Coronavirus live updates on 23rd March: 31 cases of coronavirus reported in UP, says Yogi Adityanath

With many states in Country are affected due to Coronavirus outbreak, Centre is working hard to curb it. The Centre and state governments have decided to completely shutdown 75 districts across the country where coronavirus cases have been reported.

It has also been decided to suspend the interstate bus services till March 31, government officials said on Sunday. The districts where lockdown was announced are from states that include Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Punjab, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Kerala.

The development comes in the view that there is an urgent need to extend restrictions, including the movement of non-essential passenger transport, in a bid to contain the spread of the deadly coronavirus bug which has already infected nearly 400 people in the country.

The coronavirus which had first emerged in China’s Wuhan city in December last year and has now spread to across many countries in the world.

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19:44 IST: 31 cases of coronavirus reported in UP: Yogi Adityanath
Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on Monday said that there are a total of 31 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the state.

“Total 31 cases of coronavirus have been reported in Uttar Pradesh so far. No new case came into light today. We have suspended all bus services till March 31. I am keeping a close eye on the situation and appeal to the people to stay indoors in public interest,” Adityanath said. Earlier today, Adityanath held a video conference with District Magistrates, senior cops and other officials regarding steps being taken to combat the spread of coronavirus in the state.

The Chief Minister on Sunday asked the police officials to provide for efficient patrolling to ensure that lockdown is implemented efficiently in the 16 districts in the state.


18:39 IST: COVID-19: Operations of domestic flights cancelled from March 24 midnight
In the wake of coronavirus outbreak, the government on Monday said that operations of domestic flights have been cancelled from midnight of March 24.

“The operations of domestic scheduled commercial airlines shall cease with effect from midnight on March 24,” the government said. The restrictions will not apply to cargo flights.
The government has already banned international flights in a bid to combat the spread of coronavirus.

18:31 IST: 33 positive coronavirus cases in Telangana till now, says state health minister
There are a total of 33 positive coronavirus cases in Telangana till now, state health minister Eatala Rajendra said on Monday. “Now, the COVID-19 positive coronavirus cases in the state have reached 33. In all the 33 cases, 31 have travel history while only two are direct contacts with no travel History,” Rajendra said while addressing a press conference here.

18:22 IST: Punjab announces relief measures amid lockdown, sanctions Rs 20 crore from CM fund
Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Monday announced Rs 20 crore sanctioned out of the Chief Minister’s relief fund amid a state-wide curfew in order to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Singh on Monday ordered the state-wide curfew clampdown, making Punjab the first state in the country to resort to this measure in the battle against COVID-19, as per a statement. The Chief Minister, after reviewing the situation with Chief Secretary Karan Avtar Singh and DGP Dinkar Gupta, announced “full curfew with no relaxations.”
“The DCs have been asked to issue orders accordingly. Any person required to be given relaxation will be so allowed specifically for a given period and purpose,” the Chief Minister tweeted.

17:55 IST: Tamil Nadu imposes Section 144 from Tuesday evening till March 31
Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi Palaniswami on Monday said that restrictions under section 144 of the CrPC will be imposed in the state till March 31 in the wake of surging cases of COVID-19 in the country.

The order will come into effect from March 24 at 6 pm. However, the shops of essential products such as milk, vegetable and grocery will remain open and exempt from the order.
Speaking in the Tamil Nadu Assembly the Chief Minister said, “Restrictions under section 144 of CrPC will be imposed in Tamil Nadu from 6 pm tomorrow till March 31. Shops of milk, vegetable, grocery, mutton, chicken and fish will continue to function in this period. State borders will be sealed.”

17:34 IST: Nepal confirms second coronavirus case
Nepal on Monday confirmed the second imported case of COVID-19. A 19-year-old Nepali national with a travel history to France has been tested positive.

“She was staying in self-isolation at home. After developing fever she came to the hospital and tested positive. The report was out last evening only and she is undergoing treatment at Sukra Raj Tropical Hospital, Teku,” Minister of Health and Population Bhanubhakta Dhakal told reporters during a special press meet in Nepali capital Kathmandu. A process of identifying and tracking those who came along with her all the way from France is currently underway, added Minister Dhakal. Along with a family member of returnee are prepared to be quarantined.

