The government on Monday reported 92 new confirmed cases of infection and at least four deaths across India in past 24 hours. (Express photo: Vishal Srivastav)
Telangana reported five COVID-19 deaths Monday, taking the total number of fatalities due to the virus to six. All the deceased had attended a religious gathering at New Delhi’s Nizamuddin Markaz from March 13 to 16. While two persons died at Gandhi Hospital, one died at Global Hospital, one at Apollo Hospital, one at Gadwal hospital and one person at Nizamabad.
The death toll in the country rose to 32 while the number of coronavirus-infected patients has risen to 1,251 Monday evening, Ministry of Health stated. Commenting on the health crisis, the Supreme Court cautioned that fear and panic are becoming a bigger problem than the coronavirus.
Meanwhile, the total number of coronavirus cases across the world surpassed seven lakh, with over 1,30,000 cases in the United States. And the worst affected state in the US is New York, which has over 1,000 deaths. US President Donald Trump said the death rate in the country would likely peak in another two weeks. So far the over death toll is 2,460 from the respiratory disease, according to a Reuters tally.
The government on Sunday set up 11 empowered groups to coordinate the management and control of coronavirus (COVID-19) across the country.
Lucknow: Thermal screening of passengers being conducted at Kamta bus stand during a nationwide lockdown in the wake of coronavirus pandemic, in Lucknow, Sunday, March 29, 2020. (PTI Photo)
With 34,931 samples being tested so far, the government on Sunday set up 11 empowered groups to coordinate the management and control of the disease across the country. The designated groups will look at issues related to the medical emergency plan, availability of hospitals, isolation and quarantine beds, availability of critical medical equipment, human resources supply chain management, private sector coordination, economic and welfare measures and public grievances and strategic issues on lockdown.
Central PSUs are in the process of manufacturing 40 lakh more masks — 13 lakh have been procured and 5 lakh received as donation. Across the country, 1,26,720 isolation beds have been earmarked for COVID-19 patients. This includes 17,631 beds in central government institutions and 1,09,089 in the states. However, there are only 25,743 ICU beds so far.
The Centre on Sunday suspended two senior bureaucrats of the Delhi government and initiated disciplinary proceedings against two others for alleged dereliction of duty during the COVID-19 lockdown. Sources said action had been taken against the bureaucrats over the exodus of migrant workers seen in the national capital over the past couple of days. The Centre and several states have asked shops and establishments, and other commercial units, to pay wages to their workers during lockdown, but the informal nature of these entities, and non-registration of many unorganised workers with states, would restrict the states’ ability and administrative control to enforce such orders, said government officials, who did not wish to be named. The Centre also asked states to ensure that there is no movement of people across cities. It also announced that the migrants who travelled to their home towns during the lockdown would be put under mandatory 14-day quarantine.
On Sunday, Prime Minister Narendra Modiapologised for imposing “harsh steps” but said it would be difficult to contain the virus from spreading if the lockdown is violated. Addressing the nation on his monthly radio programme Mann ki Baat, PM Modi said: “I understand that no one wants to break the rules deliberately, but there are some people who are doing so. To them, I will say that if they don’t follow this lockdown, it will be difficult to protect ourselves from the danger of coronavirus.”