Coronavirus Outbreak Highlights: Shops for educational books, electric fans, movement of Indian seafarers allowed during lockdown, says MHA

Coronavirus Outbreak Updates: The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) issued an order to include additional agricultural and forestry items, shops of educational books for students, shops of electric fans and movement of Indian seafarers in to the list of permitted activities during the lockdown, which will continue till 3 May.

FP Staff April 22, 2020 00:12:53 IST
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Coronavirus Outbreak Highlights: Shops for educational books, electric fans, movement of Indian seafarers allowed during lockdown, says MHA


15:11 (ist)

Coronavirus in Singapore Latest Update

Singapore extends ‘circuit breaker’ partial lockdown measures until 1 June

Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said on Tuesday that partial lockdown measures to stem the spread of the coronavirus in the country will be extended by four weeks to 1 June, reports CNBC.

Some of those measures, which the Singapore leader calls a “circuit breaker,” involve shutting schools and most workplaces temporarily. Those measures, which were implemented two weeks ago, were initially supposed to end on 4 May. 

10:18 (ist)

Coronavirus Outbreak Latest Update

Global toll at 1,70,456

According to worldometer, about 1,70,456 people across the globe have died so far from the coronavirus COVID-19 outbreak as of 21 April.


Apr 22, 2020 - 00:11 (IST)

Coronavirus in Pakistan Latest Updates

Imran Khan to take coronavirus test 


Pakistan prime minister Imran Khan will take the coronavirus test as a philanthropist he met last week tested positive for the disease, reported the Times of India. Faisal Edih, chairman of the Karachi-based Edhi Foundation and son of the the late Abdul Sattar Edhi, met the prime minister last week to donate to the PM's Relief Fund. He tested positive on Tuesday.  Faisal Sultan, the prime minister's personal physician and COVID-19 advisor, told media that would the leader to be tested. "We will follow all protocols in place and make recommendations accordingly," reports quote him as saying.

Apr 21, 2020 - 23:56 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Updates

 4,62,621 samples tested so far, says ICMR

According to the 9pm update issued by ICMR, a total of 4,62,621 samples from 4,47,812 have been tested till date, while  26, 943 samples were reported on Tuesday. However, the number of individuals who have tested posted was not mentioned in the update.

Apr 21, 2020 - 23:47 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Updates

Markaaz chief asks Jamaat workers to donate plasma blood

Tablighi Jamaat chief Mohammad Saad  has written a letter to Jamaat workers and all Muslims who have been cured of COVID19, appealing to them  to donate blood plasma for those still infected and under treatment.


Apr 21, 2020 - 23:39 (IST)

Coronavirus in Jammu and Kashmir Latest Updates

Twelve more test positive in Jammu and Kashmir, total reaches 380

A dozen more coronavirus cases surfaced in Jammu and Kashmir on Tuesday, taking the total in the Union territory to 380, PTI quotes an official bulletin as saying..  Eleven of the fresh cases were reported in Kashmir and one in Jammu's Kathua, it said. The UT has recorded five fatalities due to the disease so far, four in Kashmir and one in Udhampur district of Jammu, while 81 patients have recovered, the bulletin stated.  It added that 10 COVID-19 patients were discharged during the day. 

Apr 21, 2020 - 23:36 (IST)

Coronavirus in Maharashtra Latest Updates

Woman cop at Uddhav Thackeray's official residence tests positive

A woman police constable posted at `Varsha', the official residence of Maharashtra Chief Minister, tested positive for coronavirus on Tuesday, PTI quotes a senior official as saying. Also, a male constable at the official residence of Leader of Opposition in the Assembly Devendra Fadnavis has tested positive, according to a civic official.

The Varsha bungalow in south Mumbai is currently unoccupied as Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray lives in his family residence in suburban Bandra.

Apr 21, 2020 - 23:27 (IST)

Coronavirus in West Bengal Latest Updates

IMA, seven other medical organisations write to Mamata Banerjee

The Indian Medical Association (IMA) and seven other medical organisations have collectively written to West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, stating that the state's real-time and transparent data of Covid-19, including daily medical bulletins of all healthcare workers under treatment is highly solicited.

