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COVID-19 India updates April 4: Karnataka sees fourth death, Dharavi reports two more cases

A total of 75 persons have died due to COVID-19 while the number of confirmed cases in the country climbed to 3,072 on Saturday.

By: Express Web Desk | Chennai, Hyderabad, Karnataka, Kochi, New Delhi | Published: April 4, 2020 2:02:40 pm
Maharashtra faces an acute shortage of blood due to the 3-week lockdown in order to prevent the novel coronavirus from spreading. Resident of Chunabhatti organized Blood donation camp on Saturday.

Coronavirus India Latest Updates: In its biggest daily rise in the number of Covid-19 cases so far, the country has recorded 601 cases in the last 24 hours, totaling down to 3,072 cases, as per the Union Health Ministry. Going by the latest figures put out by the Ministry, the death toll stands at 75 and 212 recovered. During its daily briefing, the Health Ministry said of the total cases, 30 per cent of the Covid-19 cases (1,023 cases) are linked to the Tablighi Jamaat congregation that took place last month in Capital’s Nizamuddin West area.

Read | Does BCG protect against coronavirus? New debate over old vaccine

However, according to the state-wise data, six fresh deaths were reported — three from Maharashtra, two from Delhi and one from Gujarat. Thus, Maharashtra has reported the most deaths (19) so far, followed by Madhya Pradesh (11), Telangana (7), Gujarat (9), Delhi (6), Punjab (5), Karnataka (4), West Bengal (3), Tamil Nadu (3), Jammu and Kashmir (2), Uttar Pradesh (2) and Kerala (2). Andhra Pradesh, Bihar and Himachal Pradesh have reported a death each.

Here is a look at today’s developments that have happened across India so far:

IIT Kanpur sanctioned 25 lakh to develop PPE for healthcare professionals

The Department of Science and Technology’s Science and Engineering Research Board, has recently sanctioned funds worth Rs 25 lakh to IIT Kanpur for developing a protective coating that would help in making medicated masks and medical wear (PPE) for fighting COVID-19. The IIT Kanpur team will be developing the coating using a combination of common polymers containing anti microbial properties and re-purposable anti-viral molecules and materials, which officials say will make it a cost-effective solution. The masks are specifically being developed for doctors and nurses who are treating COVID-19 patients and are therefore susceptible to contamination.

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Two new Covid-19 cases surface in Goa, total rises to 7

Two persons in Goa have tested positive for the coronavirus, taking the total number to seven in the state. The two patients include a sailor from St Estevam who has a travel history to San Francisco and the other patient has a travel history from Kempton Park to Johanessburg to Kenya. The condition of the two stable, officials said. Upon receiving information from the the Covid-19 patients, health authorities flagged two Air India flights (AI 883 – New Delhi To Goa on March 22, and AI 661 – Mumbai to Goa on March 19)  they mentioned to travel from.  In an appeal to the public the Directorate of Health Services has asked passengers who have taken these flights to home quarantine themselves and report to Health helpline 104.

goa coronavirus, goa coronavirus lockdown, goa coronavirus grocery shops, coronavirus, covid-19, pramod sawant, coronavirus lockdown, indian express An empty Goa street. (Photo: Smita Nair/File)

Maharashtra considers to relax lockdown in phases

Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Saturday said the decision to relax the lockdown depends if people conform to the state directive to maintain social distancing and stay inside their homes. “The lockdown will end on April 14 and what is to be done afterwards depends on the people and how strictly people follow the government directives,” said Thackeray while addressing the state through social media platforms.

mumbai lockdown, mumbai coronavirus, mumbai empty streets, india lockdown, india coronavirus, mumbai city news Mumbai under lockdown. (Express photo)

Maharashtra Health Minister Rajesh Tope also said that the relaxation of lockdown in certain areas post-April 14 was under consideration. “People feel what will happen post-April 14. The CM has just now said that post April 14 we are considering if some form of relaxation can be given in phases. That is possible only if we follow discipline,” Tope said.

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Karnataka reports fourth Covid-19 linked death

A 75-year-old man from Bagalkot in Karnataka died Friday night due to the Covid-19, taking the toll in state to four. According to S Suresh Kumar, the spokesperson for the Covid-19, the patient was suffering from heart issues, diabetes and hypertension.

