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Coronavirus India highlights: Delhi sees highest single-day spike with 427 new cases

As India enters its 40th day into a nationwide lockdown enforced to contain the transmission of the novel coronavirus, the number of Covid-19 cases has climbed to 40,263, including 1306 deaths, as per the latest update from the Health Ministry.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Updated: May 4, 2020 1:44:32 am
Plasma therapy Coronavirus, Coronavirus Covid-19 Plasma Therapy, Delhi coronavirus covid-19 cases, covid-19 cases Coronavirus, coronavirus india latest news, coronavirus covid-19 news, coronavirus latest news update Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal. (PTI)

Stating that the time has come to re-open Delhi, Chief Minister Kejriwal on Sunday said he will suggest the Centre to declare only containment areas in the city as red zone and not the entire district. Also, the national capital witnessed the highest single-day spike with 427 new cases as total number of cases have soared to 4,549.

As India enters its 40th day into a nationwide lockdown enforced to contain the transmission of the novel coronavirus, the number of Covid-19 cases has climbed to 40,263, including 1306 deaths, as per the latest update from the Health Ministry.

To display the gratitude to the COVID-19 warriors, the armed forces today conducted aerial fly-pasts, light up ships at sea and showered flower petals on several hospitals across the country. The thanks-giving activities started with laying of wreaths at the police memorial in Delhi and in several other cities to honour the police personnel deployed for enforcement of the nationwide lockdown, officials said. Later in the evening, the navy will light up its warships to express their gratitude towards the frontline workers. COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus has infected almost 3.4 million people worldwide. 2.44 lakh people have died so far, with most fatalities from the United States (65,416), followed by Italy (28,710), and the United Kingdom (28,204). (Track India’s state-wise cases, deaths and recoveries here

Live Blog

Coronavirus (Covid-19) Tracker India highlights: With 83 casulaties in 24 hours, India's death toll stands at 1301. Nearly 40,000 cases. Armed Forces paid tributes to COVID-19 warriors. Follow LIVE updates 

00:04 (IST)04 May 2020
Madhya Pradesh: Number of cases dip, but high death rate in Ujjain cause for worry

While Madhya Pradesh reported a decline in the number of active cases for the second consecutive day, Ujjain continued to be a spot of bother for the government, as the death toll rose to 32 on Sunday.

Alarmed by the high fatality rate in the temple town, the government sent a special team from Indore to check on the treatment facility. While Ujjain did not report many positive cases, seven people lost their lives over the last two days. The death toll was 15 on April 25, but it more than doubled in the last eight days to climb to 32. The fatality rate is more than 20 per cent. The state death toll climbed to 158. Though Indore has reported 76 deaths, the fatality rate has come down to five.

Ujjain divisional commissioner Anand Sharma told The Indian Express that Jansapura locality has reported most cases, but people are still apprehensive to report illness. "The infection is reported very late, which makes treatment difficult," he said.

While about 50 positive cases were reported from different parts of the state, 174 persons were discharged in the last 24 hours, bringing the active case count to 1,889. Chouhan, however, counted Ujjain death rate as a cause of worry and asked to send a special team immediately.

ACS Mohammed Suleman said the state has ramped up testing facility to conduct 2,600 tests daily.

Meanwhile, the CM said the state has requested to arrange 31 trains to bring back migrant labourers stranded in other parts of the country. The plan includes 22 trains from Maharashtra, two from Gujarat and Goa. The government said the toll free (0755/2411180) number started for workers stranded outside MP is receiving 1,300 calls per minutes.

23:25 (IST)03 May 2020
No pass needed to move around in Bengaluru from 7 am to 7 pm from tomorrow

No pass needed to move around in Bengaluru from 7 am to 7 pm from tomorrow (May 4). From 7 pm to 7 am, even pass-holders aren’t allowed to step out (except medical, essential service).

22:44 (IST)03 May 2020
Gurgaon: Activities permitted in phase three of lockdown

Standalone shops, as well as markets of the Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA) in Gurgaon, will be allowed to operate between 7 am and 7 pm from Monday, along with salons and beauty parlours, as the nationwide lockdown enters its third phase. Deputy Commissioner Amit Khatri said that any shops open during the remaining length of the lockdown will have to abide by the COVID-19 protocol and follow social distancing and preventive measures, such as use of face masks and hand sanitisers.

Gurgaon has recorded 73 cases COVID-19. Six of these were recorded on Sunday. Among them, is a Delhi Police officer residing in Gurgaon, authorities said. Faridabad also recorded 7 new cases on Sunday, and now has the same number of cases as Gurgaon: 73, which is the highest among the districts in Haryana.

22:38 (IST)03 May 2020
WATCH: Southern Naval Command ships pay tributes to Covid-19 fighters

The Southern Naval Command illuminated warships in Kochi to salute healthcare professionals at the forefront of the Covid-19 battle.

