Coronavirus India Updates: In the 24 hours ending 9 am Thursday, India detected 66,999 news cases of the novel coronavirus, the highest daily increase till date. The country also reported 942 deaths, taking its toll due to the disease to 47,033. India now has 2,396,637 cases of Covid-19, including 6,53,622 patients who are undergoing treatment for the disease. The recovery rate is at 70.77 per cent, with as many as 16,95,982 patients having recovered. The fatality rate has dipped below 2 per cent, and is now 1.96 per cent. India has the fourth-highest death count in the world, after the United States, Brazil and Mexico.
The Covid-19 recovery rate has risen to 70.77 per cent on Thursday with the total number of patients recuperating from the disease reaching nearly 17 lakh, the Union Health Ministry said. It said “record-high” recoveries have led to a decline in the “actual caseload” of the country, which is the number of active cases, and currently is only 27.27 per cent of the total cases. The number of recoveries from COVID-19 exceed active cases by more than 10 lakh.
Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu continue to host the most number of Covid-19 patients. However, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, West Bengal and Assam are now the biggest contributors to India’s daily numbers. Odisha, Kerala and Punjab are also now seeing relatively high growth rates. (Read: India’s Coronavirus Numbers Explained)
Here are some of the top coronavirus stories on August 13:
Maharashtra records 11,813 new COVID cases, 413 deaths, 9,115 recoveries
Maharashtra registered a spike of 11,813 new cases on Thursday which took the coronavirus tally in the state to 5,60,126. With 413 COVID-19 patients dying, the death toll in the state reached 19,063, the state health department said. On the other hand, 9,115 patients were discharged from hospitals, it said. So far 3,90,948 COVID-19 patients have recovered in Maharashtra while there are 1,49,798 active cases. 29,76,090 people have been tested so far. The case fatality rate in the state is 3.4 per cent and recovery rate is 69.8 per cent.
Record 8.3 lakh tests done, total figure 2.68 crore: Health ministry
A record high of over 8 lakh tests have been done for detection of COVID-19 in a span of 24 hours, taking the cumulative testing figure in India to 2,68,45,688 crore, the Union Health ministry said on Thursday. The Tests Per Million saw a sharp increase to stand at 19453. A record 8,30,391 samples were tested on Wednesday in the country. “In pursuance of the ‘test, track and treat’ strategy, India is geared up to reach the testing capacity of 10 lakh tests per day,” the ministry said. The strong resolve and determination of the Union and state governments and union territory administrations to follow aggressive testing as the first important step in the early detection and isolation of COVID-19 positive cases have resulted in India rapidly increasing the number of tests done per day, it said.
J&K: 536 new Covid positive cases reported
536 new Covid positive cases reported from Jammu and Kashmir today; 98 from Jammu division and 438 from Kashmir division, taking the total number of cases to 26949. Death toll rises to 509 after 11 deaths were reported today, said Govt of J&K.
Assam announces latest unlock measures: public transport allowed; night curfew relaxed
On Thursday, the Assam government announced the latest unlock measures relaxing the night curfew till 9 30 pm, allowing public transport and inter-district movement. According to an order passed by Assam chief secretary Kumar Sanjay Krishna, inter-district movement of passenger vehicles is allowed between Monday to Friday, public transport like city buses are allowed to ply on 50 per cent capacity and proper social distancing norms. The earlier restriction which allowed shops on only one side of the street to open in Guwahati has been withdrawn. The curfew from 9.30 pm to 5 am remains and so does the weekend (Saturday-Sunday) lockdown. However, the government has passed a special order for August 15, a Saturday, on account of Independence Day: people will be allowed to move from 6 am to 5 pm, subject to maintenance of social distancing norms. The state currently has 21,626 active cases.
Uttar Pradesh reports 4,537 new COVID-19 cases, 50 more deaths
Uttar Pradesh reported 50 more COVID-19 deaths and 4,537 new cases of the infection on Thursday. Additional Chief Secretary (Medical and Health) Amit Mohan Prasad said the total number of cases in the state stands at 1,40,775 and the death toll at 2,280. “So far, 88,786 people have been treated and discharged. There are now 49,709 active COVID-19 cases in the state, of which 22,408 are in home isolation,” Prasad said. The state’s COVID-19 tally was 1,36,238 on Wednesday.
Virgin Atlantic to resume flights from London to Delhi, Mumbai from Sept 2
British premier carrier Virgin Atlantic on Thursday announced the resumption of its flight services to Delhi and Mumbai from London Heathrow, under the air bubble pact, starting September 2. Virgin Atlantic plans to operate three flights a week from Delhi to London Heathrow from September 2, while Mumbai services are planned to re-commence from September 17 with four flights per week, the airline said in a release. Both the destinations will provide connections to New York JFK and will operate on 787-9 Dreamliner, it said. The flights to the two destinations in India from London are being resumed under the air bubble pact between the UK and Indian governments, it said.
