Coronavirus Outbreak Updates: Andhra Pradesh reports sixth positive case; Jharkhand announces lockdown with immediate effect

23:27 (IST)

Coronavirus outbreak Latest Updates


German chancellor Angela Merkel quarantined

German Chancellor Angela Merkel in quarantine after doctor who gave her a vaccine tests positive for coronavirus, reports AP.

23:20 (IST)

Coronavirus Outbreak in India Latest Update

Three new coronavirus cases in Rajasthan

Three new coronavirus positive cases were reported in Rajasthan on Sunday, taking the total number in the state to 28, according to PTI. One positive case each was reported from Bhilwara, Jhunjhunu and Jodhpur, Additional Chief Secretary Rohit Kumar Singh said.  He said that out of the total 28 cases, 13 are from Bhilwara and four from Jhunjhunu and rest from other parts of the state including the capital city Jaipur.  Singh said that the government is in process if earmarking quarantine facility for 1 lakh people to face any emergency.

23:13 (IST)

Coronavirus outbreak Latest Updates

Emirates revokes passenger flight suspension

Dubai carrier Emirates partially revoked the passenger flight suspension which was scheduled to begin on 25 March. "Having received requests from governments and customers to support the repatriation of travellers, Emirates will continue to operate passenger and cargo flights to the following countries and territories until further notice, as long as borders remain open, and there is demand: the UK, Switzerland, Hong Kong, Thailand, Malaysia, Philippines, Japan, Singapore, South Korea, Australia, South Africa, USA, and Canada," it said in a statement.

 

23:08 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Update

Gujarat to reveal names of Covid-19 patients, says Deputy CM

The Gujarat government has decided to reveal the names of the persons who have tested positive for coronavirus in the state so far, so that those who came in their contact with them can get themselves tested, Deputy Chief Minister Nitin Pate, who also holds the health portfolio, said on Sunday. "If such persons should go to a government hospital and get themselves checked. In case they test positive, their treatment can be started immediately," he said.The number of infected persons in the state is 18, of whom one died in Surat on Sunday.
 
PTI

23:04 (IST)

Coronavirus in US Latest Update

COVID19 outbreak biggest domestic disaster since Great Depression: New York Mayor

he mayor of New York City, which has more than a third of the nation’s coronavirus cases, described the outbreak as the biggest domestic crisis since the Great Depression and called for the US military to mobilize to help keep the healthcare system from becoming overwhelmed, "If we don’t get more ventilators in the next 10 days people will die who don’t have to die," said Mayor Bill de Blasio, as the nation's most populous city saw cases top 8,000 and deaths hit 60. Nationwide cases are over 25,000 with at least 340 dead, according to a Reuters tally.

23:01 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Update

Count in India reaches 396 : ICMR

A total of 396 people have tested positive for coronvirus in India, ANI quotes ICMR as saying.

22:52 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Update

Section 144 imposed in Mumbai, Pune till Monday morning

Authorites in Pune, Pimpri Chinchwad and Mumbai have imposed Section 144 of the CrPC from 9 pm on Sunday till 5 am on Monday, prohibiting the movement of people and vehicles on the road.Pune Joint Commissioner of Police Ravindra Shisve told PTI that essential services are excluded from the purview of the
curfew. Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray has announced that a curfew under Section 14 of the CrPC will kick in on Monday morning in urban areas of the state, including Pune and Mumbai.

22:39 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Update

Supreme Court cancels hearing for Monday

The Supreme Court has cancelled the hearing scheduled for tomorrow, except the one assigned to the Chief Justice's Bench at 11 am tomorrow, reports LiveLaw. The rest of the hearings by the bench headed by the Chief Justice shall be held via video conference, says a notice issued by the court.

22:31 (IST)

WHO considering airborne precautions for medical staff

CNBC reported that the WHO is considering “airborne precautions” for medical staff after a new study showed the coronavirus can survive in the air in some settings.

22:27 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Update

One new case in Andhra Pradesh

The sixth positive case of coronavirus was registered in Andhra Pradesh on Sunday, PTI quotes officials  as saying. The sixth patient is the wife of the person who tested positive for coronavirus in Visakhapatnam on 17 March upon his return from Mecca. She contracted the virus from her husband, they said.

22:16 (IST)

Jharkhand announces lockdown till 31 March

ANI has reported that the Jharkhand government has announced a lockdown till 31 March. Movement of all public transport has been prohibited. However, essential services, including ration shops, bank/ATM, postal services, hospitals, medical stores, petrol/diesel pumps, will remain exempt.

