19 cases now stands at 61,149 in the country and 42,298 people have recovered. The current recovery rate stands at 39.62 percent while it was 7.1 percent at the beginning of lockdown, he added.
The country went into a 21-day lockdown on 25 March, but it later got extended till 3 May in the second phase and then for another 14-day third phase till 17 May. A two-week-long fourth phase is now underway till 31 May, but with several restrictions having been relaxed to boost economic activities.
Domestic flights to gradually resume from 25 May
Announcing further relaxations, Union Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri said on Wednesday that domestic flights will resume in a calibrated manner from 25 May, two months after the services were shut due to the coronavirus.
Puri said that domestic flights will commence from 25 May, but initially, "only a small percentage of the total number of domestic flights will be operated".
"Then, depending on the experience we gain, we will increase the number of flights. I think Standard Operating Procedure (SOPs) should not be made so onerous that it is difficult to be followed. We've now reached a happy balance and SOPs will be announced soon. Those will be the norms for some time," he added.
The minister, however, did not mention any update for international flights, which have also remained shut during the lockdown, barring for special flights being operated to bring back stranded Indians and expatriates from abroad.
Mounting concerns over economy
The aviation sector has been among the worst hit by the pandemic as various countries, including India, decided to suspend commercial flights completely to curb the spread of the virus. Several Indian carriers have resorted to pay cuts, layoffs and leave without pay for their staff members.
Similar is the situation for many other sectors, while a huge workforce shortage is looming large due to the return of lakhs of migrant workers to their native places after being rendered jobless, and even homeless in most cases, from most of the industrial clusters across the country where they were working before the lockdown.
Cab aggregator Ola is laying off 1,400 staff as its revenue declined by 95 percent in the last two months due to the coronavirus pandemic, CEO Bhavish Aggarwal said in an email to employees.
Rating agency Icra warned of a deep recession and drastically lowered its FY21 GDP forecast for Indian economy to a contraction of five percent, citing the very modest fiscal support, extension of the nationwide lockdown and the looming labour shortage.
The Congress party accused the government of implementing the lockdown in an unplanned manner and also alleged it does not have any exit strategy.
In Mumbai, Maharashtra Chief Minister Udhhav Thackeray interacted with representatives of the entertainment industry and asked them to prepare an action plan on limited resumption of film shooting and post-production activities by adhering to social distancing norms amidst the coronavirus-induced lockdown.
He, however, ruled out reopening of cinema halls or theatres anytime soon.
New cases reported in Maharashtra, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu
Thackeray said the Union government feels that the spike in coronavirus cases will be higher by May-end and in June, but the spread has been controlled to a large extent in Maharashtra, which has been the worst-hit by the deadly virus with 39, 297 confirmed cases and 1,390 deaths. Of these, 2,500 infections and 65 deaths were reported on Tuesday with 41 succumbing to the viral infection in Mumbai.
The city also reported 1,372 cases pushing the total number of infections to 23,935 while the toll touched 841, according to the civic body.
Tamil Nadu, another badly affected state by the infection, reported 743 new cases to take its tally to 13,191, but also announced nearly 1,000 recoveries. Of the new cases, the state government said, 83 were returnees from Maharashtra.
The Gujarat health department said that 398 new coronavirus cases have been reported in the state in the last 24 hours. The total number cases in the state stands at 12,539, including 5,219 persons who were cured/discharged and 749 deaths. Chief Minister Vijay Rupani sought people's participation in a week-long online campaign on COVID-19 fight. "Now, it's a direct battle against coronavirus. We have to live with coronavirus and also fight against it," he said.
Medical staff at the new open-ground quarantine and isolation facility at Mumbai. The city has reported 23,935 COVID-19 cases. PTI
Notices were issued to at least 16 private hospitals in the state for allegedly refusing to admit COVID-19 patients referred to them by Ahmedabad's civic body. Ahmedabad, the worst coronavirus-afflicted district in Gujarat, has reported 9,216 cases and 602 deaths.
The Delhi government, in the meantime, launched an exercise to define its own red, orange and green zones — marking of areas based on COVID-19 case load, PTI quotes sources as saying. Currently, all 11 districts are marked as 'red' under the central government labelling. However, the Centre had in its revised guidelines issued on 17 May had given greater freedom to states to delineate zones as well impose additional lockdown restrictions.
New cases were reported across various other states as well, including in Kerala, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Tripura, Karnataka, Rajasthan and Andhra Pradesh.
Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan sounded an alarm that the state was slowly heading towards a "more serious situation" as the total number of positive coronavirus cases in state reached 666. On Wednesday, 24 new cases were detected and all all but one are returnees— 12 from abroad and 11 from other states, including eight from Maharashtra.
"We are moving towards a more serious situation with each passing day. We have eased some restrictions. But in the coming days, we need to have stringent restrictions at certain regions. As Keralites from abroad and other states have started reaching the state, the number of patients is rising," Vijayan said.
Union Minister Jitendra Singh said the north-eastern states have done better than the rest of India in handling the COVID-19 situation. While Sikkim and Nagaland do not have a single COVID-19 positive case till date, Arunachal Pradesh and Mizoram had one patient each, who have since recovered.
Meghalaya had 13 cases in a hospital in Shillong due to a foreign traveller. The state recorded one death, but all the others have since recovered, Singh said. Meghalaya is also COVID-19 free now, while Assam has also handled the pandemic very well, he added.
A total of 48 persons have been discharged after recovery while four have succumbed to the viral infection in Assam and the number of active cases stands at 115, according to state minister Himanta Biswa Sarma.
Meanwhile, Manipur reported 11 new coronavirus cases, taking the total number of positive cases to 20.
Later in the evening, the health ministry said that its premises will remain closed till 6 am on Thursday as an official working with the Medical Education Section of Health Services has tested positive for COVID-19.
While experts have said that a vaccine is still many months or even a year away, all eyes are on US-based company Moderna's encouraging early results on a small group of healthy volunteers.
Eight candidate vaccines for COVID-19 are in the clinical evaluation, while 110 are in the preclinical stage, according to the WHO's latest draft landscape.
With inputs from PTI
Updated Date: May 22, 2020 08:18:12 IST