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Thursday, December 03, 2020

Coronavirus India Highlights: Congress MP Manish Tewari tests positive for Covid

Out of the total cases, 4.65 lakh cases are active, while 82.49 lakh people have recovered after testing positive.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Updated: November 17, 2020 7:49:11 am
Senior Congress leader Manish Tewari tested positive for coronavirus on Monday. (File Photo)

Congress MP and national spokesperson Manish Tewari tested positive for coronavirus on Monday and cautioned people who had come in contact with him in last few days. Taking to Twitter, he wrote, “I have tested positive for COVID-19 today afternoon. I got up with mild fever around 2 am last night. Got myself tested first thing in the morning. Two parallel tests. No other symptoms so far. All those who have been in contact with me over the past few days are advised caution.”

Read Coronavirus India Live Updates

Despite Delhi witnessing a surge in Covid-19 cases, Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain Monday clarified that there are no plans to reimpose Covid-19 lockdown in the national capital. Emphasising that “third wave is past its peak, Jain said, “there will be no reimposition of lockdown in Delhi. I don’t think it will be an effective step now, wearing of masks by everyone will be more beneficial.

The Jharkhand government late on Sunday announced the prohibition of religious congregations and ceremonies on the banks of water bodies for Chhath Puja. According to the precautionary guidelines issued by the State Disaster Management Committee, no one will be allowed to organise any event near the water bodies during November 17 to 21. The practise of bathing in water bodies by large groups could increase chances of virus transmission, the guidelines warned. Earmarking of areas and putting barricades to perform the puja was also banned this year.

India recorded 30,548 new cases of Covid-19 in the 24 hours ending 9 am Monday. This is the lowest single day spike in cases since July 14. With this, the country’s total tally currently stands at over 88.45 lakh cases.  With 435 people succumbing to the virus Sunday the death toll stands at 1,30,070.  Out of the total cases, 4.65 lakh cases are active, while 82.49 lakh people have recovered after testing positive. Low testing is most likely the reason behind less cases reported in the last 24 hours. Less then one million samples have been tested since Friday and only 8 lakh tests were carried out on Saturday.

Live Blog

Over 88.14 lakh cases in the country; Delhi to introduce preventive measures post Diwali; Maharashtra to reopen religious places

20:25 (IST)16 Nov 2020
COVID-19: 75 doctors, 250 paramedics from paramilitary forces on way to Delhi

At least 75 doctors and 250 paramedics from the paramilitary forces are on their way from different parts of the country to serve the people of Delhi which is facing a spike in coronavirus cases and manpower shortage. A day after Union Home Minister Amit Shah stepped in to rev up the fight against the pandemic in the national capital, several meetings were held on Monday in different wings of the government here for the smooth implementation of his 11 directives. Seventy five doctors and 250 paramedics will join the health workers of Delhi to handle the COVID-19 patients as early as possible, an official privy to the development. The doctors and paramedics of the paramilitary forces are coming from as far as Assam and Tamil Nadu besides Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Rajasthan, etc. --PTI

19:54 (IST)16 Nov 2020
COVID-19 tally crosses 10k mark in Nagaland

Nagaland's COVID-19 tally on Monday crossed the 10,000-mark as 140 more people tested positive for the infection, Health and Family Welfare Minister S Pangnyu Phom said. Forty-six more patients were cured of the disease during the day, taking the total number of recoveries to 8,860, he said. However, the recovery rate in the state has fallen to 88.37 per cent from 89.16 per cent on Sunday, Director of Health Department, Dr Denis Hangsing said in the daily COVID- 19 bulletin. --PTI

17:43 (IST)16 Nov 2020
Covid-19: Cold chain logistics will be big challenge in vaccinating 135 crore Indians

With a handful of manufacturers nearing the end of late-stage clinical trials of Covid-19 vaccine candidates in India, the next challenge that awaits the government lies in finding the requisite workforce to administer the shots to such a humongous population and cold chain logistics for their last-mile distribution in such a vast, hot country. While India has a 28,000-unit cold storage network that is used for the government’s universal immunisation programme, experts and logistics firms indianexpress.com spoke to highlight that no company had the capability or capacity to transport vaccines colder than -25 degrees Celsius. Read full story by Abhishek De here

17:01 (IST)16 Nov 2020
Congress MP Manish Tewari tests positive for coronavirus

Congress MP and national spokesperson Manish Tewari tested positive for coronavirus, he tweeted on Monday. "I have tested positive for COVID -19 today afternoon. I got up with mild fever around 2 AM last night. Got myself tested first thing in the morning.Two parallel Tests. No other symptoms so far.All those who have been in contact with me over the past few days are advised caution," he wrote.