22:12 (IST)

Delhi officials to check if people who returned from abroad self-quarantined

NDTV has reported that Delhi officials will check if 35,000 people who returned from abroad since 1 March have self-quarantined.

22:08 (IST)

Mukesh Ambani conveys appreciation for health workers during 'Janata curfew'

21:48 (IST)

Coronavirus outbreak in France Latest Updates

France reports doctor's death

The coronavirus outbreak has claimed its first fatality among French medical personnel, Health Minister Olivier Veran said.  The deceased doctor was an emergency specialist working at a hospital in Compiegne, north of Paris, according to a Facebook post by one of his children, reported by public television. “The medical profession is making a heavy sacrifice in our country today,” Veran said.

Reuters

21:38 (IST)

Coronavirus in Sri Lanka Latest Updates

Sri Lanka imposes curfew

The Sri Lankan government on Friday imposed atwo-and-a half day long curfew across the whole island in a bid to contain the spreading of the coronavirus, reports AP.The number of positive cases has risen to 59

21:35 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Update

Assam suspends interstate travel

All inter-state passenger vehicles (contract carriages, stage carriages, taxi cabs, maxi cabs) to and from Assam, to other States and Union Territories have been suspended till 31 March. However, it will not be applicable to goods vehicles, personal vehicles, vehicles used for maintaining essential emergency services and vehicles on government duty.

21:30 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Update

Lockdown in Chhattisgarh's urban areas till 31 March

Chhattisgarh chief minister Bhupesh Baghel  announced a lockdown in urban areas of the state till March 31 in view of the novel coronavirus outbreak. "To prevent the spread of virus in Chhattisgarh, we have decided to impose curfew till 31 March in all urban areas. During this period, all offices, institutions,
transport services etc will be closed. However, essential services such as medical shops, grocery shops, vegetable outlets, milk shops and petrol pumps will function," he said.
 
Besides, services like electricity supply, water supply, domestic gas supply, municipal sanitation, waste disposal and commercial transport will continue to function as before, he said.

21:14 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Update

Govt offices in Maharashtra to function with 5% staffing: Uddhav Thackeray

Apprising the people of important decisions taken during the day, Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray said that Section 144 of the CrPC has been imposed in all urban areas of the state. He said that public transport (trains and buses) and private buses will remain closed and government offices will have five percent staffing.

21:05 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Update

Three more test positive in Kolkata

 
Three more persons tested positive for novel coronavirus in Kolkata taking the total number of COVID-19 cases in West Bengal to seven, health department officials said. The three are parents of a UK-returned youth, the second positive case of the deadly infection in the state, and a maid working at their residence in Ballygunge area. All the three are currently at an isolation ward of the state-run Beliaghata ID hospital, officials said.
 
Eight other members of the youth's family were admitted to the isolation ward of the Chittaranjan Cancer Hospital's second campus in Rajarhat, officials said. The 22-year-old man, who is pursuing higher studies in the United Kingdom, had returned home on 13 March. He was admitted to the Beliaghata ID Hospital on Thursday with COVID-19 symptoms. 

20:56 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Update

All segments of BSE to operate normally on Monday

20:48 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Update

Night curfew in Meghalaya's East Jaintia Hills district

 Night curfew was imposed in East Jaintia Hills district of Meghalaya to tackle any emergent situation and ensure safety of people, reports PTI. The night curfew has also been imposed to prevent incoming vehicles from Assam from entering the district via Malidor area, according to a senior government official. Keeping in view the emerging scenario, safety of the people, and to avoid any outbreak of an epidemic, night curfew has been imposed with effect from 7 pm on 22 March till 7 am on 23 March," district magistrate F M Dopt said.
 
The state government has also directed its employees to be stationed at their places of posting even as inter-state and inter-district public transport have been withdrawn till 31 March, according to a government notification.

20:43 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Update

Himachal Pradesh's Kangra district locked down indefinitely

 

The Himachal Pradesh government has ordered an indefinite "complete lockdown" in Kangra district, where two persons have tested positive for coronavirus, Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur said.In a statement, the chief minister urged people not to panic as "the state has adequate stock of essential commodities".
 
PTI

20:36 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Update

Meerut, Gorakhpur medical colleges authorised for Covid-19 tests

The Gorakhpur and Meerut medical colleges have been authorised by the Indian Council for Medical Research to conduct tests for coronavirus infections in the state, PTI quotes state Health Minister Suresh Khanna as saying.
 

20:34 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Update

Fifteen new cases in Kerala

Fifteen more positive cases of coronaviruswere detected in Kerala, taking the total to 64, including three discharged, PTI quotes the state health departmanet as saying.