Apr 21, 2020 - 23:19 (IST)

Coronavirus in Maharashtra  Latest Updates

Case count rises to 108 in Nashik

The case count in Maharashtra's Nashik district rose to 108 on Tuesday. 10 cases were reported in Nashik city, four in Nashik rural and 94 in Malegaon. 

Apr 21, 2020 - 22:59 (IST)

Coronavirus in UK  Latest Updates

UK toll rises by 828

A total of 17,337 people in hospital with coronavirus have died in Britain, show new health ministry figures, an increase of 828 from the previous day, reports News18

Apr 21, 2020 - 22:52 (IST)

Coronavirus in UK  Latest Updates

Oxford University researchers to begin trial of potential vaccine on Thursday: Report

UK health secretary Matt Hancock announced that Oxford University researchers will begin human trials of a potential vaccine against the coronavirus on Thursday, reported BBC. According to the report, the vaccine uses a small section of the genetic code packaged into a harmless virus. Scientists hope that delivering this into the body will teach the immune system how to fight off the real disease, without ever needing to become infected with coronavirus.The plan is to test it on around 500 volunteers by mid-May and if that work proves successful, give it to thousands more volunteers, said the report.

 The secretary also announced that the government had pledged more than £40m to two British projects searching for a vaccine - the one by Oxford and the other led by the Imperial College.

Apr 21, 2020 - 22:38 (IST)

Coronavirus in Manipur Latest Updates

Manipur's second COVID-19 patient discharged

The second COVID-19 patient in Manipur was discharged from the Regional Institute of Medical Science (RIMS) on Tuesday as he tested negative in consecutive tests, PTI quotes RIMS director Prof Ahanthem Santa Singh as saying. The patient was advised home quarantine, according to protocol, the RIMS director said .

Coronavirus Outbreak Updates: The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) issued  an order to include additional agricultural and forestry items, shops of educational books for students, shops of electric fans and movement of Indian seafarers in to the list of permitted activities during the lockdown, which will continue till 3 May.

UK health secretary Matt Hancock announced that Oxford University researchers will begin human trials of a potential vaccine against the coronavirus on Thursday, reported BBC.

 56 new COVID-19 cases were reported in Telangana on Tuesday, taking the total number of cases in the state to 928. This includes 711 active cases, 194 who were cured/discharged  and 23 deaths, according to the latest update provided by the state health department.

The Maharashtra government on Tuesday revoked lockdown relaxations and exemptions in Mumbai and Pune regions because '"people are not behaving responsibly", the CMO was quoted as saying. "Rest of the parts of the state to continue to have partial exemptions," the statement added.

The Maharashtra government said that 552 new COVID-19 cases and 19 deaths were reported in the state on Tuesday, taking total number of cases to 5,218 and toll to 251 in the state.

With 150 patients discharged from hospitals on Tuesday, the number of cured patients stands at 722.

The Mumbai fire brigade said that a level-II fire broken out at the Rippon Hotel in Mumbai's Nagpada area on Tuesday. The fire fighting operation on. The fire has been confined in the hotel's lodging room, which was being used as a quarantine centre for COVID-19 patients. Most of the patients rescued, search operation is on, the statement said.

The Jammu and Kashmir government on Tuesday said that 92 areas have been identified and designated as red zones in the union territory, of which 14 are in Jammu and 78 are in Kashmir. These red zones will be under stricter restrictions on movement, surveillance and will have enhanced testing, the statement said.

The Union health ministry said that the total number of COVID-19 positive cases rose to 18,985 in India. This includes 15,122 active cases, 3,260 cured/discharged/migrated people and 603 deaths.

The Maharashtra Police said that a total of 60,005 cases have been registered under Section 188 of IPC, since 22 March till 4 am on Tuesday, for violations of coronavirus lockdown norms. 411 accused have been arrested in cases of assault on policemen, the statement said.

An oncologist in Bengaluru has been given permission by the ICMR to use plasma therapy for the treatment of COVID-19 patients in the state, the government said.