22:04 (IST)03 May 2020
Delhi sees highest single-day spike with 427 new cases, total cases 4,549. 

The national capital witnessed the highest single-day spike with 427 new cases as total number of cases have soared to 4,549. 

21:46 (IST)03 May 2020
Mumbai: Dharavi slum reports 94 new COVID-19 cases and 2 deaths

Mumbai's biggest slum sprawl Dharavi on Sunday reported 94 new COVID-19 cases and two deaths, a Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) official said. With this, the overall number of the cases from the densly-populated slum colony rose to 590 and the death toll to 20, he said.

"Dharavi on Sunday reported 94 new COVID-9 cases from various areas, taking the tally to 590 so far. The slum area also reported deaths of two COVID-19 patients, increasing the toll to 20," the official said.

Dharavi, believed to be the biggest slum in India, is posing a tough challenge for the BMC and the Maharashtra government to contain the coronavirus spread, mainly due to its population density which makes social distancing very difficult.

21:32 (IST)03 May 2020
Two more fatalities take COVID-19 death toll to 50 in West Bengal

West Bengal reported two more COVID-19 fatalities, raising the death toll due to the disease to 50 in the state, officials said on Sunday. A total of 41 fresh COVID-19 cases have emerged in West Bengal, according to a bulletin issued by the state health department.

Till Sunday afternoon, there were 927 coronavirus cases in the state, it said. The Union health ministry, however, has put the figure at 922. The number of active cases in the state stood at 663, the bulletin said. The officer-in-charge of the Pragati Maidan police station in the eastern parts of the city and a senior state government official have tested positive for the disease and have been admitted to a private hospital, officials said. A total of 22,915 samples have been tested for the novel coronavirus in West Bengal so far, they added. (PTI)

20:53 (IST)03 May 2020
Viral Video: TN police imitate Ghana dancing pallbearers to urge people to stay indoors

In its latest attempt to spread awareness about the coronavirus pandemic and urge people to stay home, the Tamil Nadu police department has taken inspiration from the dancing Ghana pallbearers, which had become a fodder for memes earlier this year.

For the uninitiated, several memes and videos of the “dancing coffin” crew from Ghana had gone viral earlier this year. The performance is a part of a funeral service, which is carried out on the request of the family.

Taking inspiration from the popular viral meme, the cops in Cuddalore district in Tamil Nadu imitated the moves to show how breaking lockdown rules could turn fatal. Here, take a look:

20:52 (IST)03 May 2020
Manipur: First batch of stranded who returned to state test negative

The first batch of 92 stranded Manipuris, who returned to the state amid the lockdown have tested negative for COVID-19 on Sunday. Of the total number of people, 87 were brought from Guwahati and five from Mizoram by road on Saturday. They were lodged at a quarantine center in Imphal West district even as their samples were sent for testing. In all 44 samples were tested at the Regional Institute of Medical Sciences (RIMS) and 48 at the Jawaharlal Nehru Institute of Medical Sciences (JNIMS), the highest number of tests conducted in the state in a single day. Hospital Authority of both the institutes said that they conducted pull testing to shorten the testing period.

20:20 (IST)03 May 2020
Gujarat: No relaxations in red zones till May 17, some services to resume in other areas

The Gujarat government on Sunday said that the COVID-19 lockdown will be strictly implemented in six municipal corporations and six municipalities of the state till May 17, while it also announced some relaxations in areas falling orange and green zones.

Declaring a series of decisions to be implemented during the third phase of the lockdown, Secretary to the Chief Minister Ashwani Kumar, on Sunday, said that lockdown will be strictly implemented in municipal corporation areas of Ahmedabad, Surat, Vadodara, Gandhinagar, Bhavnagar which fall under red zone category and in Rajkot.

19:51 (IST)03 May 2020
Assam CM sets up advisory panel to revive economy

Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal on Sunday constituted an advisory committee to suggest measures to revive the state's economy, which is hit by the coronavirus outbreak. The eight-member committee, led by retired IAS officer Subhash Das, will study various aspects of the economic activities in the state and advise the government to bring the economy back on track. (PTI) 

19:49 (IST)03 May 2020
Liquor shops in Karnataka gearing up to start operations

Erection of barricades and drawing up of boxes or circles aimed at maintaining social distancing were seen in front of liquor shops in different parts of Karnataka on Sunday, a day ahead of their reopening after a gap of over 40-days, due to the lockdown. Karnataka Excise Commissioner on Saturday had ordered that only CL-2 (retail shops) and CL-11C (state-run retail shops like Mysore Sales International Limited) would open from May 4. It had permitted liquor sale liquor between 9 am and 7 pm only in areas that are outside COVID-19 containment zones.