20:25 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Update

Jammu and Kashmir admin orders shutdown till 31 March

The Jammu and Kashmir administration on Sunday ordered the shutdown of all establishments except those providing essential services and commodities across the Union Territory till 31 March. The shutdown will come into effect from 8 pm on Sunday till 6 pm on 31 March, Chief Secretary BVR Subrahmanyam said in a letter to all 20 deputy commissioners of the UT.  "…it is necessary to enforce social distancing, i.e., preventing/minimizing close contact between people, therefore, Deputy Commissioners/District Magistrates shall issue orders under section 144 CrPC and also under the Disaster Management Act 2005 (both Acts) to shutdown all establishments except those providing essential commodities/services in their districts from Sunday 22 March, 2020 (08.00 PM) till Tuesday, the 31st March, 2020 (06.00 pm) (sic)," the letter said.
 
Earlier in the day, an order issued by Secretary, Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs Simrandeep Singh declared 16 services as essential.  The essential services include supply of groceries, fresh fruits, vegetables, medicines and other pharmaceuticals, manufacturing of health and medical equipment, banks, ATMs, dispensing of petrol and diesel at pumps, milk shops and dairies and related products, supply of cattle fodder, domestic and commercial LPG, telecom operators and their designated agencies, newspapers, post offices and loading and unloading of wheat and rice at Food Corporation of India (FCI) and local food depots

20:21 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Updates

Andhra Pradesh CM announces relief measures for the poor as state moves towards lockdown

 
Moving towards a complete lockdown, the Andhra Pradesh government announced the closure of inter-state borders for transport till March 31 and asked pople to step out of their homes only for essential needs. Chief Minister YS Jaganmohan Reddy said public transport within state and inter-state would be shut while the government will also be run with skeletal staff, with employees working in rotation basis He also announced  free ration to the poor and Rs 1000 assistance per family.

20:04 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Updates

Coronavirus tally rises to 360

 

India now has a total of 360 positive coronavirus cases and a seven people have died from the disease, PTI quotes the Union health ministry as saying,

20:00 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Updates

Buses, tempos, trucks to remain off roads in Assam till 24 March

All types of commercial vehicles, including buses and tempos, will remain off the roads in Assam till Tuesday announced The All Assam Motor Transport Association (AAMTA). The state's apex transport association which has around 20,000 vehicles registered with it, said it will evaluate the situation on Tuesday and will take a furthermdecision.

"This is a very serious situation. We need to break the chain to prevent the spreading of the coronavirus. If we do that, then we will be saved. That is why we have decided to suspend our operations across Assam till 24 March," AAMTA secretary general Pradip Das told PTI.

19:52 (IST)

Coronavirus Outbreak Latest Updates

Emirates Airlines to suspend passenger flights by 25 March

In light of the coronavirus outbreak and subsequent travel restrictions imposed by many countries, Emirates Airlines has said it will suspend all passenger flights by 25 March. Cargo operations will however continue. "This painful but pragmatic move will help Emirates Group preserve business viability and secure jobs worldwide, avoiding cuts," said the airlines in a statement.

19:43 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Updates

Bihar to enforce lockkdown till 31 March

Bihar will enforce lockdown in all district headquarters, municipal towns and block headquarters till 31 March, said chief minister Nitish Kumar, adding that all essential services will continue in the state.

19:30 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Updates

Janata curfew beginning of a long battle, says Narendra Modi

 Prime Minister Narendra Modi said the 14-hour 'Janata Curfew' is the beginning of a long battle against coronavirus outbreak and the countrymen have proved that together they can defeat any challenge. "Today's Janta Curfew may end at 9.00 pm, but this does not mean we start celebrating," he tweeted.He said the self-imposed curfew should "not be considered as a success" as it is the "beginning of a long battle".

 
"Janta Curfew is beginning of a long battle. Today countrymen have told that we are capable, and once we decide we can take on any challenge together," he said.
 
In another tweet, he urged people to follow the lockdown imposed by various state governments by staying in their homes and appealed to people in areas where curfew had not been imposed to avoid stepping out of their homes unnecessarily.

19:23 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Updates

Goa to extend curfew till 25 March

The Goa government extended Janata curfew in the state till 25 March in view of the novel coronavirus outbreak, reports PTI. In a statement, the chief minister's office said a detailed circular on this decision would be issued by the general administration department later in the evening. Essential services would remain out of the lockdown.

19:19 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Updates


Lockdown imposed in 7 districts of Haryana

Haryana chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar has announced that a lockdown has been imposed in seven districts of the state till 31 March, reports PTI. The lockdown will be imposed in the districts of Sonipat, Panipat, Jhajjar, Rohtak and Panchkula from 9 pm on Sunday.