Karnataka minister Dr K Sudhakar said, "Plasma therapy holds great promise in treating COVID-19 patients and I am happy to inform that ICMR agreed to our request and has given permission for plasma treatment to Dr Vishal Rao, HCG Bangalore Institute of Oncology."

At least 25 people, including journalists, working for a Tamil news television channel tested positive for coronavirus here on Tuesday, a health department official said. To a question, the official said the test results of those associated with the television channel were being collated and indicated that the tally of total positives could be '27.'

The number of coronavirus cases in Rae Bareli district jumped from two to 35 with several people testing positive after coming in contact with participants at a Tablighi Jamaat congregation, officials said on Tuesday.

Rajasthan on Tuesday stopped using rapid test kits for coronavirus after receiving invalid and incorrect results for a large number of samples. Health Minister Raghu Sharma said the kits were giving mere five percent correct or valid results and a report has been forwarded to the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) in this regard.

Over 100 families residing at the President's Estate are under self-isolation as a preventive measure after a sanitation worker's relative tested positive for coronavirus, officials said Tuesday. The relative of the sanitation worker, who is a resident of the estate that houses Rashtrapati Bhavan, has been admitted to a hospital here for treatment, they said.

Trinamool Congress MP Derek O’Brien asked why the Centre did not send IMCT teams to states like Gujarat, Tamil Nadu and Uttar Pradesh despite the high number of cases and hotspots there.

The toll due to coronavirus rose to 77 in Gujarat as six more people succumbed to the disease, a health official said on Tuesday. About 127 new COVID-19 cases have been reported in the state, taking the tally to 2,066. This figure includes 131 recoveries and deaths so far.

Delhi has reported a total of 2081 positive cases, out of these 78 cases were found on Monday. The border between Delhi and Ghaziabad has been sealed as a measure to contain the spread of coronavirus.

472 more COVID-19 cases reported in Maharashtra till 10 am on Tuesday, taking total positive cases in the state to 4,676, reports ANI. Nine more deaths have been reported, taking the total toll in the state to 232, said Public Health of Department, Government of Maharashtra.

Three cops test positive for COVID-19 at Nabi Karim area in Paharganj, New Delhi. A total of 11 cops are COVID positive now in the central district. Nabi Karim area is one of the 84 containment zones in the National Capital.

25 hospital staff including 19 nurses tested positive for COVID-19 in Ruby Hall Clinic in Pune, said Bomi Bhote, Chief Executive Officer of Ruby Hall Clinic, reports ANI. Meanwhile, according to worldometer, about 1,70,456 people across the globe have died so far from the coronavirus COVID-19 outbreak as of 21 April.

The total number confirmed COVID-19 cases continue to rise steadily in Rajasthan and Tamil Nadu, according to data from the Union Health Ministry. Rajasthan has so far reported 1,628 cases. Of these, 205 patients have recovered. The toll in the state stands at 25.

Five more persons tested positive for novel coronavirus in Odisha on Tuesday, taking the total number of such cases to 79 in the state, a health department official said.

There are now 18,601 total cases of the novel coronavirus disease (Covid-19) in India. Active cases stand at 14,759 and recoveries at 3,251 and deaths at 590.

US President Donald Trump said on Monday he will be signing an executive order to temporarily suspend immigration into the United States.

Maharashtra Health Minister Rajesh Tope on Monday said the rate of doubling of COVID-19 cases in the state has slowed down further to seven days from five days earlier.

One coronavirus positive case found in Rashtrapati Bhavan, 125 families sent on home quarantine, reports ANI. 125 families advised to remain in self-isolation as mandated by the Health Ministry’s guidelines as a precautionary measure.

US crude oil jumped more than $20 per barrel on Tuesday but still traded below $0 after plunging into negative territory for the first time in history, dragged down by a supply glut and sagging demand for crude due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The confirmed cases in India rose to 17,656 and the toll from the coronavirus outbreak rose to 559, while several states sought to contain the ballooning economic cost of the pandemic by easing some lockdown curbs.

