With 69,239 fresh cases reported in the last 24 hours, the coronavirus tally in India crossed the 30-lakh mark. As per the latest figures released by the Union Health Ministry, of the 30.44 lakh cases, 7,07,668 are active infections, while 22,80,567 patients have already been discharged. As many as 912 deaths pushed the casualties in the country to 56,706.
Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan has said that if everything goes well, India would get a Covid-19 vaccine by the end of this year, PTI reported. Three COVID-19 vaccine candidates, including two indigenous ones, are at different phases of development in India. The phase-one human clinical trials of the two indigenous candidates have been completed and the trials are now in phase-two, ICMR Director General Dr Balram Bhargava had said recently.
Here are some interesting stories on day 23 of Unlock 3.0
Ajit Pawar sprays disinfectant on microphones held by reporters
Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar sprayed disinfectant on the microphones held by news reporters seeking a sound byte at the sidelines of inauguration of a ‘Jumbo Covid Care facility’ in Pune.@IndianExpress pic.twitter.com/QyfWE9bBw9
— Atikh Rashid (@ThePikaro) August 23, 2020
Kolkata traffic cop comes to rescue of 11-year-old thalassemia patient
The humane side of police personnel and civic volunteers enforcing lockdown curbs came to the fore recently in Bengal, when one of them rushed to the aid of an 11-year-old thalassemia patient, in need of immediate blood transfusion. Taking to Facebook, the Kolkata Police shared details of the incident and said “humanity knows no lockdown”.
Shubhendu Bhakta, the father of the 11-year-old, was speeding on the Howrah Bridge, his shirt blood-stained, when the police intercepted him. Upon enquiry, Bhakta said he fell from his bike and sustained injuries on the way.
Bhakta also insisted that he be allowed to rush to the bank, where he would donate a unit to procure another O-positive blood unit for his son. A civic volunteer of the Howrah bridge traffic guard, Mohammed Niazuddin, after getting to know about his plight, promptly agreed to accompany Bhakta to the bank and donate blood, as the father was already injured and bleeding.
Delhi farmer buys flight tickets to bring back 20 workers from Bihar
A Delhi-based mushroom farmer, who had sent 10 of his workers to their home state Bihar by plane in May during the coronavirus-induced lockdown, has now booked air tickets for them and 10 other migrant labourers to return and join work here. Pappan Singh has booked tickets worth over Rs 1 lakh so that the workers, who have toiled for him, some for over 20 years, can join him in farming mushrooms during the August to April season.
Of the 20 workers, 10 of them would be flying for the first time, and they will arrive at the IGI Airport here on August 27. They will start working in the new mushroom farming season along with Singh in Delhi’s Tigipur village. Talking to PTI over phone from his native village in Bihar’s Samastipur district, Naveen Ram said they are excited to travel on a plane, but added that he is not nervous this time as he has the experience of his first air travel in May.
The Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay, on Sunday used virtual reality (VR) to hold its 58th convocation amid the coronavirus outbreak. The programme, where the animated digital avatars of the institute’s senate members shared the stage and personalised avatars of students given away certificates, was telecast on DD Sahyadri and social media platforms.
A statement released by the institute said: “The institute thought it best to arrange such a VR-convocation for the graduating students as we did not wish to put their health at risk but at the same time, we did not wish to deprive them of the sense of achievement and pride of passing out of India’s premier engineering Institute.”