19:11 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Updates

IIT Delhi has developed affordable COVID19 test, says HRD ministry


According to the ministry of human resource development, the researchers of IIT Delhi have developed a method to detect COVID19 which can significantly reduce the cost of testing. The National Institute of Virology, Pune is in the process of validating this test on clinical samples, it said.

18:58 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Updates

Telangana to be under lockdown till 31 March

Telangana chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao has declared a lockdown till 31 March in the state, under the Epidemic Diseases Act, 1897 as a precautionary measure.

18:53 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Updates

Delhi borders to be sealed, essential services to continue: Arvind Kejriwal

During the lockdown, no public transport will operate and Delhi's borders will be sealed but the essential services related to health, food, water and power supply will continue, PTI quotes Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal as saying. Dairies, grocery shops, chemists and petrol pumps will remain open and persons associated with essential services will be allowed to go to their destinations during the lockdown, he said. "We know people will face difficulties, but lockdown is necessary to contain the spread of coronavirus," the chief minister said.

He also said six of the total cases reported in Delhi were locally transmitted

18:38 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Updates

Complete lockdown in Delhi till 31 March: Arvind Kejriwal 

Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Sunday announced that Delhi will be under complete lockdown from Monday 6 am till midnight of 31 March.

18:21 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Updates

Executive chairman of Vedanta Resources pledges to contribute Rs 100 crore to contain COVID-19

Anil Agarwal, Executive Chairman of Vedanta Resources Limited, has pledged to contribute Rs 100 crores in an effort to fight the novel coronavirus pandemic. "I am committing 100 cr towards fighting the Pandemic. #DeshKiZarooratonKeLiye is a pledge that we undertook and this is the time when our country needs us the most. Many people are facing uncertainty and I’m specially concerned about the daily wage earners, we will do our bit to help."

18:14 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Updates

15 UP districts, including Lucknow to be under lockdown till 25 March: Yogi Adityanath

Lockdown will be imposed from 22 March in 15 districts of Uttar Pradesh - Agra, Lucknow, Gautam Budh Nagar, Ghaziabad, Moradabad, Varanasi, Lakhimpur Khiri, Bareilly, Azamgarh, Kanpur, Meerut, Prayagraj, Aligharh, Gorakhpur and Saharanpur.

"The lockdown will be effective from 23 March till 25 March in 15 districts of Uttar Pradesh," said Chief minister Yogi Adityanath.

18:10 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Updates

Air India crew members face condemnation from vigilante welfare associations, neighbours for flying to COVID-hit countries

Releasing a statement, Air India said on Sunday that its crew members who have undertaken to fly to COVID-affected cities have been facing condemnation from vigilante Resident Welfare Associations and neighbours in many localities.

The crew members are obstructed to perform their duties simply because they travelled abroad.

"These vigilantes have conveniently forgotten that many a spouse, parent, sibling, child and dear ones have been brought home safe and secure from affected countries, thanks to the heroic efforts of these Air India crew," read the statement.

17:50 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Updates

Steps taken by Karnataka govt to contain COVID-19

Taking preventive measures against the novel coronavirus, the Karnataka government has ordered that all public transport will remain cancelled in the state on Monday as well. All AC bus services will stay suspended till 31 March.

After the Janta curfew concludes at 9 pm, Section 144 will be imposed in the state from 9 pm till midnight.

17:31 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Updates

Govt to lockdown 75 districts across country

Centre on Sunday asked state governments to impose a complete lockdown in 75 districts across the country that have reported COVID-19 cases and casualties, and suspended all train services, including Metro and sub-urban services, to contain the infection. Some of the prominent cities included in the list are - Mumbai, Nagpur, Pune, East Delhi, North Delhi, North West Delhi, North East Delhi, South Delhi, West Delhi, Ahmedabad, Gurugram, Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad, Kolkata.

Only essential services will operate in these 75 districts and state governments have been asked to expand the list depending on their assessment of the situation. 

As of Sunday afternoon, India had reported 341 cases of COVID-19 with the toll rising to seven.

17:18 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Updates

WATCH: People clap, clang utensils, ring bells in in message of solidarity 

In reponse to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's call for Janta curfew, people come out on their balconies to clap, clang utensils and ring bells to express their gratitude to those providing essential services amid the coronavirus pandemic.