17:17 IST: 5 out of 11 COVID-19 cases in Gujarat cited as ‘local transmission’
Eleven new cases of coronavirus were reported in Gujarat on Monday, taking the total tally to 29 in the state.
Of the eleven new cases, five were cited as cases of ‘local transmission’, according to a statement released by the Department of Health and Family Welfare, Gujarat government. On Sunday, the health department had confirmed the first COVID-19 related death of a 69-year-old man. “The death of a 69-year-old man from Surat is confirmed to be caused due to co-morbidity and was also tested positive for COVID-19,” it said.

Earlier, Gujarat Deputy Chief Minister Nitin Patel said on Sunday that the names of the patients tested with COVID-19 would be published to spread awareness among people who came in contact with them.

17:39 IST: Coronavirus: 127 people die in Iran in last 24 hrs, toll at 1,812
Iran on Monday said that 127 people have succumbed to the novel coronavirus in the last 24 hours, raising the death toll to 1,812.

The country also reported 1,411 new confirmed cases which have emerged in the same duration taking the nationwide tally to more 21,600 of confirmed positive cases. Head of Iran’s Health Ministry Public Relations Office Kianoush Jahanpour said on Monday, “1,411 new affected cases have been detected since yesterday. Over the last 24 hours, 127 people succumbed due to the deadly virus,” IRNA reported.
He stated that over 36 million people have also been screened with regard to coronavirus infection.

17:23 IST: 415 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in India
A total of 415 confirmed cases of COVID-19 have been reported in India so far including 23 cured and 7 deaths, Lav Aggarwal, Joint Secretary, Union Health Ministry said on Monday.

Addressing a press conference here on Monday he said, “415 confirmed cases reported so far, 23 patients discharged, 7 deaths reported – some of them also had co-morbid conditions.” He said that a “complete lockdown has been announced in 19 states and union territories. Some parts of 6 states and union territories have been kept under lockdown”

Meanwhile, the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) Director-General Balram Bhargava said that 12 laboratory chains have been registered and they have started functioning.

17:14 IST: Statewide curfew in Maharashtra

Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Monday announced the statewide curfew in the backdrop of coronavirus pandemic.

“Today I am compelled to announce a statewide curfew. People were not listening and we are compelled,” said Thackeray. He also said that the government is sealing district borders to prevent the spread of coronavirus in the districts which are not affected by it. Maharashtra has 89 confirmed cases of coronavirus.

“Yesterday we sealed the state borders and today we are sealing district borders. We will not allow it to spread to the districts which are unaffected as of now,” said Thackeray.
“Essentials like groceries, milk, bakery, medical, etc will remain open. People need not panic. All religious places will remain closed. Only the priests and clerics alone will be inside and pray. Today I am compelled to announce a statewide curfew. People were not listening and we are compelled,” he added.

16:26 IST: COVID-19 task force recommends use of hydroxychloroquine for prevention of infection
The National Task Force for COVID-19 constituted by Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has recommended the use of hydroxychloroquine for prevention of the coronavirus infection for high-risk cases.

The advisory provides for placing the — asymptomatic healthcare workers involved in the care of suspected or confirmed cases of COVID-19, and asymptomatic household contacts of laboratory confirmed cases — under chemoprophylasxis with hydroxychloroquine. The protocol recommended by the National Task Force has been approved by the Drug Controller General of India for restricted use in emergency situations.

However, the drug is not recommended for prophylaxis in children under 15 years of age and it is contraindicated in persons with known case of retinopathy, known hypersensitivity to hydroxychloroquine and 4-aminoquinoline compounds.

Among the key considerations are — the drug has to be given only on the prescription of a registered medical practitioner. If anyone becomes symptomatic while on prophylaxis, he or she should immediately contact the health facility, get tested as per national guidelines and follow the standard treatment protocol.

15:51 IST: Combatting COVID-19: SAD to donate one month’s salary to Punjab CM Relief Fund
Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) parliamentarians and legislators on Monday announced to donate their one month salary to the Chief Minister’s Relief Fund to assist the Punjab government in its efforts to provide treatment and succour to COVID-19 patients as well as take preventive steps to stop the spread of the infection.

In a statement, the party said that the decision was taken after president Sukhbir Singh Badal held discussions with MPs as well members of the legislative wing on the issue. “Following a suggestion by the SAD president to lead the relief effort, all party MPs and legislators unanimously agreed to donate one month’s salary for this noble cause,” the release said.
The SAD president also issued a simultaneous appeal to all party leaders and workers to contribute their might to combat the outbreak.

“These are challenging times for humanity. We need to keep ourselves safe but also come to the rescue of those who are suffering from COVID-19. Let us contribute in this effort to save our fellow brethren in whatever way possible,” said Jangveer Singh, media advisor to the SAD president.

