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India Coronavirus Updates, 16 August: Recovery rate at 71.9%; devotees throng Vaishno Devi shrine

India Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update: The overall tally in Sunday rose to 25,89,682 after 63,490 cases were registered within a span of 24 hours.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi |
Updated: August 16, 2020 7:37:54 pm
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Coronavirus India Updates: With 18,62,258 recoveries, the coronavirus recovery rate in India rose to 71.91 per cent on Sunday, according to the Union Health Ministry data. The overall tally, on the other hand, rose to 25,89,682 after 63,490 cases were registered within a span of 24 hours.

The death toll, meanwhile, climbed to 49,980, out of which 944 people succumbed to the disease on Saturday.

India has been reporting over 60,000 cases daily since August 7, barring August 11 when the country registered 53,601 new cases of the infection, PTI reported.

A look at the top developments today.

Religious places, including Vaishno Devi, reopens in J&K

The famous Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine atop Trikuta hills in Reasi district of Jammu and Kashmir were among the several religious places that reopened almost after five months, on Sunday.

The gates of the shrine reopened for the devotees around 6 am with Chief Executive Officer of the Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Board Ramesh Kumar reviewing the measures to ensure safety of the pilgrims, news agency PTI reported.

“The Vaishno Devi pilgrimage was stopped on March 18 as a precautionary measure to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and now when the administration had decided to reopen the religious places, the board had taken all necessary measures keeping in mind the challenge posed by the dreaded disease,” Kumar said.

In the first week, there shall be a cap of 2,000 pilgrims each day, of which 1,900 would be from Jammu and Kashmir and the remaining 100 from outside. Only the pilgrims who have registered themselves online are being allowed to undertake the pilgrimage. The pilgrims are directed to use traditional routes — from Katra to Bhawan via Banganga, Adhkuwari and Sanjichhat — to reach the shrine and Himkoti route-Tarakote Marg for their return journey.

Raut takes dig at Centre with Russian Covid-19 vaccine example

Taking a dig at the Narendra Modi government over its push for self-reliance, Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut on Sunday said Russia gave the first lesson to the world on being ‘Aatmanirbhar’ by introducing the coronavirus vaccine while India has just been preaching about it.

“When there was a movement across the globe to prove the Russian vaccine as illegal, Putin used the vaccine as a trial on his daughter and created self-confidence in his own country,” Raut said.

“Russia gave the first lesson of being ‘Aatmanirbhar’ (self-reliant) to the world. We are just preaching about being ‘Aatmanirbhar’,” the executive editor of ‘Saamana’ said.

On 200th day of pandemic, Vijayan lauds ‘unflinching spirit’ of Kerala residents

On 200th day of Covid-19 crisis, Kerala chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan took to Twiiter appreciating the ‘unflinching spirit’ of the state residents in responding to the pandemic. “We are into the 200th day of Covid-19 crisis. Looking back, we can say with pride that this has not been just a period of despair & loss. It has also been a time of courage, compassion, resilience & survival. People of Kerala responded to the crisis with an unflinching spirit,” he said.

He cited the example of a 105-year-old patient surviving the disease and said Kerala’s health workers have done a remarkable job. He went on to say, “Kerala is often cited as an example for inclusive development and social harmony, and it will remain so, but from now, it will also be an argument for hope. Keep Hope Alive, We Shall Overcome.”

COVID-19: Work at Rajasthan High Court suspended for 3 days

Chief Justice of Rajasthan High Court Indrajit Mahanty tested negative for coronavirus on Sunday after a scare that he has contracted the infection. Jaipur Chief Medical and Health Officer (CMHO) Dr Narottam Sharma said the first report came positive owing to a “technical error” in the RT-PCR test. “However, he has tested negative in two subsequent reports,” Sharma said, adding that there remains a possibilty of an error due to mistakes by the health staff or technical issues.

Earlier, it was announced that work at the Rajasthan High Court in Jaipur will remain suspended for three days after the scare gripped the complex.  In a notice, the registrar general of the court requested all the persons concerned to get themselves tested for Covid. The testing facility is available in the Rajasthan High Court, Jaipur bench, during the three-day period, the notice added.

“ln view of recent results of COVID-19 tests conducted in the Rajasthan High Court, Jaipur Bench, it is notified that court and office work in Rajasthan High Court, Jaipur Bench shall remain suspended from August 17 to 19 for COVID-19 testing,” it said. The notice, however, did not mention anything about the Rajasthan High Court chief justice contracting the virus.

Utpal Parrikar tests coronavirus positive

Utpal Parrikar, BJP leader and the son of former Goa chief minister Manohar Parrikar, said he has tested positive for Covid-19 and has got himself admitted to a hospital on doctors’ advice.

After his test results came positive, Uptal Parrikar told reporters on Saturday evening that he tested positive for COVID-19. “Its a mild infection, so I would be home quarantined,” he had then said. However, on Sunday, he tweeted: “On advice of Doctors and to take proper line of treatment, I’ve got admitted to Hospital. Thank you everyone for the wishes.”

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