Reports of barricades being erected to ensure that people stand in line and drawing of boxes or circles in front of shops to maintain social distancing in front of retail and MSIL shops have emerged from across the state, including the state capital. Also reports about shop keepers doing special poojas outside liquor shops in Kolar and some even illuminating their outlets with lights from outside have surfaced from other parts of the state. Meanwhile, officials were engaged in checking stocks ahead of the shops opening on Monday morning.

Calling for number of customers to be limited to five at a time while ensuring that they maintain social distancing of not less than six feet distance, the order states that customers and the staff will have to wear masks and sanitizers should be used at the shops. Only stand alone CL-2 and CL-11C shops are allowed to commence liquor sale and not those at malls and super markets, it said. Officials in Bengaluru said liquor sale is prohibited in 26 containment zones in the city, while in other places rules that have been prescribed need to be followed. In case of any violation, strict action would be taken, including imposing of penalty, they said. There was pressure on the government to kick start economic activities, including allowing sale of liquor, to boost the state's finances as excise is the key area which generates revenue. State Excise Minister H Nagesh had recently pegged the losses at Rs 60 crore per day because of closure of liquor shops, due to the lockdown. (PTI)

19:40 (IST)03 May 2020
WATCH: Coronavirus on May 3, flights to resume from T3 after lockdown

Commercial passenger flights at Delhi’s IGI Airport will resume operations from Terminal 3 after the lockdown is lifted. Entry gates, self check-in machines and check-in bays will be allocated to airlines to avoid overcrowding by air travellers.

19:33 (IST)03 May 2020
Explained: What is ‘covid toe’ condition that has left researchers puzzled?

The most common symptoms of Covid-19 are well known by now, these include fever, dry cough, sore throat and muscle pain among others. But emerging research has pointed out some other symptoms as well, which include the loss of smell and taste, confusion, stroke and seizures reported in a small subset of patients infected with the virus.

Now, a paper published in the British Journal of Dermatology talks about “unexplained” skin manifestations in Covid-19 patients. Researchers have described five clinical patterns, including the so-called ‘covid toe’, that they observed in 19 per cent of the cases examined.

19:30 (IST)03 May 2020
Lockdown 3.0: What’s allowed, what’s not from tomorrow

The third phase of the coronavirus-enforced lockdown to break the chain of transmission will kick in from Monday after the government extended the nationwide lockdown for two more weeks. According to latest figures provided by the Health Ministry, the total number of coronavirus cases climbed to 40,263 with as many as 1,306 fatalities. The ministry said 2487 cases and 73 deaths were reported in the last 24 hours.

“After a comprehensive review and in view of the lockdown measures having led to significant gains in the Covid-19 situation, the government has decided to further extend the lockdown,” the MHA order read.

The MHA further said a limited number of activities will remain prohibited across the country, irrespective of the zones, including travel by air, rail, metro and inter-state movement by road; running of schools, colleges, and other educational and training/coaching institutions.

19:22 (IST)03 May 2020
10 lakh tests done till date, over 74,000 tests performed on a daily basis: Harsh Vardhan

The Health Minister informed that India has done more than 10 lakh tests till date and government is performing over 74,000 tests in a day presently. Harshb Vardhan added that the government has distributed around 20 lakh PPE kits all over India and supplied medicines (both Hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) and Paracetamol to more than 100 countries.

He said India is on a 'better footing' as compared to other nations, adding the country is capable to pull off any eventuality with more than 2.5 lakh beds in dedicated COVID-19 hospitals and health centers. Vardhan also urged the people to observe the extended period of lockdown 3.0 (till May 17) in letter and spirit and treat it as an effective intervention to cut down the chain of transmission of COVID-19.

19:18 (IST)03 May 2020
Rate of growth of new COVID-19 cases steadying for a while: Health Minister

Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan on Sunday said the rate of growth of new COVID-19 cases has been steadying for a while and the recovery rate improving, adding that India is on the path of success and will win the war against the pandemic. He said around 10,000 COVID-19 patients have recovered so far. "The recovery rate of COVID-19 patients has steadily increased which shows that more and more of these patients are getting better and going back home," he said.

"The rate of growth of new cases has also been steadying for a while," Vardhan added. According to the data received on Sunday, for the past three days, the doubling rate of the virus is 12.0, for seven days it is 11.7 and for 14 days it is 10.4, the minister was quoted as saying in a statement.

19:12 (IST)03 May 2020
Assam to impose curfew from tomorrow, only pharmacies allowed to operate

Assam to impose 6pm - 6am curfew from tomorrow. "Nothing except pharmacies will be allowed to remain open in that period," says Himant Biswa Sarma. 

19:06 (IST)03 May 2020
Key takeways from CM Kejriwal's press conference

* The Chief Minister cautioned that people aged above 65, those with health complications and children of the age below 10 should remain indoors. They will be allowed to venture out only in case of medical needs, Kejriwal said, reiterating the ban on spitting in public places.

