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Coronavirus India updates, July 17: Kerala CM confirms community spread, no lockdown extention in Bengaluru; and more

Coronavirus (Covid-19) India Updates: India has become the third country in the world, after the US and Brazil, to cross the 10 lakh mark in Covid-19 cases.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Updated: July 17, 2020 9:22:10 pm
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Coronavirus India Updates: With 34,956 new cases registered since yesterday, India’s COVID-19 caseload has surged past the 10 lakh mark and now stands at 10,03,832, according to data released by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare. Nearly 700 people succumbed to the virus in the last 24 hours, taking the total death toll to over 25,600.

India has become the third country in the world, after the US and Brazil, to cross the 10 lakh mark in Covid-19 cases. The country reached this grim milestone merely three days after it crossed the 9 lakh mark. Currently, India has 3,42,473 active cases. Over 6.35 lakh coronavirus patients have been cured/discharged/migrated since Thursday.

Compared to the world average, India’s mortality rate is much lower. While globally the mortality rate of the disease is about 4.3 per cent, in India it has dropped to 2.55 per cent. Meanwhile, the US, which has seen the maximum number of deaths, more than 1.35 lakh, has a mortality rate of about 3.98. With over 74,000 deaths, Brazil has a mortality rate of 3.84 per cent.

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As many as 3,33,228 samples were tested on Thursday, as per data released by the Indian Council of Medical Research. Over 1.3 crore Covid-19 tests have been conducted in the country, since the onset of the ongoing pandemic.

Here are the top Covid-19 developments from across the country:

Record 949 new coronavirus cases in Gujarat, 17 deaths

Gujarat recorded a highest single day spike of 949 coronavirus cases on Friday, taking the tally to 46,516, the state health department said. Seventeen persons with the viral infection died across the state since Thursday evening, taking the death toll to 2,108, it said in a statement.

770 persons recovered and were discharged from hospitals, taking the number of recovered patients to 32,944. Gujarat coronavirus figures are as follows: Positive cases 46,516, new cases 949, total deaths 2,108, discharged 32,944, active cases 11,464 and people tested so far 5,12,000.

Need another few days to take final call on lifting lockdown: Karnataka Two policemen wearing coronavirus-themed helmets during an awareness programme in Bengaluru. (PTI)

Tamil Nadu records 79 COVID-19 deaths, 4,538 fresh cases

Tamil Nadu recorded its highest COVID-19 fatality mark on Friday with 79 people succumbing to the virus, pushing the death toll in the state to 2,315, the health department said. The day also saw 4,538 fresh coronavirus positive cases being reported,taking the infection count to 1,60,907 till date.

The number of recoveries stood at 3,391, and the cumulative figure of those cured is 1,10,807 so far, according to a department bulletin. State minister ‘Sellur’ K Raju, under treatment for the coronavirus infection, was discharged after ‘complete recovery’, hospital sources said.

Jammu and Kashmir reports nine more COVID-19 deaths, 601 new cases

Jammu and Kashmir reported nine more COVID-19 deaths on Friday, taking their number to 231 as 601 new cases of the infection pushed the tally in the Union territory to 12,757. While 137 of the new cases are in Jammu region, 464 were reported from the Valley, officials said.

Kerala coronavirus cases, Kerala coronavirus community transmission, Kerala coronavirus cases community transmission, Kerala covid cases, India news, Indian Express Kozhikode: Health workers collect swab sample from a woman for COVID-19 tests, in Kozhikode, Thursday, July 9, 2020. (PTI Photo)

“Nine persons, who were COVID-19 positive, have died over the past 24 hours in Jammu and Kashmir,” an official said, adding that all of these took place in the Valley. This has taken the death toll due to coronavirus to 213 in the Kashmir Valley and 18 in the Jammu region. There are 5,968 active cases in the Union territory, while 6,558 patients have recovered from the infection, the officials said.

West Bengal records highest single-day spike in cases with 1,894 new infections

West Bengal recorded its highest single-day spike in COVID-19 infections with 1894 new cases. According to data provided by the West Bengal government, as of July 17, there are presently 14,709 active cases.

The total number of COVID-19 cases as of today is 38,011. In the last 24 hours, the state has recorded 26 deaths. Of these numbers, 563 new COVID-19 cases and 12 new deaths have been recorded in Kolkata alone.

The total number of COVID-19 related deaths in state as of July 17 is 1,049. The Bengal government states that 838 patients have been discharged and 13,240 samples have been tested in the last 24 hours.