16:35 (IST)16 Nov 2020
Bharat Biotech's COVID-19 vaccine "Covaxin" enters phase-3 trials

Covid-19 vaccine, Covaxin, being developed by Bharat Biotech is now undergoing phase-3 trials, Krishna Ella, Chairman and Managing Director, Bharat Biotech said on Monday. Speaking virtually at a programme organised by the Indian School of Business, Ella said the company is also working on another vaccine for COVID-19 which would be in the form of nasal drops and can be ready by next year. "We partnered with ICMR for COVID-19 vaccine as we speak it entered the phase 3 trials," he said. --PTI

14:42 (IST)16 Nov 2020
Odisha reports 749 new COVID-19 cases, 16 more deaths

At least 749 more people tested positive for COVID-19 in Odisha, taking the tally to 3,09,408 on Monday, while 16 fresh fatalities pushed the toll in the state to 1,543, a health department official said. Of the 749 cases, 437 were reported from quarantine centres, and the remaining detected during contact tracing. Khurda recorded the maximum number of new cases at 88, followed by Mayurbhanj at 78 and Sundargarh at 55. (PTI)

13:38 (IST)16 Nov 2020
An Expert Explains| How to read serosurveys

Studies in large urban centres in India, including ones that my co-authors and I did in Mumbai as well as other studies in Pune, Delhi and Hyderabad, suggest that large shares of the population in these cities had antibodies — which means they had been infected. Our recent IDFC Foundation study in Karnataka, which was led by my co-authors Anup Malani (UChicago), Anu Acharya (Mapmygenome) and Kaushik Krishnan (CMIE) and me, found that over 44% of rural areas also had antibodies. With an infectious disease that is spreading rapidly, the share of the population that has antibodies will rise over time.

Read our explainer here

13:18 (IST)16 Nov 2020
Russia’s covid vaccine may reach Kanpur next week for phase 2, 3 trials

The first batch of Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine for COVID-19 is likely to reach Kanpur’s Ganesh Shankar Vidyarthi Medical College by next week wherein the vaccine’s Phase 2 and Phase 3 human clinical trials will be conducted.

The decision to conduct the human clinical trials of the vaccine was taken after Dr Reddy’s Laboratories got approval from the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) in this regard, an official said. (Read more here)

12:26 (IST)16 Nov 2020
Delhi past third wave of covid-19; no plans to reimpose lockdown, says Satyendar Jain

With the capital reeling from a fresh spike in COVID-19 cases, Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain Monday clarified that there are no plans to reimpose the lockdown. Stressing that the “third wave is past its peak,” Jain was quoted as saying by ANI, “There will be no reimposition of lockdown in Delhi. I don’t think it will be an effective step now, wearing of masks by everyone will be more beneficial.” 

One of the fastest-growing cities in the country, Delhi currently has over 4 lakh cases. Over the last week, Delhi contributed the maximum number of new cases in the country, breaching the 8,500-mark for a day and recording over 51,000 cases in the last week. 

12:16 (IST)16 Nov 2020
Devotees visit temples as places of worship re-open in Maha

Places of worship in Maharashtra, shut since March, reopened Monday with devotees with a slew of Covid-19 measures in place.Today morning, devotees could be seen visiting prominent temples and shrines in the state. 

Devotees were seen visiting Lord Vitthal's temple at Pandharpur in Satara, Saibaba's shrine in Shirdi, Goddess Tulja Bhavani's temple in Osmanabad and the famous Siddhivinayak temple in Mumbai. The Siddhivinayak temple's chairman Aadesh Bandekar on Sunday said only 1,000 devotees will be allowed inside the temple every day in staggered time slots to be booked through a mobile phone application. 

11:49 (IST)16 Nov 2020
Places of worship re-open in Maha: Take a look at the SOPs

The state government has issued a set of guidelines to ensure minimum Covid-19 risk.

  • The standard operating procedure (SOP) states that only shrines located outside containment zones will be allowed to open, and thermal screening and hand sanitisers will be necessary.
  • No physical offerings such as ‘prasad’ distribution or sprinkling of holy water will be allowed inside the religious place.
  • People above 65 years of age, those with co-morbidities, pregnant women and children below 10 years of age to stay at home.
  • Spitting should be strictly prohibited, the guidelines said, adding that a penalty should be imposed as a deterrent.
  • Visitors have also been advised to use Aarogya Setu app and preferably take off their shoes in their own vehicle before entering the place of worship.
  • Social distancing should also be maintained in the parking lot, toilets and eating places
11:38 (IST)16 Nov 2020
J'khand govt bans Chhath puja celebrations along waterbodies

The Jharkhand government has issued a notification prohibiting congregation and religious ceremony on the banks of rivers, ponds and other public waterbodies for Chhath puja, in view of the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the guidelines issued by the State Disaster Management Committee late on Sunday, all precautions were being taken by the government to ensure the safety of people amid the pandemic, and as part of the measures, no one would be allowed to organise any musical or cultural programme near the waterbodies during the Chhath festival.(PTI)

10:33 (IST)16 Nov 2020
Covid-19: Nearly 160 tonnes of biomedical waste generated during Bihar polls

Nearly 160 tonne of biomedical waste in the form of gloves, face masks and empty sanitiser bottles used by polling personnel and voters was generated during the Bihar assembly polls held amid the COVID-19 pandemic, poll authorities in the state have said.

The poll authorities also relied on an inexpensive but effective technology used to track EVMs to ensure that the waste reached public health centres for its onward journey to the incinerator.