* Between 7 pm to 7 am, people have been advised against going out unless dealing with essential services and needs.

* For now, public transport services such as Delhi Metro, bus services, autos, cabs and e-rickshaws will also remain suspended. The ban on social, political and religious gatherings will also stay enforced. However, marriages, with maximum 50 people in attendance and funerals, with maximum 20 people, will be allowed under conditions of abiding by social distancing norms.

* Shops and establishments extending services such as barber shops, salons and spas will remain closed. In markets, only shops selling essential items can open while all standalone shops, neighbourhood shops and those inside residential complexes can open businesses, irrespective of whether essential or non-essential.

18:24 (IST)03 May 2020
Delhi will implement all lockdown relaxations prescribed by Home Ministry: CM Kejriwal

PTI reported that Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal stated Sunday that his government will implement all lockdown relaxations prescribed to Union Home Ministry. "Delhi govt offices engaged in essential services to function with full strength; private office to open with 33 per cent strengt," Kejriwal added. "We will not be able to sustain the lockdown for long as the economy is in peril. The revenue has fallen from Rs 3500 Crores in April month of previous years to Rs 300 Crores this year. How will the government function?," Kejriwal said.

"I believe enforcing the lockdown was very essential at that point (last week of March). Had it not been implemented, the country would have faced serious consequences. However, after 1.5 months, at least in Delhi, we are fully prepared to lift the restrictions," the CM said during a webcast. He also added that the lockdown was having grave consequences on the economy with revenue drying up. "Where will we give salaries from?" Kejriwal asked, reaching out to the centre to allow more relaxations in Delhi.

"We will now have to learn to live with corona. Both governments and the people need to prepare themselves for it. If lockdown is lifted, there will be a little spike in cases, but we are ready to tackle that. We have told the Centre that the containment zones should be kept under lockdown and the rest of the city should be thrown open," the CM added.

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Coronavirus India LIVE updates: A day after six trains set off from across the country, taking stranded migrants back home, the Railways on Saturday cleared 12 more trains. Sources said the Railways estimates that around 500 such trains will eventually be run to take stranded people home.

Throughout Saturday, the entire Railways system kept itself busy resolving coordination issues with states. For instance, after the departure of the train from Sabarmati to Agra, it was found that a large number of people were from Kanpur and wanted a halt there, something authorities in Uttar Pradesh had not informed the Railways.

Meanwhile, with 187 new coronavirus cases, Punjab on Saturday recorded its highest single-day spike since the outbreak. The state’s cases tally is now 772. Of the 187 new cases, 170 were pilgrims who had returned from Nanded, Maharashtra.

A government functionary said that of the total 772 who have tested positive in the state so far, 339 were pilgrims who had returned from Nanded, accounting for nearly 44 per cent of the total cases.

Lokpal member Justice A K Tripathi (Retd) dies of coronavirus

Former Chief Justice of the Chhattisgarh High Court and Lokpal member Ajay Kumar Tripathi passed away late evening on Saturday at AIIMS trauma centre. He was admitted to the hospital in April after he tested positive for Covid-19. On Saturday, he suffered a sudden cardiac arrest and succumbed to the month-long illness.

“He was still positive for Covid-19 and at around 9 pm he suffered a cardiac arrest,” said Dr Amil Lathwal, medical superintendent of AIIMS trauma centre. The hospital had put him off the ventilator few weeks ago after he showed some improvement, however, he was put back on ventilator support.

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Rahul Gandhi calls Aarogya Setu a ‘sophisticated surveillance system’; RS Prasad hits back

Highlighting data security and privacy concerns with Aarogya Setu, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi Saturday claimed the government’s contact-tracing mobile application was a “sophisticated surveillance system outsourced to a private operator”.

Gandhi’s remark came a day after the Centre made the use of the app mandatory for all employees of public and private organisations to track patients with Covid-19 and alert others in proximity to them. The app is developed by the National Informatics Centre (NIC) under the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology.

“The Arogya Setu app, is a sophisticated surveillance system, outsourced to a private operator, with no institutional oversight – raising serious data security and privacy concerns. Technology can help keep us safe; but fear must not be leveraged to track citizens without their consent,” the Congress leader said.

Hitting back, Union Information and Technology Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said the app was a “powerful companion which protects people and has a robust data security architecture.”

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Trump hopes COVID deaths will be below 100,000

President Donald Trump says he’s hoping that the total number of COVID-19 deaths in the United States will be below 100,000. Even that, he acknowledged on Friday, is a “horrible number”.

Trump’s predictions of the expected U.S. death toll have changed over time, and he repeatedly has used high estimates to make the case that his administration’s actions, especially his decision to restrict travel from China, have saved lives.

His actions have been challenged by state, local and public health officials who have complained about shortages of testing supplies and safety gear for doctors and nurses.

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