Kolkata coronavirus cases, West Bengal coronavirus cases, coronavirus cases West Bengal, India news, Indian Express A passenger waits for a government bus in West Bengal’s Kolkata, on June 30, Tuesday. (Express Photo Shashi Ghosh)

Kerala CM admits to community spread in coastal areas of Trivandrum

As Kerala reported 791 new Covid-19 cases on Friday, the highest single-day hike so far, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan during a media briefing admitted to a community spread in certain coastal areas of Thiruvanathapuram such as Poonthura and Pulluvila. As many as 791 new Covid-19 positive cases, 133 recoveries and one death have been reported in Kerala today, Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan said during the media briefing.

Lockdown won’t be extended in Bengaluru: CM Yediyurappa

Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa Friday reiterated that the lockdown announced in different parts of the state including capital city Bengaluru will not be extended further.

In a meeting with MPs, ministers and top government officials in Bengaluru, the CM said, “Lockdown is not a solution to Covid-19 woes. We will not be extending the lockdown further.” Yediyurappa had said the same earlier this week after a meeting with the Karnataka Covid-19 task force as well.

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Recovered Maharashtra minister to donate his plasma

Maharashtra Housing Minister Jitendra Awhad, who has recovered from COVID-19 infection around two months back, on Friday said that he has decided to donate his plasma, used for treating patients. Awhad, who represents Mumbra-Kalwa Assembly segment, had tested coronavirus positive, but recovered in May this year.

“After two months my blood reports are normal after fighting #coronavirus now I have decided to donate my plasma in govt hospital,” the NCP leader tweeted. Awhad said he will donate plasma in the next two days.

1,462 fresh COVID-19 cases take Delhi’s tally to 1,20,107

Delhi coronavirus cases, coronavirus cases Delhi, Delhi containment zones, Delhi COVID cases, Delhi news, city news, Indian Express People get tested for Covid-19 at Nehru Homeopathic hospital in Defence Colony on Monday. (Express Photo by Abhinav Saha)

Delhi recorded 1,462 fresh coronavirus cases on Friday, taking the tally in the city to over 1.2 lakh, while the death toll from the disease mounted to 3,571, authorities said. Twenty-six fatalities have been recorded in the last 24 hours, according to the Delhi health department bulletin.

This is the seventh consecutive day when fresh cases have been reported in the range of 1,000-2,000. However, the number of fresh cases reported on Friday was less than the figures on Thursday (1,652). The number of active cases on Friday stood at 17,235, down from 17,407 the previous day.

Lockdown in India may have saved 630 lives, says study

The COVID-19 lockdown-led reduction in air pollution levels across five Indian cities in India, including Delhi and Mumbai, may have prevented about 630 premature deaths, and saved USD 690 million in health costs in the country, according to a new study.

Scientists, including those from the University of Surrey in the UK, assessed the levels of harmful fine particulate matter (PM2.5) from vehicles and other sources in five Indian cities — Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai and Hyderabad — since the beginning of the lockdown period.

The study, published in the journal Sustainable Cities and Society, compared these lockdown PM2.5 figures from 25 March up until 11 May, with those from similar periods of the preceding five years, and found that the measure reduced pollution levels in all these places.
According to the scientists, during this period, the levels of these harmful air pollutants reduced by 10 per cent in Mumbai, and by up to 54 per cent in Delhi.

A boy wearing a face mask as a precaution against coronavirus walks past a notice displayed by authorities on a makeshift barricade set up to restrict entry in a containment zone during lockdown in Bengaluru, India, Sunday, July 5, 2020. (AP Photo/Aijaz Rahi)

31.6 lakh people in quarantine across India, UP has the highest number

A whopping 31.6 lakh people are currently in quarantine across the country as authorities made concerted efforts to check the spread of the novel coronavirus which has infected over 10 lakh people so far, officials said on Friday. Uttar Pradesh has the highest number of people in quarantine among states, followed by Maharashtra, they said.

According to the latest available official estimate, more than 11 lakh people are in quarantine in Uttar Pradesh, 7.27 lakh in Maharashtra, 3.25 lakh in Gujarat and 2.4 lakh in Odisha. A total of 31.6 lakh people are currently in institutional and home quarantine across India, a Union Home Ministry official told PTI.

MP Assembly monsoon session deferred due to COVID-19 pandemic

The Madhya Pradesh Assembly’s Monsoon session, which was scheduled to begin here from July 20, has been postponed in light of the coronavirus pandemic, an official said on Friday. The decision to defer the session was taken unanimously at an all-party meeting on Friday chaired by pro- tem speaker Rameshwar Sharma, the Assembly official said.

The meeting was attended by Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan, Leader of Opposition Kamal Nath and Home and Legislative Affairs Minister Narottam Mishra, among others, he said. The decision will be forwarded to the governor for approval, he added.

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Districts in MP, Bihar, Telangana most vulnerable to COVID: Lancet study

Districts in Madhya Pradesh may be the most vulnerable to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, followed by those in Bihar and Telangana, according to a study in The Lancet journal which assessed several key indicators like housing, hygiene, and the health system in these states.

