The situation in the United States continues to be grim with over 16,000 dead and 4.6 lakhs infected. Globally, over 15 lakh people have been infected so far by coronavirus and the fatalities stands at nearly 95,000.
Numbers to note:
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Here are the latest updates:
4.00 pm | India
PMO reviews efforts to check coronavirus spread
The production of personal protective equipment (PPE) is being ramped up, a meeting held by the Prime Minister’s Office to review the efforts to tackle the spread of coronavirus was informed on Friday.
Principal Secretary to the Prime Minister P K Mishra chaired the meeting of the empowered groups of officers set up to tackle the challenges arising out of COVID-19.
The meeting reviewed and expressed satisfaction on the detailed testing protocol and procedure, under which 1,45,916 samples have been tested across the country till date.
3.40 pm | Delhi
‘Operation SHIELD’ has stalled COVID-19 from spreading at Dilshad Garden, claims Delhi govt.
‘Operation SHIELD’, aimed at countering the community spread of the Novel Coronavirus, announced by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Thursday, has stalled COVID-19 from spreading at Dilshad Garden, the Delhi government claimed.
In the last 10 days, the government claimed in a statement, there had been no reported cases from the Dilshad Garden area, terming it the first instance of the “successful implementation” of the initiative.
— Jatin Anand
3.35 pm | Uttar Pradesh
The number of cases in U.P. now stands at 431, said Amit Mohan Prasad, State Principal Secretary, Health department.
— Omar Rashid
3.25 pm | India
ICMR approves use of diagnostic machine used for drug-resistant TB for COVID-19
As part of its efforts to ramp up the testing capacity, the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has approved the use of diagnostic machines used for testing drug-resistant tuberculosis for conducting coronavirus tests.
The ICMR has validated ‘TruenatTM beta CoV test on TruelabTM workstation’ and has recommended it as a screening test, the apex health research body said on Friday.
Issuing a guidance on the use of Truenat beta CoV, the ICMR said throat/nasal swabs will be collected in the viral transport medium (VTM) with virus lysis buffer provided along with the kit.
3.20 pm | Spain
Spain’s daily death toll eases again
The number of people dying of coronavirus in Spain each day fell again on Friday as the country registered 605 fatalities over the past 24 hours, the health ministry said.
The overall death toll rose to 15,843 on Friday from 15,238 the previous day, it said in a statement. The total number of coronavirus cases rose to 157,022 on Friday from 152,446 on Thursday.
3.15 pm | India
SpiceJet operates 1st freighter service to Ho Chi Minh City, carries medical supplies
Budget carrier SpiceJet operated its first freighter service on Friday to Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam from Hyderabad, carrying around 16 tonnes of medical supplies as part of the transportation of medical essentials, including medicines and other medical supplies, amid the coronavirus pandemic, the airline said.
Besides, one of its freighters flew with critical medical equipment from Singapore to Bangaluru, while a passenger aircraft transported medical supplies as in-cabin cargo to Guwahati from Kolkata, it said.
3.00 pm | Tripura
Tripura invokes Essential Services Management Act
The Tripura government has invoked the Essential Services Management Act (ESMA) after a few nurses at a state-run hospital complained about shortage of masks and other protective equipment in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak.
Tripura is the second State after Madhya Pradesh to have enforced the Act of 1986, which gives the police the right to arrest without a warrant anybody violating the ESMA’s provisions.
Under it, employees in a long list of “essential services” like post and telegraph, railway, airport and port operations are prohibited from going on strike.
2.45 pm | Kerala
22 discharged in Kasaragod
In a huge relief for Kasaragod district, which has witnessed the highest number of COVID-19 cases in the State, 22 patients have been discharged from various hospitals.
In the second stage of coronavirus infection, a total of 138 patients from Kasaragod are receiving treatment in various hospitals.
2.40 pm | Tamil Nadu
TN COVID-19 expert panel recommends extension of lockdown by two weeks
The Expert Committee of medical experts constituted to track the spread of COVID-19 in Tamil Nadu on Friday recommended to Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami to extend the ongoing lockdown by two weeks beyond April 14.
“Despite all the efforts taken by the government, cases [of COVID-19] have been increasing so far…All the doctors [on the 19-member panel] feel that it would be good if the lockdown is extended for 14 more days. This is among the recommendations of the Committee,” a panel spokesperson told journalists at the Secretariat in Chennai in the afternoon.
— Dennis S. Jesudasan
2.30 pm | Punjab
Punjab in second stage of COVID-19: Amarinder Singh
Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Friday said the State is in second stage of COVID-19. Ahead of State cabinet meeting, slated for today, Mr. Singh said he personally feels the lockdown should be extended.
He, however, added that the Cabinet would take a decision on the State’s lockdown extension.