15:35 IST: Spending money on COVID-19 is CSR for companies: MCA
Funds spent by companies to combat the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) will be eligible to be classified as corporate social responsibility (CSR) activity, the government said on Monday.
This has been done as the World Health Organisation (WHO) has declared coronavirus as pandemic and the government is treating it as a notified disaster, according to a statement issued by the Ministry of Corporate Affairs. “Funds may be spent for various activities related to COVID-19 relating to the promotion of health care, including preventive health care and sanitation, and disaster management,” it said.

The funds are broad-based and may be interpreted liberally for this purpose, said the ministry.

15:28 IST: FIR filed against 40 people for gathering outside their residence in Ahmedabad, says Commissioner of Police
An FIR has been filed against 40 people from Khadia area who had gathered outside their house on March 22 as Section 144 of CrPC is imposed in Ahmedabad, said Ashish Bhatia, Commissioner of Police, Ahmedabad.

The nation on Sunday observed ‘Janta Curfew’ from 7 am to 9 pm, called by Prime Minister to fight the coronavirus outbreak. It was decided by the state government on Saturday that Ahmedabad, Surat, Rajkot, and Vadodara would remain under lockdown till March 25. However, shops selling daily necessities and essentials things like vegetables, dairy products, and medical items would remain open.


14:31 IST: SC asks Cente to consider plea seeking increase in number of testing, quarantine centres
The Supreme Court on Monday asked the Central government to look into a plea seeking directions for an increase in the number of testing centres and quarantine centres across the country to tackle the coronavirus pandemic.
A bench headed by Chief Justice SA Bobde asked the Centre to consider the plea, filed by journalist Prashant Tandon and social activist Kunajana Singh. The court asked the petitioners to give representation to the Central government, which will consider the petition.

14:25 IST: Haryana lockdown violated, private-manned bus services and liquor shops still functional
The Haryana district administration on Monday claimed that there were few instances of violations of the lockdown imposed by the Manohar Lal Khattar-government in the state to help contain the spread of coronavirus.
The officials said that people initially came out on the streets in the morning despite the government-ordered lockdown. “A large number of vehicles were also seen at all intersections of Gurugram. Even the private-manned buses services were also seen on the roads carrying hoards of people. To deal with this, the Gurugram Police had to come down on the roads and warn them from coming out of their houses again. The bus drivers of the private buses also admitted that it was their fault,” Rajendra Singh, ACP Traffic, Gurugram, told ANI.

14:25 IST: PM Modi interacts with media heads over COVID-19
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday held an interaction with media heads through video conferencing over COVID-19.
Subhash Chandra from Zee Group, Kalli Purie from Aaj Tak, Rajat Sharma, Editor-In-Chief of India TV, Republic TV founder Arnab Goswami and Smita Prakash, Editor at Asian News International, among others attended the video conference. Information & Broadcasting Minister Prakash Javadekar was also present with the Prime Minister.
Earlier, the Prime Minister had held an interaction with Chief Ministers of states over the deadly virus.

14:21 IST: IAF won’t allow COVID-19 suspects to board aircraft during evacuation from abroad, pilots told to remain in cockpit
Having already airlifted 170 Indian and other nationality passengers from China and Iran, the Indian Air Force (IAF) has issued instructions to its air-crew that people with symptoms of COVID-19 would not be allowed to board their aircraft.
In an advisory issued by the IAF, the service has issued detailed instructions to its air-crew as per which the pilots have been told to remain in their cockpits in case of evacuations from outside the country. As per the standard operating procedures (SOP) for air travel by Air Force aircraft, ” During embarkation, thermal scanning will be done and any symptomatic person will not be allowed to board the flight.”

14:01 IST: Another positive case of Covid-19 in Chandigarh, total number rises to 7
Chandigarh reported one more positive case of coronavirus on Monday, taking the total number of infected patients to seven.
Another primary contact of the city’s first Covid-19 patient was tested positive for the virus on Sunday. With the latest additions, the total number of coronavirus cases in the city has gone up to six. The Haryana government has announced lockdown in seven districts – Faridabad, Gurugram, Rohtak, Jhajjar, Sonipat, Panipat and Panchkula – till March 31.

13:24 IST: COVID-19: Goa to remain shut for 3 more days
Goa remains shut down for the second consecutive day after the Goa government extended the Janta Curfew for three more days on Sunday as a precautionary measure against the spread of coronavirus.