However, some states preferred to maintain strict restrictions, with Tamil Nadu and Karnataka joining Delhi in deciding against any relaxation till 3 May.

Punjab, which had earlier ruled out any relaxation till 3 May, said some industrial activity may resume in areas other than those identified as high-risk 'containment zones'.

No new cases in 59 districts in fortnight, says health ministry

Coronavirus Outbreak Highlights Shops for educational books electric fans movement of Indian seafarers allowed during lockdown says MHA

The coronvirus cases in India jumped to 17,656 on Monday. PTI

According to the Union health ministry, the number of coronavirus positive cases saw a sharp increase of 1,553 between Sunday and Monday, while there has been a recovery rate of about 15 percent.

In the daily COVID-19 press briefing, health ministry Joint Secretary Law Agarwal said as many as 59 districts across 23 states and Union Territories have not reported a single case in the last 14 days and also asserted that the rate of the number of cases doubling has improved to 7.5 days, from 3.4 days before the lockdown. Last Friday, he had put the rate of doubling of cases at 6.2 days.

Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and Health Ministry officials said 80 percent patients were either asymptomatic or had only mild symptoms but were found to be positive after testing. They also said around 15 percent patients turn into severe cases, while 5 percent turn critical.

Later, in its 5 pm update, the ministry said the COVID-19 death toll has risen to 559 and the number of cases has risen to 17,656 across the country. Across the country, 2,851 people have been discharged, it said. According to data published on its website, the highest number of cases have been reported in Maharashtra (4,203), followed by Delhi (2,003), Gujarat (1,851), Uttar Pradesh (1,176) and Madhya Pradesh (1,485).

However, a PTI tally of figures reported by various states and Union Territories, as on 9.15 pm, showed 18,322 confirmed cases, 2,969 recoveries and 590 deaths.

Maharashtra total reaches 4,666, 53 journalists test positive in Mumbai

Based on reports coming from state governments, Maharashtra alone has reported 4,666 cases, while Delhi has also crossed 2,000. Gujarat has 1,939 cases, while Tamil Nadu and Rajasthan are above 1,500 each, closely followed by Madhya Pradesh with 1,414 cases.

Fresh cases reported from various parts of the country included those of police personnel in Gujarat and Andhra Pradesh, of health workers at various places, journalists in Mumbai and even of prisoners in Madhya Pradesh's Indore.

In Mumbai, where 3,032 cases have been recorded so far, 53 journalists have contracted the disease, reported Huffpost. Shiv Sena leader and Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation’s health committee member Amey Ghole told the publication that samples of 167 Mumbai journalists had been collected for the test and 53 of these had tested positive. Significantly, most journalists who tested positive did not display any symptoms, according to ANI.

Gujarat reported 201 new coronavirus positive cases, taking the number of the affected people in the state to 1939, a health official told PTI, adding that most cases were being reported from virus hotspots.

The Tamil Nadu government said that 43 new coronavirus cases were reported in the state on Monday, taking the total number of cases to 1,520 in the state. Meanwhile, 46 COVID-19 patients were discharged on Monday.

Some states ease restrictions, Centre rebukes Kerala, West Bengal

Even as several states reported a rising number of cases, the first set of relaxations from the nationwide lockdown, which came into effect on 25 March, kicked in at select places across Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Kerala and Goa among other states.

But despite the relaxations announced by state authorities, which are mostly limited to non-urban areas, industry executives said most companies have decided to wait for a complete exit from the lockdown as continuing restrictions on goods and people's movement make it difficult to resume stalled economic activities, which are estimated to have suffered a loss of Rs 7-8 lakh crores already.

While attendance at government establishments also increased marginally, there have been no relaxations as such for the public road transport, railway passenger services and flights.

Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri said restrictions on domestic and international flights will be lifted when the government is confident that spread of coronavirus has been controlled, and poses no danger to Indians.

Goa eased some lockdown restrictions, in line with the central government's guidelines, as there are currently no active cases i the state after the recovery of its last patient on Sunday. However, leaders there warned against any hurry in declaring the state a 'green zone' one or free of the virus.