Speaking to, Bagalkot Deputy Commissioner K Rajendra, said, “The man was diagnosed with coronavirus only 24 hours before his death. He had no history of travel abroad. But his son and daughter, who are residents of Bengaluru, had traveled to Bagalkot 10 days ago.” The son and daughter of the deceased have tested negative and 21 primary contacts and 51 secondary are kept under observation.

kARNATAKA, Karnataka coronavirus case, karnataka covid 19 case, karnataka news, indian express As of 5 pm on Saturday, 144 COVID-19 positive cases have been confirmed in the state, which includes four deaths and 11 discharges. (Representational Image)

Meanwhile, 16 new cases have been confirmed in Karnataka. As of 5 pm on Saturday, 144 COVID-19 positive cases have been confirmed in the state, which includes four deaths and 11 discharges.

Asia’s biggest slum Dharavi sees two more Covid-19 cases

Adding to the gradual rise in the number of coronavirus cases in Dharavi, the 630-acre urban sprawl in the heart of Mumbai, two more persons have tested positive for the virus. This takes the total number to four Covid-19 cases in the area. The two persons who tested positive include, a 48-year-old who is a resident of the slum and a 30-year-old who lived in the housing complex where the first death related to the Covid-19 was reported.

BMC civic workers sanitise at Jasmine Mill Road in Dharavi.

Mumbai’s civic body has started ten COVID-19 clinics in the containment zones and densely-populated areas which are at the risk of rapid transmission. Screening for symptoms will be conducted in these clinics between 10 am and 1 pm every day, an official said. “A screening clinic is being opened in each zone of the MCGM (Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai) and one more additional clinic will be opened in Zone -II, IV and V, where COVID-19 cases were observed in large numbers,” he said, adding that Municipal Commissioner Pravin Pardeshi issued instructions on Friday.

Delhi reports six deaths, cases may rise: CM Kejriwal

Amid surging number of cases in Delhi after the Tablighi Jamaat congregation at Nizamuddin West area, CM Arvind Kejriwal said there may be a rise in the number of cases in the future. Total deaths in Delhi are six, five of them were above the age of 60, Kejriwal informed. About 500 patients from Nizamuddin’s Markaz are admitted to the hospitals, while another 1,800 have been quarantined, he said. Out of the 445 total coronavirus cases in the capital, 40 cases are by local transmission, the CM informed.

Coronavirus india, COVID-19 cases, Tablighi Jamaat congregation, Markaz Nizamuddin, coronavirus cases in India rise to double, India lockdown, indian express news At the Yamuna Sports Complex auditorium in Delhi, Friday. It houses the homeless and migrants stopped by police. (Photo: Amit Mehra)

“Those without ration cards can register for getting 5 kg ration, likely to start from next week, Kejriwal said.

Discoms advice: Don’t switch off main switches on Sunday

Ahead of Prime Minister’s call to switch off all lights on Sunday for 9 minutes in solidarity with the country’s fight against novel coronavirus, electricity companies have advised people to keep main switches turned on. It is advised by discoms that on Sunday from 9-9.09 pm, people may switch off their lights (bulbs, lamps, tube lights, etc) but refrain from shutting down their main switches, fans, computers, TVs, ACs and refrigerators. This is to ensure stability of the grid.

PM Modi reviews availability of isolation facilities

Prime Minister Narendra Modi Saturday chaired a meeting of Empowered Groups constituted for planning and ensuring implementation of COVID-19 response activities in the nation. During the meeting, PM Modi took stock of countrywide preparedness regarding the availability of hospitals, proper isolation and quarantine facilities as well as disease surveillance, testing and critical care training, Office of the PM tweeted. He further directed concerned groups and officials to ensure sufficient production, procurement and availability of all essential medical equipment such as PPEs, masks, gloves and ventilators.

601 new Covid-19 cases, 12 deaths in a day: Health Ministry

In the last 24 hours, about 601 new coronavirus cases and 12 deaths have surfaced across the country, the Health Ministry said Saturday. During its daily evening briefing, the Ministry informed so far, 30 per cent of Covid-19 cases are linked to the Tablighi Jamaat congregation in Delhi’s Nizamuddin West area. “So far, 1,023 Covid-19 cases are linked to the Tablighi Jamaat. This means 30 per cent cases are linked to one thing that we cannot control,” Ministry’s Joint Secretary Lav Aggarwal said.

Read | Close to 22,000 Tablighi Jamaat members, their contacts quarantined in India: MHA

During the health ministry’s briefing, MHA Joint Secretary said Punya Salila Srivastava at least 22,000 people linked to the congregation that was held in the national capital last month and their contacts have been put under isolation.