Keeping tab on fees of private COVID hospitals: Nagpur collector
The Nagpur district administration in Maharashtra has deployed its officials to monitor prices being charged by private COVID-19 hospitals following complaints of some medical facilities charging exorbiatnt amounts from patients. Sales tax and GST officials were trained a few days back to keep a check on the rates being charged by the hospitals in Nagpur, Resident Deputy Collector Ravindra Khajanji said on Wednesday. The officials are now monitoring if the state government’s regulations on charges for treatment of COVID-19 patients are being followed, Collector Ravindra Thakre told PTI.
The Maharashtra government today told the Bombay High Court that it could not permit Jain temples in the city to open for devotees to mark the festival of Paryushan, PTI reported. The state said that opening the temples from August 15 to 23 this year, as requested by the Jain community, would lead to an “imminent danger” of the spread of the virus. Responding to this, the court said it did not wish to interfere with the state’s decision right now. “This won’t be possible. If you noticed, yesterday, there were no Govindas on the streets,” the bench said while referring to the restrictions on the Janmashtami celebrations this year in view of the pandemic.
Record 1,981 Covid-19 cases in Odisha push tally to 52,653
Odisha on Thursday witnessed the biggest single-day spike of 1,981 Covid-19 cases, which took the state’s tally to 52,653, a health department official here said. Nine more patients succumbed to the infection, raising the death toll to 314, he said. Three deaths were recorded in Ganjam district, two each in Cuttack and Mayurbhanj, and one each in Kandhamal and Sundergarh, the official said. “Regret to inform the demise of Nine #COVID 19 positive patients while under treatment in hospitals,” the health and family welfare department posted on Twitter.
Over a week after sharing the stage with Prime Minister Narendra Modi during the ‘bhoomi pujan’ of the Ram Temple in Ayodhya, Ram Janmabhoomi Trust chief Mahant Nritya Gopal Das Thursday tested positive for Covid-19. Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and Governor Anandiben Patel were also among the top leaders who were present at the event on August 5.
The Uttar Pradesh government, in a statement, said the Chief Minister had spoken to the Mathura District Magistrate and urged Dr Trehan of Medanta Hospital to provide immediate medical attention to Gopal Das. “Honorable CM has taken details of the Health Status on Mahant Nitiya Gopaldas ji who has been tested positive for Covid . He has spoken to DM Mathura and his followers and to Dr Trehan of Medanta and requested for immediate medical attention for Mahantji at Medanta. He has directed DM Mathura to provide all possible support for providing best possible medical attention,” the statement read.
SC may resume physical hearings next week
After over four months, the Supreme Court may resume physical hearings next week. At least two or three of the SC’s 15 benches may reportedly begin hearings with precautions such as physical distancing and wearing masks.
Shivaji M Jadhav, president of the Supreme Court Advocates on Record Association (SCAORA), was quoted as saying by news agency PTI that the court was “seriously considering to start at least 2-3 physical courts from the next week”.
“I may also add that the physical courts are in addition to virtual courts and people would have option to do virtual hearing as well. Matters from the final hearing list published before the lockdown would be listed before the physical courts. Final decision would be taken by the judges’ committee in a day or two,” he said.
The apex court has been hearing cases virtually since March 25.
Pranab Mukherjee in deep comatose: Hospital
Former president Pranab Mukherjee is in deep comatose, the Army’s Research and Referral hospital in New Delhi said in a statement Thursday. Mukherjee underwent brain surgery on Monday (August 10) for a blood clot. During his treatment, doctors found he was Covid-19 positive.
“The condition of Shri Pranab Mukherjee remains unchanged this morning, He is deeply comatose with stable vital parameters and he continues to be on ventilatory support,” a statement from the hospital read.
The Trump administration Thursday made exemptions to its H-1B and L-1 travel ban, a move that could bear good news for Indian IT professionals. The amendment to the June 22 order stated that H-1B and L-1 visas could be issued for employees who were “seeking to resume ongoing employment in the United States in the same position with the same employer and visa classification”. The exemptions were also available to spouses and dependents, the notification said.
President Donald Trump had earlier restricted foreign workers from entering the country using several non-immigrant visas, including the H-1B, to help US nationals secure jobs during the pandemic.
At Rs 2,800 per 100mg vial, Zydus Cadila Thursday launched the cheapest generic version of remdesivir, an antiviral drug, to treat Covid-19 patients in India. The drug will be sold to government and private hospitals under the brand name Remdac, the company said.
There are four other companies selling the drug in India, including Hetero Labs Ltd, Cipla, Mylan NV and Jubilant Life Sciences Ltd.