Earlier, Chief Minister Pramod Sawant said that the government had extended the Curfew for three more days. “I welcome the extension by three days taken by the Chief Minister. A decision to extend it further will be taken by the CM at the end of the three day period,” said Vishwajit Rane, Goa Health Minister on Sunday.

12:51 IST: 27 coronavirus positive cases in state: Karnataka Health Minister
Karnataka Health Minister B Sriramalu on Monday confirmed that there are 27 positive coronavirus cases in the state so far.
A fresh COVID-19 positive case has been reported from Mysore today. “One hospital in every district is dedicated to COVID-19 treatment. We have placed an order for 1000 ventilators. We have also ordered 10 lakh N90 mask, five lakh PPE testing kits, 15 lakh three-layer masks. Sanitizers and thermal scanners will also be purchased on-demand,” said Sriramalu while addressing a press conference here.
The Karnataka Health Minister said that decision will also be taken to purchase lab testing kits and equipment.

12:50 IST: No community spread of coronavirus, 89 positive cases in Maharashtra, says Health Minister
Maharashtra Health Minister Rajesh Tope on Monday said that there is no community spread of novel coronavirus right now and there are a total 89 reported positive cases of the disease in the state so far. “I want to make it very clear that we have not entered the community spread phase. There are a total of 89 positive coronavirus cases in the state including 14 new cases in Mumbai and 1 in Pune. 8 people have contact history and 6 are with travel history,” Tope told reporters here in a press conference. “We are issuing orders to disburse the crowds at various checkpoints of Mumbai. Police can take action under section 144,” he said. The minister also announced that he will now address the media digitally through his Facebook page.

12:21 IST: 415 individuals confirmed positive for COVID-19 in India
The total number of novel coronavirus cases in India rose to 415 on Monday including seven deaths. “A total of 18,383 samples from 17,493 individuals have been tested for SARS-CoV2 as on March 23 at 10 am IST. A total of 415 individuals have been confirmed positive among suspected cases and contacts of known positive cases,” ICMR said in a release. According to the data released by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Maharashtra is the worst affected state with 67 confirmed cases, including 64 Indian nationals. Kerala also has 67 confirmed cases with 60 Indian nationals.

12:09 IST: Delhi has 30 Covid-19 cases, CM says situation under control
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Monday declared that 30 positive cases of imported coronavirus infection were reported in the national capital on Monday.
“In Delhi, 30 case-23 people returned from abroad, 7 their family members infected by them. Currently Delhi is under control,” Kejriwal said on Twitter. “Other countries show that if we do not tighten now, the situation may soon go out of control. So follow the lockdown so that the situation is not out of control,” he added.

11:51 IST: Nearly 89 pc of confirmed Covid-19 cases in China have recovered
Nearly 89 per cent of the confirmed novel coronavirus cases in China have recovered and discharged from hospitals, as per Monday’s report from the country’s National Health Commission.

Of the 81,093 cases reported in the country since the beginning of the outbreak in December last year, as many as 72,703 have recovered, while only 5,120 patients remain in hospitals at the moment. “As of 24:00 on March 22, the National Health Commission had received 81,093 reports of confirmed cases and 3,270 deaths in 31 provincial-level regions on the Chinese mainland and the Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps, and in all 72,703 patients had been cured and discharged from hospital,” the report read.

11:46 IST: COVID-19: PM admires ‘outstanding efforts’ of Air India crew who airlifted 263 Indians from Rome
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday admired the ‘outstanding efforts’ of Air India crew onboard a special flight that airlifted 263 Indians from Rome yesterday.
“Extremely proud of this team of @airindiain, which has shown utmost courage and risen to the call of humanity. Their outstanding efforts are admired by several people across India,” the Prime Minister wrote on Twitter. The entire crew has now been advised to be in home quarantine as per the established norms of the company, an official of the national carrier said.

11:21 IST: Enforce strictly, take legal action against violators: Centre to states on COVID-19 lockdown

The Centre on Monday asked state governments to strictly enforce the lockdown imposed to prevent the spread of coronavirus and directed legal action against violators.
“States have been asked to strictly enforce the lockdown in the areas where it has been announced. Legal action will be taken against violators,” a tweet by Principal Director General of PIB, KS Dhatwalia read. This comes just an hour after Prime Minister Narendra Modi appealed to the public to take the lockdown seriously and urged the state government to ensure that rules and laws are followed.

