A day before India is set to see an increase in the list of services that will be remain functional, ICMR reported a huge spike in coronavirus infections – 2,154 persons (the highest in a single day) – on Saturday. Currently, India has seen more than 16,000 cases of COVID-19 of which over 13,000 are active. At least 530 people have died till date.
Meanwhile New York, which had emerged as the epicentre for COVID-19 in the U.S with over 1,22,148 confirmed cases and over 7,890 deaths, registered daily deaths under 550 for first time in almost two weeks.
The Hindu has brought out a multi-language e-book on essential COVID-19 information, in addition to covering the developments related to the coronavirus pandemic as it unfolded. Here is a collection of our daily cartoons on COVID-19.
Here are the latest updates:
9:54 pm | Jaipur
Two deaths and 127 positive cases reported in Rajasthan today. The death toll is now 23 and the tally of patients is 1,478. Of them, 205 have recovered and 97 have been discharged from hospitals, according to the Medical & Health Department.
9:51 pm | Hyderabad
Lockdown in Telangana extended till May 7, Chief Minister K. Chandrashekar Rao announced at a briefing today.
8:58 pm | Lucknow
Cases in Uttar Pradesh has now touched 1,100, as per the State Directorate of Health Services. A total of 17 deaths were reported so far.
Six of the deaths were reported in Agra, three in Meerut, two in Moradabad and one each in Lucknow, Kanpur, Bulandhshar, Basti, Varanasi and Firozabad.
8:38 pm | Mumbai
Maharashtra reported a staggering surge of 552 new positive cases on Sunday, taking the State’s cumulative tally to 4,200 cases. Twelve more deaths were reported, raising the State’s death toll to 223.
8:32 pm | Guwahati
5 more patients discharged in Assam
Five more patients were discharged in Assam on Sunday, taking the total number of cured persons to 17, Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said.
Thirty-four persons had tested positive for COVID-19 in the State since March 31 and one person, hailing from Hailakandi, had died.
Four persons, including a woman, were discharged from Mahendra Mohan Choudhury Hospital (MMCH) and another from Guwahati Medical College Hospital here after their four successive tests were negative, the minister tweeted.
All five patients will now proceed for 14-day home quarantine, he said.
7:57 pm | New Delhi
Centre stops airline bookings
The government on Sunday directed airlines to discontinue advance bookings for travel from May 4, following which Air India has reversed its earlier decision to sell air tickets.
“It has been noticed that airlines have started booking tickets for journeys with effect from May 4. No decision to commence the operation of domestic/international flights with effect from May 4 has been taken yet. All airlines are hereby directed to refain from booking tickets,” the Civil Aviation Ministry told domestic and foreign airlines. It said the airlines would be given sufficient notice for restarting flights.
7:52 pm | Ahmedabad
Another 139 COVID-19 cases and 5 deaths were recorded in Gujarat today, taking the numbers to 1,743 cases and 63 deaths. In addition, 11 patients have recovered and discharged.
Gujarat’s infection curve is rising with a sharp increase in infections. A total of 367 cases and 10 deaths were reported today while yesterday’s count was 277 cases and 12 deaths.
7:45 pm | Nagpur
Nine COVID-19 cases were reported from Nagpur today, taking the total number of cases in the district to 72, said district authorities.
All the new cases were contacts of a 68-year-old man who died on April 5 and was the district’s first fatality, said Nagpur Municipal Commissioner Tukaram Munde.
He said till date, 192 contacts (including kin of the deceased) had been traced of whom no less than 37 had tested positive so far. The test results of 144 of these contacts were still awaited.
7:33 pm | New Delhi
Transported 1,150 tonnes of medical items, says Railways
Railways has transported 1,150 tonnes of medical items during the lockdown period across the country, the national transporter said on Sunday, adding that they include medicines, masks, hospital items and other medical commodities.
It said the items were being ferried through its timetabled parcel services to strengthen government’s efforts in managing the challenges and adverse impact of the coronavirus outbreak in the country.
At almost 400 tonnes, the Northern Railway ferried the maximum items followed by Western Railway (328.84 tonnes) and Central Railway (136 tonnes).
7:30 pm | Srinagar
Nine new cases reported in Jammu and Kashmir, tally touches 350
The number of cases in Jammu and Kashmir reached 350 on Sunday as nine more people tested positive in the Union territory, officials said.
Of the fresh cases, eight are from the Kashmir division while one is from Jammu, the officials said.
Now, the number of novel coronavirus cases in the Jammu division is 55 and that in the Kashmir division stands at 295, they added.