Addressing a press conference through video conference, Mr. Singh said Punjab will allow district-wise relief from lockdown only to farmers to allow them for harvesting of Rabi crop.
He said the state was expecting a bumper crop of 185 lakh tonnes of wheat and is making arrangements for harvest of the crop.
He said predictions by health experts about the spread of the pandemic are “horrendous and frightening“.
“Prediction by experts about spread of the virus are horrendous and frightening,” he said, adding that the government is preparing itself and gearing up for such a situation.
2.20 pm | Rajasthan
Bhilwara model breaks virus transmission chain in district
The “ruthless containment” model adopted in Bhilwara, which emerged last month as the worst-affected district in Rajasthan, has succeeded in breaking the chain of novel coronavirus transmission. Among the 27 COVID-19 positive cases found earlier, 25 patients have been cured of the infection and 15 of them discharged from hospital.
Bhilwara Collector Rajendra Bhatt said on Friday that the remaining 10 persons, who were under observation, would be discharged in a couple of days. The two elderly patients who died after testing COVID-19 positive reportedly had co-morbidity and other medical complications, while one of them was also in a state of coma when he was tested.
— Mohammed Iqbal
2.15 pm | Tamil Nadu
Doctor in Nagapattinam tests positive for COVID-19, clinic sealed
The district administration has sealed a private hospital run by a doctor after he tested positive for COVID-19.
The doctor who had returned from USA about 20 days ago, is the 12th COVID-19 positive patient in the district. The doctor’s residence and clinic have been made containment zones.
2.00 pm | Puducherry
Two more test COVID-19 positive in Puducherry
1.45 pm | Kerala
It doesn’t matter what’s the cost involved in flattening the curve: Kerala Finance Minister
Finance Minister T.M. Thomas Isaac reveals in an interview with The Hindu, the State’s plans to use the COVID-19 fight as a window of opportunity to set up agriculture processing industries and pharma consortiums.
1.30 pm | Maharashtra
Two nurses from Dadar hospital test positive
Two nurses from Dadar’s Sushrusha Hospital have tested positive. About 28 other nurses have been put in quarantine in the same hospital. Besides, the management has been ordered to stop new admissions and shift patients out in 48 hours.
Another senior citizen has tested positive from Dadar, bringing the total to six from the area.
1.20 pm | Karnataka
Ten new cases in Karnataka
Ten new cases have been detected in the State on Friday, taking the total number to 207.
The new cases include five from Mysuru and two from Bengaluru. All the patients from Bengaluru and Mysuru are contacts of patients who tested positive earlier.
A 55-year-old male from Kalaburagi, who is suffering from severe acute respiratory illness, is also a contact of another positive patient. Two from Bengaluru Rural have also tested positive.
With Friday’s additions, a total of 42 cases have been reported from Mysuru. This includes 31 from the Pharma company, three who returned from Dubai and the remaining who returned from Delhi.
1.10 pm | Delhi
Dwarka councillor violates quarantine, tests positive
A councillor in the Dwarka area, her husband and son have tested positive for Covid-19.
The Delhi Police has registered a case against them for violating home quarantine guidelines.
— Saurabh Trivedi
1.00 pm | Maharashtra
Detailed inquiry to be undertaken into DHFL promoters’ lockdown violation: NCP
Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh has spoken to CM Uddhav Thackeray regarding DHFL chairman Kapil Wadhawan and his family violating the lockdown by travelling, and a detailed inquiry will be done regarding the same, NCP chief spokesperson Nawab Malik said in a press note.
Pending inquiry, Amitabh Gupta, Principal Secretary (Special), Home Department, has been sent on a long leave, the note said.
“IPS and IAS officers come under the ambit of the PMO. If the Central Government wishes to take action against Amitabh Gupta, they are free to do so. We will welcome the same,” Mr. Malik added.
12.50 pm | Bihar
The number of COVID-19 patients in Siwan district has gone up to 29. The total number of infected persons in Bihar goes up to 60.
12.40 pm | Uttar Pradesh
Priyanka Gandhi writes to Adityanath, seeks increased testing for COVID-19 in U.P.
Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, in a letter to Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, urged the State government to considerably increase testing for COVID-19 and cited the example of Congress-ruled Rajasthan.
The letter, dated April 9, was released by the Congress on Friday.
12.20 pm | Andhra Pradesh
Two new cases in A.P.
Two new COVID-19 positive cases have been reported from Anantapur district in Andhra Pradesh in the testings conducted from 9 p.m. on Thursday to 9 a.m on Friday, taking the total number of positive cases in the State to 365.
According to a bulletin released by the State nodal officer, COVID-19 tests were conducted on 892 people in the last 24 hours and 17 of them tested positive. Of the total 365 positive cases, 10 persons have been discharged after recovery, six of them succumbed to the virus and 349 are undergoing treatment.