Manipur chief minister Biren Singh said that the state has become COVID-19-free. "We have decided to relax coronavirus lockdown in rural areas but the lockdown will continue in Imphal till further orders. Shops of essential goods will open between 8 am and 2 pm in urban areas," he said.

Kerala, where the doubling rate of cases is among the best in the country at 72.2 days, also announced a number of relaxations, but had to rescind some after facing the flak from the Centre.

In a letter to the state government, the Union Home Ministry said Kerala's decision to open restaurants, allow bus travel in cities and open MSME industries in urban areas amounted to dilution of the lockdown guidelines and also a Supreme Court observation. Later in the day, the state government decided not to allow plying of buses in cities, opening of restaurants and pillion riding on two-wheelers.

At the daily press briefing, Home Ministry Joint Secretary Punya Salila Srivastava said states have been told that some of them were issuing certain guidelines that amounted to "diluting" the lockdown leading to "severe repercussions to health" of the citizens.

She said states and UTs can take stricter action than what is mentioned in the guidelines issued by the central government to enforce the nationwide lockdown to prevent the spread of COVID-19 but cannot dilute or weaken them.

Separately, the home ministry also said the COVID-19 situation is "especially serious" in Mumbai, Pune, Indore, Jaipur, Kolkata and a few other places in West Bengal, and warned that violation of lockdown measures risks the spread of the novel coronavirus further. The ministry said six inter-ministerial central teams will visit these identified areas in Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, West Bengal and Rajasthan within the next three days to make on-the-spot assessment and recommend remedial measures in a report to the Centre.

In identical orders issued to the four states on Sunday, the home ministry said there have been several incidents of violence against COVID-19 front-line healthcare professionals, complete violation of social distancing norms and movement of vehicles in urban areas.

The Centre also dispatched a team to asses the seriousness of the COVID-19 situation in West Bengal, which saw its highest ever spike of 54 cases. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee shot off a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Mod where she voiced her displeasure at the state government having been kept in dark about the visit , which she said  violated established protocol.

Tamil Nadu, Karnataka extend lockdown till 3 May

Amid rising number of cases, Tamil Nadu government said prohibitory orders and other COVID-19 lockdown curbs will continue till May 3 without any relaxation, while the Karnataka Cabinet decided to promulgate an ordinance, giving it special powers to control the spread of COVID-19. These include provision for protection to front line health workers and making non-cooperation with the government a punishable offence.

Karnataka has also decided to continue the COVID-19 lockdown measures till 3 May without any relaxation, Law and Parliamentary Affairs Minister JC Madhuswamy said. However, Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa and the COVID-19 Task Force have been authorised to meet in three or four days to review and take further decisions about any relaxation.

Rajasthan chief minister Ashok Gehlot said some relaxation for economic activities has been given from Monday but it is limited, as he asked people not to violate lockdown norms and avoid going out of their homes. In Uttar Pradesh, no relaxation would be given in Lucknow, Agra and Firozabad.

Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray said limited industrial activities have been allowed in certain areas of the state to restart the wheels of the economy, but this should not be seen as indication that the threat of coronavirus has receded in any way.

There has been a rise of 835 cases of COVID-19 in Maharashtra in the last 36 hours, but we are relaxing the stringent norms of lockdown to restart the wheels of economy, he said.

Assam's Finance Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said the state "will not be able" to pay salaries of its employees for May if it does not get financial support from outside.

Global toll crosses 1.66 lakh

According to the the John Hopkins University Coronavirus Resource centre, 1,66,794 people have died due to the viral disease across the world. Italy has reported the highest number of deaths (23,660) while Spain recorded 20,852. However, the USA now has the most number of infections (7,61,991) while the global count has reached 2,432,092.

However, WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus warned that “the worst is yet ahead of us”, while alluding to the Spanish flu of 1918.

“Trust us. The worst is yet ahead of us,” he said. “Let’s prevent this tragedy. It’s a virus that many people still don’t understand,” news agency AP quoted him as saying.

With inputs from agencies

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