To ensure safety of voters, polling staff and security personnel in the first-ever polls held amid the pandemic, the Election Commission had procured 18 lakh face shields, 70 lakh face masks, 5.4 lakh single use rubber gloves for polling and security personnel and 7.21 crore ‘one hand’ single use polythene gloves for voters to press the EVM button and sign the register at the polling stations. 

10:20 (IST)16 Nov 2020
In post-Covid patients, doctors notice mental health problems rising

In India, there are 4.89 lakh active Covid cases, 8 million of whom have recovered. Doctors say many of them have been returning with complaints of fatigue, headaches, insomnia, shortness of breath, body pain, lack of appetite, sore throat and diarrhoea. Add to that, mental health issues. There is now increasing evidence that Covid-19 can lead to anxiety, depression, psychosis, insomnia and memory fogs.

A Lancet Psychiatry study published last week found that 18.1% Covid patients had a psychiatric problem within 14 to 90 days of infection. Doctors and experts say the unpredictability of the virus is what is adding a mental dimension to the disease. Add to that the isolation that patients go through, and the fact that measures to check the spread of the virus have had economic ramifications.(Read Tabassum Barnagarwala's report here)

09:51 (IST)16 Nov 2020
Over 8.61 lakh samples tested on Sunday: ICMR
09:46 (IST)16 Nov 2020
India reports the lowest single day spike since July 14

India recorded 30,548 new cases of Covid-19 in the 24 hours ending 9 am Monday. This is the lowest single day spike in cases since July 14. With this, the country’s total tally currently stands at over 88.45 lakh cases.  With 435 people succumbing to the virus Sunday the death toll stands at 1,30,070.  Out of the total cases, 4.65 lakh cases are active, while 82.49 lakh people have recovered after testing positive. 

09:30 (IST)16 Nov 2020
Delhi's Covid hospitals face crunch amid surge

Amid a massive spike in daily cases and deaths over the past two weeks, critical care facilities for Covid-19 patients are filling up fast — 88% ICU beds with ventilators are occupied at 99 hospitals, data on the Delhi government’s corona app shows. At 62 of these hospitals, including a few government facilities, there are no ventilator beds in ICUs.

The city Sunday recorded 3,235 fresh cases, the lowest since October 26 when 2,832 cases were seen, taking the infection tally to 4,85,405. This may be attributed to fewer tests being conducted on Diwali.(Read Astha Saxena's full report here)

09:02 (IST)16 Nov 2020
Assam reports 93 new COVID-19 cases, two more deaths

Assam reported two deaths due to COVID-19 on Sunday and registered 93 new cases, its lowest tally of daily infections since early June, Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said. The two fresh fatalities from Kamrup Metropolitan district pushed the death toll to 963, and the total number of coronavirus cases rose to 2,10,268. (PTI)

22:26 (IST)15 Nov 2020
COVID vaccine would begin to be delivered at the "end of this year, beginning of next year": vaccine creator

The new COVID vaccine being developed by Pfizer and BioNTech would begin to be delivered at the "end of this year, beginning of next year" if everything continued to go well, one of its creators said on Sunday. Last week, BioNTech and co-developers Pfizer said preliminary analysis showed their vaccine could prevent more than 90 per cent of people from getting Covid-19. About 43,000 people took part in tests.

Prof Ugur Sahin, co-founder and CEO of BioNTech, told the BBC that the goal was to deliver more than 300 million doses worldwide by next April, which "could allow us to only start to make an impact". He said the bigger impact would happen later, adding: "Summer will help us because the infection rate will go down in the summer and what is absolutely essential is that we get a high vaccination rate until or before autumn/winter next year." If everything continued to go well, he said, the vaccine would begin to be delivered at the "end of this year, beginning of next year". (PTI)

21:27 (IST)15 Nov 2020
30 more deaths, 1,054 new cases in 2 days in Punjab

Thirty more people died of coronavirus in Punjab in the past two days, raising the toll to 4,458, while 1,054 new cases pushed the infection count to 1,41,658, a health department medical bulletin said on Sunday. Eight fatalities were reported on Saturday while 22 deaths took place on Sunday, it said. There are 5,769 active COVID-19 cases in the state as of now, according to the bulletin. A total of 1,025 coronavirus patients were discharged after recovering from the infection, taking the number of cured persons to 1,31,431, it stated. Eighteen critical patients are on ventilator support while 140 are on oxygen support, the bulletin said. A total of 28,68,278 samples have been collected for coronavirus testing so far in the state, it said.

Places of worship in Maharashtra, shut since March, reopened Monday with devotees with a slew of Covid-19 measures in place. The standard operating procedure (SOP) released by the state government states that only shrines located outside containment zones will be allowed to reopen with thermal screening and social distancing in place. Today morning, devotees could be seen visiting prominent temples and shrines in the state. 

Meanwhile, Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman Thursday announced the AtmaNirbhar Bharat Rozgar Yojana to incentivise new job creation. Effective October 1, the scheme will provide incentives for EPFO-registered establishments taking a new employee or offering employment to those who lost their jobs between March 1 and September 30. The scheme is for those earning less than Rs 15,000 a month. It will be operational till June 30, 2021.

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