Coronavirus India June 7 Highlights: Govt says ‘fine tuning’ strategy based on emerging knowledge, experience
With over 2.46 lakh cases, India surpassed Spain, becoming the fifth worst-hit nation by the COVID-19 pandemic. Now, only the US, Brazil, Russia, and the UK have more cases than India. The death toll in India stands at 6929.
A face shield on a mannequin outside a shop at Khan Market in New Delhi on Saturday. (Express Photo: Praveen Khanna)
On a day the number of confirmed cases in India crossed 2.5 lakh, the health ministry said the government is “fine-tuning” its strategy based on emerging knowledge and on-ground experience. It also defended the timing of imposition of the nationwide lockdown aiming to contain the spread of virus and termed “baseless” certain media reports expressing concerns that it did not take suggestions from technical experts while chalking out its COVID-19 strategy.
The Union Culture Ministry Sunday approved opening of 820 monuments under Archeological Survey of India which have places of worship from Monday, Minister Prahlad Patel said. Among over 3,000 ASI-maintained monuments, only those where religious events take place, such as Nila Mosque at Hauz Khas enclave, the Qutub archaeological area and Lal Gumbad in Delhi, will be opened. All these were shut from March 17 in view of the coronavirus crisis.
The global death toll exceeded 4 lakh-mark on Sunday with 400,013 fatalities as recorded by Johns Hopkins University. Over 6.9 million people have been infected so far, of whom 30 lakh have recovered. With over 2.54 lakh cases, India has beaten Spain to be the fifth nation worst hit by the COVID-19 pandemic. according to latest figures by Johns Hopkins. Now, only the US, Brazil, Russia, and the UK have more cases than India. The death toll in India stands at 6929. There are 1.2 lakh active cases, while 1.19 lakh have recovered.
Coronavirus (Covid-19) Tracker, India Lockdown News Highlights: With over 2.46 lakh cases, India 5th worst-hit COVID nation; Nearly 7,000 deaths in India. Follow Highlights
A 37-year-old Central Reserve Police Force personnel suffering from cancer has succumbed to COVID-19, officials told PTI on Sunday. This is the third death due to COVID-19 in CRPF, and 11th among the Central Armed Police Forces (CAPFs), or the paramilitary forces. They said the constable of the 141st battalion, died ina hospital here on Friday.
Amid a surge in the number of cases, Delhi Chief Minister Kejriwal today announced that the government and a few private hospitals in the city will only treat patients from the national capital. Central hospitals will remain open for patients from across the country. The Delhi border, which was sealed last week, will also be opened for inter-state movement from Monday, he said. Religious places, malls, and restaurants will resume activity from Monday as per the Centre’s guidelines. Hotels and banquet halls will, however, remain shut.
Mumbai, the city that accounts for 20 per cent of all novel Coronavirus infections in India, has come under scrutiny for its stagnating testing numbers. The city has been testing around 4,000 samples every day and this number has not increased for over a month now.
This, despite the fact that it has the capacity to carry out about 10,000 tests per day, and the number of positive cases that it discovers each day has been on a steady rise.
The debate on testing has been going on since the outbreak started in India in the beginning of March. The conventional wisdom is that the more tests are carried out, the more are the chances of finding positive patients. Read here
That is because a majority of the infected people, more than 80 per cent, are expected to be asymptomatic, meaning they do not show any signs of the COVID-19 disease they are carrying. But they are capable of transmitting the virus to others.
Only if they are tested, can they be identified and isolated. That is why health experts have been stressing on the need to ramp up testing infrastructure, and test more and more people, even asymptomatic ones.
The testing numbers have steadily improved in the last two months. India is now testing more than one lakh samples every day. Almost every state, including Maharashtra, has significantly increased its testing numbers during this time. Mumbai, however, has bucked this trend in the last one month at least.
Workers line up for medical workers to take swabs for the coronavirus test at a large factory in Wuhan in central China's Hubei province (Chinatopix Via AP)
Meanwhile, Beijing on Friday decided to lower its Covid-19 emergency response, marking the return of normalcy in China’s capital following the coronavirus outbreak, while the central city of Wuhan, the origin point of the pandemic, cleared all its confirmed cases.
Wuhan recorded zero cases of the virus following testing of 10 million people.
Beijing city will lower its emergency response to the novel coronavirus epidemic from the second level to the third level starting Saturday, a local official announced on Friday.
Amid the pandemic, there is increasing pressure on governments to ease lockdown restrictions, especially to lift economic and psychological burdens on people who have been confined to their homes worldwide. Many countries have started gradually lifting restrictions even as the number of cases of the infection continues to rise. As a Covid-19 vaccine is still months away, questions about the methods that can be adopted to avoid the second wave of infections while easing restrictions have arisen.
A new study published in Nature Human Behaviour suggests that one of the ways of effective social distancing strategies to keep the Covid-19 curve flat include the idea of social bubbles. “…simple behavioural rules can go a long way in keeping the curve flat,” the study says.
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