Maharashtra reports highest number of COVID-19 cases

The highest number of confirmed cases of the pandemic was reported from Maharashtra at 537 followed by Tamil Nadu with 411 infections. The number of cases in Delhi has gone up to 386, in Kerala to 295, in Rajasthan to 179 and in Uttar Pradesh to 174. In Andhra Pradesh, cases have increased to 161 while Telengana has 158 positive patients so far.

The cases in Karnataka have risen to 128. Madhya Pradesh has reported 104 cases so far, Gujarat 105 while Jammu and Kashmir has 75 positive patients so far. The number of cases has risen to 63 in West Bengal.

Punjab has reported 53 cases of COVID-19 so far followed by Haryana with 49 cases. Bihar has 29, Assam has 24, Chandigarh 18, Uttarakhand 16 and Ladakh has reported 14 cases so far. Ten cases have been reported from the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. Chhattisgarh has nine positive patients so far. Goa and Himachal Pradesh have reported six coronavirus cases each. Odisha and Puducherry have five cases each. Jharkhand and Manipur have reported two cases each while Mizoram and Arunachal Pradesh have reported a case each.

Workers sanitize beds in Ashram for migrant wokers in Delhi.

Govt puts curbs on export of diagnostic kits with immediate effect

The government has put curbs on exports of diagnostic kits with a view to discourage shipments amid the coronavirus outbreak. “The export of diagnostic kits (diagnostic or laboratory reagents on a backing, preparation diagnostic or laboratory reagents)… is restricted with immediate effect,” the Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) said in a notification. The move would help in dealing with the COVID-19 crisis as these kits are required for testing of patients. Earlier, exports of these products were allowed without any restrictions. Putting them under the restricted category would mean that an exporter will now require a licence from the DGFT for outbound shipments.

No shortage of PPE kits: Health Minister Harsh Vardhan

Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan at LNGP hospital in New Delhi (Twitter/ Ministry of Health)

Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan said the procurement process for PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) kits, N95 masks, ventilators is in the advanced stage and these will reach the states soon. He, however, said that “there is no shortage as of today”.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has urged people to use homemade face masks, saying “such people who are not suffering from any medical condition or having breathing difficulties may use the handmade reusable face cover, particularly when they step out of their house.”

France evacuates 112 stranded citizens from Kerala, TN

France on Saturday evacuated 112 French citizens stranded in Kerala and Tamil Nadu in a special Air India flight, news agency PTI reported quoting its official sources. The Embassy of France had made a request to the Kerala government to facilitate the journey of the French citizens stranded due to the lockdown announced by the central government to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus.

The French citizens, mostly tourists and those who came for Ayurvedic treatment, were brought here by the state tourism department 24 days ahead of their trip. They underwent a medical examination before boarding the flight for Paris from Cochin International Airport at 08.13 am on Saturday. The Air India flight was chartered by the French government for evacuating its citizens in various cities in India including Kochi, Bengaluru and Mumbai. On Friday, Gulf nation Oman had evacuated its 46 citizens stranded in Kochi in an Oman Air flight.

Meanwhile, under Lifeline Udaan initiative of the Ministry of Civil Aviation, 107 flights have been operated till April 3 for transporting medical cargo of total 138.81 tonnes across the country.

In lockdown, volatility marks price rise in potatoes, onions, pulses and sugar

In what clearly indicates supply-side disruptions after states enforced lockdown to stymie the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, wholesale prices of essential commodities, especially vegetables, have shown a sharp increase during the last fortnight of March.

Read  |  Here are COVID-19 updates from across the world 

The average countrywide prices of vegetables such as onions and tomatoes, which were softening in the first fortnight of March, recorded a perceptible spurt in the second half of the month after March 15 when lockdowns became effective, according to data compiled by the Department of Consumer Affairs. The experts attributed the rise in prices of the essential commodities such as vegetables to purely supply-side issues, instead of production-linked problems.

108 members of Sir Ganga Ram Hospital staff under quarantine

In Delhi, 108 members of Sir Ganga Ram Hospital staff including doctors and nurses have been quarantined after they came in contact with two patients who in their second test report were found positive for COVID19. Of the 108, 85 are in home quarantine and 23 in the hospital.

At the Yamuna Sport Complex in east Delhi during coronavirus Lockdown

Meanwhile, Health Minister Harsh Vardhan announced that the Lok Nayak Jai Prakash Narayan and GB Pant hospitals in Delhi will be converted into a COVID-19 management centers with a facility for 2000 patients at the same time.

Currently, there are 290 COVID-19 positive or suspected cases admitted in Lok Nayak Jai Prakash Narayan hospital.

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