New Delhi: In a bid to contain the spread of coronavirus, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced total lockdown in India for 21 days. With this attempt, India hopes to curb the spread of Covid-19 infection. Coronavirus cases are growing rapidly in India and across the world.
The coronavirus which had first emerged in China’s Wuhan city in December last year and has now spread across many countries in the world.
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20:18 IST: Total positive COVID-19 cases in India reaches 606: Health Ministry
The total number of positive coronavirus cases in India have climbed to 606, said Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on Wednesday.
The total number of active COVID-19 cases in the country so far stands at 553, while the number of people who have been cured or discharged stands at 42. Ten people have died from the disease while one case has migrated, the Ministry further informed.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday announced a 21-day lockdown in the entire country to deal with the spread of coronavirus, saying that “social distancing” is the only option to deal with the disease, which spreads rapidly.
20:00 IST: Spain’s COVID-19 toll now higher than China at 3,434
Spain’s number of COVID-19 cases has increased by almost 8,000 over the past 24 hours, reaching 47,610, and the death toll has increased by over 700 to 3,434 and is now higher than in China, according to the national Health Ministry.
As of Wednesday, 3,166 patients are in critical condition. As many as 5,367 people have recovered from COVID-19 in Spain. China’s death toll from COVID-19 currently amounts to 3,163.
Separately, Belgium recorded 668 new infection cases in the past 24 hours, bringing the total to 4,937, according to Le Soir daily. More than 2,300 patients have been hospitalized, 434 of them in the past day, and 474 people were in intensive care as of Tuesday. The death tally stands at 178.
19:53 IST: Centre earmarks Rs 1.80 lakh crores for providing subsidised wheat, rice : Union Minister
In the backdrop of coronavirus outbreak and subsequent lockdown, the Centre has earmarked Rs 1.80 lakh crores for providing wheat at Rs 2 per kg and rice at Rs 3 per kg, Union Minister Sadananda Gowda on Wednesday.
Enumerating about the Union Cabinet decision, he said: “Union Cabinet has decided to provide wheat at Rs 2 per kg which is worth Rs 27 per kg and rice at Rs 3 per kg which is worth Rs 37 per kg. A total amount of Rs 1 lakh 80 thousand crores is being spent for the cause. The amount will be given in advance to the states for the coming 3 months,” Gowda tweeted. The decision was taken in the Cabinet meeting headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi at his residence earlier today.
19:33 IST: 9 new positive coronavirus cases confirmed in Kerala, says CM
Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Wednesday confirmed nine new COVID-19 positive cases in the state.
“Out of the nine people who have been tested positive for COVID-19, four have returned from Dubai, one from the UK and one from France,” said Vijayan in a statement. With this, the total number of COVID-19 cases has reached 118 in the state.
According to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, the total number of positive COVID-19 cases in India reached 606, including 43 foreign nationals
19:31 IST: Pakistan announces Rs 1.25 trillion package
In the backdrop of coronavirus pandemic, Pakistan government on Wednesday announced Rs 1.25 trillion package to keep the economy afloat. The package will grant relief to SMEs and daily wage workers.
“The federal and provincial governments are working together,” Special Assistant to Prime Minister Hafeez Sheikh said, as reported by DAWN. On Tuesday, Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly and PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif on Tuesday urged Prime Minister Imran Khan to call a meeting of the Council of Common Interests (CCI) to address the current coronavirus outbreak.
He also offered the government various solutions for combating the economic fallout of the novel coronavirus in the country.
He proposed slashing the interest rate by three to four per cent. He further proposed to double the salaries of medical staff. He also asked to take the media on board and launching an awareness campaign.
19:10 IST: Don’t attempt to treat COVID-19 infection on your own: PM Modi
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday said that people should not attempt to treat coronavirus infection on their own and must consult a doctor.
“You should not attempt to treat Coronavirus infection on your own. Stay at your home, do things only after consulting a doctor. Call them up, ask them, tell them your ailments. We will have to note that no vaccine has been developed for it so far, anywhere in the world,” Prime Minister Modi said while interacting with people of his Lok Sabha constituency Varanasi via video conferencing. “Scientists in India and across the world are working on it, work is going on rapidly. If someone recommends you a medicine then kindly talk to your doctor first. Take medicine only after consulting a doctor,” he added.
18:50 IST: COVID-19 positive cases in Delhi reaches 35, says Kejriwal
With 5 new positive COVID-19 cases reported in the last 24 hours, the total number of positive coronavirus cases in the national capital reached 35 on Wednesday, said Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal.