–P. Sujatha Varma
12.10 pm | Maharashtra
Maharashtra records 16 more cases as tally rises to 1380
At least 16 more Covid-19 positive cases were reported from Maharashtra on Friday as the cumulative tally climbed to 1380, with Pune recording an alarming spike of nine fresh cases over a 12-hour span, said officials.
With this, Pune tally has surged to 218, with a total of 25 deaths reported from the district.
Four more cases were reported from Akola taking the district’s tally to 13, while two more were reported Buldhana district, taking the district’s tally to 17, and one positive case was reported from Ratnagiri district.
97 deaths have been reported from the State so far, with 54 of these being from Mumbai.
— Shoumojit Banerjee
12.05 PM | India
PM to interact with CMs tomorrow; extension of lockdown on agenda
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will interact with Chief Ministers of all States on Saturday via video, where a call would be taken on whether the 21-day lockdown to check spread of coronavirus should be extended.
The video conference comes after several States have favoured the extension to contain the virus.
12.00 pm | Andaman and Nicobar Islands
10 COVID-19 patients in Andaman and Nicobar Islands recover
Ten persons, who tested positive for COVID-19 after returning from a religious congregation in Delhi last month, have recovered, officials said on Friday.
All of them returned to Port Blair via Kolkata on March 24, they said.
They have tested negative and will soon be shifted from the GB Pant Hospital, where they are undergoing treatment, to a quarantine facility before being discharged, a health official said.
11.40 am | India
IndiGo to suspend meal service for some time, fill only 50% seats in airport buses post lockdown
India’s largest airline, IndiGo, will temporarily discontinue meals onboard as well as run coaches at half their capacity. These are among its new set of operating procedures as it prepares to resume flights once the lockdown that followed the COVID-19 outbreak is lifted.
11.30 am | Madhya Pradesh
14 new cases in Bhopal
As many as 14 persons tested positive for COVID-19 in Bhopal on Friday morning, taking the tally in the city to 109, said district administration officials. Madhya Pradesh has recorded 445 cases and 33 deaths so far.
11.25 am | India
Govt. removes customs duty, cess on COVID-19 medical equipment
The government on Thursday removed customs duty and health cess on ventilators, face and surgical masks, personal protection equipment and COVID-19 test kits with a view to boost availability of these products in the country to fight coronavirus pandemic.
11.20 am | Delhi
Chief Secretary reviews situation at containment zones
Chief Secretary Vijay Dev has reviewed the situation at 22 areas in Delhi designated as containment zones. A multi-agency containment plan has been put in place, according to the office of the Chief Secretary.
Police authorities of the area have been directed to ensure the containment of the area, adequate barricading and deployment of police personnel to prevent any unauthorized movement of persons. Civil Defence volunteers have also been deployed in shifts in the Containment Zones for enforcing the lockdown effectively, the office said.
Surveillance of the Containment Zones will be carried out by a dedicated team with the help of Surveillance App. A dedicated helpline for grievance redressal is being set up for the ‘Containment Zone’. The Containment Plan will be reviewed constantly based on experience and field inputs, it added.
— Jatin Anand
11.15 am | Telangana
Telangana Cabinet to hold meeting tomorrow; to discuss lockdown extension
Telangana Cabinet will have a meeting on Saturday at 3 p.m. to discuss rising cases of Covid-19 and the resultant situation. The Cabinet will also discuss the prospect of extending lockdown and the present financial situation, relief being extended to poor, migrant workers , purchase of agricultural produce and other issues.
11.00 am | Maharashtra
Five more test positive in Mumbai’s Dharavi
Dharavi reported five new cases on Friday, bringing the total to 22. These five include two people who had attended the Markaz at Delhi.
On Friday, the number of cases jumped from 17 to 22. Among the new cases is the wife of a doctor from Wockhardt hospital who had earlier tested positive. Two cases are from new areas of Dharavi- PMGP colony and Murugan chawl- while two are from areas that had previously reported cases.
Among the two new positive cases were people who had returned from Nizamuddin Markaz in Delhi and were already being quarantined, screened for symptoms. After they developed symptoms, they were tested positive and moved to a hospital. Besides, five other couples who had attended the Markaz and stayed briefly in Dharavi are suspected to be the source of first Covid-19 patient in the area who eventually died.
10.55 | Rajasthan
26 fresh cases in Rajasthan
Rajasthan records 26 new cases of coronavirus infection today, taking the State’s tally to 489.
As many as 12 COVID-19 positive cases were reported from Banswara, followed by 8 in Jaisalmer district’s Pokhran town, 3 in Jhalawar and 1 each in Alwar, Bharatpur and Kota.