17:14 (IST)

WATCH: Yogi Adityanath clangs bell in Gorakhpur to express gratitude to those providing essential services 

17:11 (IST)

WATCH: People wave the tricolour outside Jama Masjid to express gratitude to those providing essential services

17:07 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Updates

Patna death yet to be confirmed as COVID-19 casualty: Health ministry

The death of the 38-year-old COVID-19 patient who passed away in AIIMS, Patna on Sunday is yet to be confirmed as COVID-19 casualty, according to ICMR. "We are checking details. We are awaiting confirmation from Patna," said Health ministry.

17:04 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Updates

Janta curfew extended till tomorrow in Uttar Pradesh 

Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath has extended the Janta curfew till 6 am on Monday. The chief minister is likely to make an important announcement on Sunday shortly.

17:00 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Updates

Arvind Kejriwal likely to announce complete lockdown in Delhi 

Owing to the current situation arising out of novel coronavirus, Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal is likely to announce complete lockdown in the  National Capital. He will hold a press conference at 6 pm on Sunday.

16:49 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Updates

60 labs operational to conduct COVID-19 tests: ICMR

As many as 60 private laboratories have been registered to conduct the COVID-19 tests, according to lCMR. "Coronavirus cases have surged due to rush of passengers from foreign countries in past few days," ICMR director general 

16:43 (IST)

Coronavirus in India Latest Updates

341 confirmed COVID-19 cases reported so far: Health ministry

As of Sunday, five deaths due to the novel coronavirus have been recorded, according to ICMR. "Two more deaths have been reported across the country on Sunday, one in Maharashtra and the other in Bihar. However, we are assessing the reason of deaths," saidHealth ministry

So far India has reported 341 confirmed cases of COVID-19.

Coronavirus Outbreak Updates: The sixth positive case of coronavirus was registered in Andhra Pradesh on Sunday. he sixth patient is the wife of the person who tested positive for coronavirus in Visakhapatnam on 17 March upon his return from Mecca. She contracted the virus from her husband, said officials.

Fifteen new positive cases of coronavirus were detected in Kerala on Sunday, taking the total number of infected persons under treatment in the state to 64, the government said. Health department said out of the 15, five are in
Kasaragod district, four in Kannur and two each in Malappuram, Kozhikode and Ernakulam districts.

India now has a total of 360 positive coronavirus cases and  seven people have died from the disease, said the Union health ministry.

Telangana chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao has declared a lockdown till 31 March in the state, under the Epidemic Diseases Act, 1897 as a precautionary measure. He has asked people to remain indoors and assured the supply of essential services.

Releasing a statement, Air India said on Sunday that its crew members who have undertaken to fly to COVID-affected cities have been facing condemnation from vigilante Resident Welfare Associations and neighbours in many localities.

The crew members are obstructed to perform their duties simply because they travelled abroad.

"These vigilantes have conveniently forgotten that many a spouse, parent, sibling, child and dear ones have been brought home safe and secure from affected countries, thanks to the heroic efforts of these Air India crew," read the statement.

Centre on Sunday asked state governments to impose a complete lockdown in 75 districts across the country that have reported COVID-19 cases and casualties, and suspended all train services, including Metro and sub-urban services, to contain the infection. Some of the prominent cities included in the list are - Mumbai, Nagpur, Pune, East Delhi, North Delhi, North West Delhi, North East Delhi, South Delhi, West Delhi, Ahmedabad, Gurugram, Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad, Kolkata.

Only essential services will operate in these 75 districts and state governments have been asked to expand the list depending on their assessment of the situation.

As many as 60 private laboratories have been registered to conduct the COVID-19 tests, according to lCMR. "Coronavirus cases have surged due to rush of passengers from foreign countries in past few days," ICMR director general

The Health Ministry has conducted Covid-19 tests on 5,000 individuals in the past one week. "Currently, we have the capacity to conduct 60,000-70,000 tests in a week," said ICMR director.

"We have conducted 15,000-17,000 tests so far. We have the capacity to conduct 10,000 tests per day, it means we can conduct 50,000-70,000 per week," ICMR chief.

It is essential to understand the ailment. 80 percent of the people will experience cold-like fever and they will recover. 20 percent may experience cough, cold, fever and some of them may be needed to be admitted to hospital, said ICMR Director-General Balram Bhargava.

The Health Ministry thanked the nation to observe Prime Minister Narendra Modi's call for Janta curfew on Sunday. "Fellow countrymen have been brought back from different parts of the world. Isolation is important at this point in time to break the chain of transmission," said the health ministry.

"The country can overcome any challenge," said the health ministry.

As the number of COVID-19 cases reached to 74 in the state, Maharashtra government decided to impose Section 144 of CrPC in all urban areas from 31 March. "I would like to request everyone to continue Janata Curfew till tomorrow morning," said Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray.

"Number of cases has increased considerably. I have no option left but to apply Section 144 in Maharashtra," Thackeray added.