“In the last 24 hours, there have been 5 new COVID-19 cases in Delhi. One of them has a foreign travel history. Now, the total number of cases rises to 35 in Delhi,” CM Kejriwal said while addressing a digital press conference. Earlier today, CM Kejriwal assured people that the supply of essential commodities will not be hampered at any cost and added that personnel manning shops and engaged in other essential services would be issued E-passes promptly to facilitate their movement in the national capital during the 21-day lockdown period.
18:24 IST: COVID-19 : 26-year-old tested positive in Uttarakhand
A 26-year-old resident of Dugadda in Pauri has been confirmed positive for coronavirus, said Chief Medical Superintendent of Pauri on Wednesday.
“The 26-year-old youth who is confirmed positive for coronavirus is resident of Dugadda in Pauri of Garhwal district. He had returned from Spain on March 19,” said the Chief Medical Superintendent. The official also said that he was admitted to a hospital after he complained of cough.
16:29 IST: Free meals, increased rations in various states for poor, homeless
To mitigate the hardships faced by people, especially the homeless and poor, various state governments have announced increased rations and free meals.
On Saturday chief minister Arvind Kejriwal had announced that free cooked food will be provided twice a day to the homeless in night shelters and said his government will provide free ration to over 72 lakh people and the quantity will be increased from 5 Kg to 7Kg for every ration card-holders. On Wednesday, free meals were handed out at a ‘Rain Basera’ (shelter home), situated at Baba Kharak Singh Marg. Food was also distributed at a shelter home, near Bangla Sahib Gurudwara.
15:13 IST: Maharashtra’s first two COVID-19 patients discharged after successfully overcoming disease
The first two reported cases of coronavirus positive patients in Maharashtra have been discharged from hospital on Wednesday after successfully overcoming the disease.
“Both the patients have been discharged now,” said Dr Ramchandra Hunkare, Chief of Pune Municipal Corporation’s health department. The cases, both from Pune, were released from the hospital after successful treatment and following the negative outcome of COVID-19 tests performed on them, twice.
“Samples of three others in Pune are now tested negative for the first time and their samples have been sent for second testing again, the reports of which are expected by Wednesday evening. If those reports come negative again they shall be discharged with due process,” Dr Hunkare said.
Earlier, Pune Municipal Corporation PRO Sanjay More said, “First two positive cases found in Pune and in Maharashtra have tested negative twice for COVID-19 hence both will be discharged from hospital today.”
“On March 9 they were admitted to hospital. After 14 days their samples were found negative. On Tuesday, the samples were again sent for testing and were found negative for coronavirus. So we are discharging them on Wednesday as per discharging protocol. They will be put under home quarantine for the next 14 days” the PRO said.
14:49 IST: YSRCP MP Balashowry contributes Rs 4 cr fund from MPLAD to combat COVID-19
YSRCP MP from Machilipatnam V Balashowry has announced a contribution of Rs 4 crores to the Chief Minister’s Relief Fund for combating the COVID-19 outbreak.
In a letter addressed to Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Jagan Mohan Reddy, Balashowry said, “I seriously thought, as a Member of Parliament what is that I could do to strengthen your hands in these difficult times to deal with COVID-19 and came out with an idea and decided to contribute Rs 4 crores to CM Relief Fund from my MPLADS Fund, so that you can optimally utilize it to deal with Coronavirus.” “I also feel that this gesture will send a good message to the people that we are also trying our best and contributing our mite in controlling and containing this deadly virus. I wish, if each of the 28 MPs contribute Rs. 4 crores each from their MPLADS Fund, it comes to Rs 112 crores,” the letter further read.
14:31 IST: COVID-19: UP govt announces Rs 50 cr more for state health department
Uttar Pradesh government has announced an additional fund of Rs 50 crore for the health department in wake of COVID-19.
On Tuesday, Uttar Pradesh Governor Anandiben Patel gave her nod for the declaration of coronavirus outbreak as a ‘disaster’ in the state. The state revenue department had declared COVID-19 crisis as a disaster.
Thirty-seven people have tested positive for COVID-19 in Uttar Pradesh, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare reported on Tuesday.
14:19 IST: Odisha Mining Corporation gives Rs 500 crore to CM’s Relief Fund to combat coronavirus
The Odisha Mining Corporation (OMC) has contributed Rs 500 crore to the Chief Minister’s Relief Fund for supporting the state government’s fight against coronavirus.
The OMC added that this sum is in addition to the Rs 100 crore already contributed by the public sector company to the CMRF in February, 2020. “Odisha Mining Corporation (OMC) as a responsible public sector company, is contributing Rs 500 crores to Chief Minister Relief Fund (CMRF) for supporting the State government efforts to control the COVID-19 situation. This is apart from the Rs 100 crores already contributed to CMRF in February 2020,” a release by the PSU read.