The study noted that nine of 30 large states — Madhya Pradesh, Bihar and Telangana, Jharkhand, Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, West Bengal, Odisha, and Gujarat — have high vulnerability to be impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. It rated the vulnerabilities of the states to the pandemic on a scale from zero to one, measured using 15 indicators across five domains — socioeconomic, demographic, housing and hygiene, epidemiological, and health system.

Six high-caseload states record highest single-day spike

As many as six out of the top ten states with the highest Covid-19 caseloads in the country, simultaneously recorded their highest single-day numbers on Thursday. Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, and West Bengal detected a record number of cases yesterday.

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Karnataka, the fastest growing state in the country right now, reported 4,169 new cases, bringing its total tally to 51,422. Uttar Pradesh had more than 2,000 cases for the first time, while Andhra Pradesh touched a new high of 2,500 infections. In Tamil Nadu, 4,549 new cases were registered.

The number of deaths reported on Thursday was also the highest ever, 687. However, the rising death toll was in keeping with an increasing trend in death numbers for the last few days.

Odisha’s Covid-19 tally crosses 16,000; 14-day complete lockdown in 4 districts from tonight

Amidst a growing number of Covid-19 cases, a complete lockdown will be enforced in four districts of Odisha from 9 pm tonight until midnight of July 31. The lockdown restrictions are being imposed in Ganjam, Khorha, Cuttack, Jajpur as well as the entire Rourkela Municipal Corporation area of Sundergarh district, ANI reported.

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On Friday, Odisha’s Covid-19 tally crossed the 16,000 mark as 718 more people tested positive, PTI reported. The death toll mounted to 83 with four more fatalities, according to data from the state’s health department.

“From the ongoing surveys which is going on, it is learnt that nearly two-third of the active cases and new cases load which accounts for nearly 66 percent of the cases have been reported from Ganjam, Cuttack, Jajpur and Khurda. Hence, we have decided to impose 14-day lockdown till July 31,” the state’s Chief Secretary Asit Tripathy said on Thursday.

91 new Covid-19 cases recorded in Puducherry

Puducherry has recorded 91 new Covid-19 cases in the last 24 hours, the union territory’s health department told ANI. Its total tally of cases now stands at 1,832, including 1,014 recoveries and 25 deaths.

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The union territory currently has a total of 793 active cases, according to data released by the Government of Puducherry Directorate of Health and Family Welfare Services.

Centre tells Bihar, West Bengal, Assam to implement 3-pronged strategy during lockdown

The Centre has told the three Eastern states — Bihar, West Bengal and Assam — that while it is not “questioning their decision” to reimpose part or full lockdowns, this period “must be utilised gainfully” by implementing a three-pronged strategy to contain the spread of the infection, The Indian Express has learnt.

During a video conference, the centre asked the states to implement the strategy, which involves: one, redefining of containment zones, provisioning of buffer zones, and adding new containment zones; two, strictly monitoring patients in home isolation through teleconsultation or physical surveillance; and three, augmenting bed capacity in hospitals.

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Following a surge of new Covid-19 cases, Bihar imposed a complete lockdown yesterday until the end of the month. On Tuesday, West Bengal extended the lockdown in containment zones till July 19. Meanwhile, in Assam’s Kamrup (metro) district, in which Guwahati is located, a lockdown that has been in place since June 28 will continue until July 19.

IndiGo introduces option to book two seats for single passenger

Amid the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, domestic airline IndiGo has launched ‘double seat booking’, which will allow customers to book two seats for a single passenger, to ensure safety through social distancing.

“The charges for the extra seat will be effectively up to 25% of the original booking cost. This offer is effective travel starting July 24, 2020,” the airline said in a statement. Passengers will only be able to avail of this offer on IndiGo’s official website, as per the statement.

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“Even though air travel is the safest mode of travel at this point, we understand the customers’ emotional need for safety,” IndiGo’s chief strategy and revenue officer Sanjay Kumar said.

At top Bengaluru hospital, 97% corona patients on ventilator died

The 100-year-old Victoria Hospital attached to the Bengaluru Medical College and Research Institute (BMCRI) — the leading government hospital in the city for treatment of Covid-19 — has seen a 97% death rate among patients put on ventilators.

Since April, the hospital has seen 91 deaths — out of which, 89 patients had been put on ventilators for advanced respiratory support.

“A death rate of almost 97% for patients on advanced respiratory support suggests something is going wrong in intensive care. Even in Italy at the peak of the Covid-19 incidence, the death rate of people on mechanical ventilation was around 65%,” a senior professor at St John’s Medical College and Hospital in Bengaluru said.

At 50, Victoria Hospital has the most ventilators of any government facility in Bengaluru.

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