“Many people are still not taking the lockdown seriously. Please save yourself by doing this, save your family, follow the instructions seriously. I request the state governments to ensure the rules and laws are followed,” Modi’s tweet, roughly translated from Hindi, read. The Centre and state governments have decided to completely shut down 75 districts across the country where coronavirus cases have been reported. It has also been decided to suspend the interstate bus services till March 31, government officials said on Sunday.

11: 00 IST Andhra Pradesh govt orders state-wide lockdown to prevent onset of community transmission of coronavirus

Extending the precautionary restrictions to prevent the rapid spread of coronavirus, the Andhra Pradesh state government on Monday ordered a state-wide lockdown to prevent onset of community transmission of the pandemic infection.

“In exercise of the powers contained under Sec 234 of Epidemic Disease Act, 1897, the Governor of Andhra Pradesh hereby issues following measures for containment of COVID-19,” a notification issued by the state Health Department read. “While, vide GO Rt.No. 202 and GO Rt. No. 204 multiple restriction and social distancing measures have been communicated, it is imperative that in proactive manner a state-wide lockdown is observed to prevent onset of community transmission of the Corona-virus,” it added.

So far, six cases have tested positive in the state, one each in districts of Nellore, East Godavari, Krishna, Prakasam and two in Visakhapatnam.

10:45 IST: Uber rides suspended, Ola curtail services in Delhi
Cab operator Uber on Monday temporarily suspended all ride services in the city amid lockdown in the view of novel coronavirus while Ola Cabs has curtailed its services.

“Ola will continue to encourage citizens to limit travel only for essential emergency needs as per Govt’s directive. We will enable minimal network of vehicles to support essential services, as part of this national effort to reduce contagion of COVID-19,” Spokesperson, Ola Cabs said in a statement. The national capital wore a deserted look on Monday morning. Fewer vehicles were seen plying on roads as prohibitory orders are currently in force across the city in wake of the coronavirus outbreak.

According to the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), the total number of novel coronavirus cases in India has gone up to 396. The national capital has reported 29 confirmed cases.

10:35 IST: Complete lockdown in Telangana from today
The Telangana government has announced a complete lockdown in the state till March 31 in view of the coronavirus outbreak. “Whereas the State Government is satisfied that the State of Telangana is threatened with the spread of Covid-19, which has already been declared as a pandemic by World Health Organization, and it is therefore necessary to take certain further emergency measures to prevent and contain the spread of virus. The Government in exercise of the powers conferred under Section 2 of The Epidemic Diseases Act, 1897, read with all other enabling provisions of The Disaster Management Act, 2005, hereby notify lockdown in the entire State of Telangana with immediate effect till 31st March, 2020,” stated an order from Telangana government dated March 22. All state borders will be sealed other than for “movement of essential and perishable commodities.” During the period, all public transport services including TSRTC buses, SETWIN, Hyderabad Metro, taxis, auto-rickshaws will not be permitted.

10:31 IST: ‘We are monitoring the situation seriously’, says Rajeev Mehta
As coronavirus continues to rage, the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) general secretary Rajeev Mehta on Monday said that the committee is monitoring the situation earnestly.

His remarks came after the Canadian Olympic Committee (COC) decision to not send their teams to the Olympic and Paralympic Games in the summer of 2020. “We are monitoring the situation very seriously and we are in touch with the government. I will talk to the secretary sports government of India and also the minister,” Mehta told ANI.

“I know Canada has denied sending athletes if Olympics are not postponed and Australia has also raised the question. We are also in discussion about what to do. As of now, nothing has decided but we are in touch with the government,” he added.

10:15 IST: Akhilesh Yadav urges Centre to relax norms for filing of returns
As the ending of the financial year draws nears, Samajwadi Party leader and former Uttar Pradesh chief minister Akhilesh Yadav on Monday urged the Centre to announce relaxation in the time frame for filing tax returns as the country braces for a battle with the coronavirus pandemic.

10:12 IST: Delhi lockdown first day: Few vehicles on roads, borders sealed
The national capital wore a deserted look on Monday morning. Fewer vehicles were seen plying on roads as prohibitory orders are currently in force across the city in wake of the coronavirus outbreak.

According to the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), the total number of novel coronavirus cases in India has gone up to 396. The national capital has reported 29 confirmed cases. The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) has announced the closure of metro train services till March 31 and only 25 per cent of Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC) buses will hit the roads. No other modes of public transport including private buses, taxis, auto-rickshaws, rickshaws and e-rickshaws shall be permitted during the lockdown period. Cab operator Uber has temporarily suspended all ride services in the city, while OLA said it “will enable minimal network of vehicles to support essential services”.


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