13:28 IST: Two health workers among four new COVID-19 cases in Rajasthan, tally reaches 36
Four new cases of COVId-19, including three from Bhilwara and one from Jodhpur, have been reported from Rajasthan on Wednesday, taking the total number of coronavirus cases in the state to 36. Two of the affected in Bhilwara are medical support staff.
“Four new cases – 3 from Bhilwara and 1 new from Jodhpur. Total 36 positive cases for COVID-19 in Rajasthan,” said a government release.
One person from Jodhpur has travel history while two from Bhilwara are members of the medical staff in the area, it added.
12:51 IST: Pak’s coronavirus tally surges to 1000
The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Pakistan reached 1000 on Wednesday, including 413 in the southeastern province of Sindh alone, while 7 people, including a doctor, have died of the infection, Pakistan Government said.
Five new cases were reported in the Taftan camps, taking the tally in Balochistan to 115, a provincial government spokesperson said. “The number of confirmed cases in the province now stands at 115 after five new cases were identified in the Taftan quarantine,” the spokesperson said, as reported by Geo News.
The eastern province of Punjab has reported 296 cases, the northwestern province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa have reported 78, while capital Islamabad has reported 16.
The country has decided to suspend all domestic flights from March 26 onward as part of the measures to contain the spread of the virus.
12:16 IST: 539 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in India, says ICMR
The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) on Wednesday confirmed 539 positive cases of coronavirus in India.
“A total of 539 individuals have been confirmed positive among suspected cases and contacts of known positive cases,” said the ICMR in a statement.
A total of 22,928 samples from 22,038 individuals have been tested for SARS-CoV2 as on March 25 at 10 am, it said.
11:38 IST: With 3 new cases, Gujarat’s COVID-19 count climbs to 38
With three fresh cases of novel coronavirus, the total number of people affected by COVID-19 in Gujarat has now risen to 38, according to state Principal Secretary (Health) Jayanti Ravi.
“Three new coronavirus positive cases have been reported in Gujarat. 38 positive cases reported till date,’ said Ravi here on Wednesday in a press conference. She informed that FIRs against 147 people have been filed for breaking home quarantine. “FIRs have been registered against 147 people for breaking home quarantine,” she said. On Tuesday, 52 samples to be tested for coronavirus were collected in the state.
11:21 IST: 388 Russian citizens stranded in India flown back
The three hundred and eighty-eight Russian citizens stranded in India were flown back to their homeland by a special Aeroflot flight, the Russian embassy in New Delhi said on Wednesday.
“Russian Embassy has successfully facilitated transportation by special Aeroflot flight of about 388 Russian citizens who were stranded in India due to the lockdown,” said Evgeny Bereka, Press attache, Russian Embassy. Countries across the world have been carrying out special operations to evacuate their citizens stranded in foreign lands amid the outbreak of coronavirus — the pandemic which has infected more than 3,75,000 people and killed over 16,300.
11:13 IST: Goa to set up its own virology lab at GMC: State Health Minister
Goa is setting up its own virology lab at Goa Medical College (GMC), Vishwajit Rane, state health minister of Goa, said on Tuesday. “I am happy to announce the setting up of a virology lab at GMC, which has been possible with the help of the Central Government. We have procured the PCR machine through the Malaria Control Center” he said. At a time when COVID-19 positive cases are climbing in the country, the proposed virology lab will introduce real-time COVID-19 testing. Rane said, “Real-time testing for COVID 19 will be introduced in a couple of days using the PCR technology.”
512 active coronavirus cases in India: Union health Ministry
10:37 IST: The total number of confirmed coronavirus cases in India rose to 562, according to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on Wednesday.
This includes 512 active cases, while 40 infected people have already been cured or discharged. The Union Health Ministry said that total deaths due to the disease now stand at 9, as the second death reported in Delhi is COVID-19 negative. One patient has also migrated due to the infection.
The Central government has taken several steps to contain the rapid spread of the virus including the screening 15,24,266 passengers at the airports. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had on Tuesday announced a 21-day lockdown in the entire country effective from midnight to deal with the spread of coronavirus, saying that “social distancing” is the only option to deal with the disease, which spreads rapidly.
In a televised address to the nation, Prime Minister Modi said that it is vital to break the chain of the disease and experts have said that at least 21 days are needed for it.
The Prime Minister, who had also addressed the nation last week, said the lockdown has drawn a “Lakshman Rekha” in every home and people should stay indoors for their own protection and for that of their families.