No flights outside of India will be allowed to land in Mumbai. "In the wake of coronavirus pandemic, the employee strength at the government offices will be reduced to five per cent from the present 25 per cent," Thackeray said.

The chief secretaries of all states where confirmed novel coronavirus cases have been reported have been instructed by the Centre to extend restriction on movement of non-essential passengers till 31 March. The decision was taken during a meeting of the principal secretary to the prime minister and the chief secretaries.

At present, there are 75 districts across India where authorities have confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus.

Indian Railways halted the operation of all trains except goods trains till 31 March after the number of COVID-19 cases climbed in India. "However bare minimum Suburban services and Kolkata metro Rail service will continue to run till 22 March midnight, thereafter these services will also be stopped till 31 March," announced Ministry of Railways.

The 38-year-old COVID-19 patient who succumbed to the virus on Sunday had renal failure, after existing kidney problems, reported India Today. The Munger resident who passed away on Sunday morning in AIIMS, Patna had recently come from Qatar.

Bihar reported its first fatality due to the novel coronavirus after a 38-year-old patient succumbed to the virus in Patna, AIIMS, News18 Bihar reported. With this, India witnessed a break from the age pattern of all the deaths due to COVID-19, which has primarily affected the elderly so far.

The news was confirmed by Sanjay Kumar, Principal Secretary, Health Department of Bihar.

The deceased has been identified as Saif Ali, who was 38 years old. According to the information, Saif was a resident of Munger and worked in Qatar.

A 63-year-old coronavirus patient died in Mumbai on Sunday, taking the toll in Maharashtra to two, a health official said. The man was admitted to the HN Reliance Hospital in Mumbai on Saturday.

The Brihamumbai Municipal Corporation in a statement said the patient had chronic history of diabetes, high blood pressure and ischemic heart disease.

He developed acute respiratory distress syndrome leading to his death, the statement said.

All the 263 Indian evacuees who returned from Rome on Sunday at 9.15 am will be taken to ITBP Chhawla Quarantine Facility in Delhi. Before being taken to the quarantine site, all of them will be thermally screened at the Delhi airport.

A special Air India fllight with 12 crew members was sent to bring back the stranded Indians. The Boeing 787-Dreamline departed from Delhi at 2.30 pm on Saturday and left Rome on Sunday morning.

The special Air India flight carrying 263 Indian students that took off from Rome landed at Delhi's Indira Gandhi International airport today at 9.15 am. They will be taken to the quarantine facility in Chhawla. Meanwhile, the number of confirmed cases in India has climbed to 324.

From 22 to 31 March, general public will not be allowed to travel in Mumbai local trains. Meanwhile, Delhi Metro closed operations today in view of the janta curfew.

The four-year-old child, who was suspected of COVID-19 and has been tested in Jorhat Medical College and Regional Medical Research Center, has been found negative. Passengers were seen stranded outside New Delhi railway station and Mumbai's Lokmanya Tilak Terminus as all passenger and intercity trains have been cancelled till 10 pm on 22 March.

The total number of confirmed novel coronavirus cases in India rose to 315 Saturday after more than 60 fresh cases were reported in various parts of the country, the Union Health Ministry said.

"Total number of confirmed cases so far in the country as on 21 March including foreign nationals is 315," the Health Ministry said late Saturday.

The spurt in the new cases, the highest so far in a single day, came as several states went into battle mode to contain the pandemic, announcing partial shutdowns and imposing restrictions on people's movement and gatherings among a slew of precautionary measures.

Representational image. PTI

While the Rajasthan govt ordered lockdown across the state, Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani ordered the closure of shops and malls selling non-essential items in four cities — Ahmedabad, Surat, Vadodara, and Rajkot, till Wednesday.

In Maharashtra, where restrictions were already in place since Friday, the police took actions against those who violated the lockdown arresting over a thousand in Nagpur alone.

The country is also set to observe a "janata curfew" from 7 am to 9 pm on Sunday after Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday pitched for social distancing, asking people, barring those in essential services, not to get out of their homes.

The Congress, while announcing its support to the move, urged the Central Government to create an economic relief package, especially targetting the farmers, daily wage earners and small and medium scale businesses that are likely to be affected the most by the lockdown due to the virus.

Globally, Italy’s tally of coronavirus cases and deaths continued to soar, with officials on Saturday announcing new day-to-day highs: 793 dead and 6,557 cases.

The country, at the heart of western Europe’s rampaging outbreak, now counts 53,578 known cases.

Across the Atlantic, New York state officials considered establishing temporary hospitals on college campuses and in New York City's main convention centre in preparation for a possible onslaught of coronavirus patients.