The State’s tally of 489 cases includes 42 evacuees from Iran staying in Army’s facilities, according to Medical & Health Department. – Mohammed Iqbal
10.50 am | Jammu and Kashmir
4 test positive for COVID-19 in Udhampur
Four people have been confirmed positive for COVID-19 in Udhampur district, taking the total number of cases in Jammu and Kashmir to 188.
The four are the contacts of a 61-year-old woman who died of coronavirus on Wednesday.
The positive cases included two grand-daughters, daughter-in-law and a neighbour of the deceased woman. – PTI
10.45 am | Gujarat
Two die in Gujarat
Gujarat records two deaths and 46 news cases of Coronavirus infection on Friday. The deaths were reported from Ahmedabad and Gandhinagar.
Total 259 patients are under treatment out of which two are on ventilator support, the State’s Health Department bulletin said.
The infection has now spread to 19 of the 33 districts in the State.
Totally 308 cases have been reported in Gujarat, including 19 deaths. So far, 30 patients have recovered and discharged from their hospitals. – Mahesh Langa
10.40 am | Jharkhand
Bokaro man tests positive for COVID-19
A 35-year-old man, who attended a religious congregation in Delhi last month, tested positive for COVID-19 in Bokaro district, taking the total number of coronavirus cases in Jharkhand to 14. – PTI
10.40 am | Kerala
Kerala gets nod for trial of plasma therapy
Kerala is not easing its level of preparedness or its efforts to stay ahead of the virus even when it is clear that the progression of COVID-19 epidemic in the State is currently well below the case progression graphs plotted by mathematic modellers.
With Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan making it clear that the State would be exploring all currently available treatment options the world over, Kerala has once again gone a step ahead and won Indian Council of Medical Research’s (ICMR) approval for the clinical protocol exploring the feasibility of an experimental therapy, convalescent plasma transfusion, which may be administered to severe COVID-19 patients.
10.20 am | Yemen
Yemen reports first coronavirus case
Yemen on Friday reported its first case of coronavirus in a southern province under the control of the government, the supreme national emergency committee for COVID-19 said.
Aid groups have warned that when the virus does hit Yemen’s broken healthcare system, the impact will be catastrophic.
“The first confirmed case of coronavirus has been reported in Hadramout province,” the committee, which belongs to the internationally recognised government, said on Twitter.
10 am | World
UN chief warns COVID-19 threatens global peace and security
Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned the U.N. Security Council on Thursday that the coronavirus pandemic is threatening international peace and security, “potentially leading to an increase in social unrest and violence that would greatly undermine our ability to fight the disease.”
The closed meeting was the first by the council on the pandemic and afterward it issued its first brief press statement expressing “support for all efforts of the secretary-general concerning the potential impact of the COVID-19 pandemic to conflict-affected countries and recalled the need for unity and solidarity with all those affected.”
9.30 am | Israel
Israel PM Netanyahu thanks India for delivering hydroxychloroquine
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Thursday thanked his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi for rushing a five-tonne cargo of medicines, including anti-malarial drug hydroxychloroquine, seen as a possible cure for COVID-19.
“Thank you, my dear friend @narendramodi, Prime Minister of India, for sending Chloroquine to Israel. All the citizens of Israel thank you!”, Mr. Netanyahu said in a tweet Thursday evening.
9.10 am | India
No significant rate of increase in COVID-19 positive cases, says ICMR
The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) on Thursday said the country has maintained a steady rate of COVID-19 positive cases — 3% to 5% over the past month and half — and has registered no significant increase in this trend so far.
The country currently has 5,865 confirmed cases and 169 deaths. This includes 591 new cases and 20 deaths in the last 24 hours, Joint Secretary in the Union Health Ministry Lav Agrawal said at the daily press briefing. He added that 473 people had recovered and been discharged so far.
8.40 am | Bihar
With seven more positive cases detected in Bihar from Siwan and Begusarai districts, the total number of COVID-19 positive cases in the State has gone up to 58.
8.30 am | Odisha
The total number of COVID-19 positive cases in Odisha has increased to 48 with six new cases detected by 11 p.m. on Thursday, according to the State government.
Boris Johnson leaves intensive care, remains under observation
Prime Minister Boris Johnson left intensive care on Thursday evening as he continues to recover from COVID-19, but he remains under close observation in hospital, his office said on Thursday.
Mr. Johnson, 55, was admitted to St. Thomas’ Hospital on Sunday evening with a persistent high temperature and cough, and was rushed to intensive care on Monday where he spent three nights receiving treatment.
“The Prime Minister has been moved this evening from intensive care back to the ward, where he will receive close monitoring during the early phase of his recovery,” a spokesperson from his office said in an emailed statement. “He is in extremely good spirits.”