In Germany's southern state of Bavaria, town squares were empty. Pigeons outnumbered people in London's usually bustling Trafalgar Square and Leicester Square a day after the British government ordered the closure of all bars, restaurants, movie theaters and other places where people congregate.

But shoppers still flocked to street markets in both countries, in a sign that restrictions were being interpreted in a patchwork fashion.

The number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 recorded in Africa rose above 1,000 Saturday, according to the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. At least 40 of Africa’s 54 countries now have cases.

Almost 287,000 cases have been confirmed globally, including more than 11,900 deaths, according to a running tally by Johns Hopkins University. Nearly 89,000 people have recovered.

Kerala record 12 new cases, Maharashtra leads with 63 overall

The figure of 315 includes 39 foreign nationals, including 17 from Italy, three from the Philippines, two from the UK, one each from Canada, Indonesia and Singapore. It also includes four deaths — reported from Delhi, Karnataka, Punjab and Maharashtra.

The data includes 63 cases in Maharashtra (three foreigners), followed by Kerala at 40, including seven foreign nationals.

However, Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan placed the total cases in the state at 49 with the state recording 12 more fresh cases of coronavirus on Saturday.

Delhi has reported 27 positive cases, which include one foreigner, while Uttar Pradesh has recorded 24 cases, including one foreigner.

In Gujarat, Chief Minister Vijay Rupani said the state has 13 coronavirus positive patients, with six new cases reported. Telangana has reported 21 cases, including 11 foreigners. Rajasthan has reported 17 cases, including two foreigners.

In Haryana, there are 17 cases, which include 14 foreigners. Karnataka has 15 coronavirus patients. Punjab and Ladakh have 13 cases each while Jammu and Kashmir has four.

Tamil Nadu Health Minister C Vijaya Baskar said three foreign nationals under observation have tested positive and the total number of cases has risen to six. Andhra Pradesh, Uttarakhand and West Bengal have reported three cases each. Odisha has two cases. Puducherry, Chhattisgarh and Chandigarh have reported one case each.

 

More states join lockdown

A number of states and union territories Saturday announced measures aimed at curbing the spread of coronavirus.

Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot ordered a lockdown in the state from 22 to 31 March 31 except for essential and medical services.

Gujarat chief minister Vijay Rupani announced the closure of shops selling non-essential items in the state's four largest cities -- Ahmedabad, Surat, Vadodara, and Rajkot -- till 25 March. he also said that government offices will operate at half strength on a rotational basis till 29 March.

The Chhattisgarh government ordered the closure of all its offices, except those providing essential and emergency services, till March 31.

In Odisha, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik announced a "near-total" shutdown in five districts and eight other prominent towns for a week from Sunday morning.

These districts and towns were identified as over 3,000 residents have returned to these places from abroad in the past few days.

The Goa government imposed section 144 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) across the state to prohibit large gatherings.

Health Minister Vishwajit Rane said the state government has also issued an order banning inter-state transport, except for the supply of essential commodities, from Saturday night onwards.

Goa shares borders with Maharashtra and Karnataka, where several people have tested positive for coronavirus infection.

Private events, including weddings, have also been banned in Goa till further orders.

The Bihar government ordered shutting down of bus services, restaurants and banquet halls across the state till March 31 while the State Election Commission of Arunachal Pradesh announced that municipal and panchayat elections slated to be held in April-May have been temporarily put on hold.

The Nashik administration in Maharashtra banned the sale of liquor from Saturday till further orders in the district invoking the Epidemic Diseases Act and Disaster Management Act.

Konkan Divisional Commissioner Shivaji Daund issued orders restricting travel on suburban local trains in Mumbai only for those engaged in essential services or those requiring medical aid.

"All the people who are not related to emergency services should avoid unnecessary travel from railway. They will not be given the entry on the railway stations. The officials and staff involved in the emergency services will be verified based in their government identity card or appointment orders," states the order issued by Daund.

"Those needing medical attention will be exempted. There are 135 suburban stations. Railways have reduced services by 35 to 40 per cent but we would like it come down further," said Daund.

The order to close bars, including those located in five-star hotels and resorts and liquor shops was issued by Collector Suraj Mandhare.

The Akola district administration ordered a shutdown between March 22 and 24 during which all establishments except those selling essential items will remain closed.

The move is similar to the sectoral shutdown put in place in Maharashtra's major cities like Mumbai, Pune, Thane and Nagpur.

In West Bengal, the Mamata Banerjee government ordered all restaurants, bars, pubs, nightclubs, amusement parks, museums and zoos to remain shut till 31 March.

The order, which aims to prevent all non-essential social gatherings, comes into effect on Sunday morning. The directive also applies to massage parlours and hookah bars, an official said, adding that strict action would be taken in case of any violation.

The Jammu and Kashmir administration said all its employees with foreign travel history along with their relatives would have to go for quarantine before resuming their duties.

Meanwhile, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said that there's no lockdown in the National Capital, but it may choose to do so if the situation doesn't improve.

Suspicion of community transmission lingers

Late in the night, the state of Assam reported its first case with a four-and-a-half-year-old girl in Jorhat district with no travel history abroad testing positive.

Jorhat Deputy Commissioner Roshni Aparanji Korati said the initial results from Jorhat Medical College and Hospital (JMCH) were positive and the samples have been sent to ICMR-RMRC laboratory at Lahowal in Dibrugarh district for a recheck.

In a health ministry breifing, reporters questioned the health ministry officials on three cases in India who have no reported history of foreign travel and only had a history of domestic travel from Mumbai, Pune and Chennai, respectively.

The ministry officials, however, refused to call it a case of community spread and said efforts were on to trace their contact history.

Govt caps price of santisers, masks; Cost of COVID-19 test to not exceed R 4,500

The government also capped the price for COVID-19 tests at Rs 4,500 in private accredited labs.

Lav Agarwal, Joint Secretary in the Union health ministry, asserted that the government is working to ramp up production of masks and sanitisers with states asked to allow deodorant manufacturers to produce sanitisers, adding there is no shortage of these items and people should not indulge in panic-buying.

The government also capped the maximum retail price of hand sanitisers at Rs 100 per 200ml bottle till 30 June this year amid a sharp rise in the prices of this product amid the coronavirus outbreak.

Similarly, the price of a 2 ply (surgical) mask has been capped at Rs 8 and that of a 3-ply (surgical) mask at Rs 10 till 30 June, Consumer Affairs Minister Ram Vilas Paswan said in a statement.

On 19 March, the government had placed price limits on alcohols used in making hand sanitizer.

At a press conference, the health ministry said it carried out training for critical care management at 1,000 places through video conference and will conduct nationwide mock drills on Sunday for emergency response to handle coronavirus cases.

Health ministry Joint Secretary Lav Agarwal said guidelines for coronavirus tests have been revised, directing that asymptomatic direct, high-risk contacts of confirmed cases should be tested once between day 5 and day 14 of coming in contact with an infected person.

Non-conformity to lockdown continues

A day before, India is set to observe "janata curfew", residents continued to violate existing restrictions across the country.

Amid increasing cases of people affected by a coronavirus, a couple was deboarded from a Delhi-bound Rajdhani train after co-passengers noticed a home quarantine seal on the husband's hand.

The Railways urged people to avoid non-essential travel for the safety of fellow citizens.

According to reports, Saturday also saw migrants leaving for their homes from big cities, where several cases of coronavirus have been reported, forcing the prime minister to appeal to migrants on Twitter to stay put wherever they are and not undertake train and bus journeys to their home due to the fear of coronavirus.

Modi cautioned people against any kind of travel, saying they are playing with their health and also putting their families at risk.

He said travelling in a crowded space increase the risk of its spread. The risk will also increase for the people who live where you will be headed, he added.

"It is my plea to you to stay put for a few days in the city where you are. We can all stop this disease from spreading by doing so. By crowding railway stations and bus stands, we are playing with our health. Please be concerned about your health and that of your families. Don't step out of the home if not necessary," the prime minister said.

Meanwhile, in some good news, Uttar Pradesh Health Minister Jai Pratap Singh, who had attended a party with Bollywood singer Kanika Kapoor days before she tested positive for coronavirus, tested negative for COVID-19 on Saturday.

The 66-year-old minister had gone into self-isolation after undergoing the testing here on Friday. Samples of 28 people who came in contact with him have also tested negative, King George Medical University spokesperson Dr Sudhir Singh said.

The Uttar Pradesh Police have Kapoor for negligence and committing acts that are likely to spread disease dangerous to life. She had attended at least three gatherings in Lucknow, including a party where political leaders were present.

Following Kapoor's announcement, a number of people who came in contact with her directly or indirectly went into self-quarantine. They included BJP leader Vasundhara Raje, her MP son Dushyant Singh and parliamentarians Derek O'Brien and Anupriya Patel.

Former BSP MP Akbar Ahmad Dumpy, whose high profile party in Lucknow was attended by Kapoor, has decided to stay in isolation as a precautionary measure for 14 days at his farmhouse in Utttarakhand, an official said.

With inputs from agencies



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