7:28 pm | Chandigarh
Ten fresh cases in Punjab; CM rules out any relaxation in curfew
Ten fresh cases surfaced in Punjab on Sunday, taking the total tally to 244 in the State, according to government statement.
State health department said out of the ten cases reported on April 19, four are from SAS Nagar and six are from Jalandhar districts. Till now, Punjab has seen 16 Covid-19 related deaths, while 37 patients have been cured of the deadly virus.
Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh, meanwhile ruled out any relaxation in the curfew in the state, except as needed to ensure Covid-19 free procurement of wheat, till May 3.
7:17 pm | Patna
Six more test positive in Bihar, total rises to 92
Six more people tested positive in Bihar on Sunday, taking the total number of cases in the State to 92, a top Health Department official said.
Of these six fresh infections, two were reported from Buxar district and four from Nalanda district.
7:16 pm | Chandigarh
Jail warder among 18 fresh cases in Haryana
Eighteen fresh cases of COVID-19 surfaced in Haryana on Sunday, including a jail warder, taking the total tally to 250 in the State, according to a government statement.
State Health Department said out of total 250 confirmed cases, 24 are foreign nationals i.e – 14 Italian, six are from Sri Lanka, one each from Nepal, Thailand, Indonesia and South Africa and 64 are from other States. Till now, Haryana has seen two COVID-19 related deaths, while 104 patients have been cured of the deadly virus, it added.
Chief Medical Officer, Gurugram, J.S. Punia, said a jail warder at Gurugram’s Bhondsi Jail has been tested positive. “He was absent from the duty since April 9 and returned to work two days ago. But he was asked to get his test done and not allowed to join. His samples were taken and result came on Saturday. He was found to be infected with the virus. Since he had not joined the duty, the staff and inmates at the jail did not come in contact with him,” he said.
7:10 pm | Dehradun
Dehradun, Haridwar and Nainital designated as red zones in Uttarakhand
Dehradun, Haridwar and Nainital in Uttarakhand have been kept in the red zone with 80% of positive cases in the State being reported from these districts.
According to a strategy devised by the Health Department for effective implementation of the extended lockdown, the State has been divided into three zones on the basis of the rate of spread of the pandemic, Health Secretary Yugal Kishore Pant said.
Dehradun, Haridwar and Nainital have been kept in the red zone while Almora, Udham Singh Nagar and Pauri districts have been kept in the orange zone. The remaining seven districts which have not yet reported a case have been kept in the green zone, Mr. Pant said.
7:03 pm | Mumbai
Dharavi reported 20 new cases on Sunday, bringing the total to 138 cases so far including 11 deaths
7:01 pm | New Delhi
Lok Sabha, Rajya Sabha Secretariats to resume work from April 20
The Lok Sabha Secretariat will resume work from Monday after it was shut in the last week of March in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak, according to an official order.
The Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha were shut on March 24 after both houses were adjourned sine die following the passage of the Finance Bill for 2020-21, bringing a premature end to the budget session of Parliament, which was slated to conclude on April 3.
According to the order issued by the Lok Sabha Secretariat, it will resume work from Monday and all officers of the joint secretary rank and above will join office. Besides them, the other staff will work on a rotational basis. The order further said while working, the secretariat staff will ensure that social distancing norms are observed.
File movement shall only be through electronic mode in e-office. The only exception could be urgent files for the consideration of the Lok Sabha speaker.
Another official order also said the Rajya Sabha Secretariat will resume work from Monday.
6:55 pm | Thiruvananthapuram
2 cases reported in Kerala, 13 cured
Two new cases were reported in Kerala on Sunday, taking the total number to 401, while 13 people were cured, the Health Department said.
Health Minister K.K. Shailaja said as of now 270 people have been cured of the deadly virus in the State.
“One infected person is from Kannur and another from Kasaragod. They came from Abu Dhabi and Dubai respectively. As of now 129 peopleare under treatment in the state,” Ms. Shailaja said in a release.
At least 55,590 people are under observation in the State while 416 are in isolation wards at various hospitals. The State has till now sent 19,351 samples for testing. Kannur has 48 positive cases, while neighbouring Kasaragod has 42 and Kozhikode, 13.
6:41 pm | Chennai
A total of 105 persons tested positive today taking the total number of positive cases to 1,477. In addition, 46 persons who were treated for the infection were discharged today. As of Sunday, 411 individuals have been discharged, 21,381 are under home quarantine and 1,987 in isolation wards.
6:17 pm | Jammu
Screening of Rohingya Muslims under way in Jammu; 12 samples taken for testing
Stepping up the COVID-19 screening of Rohingya Muslims living at various slums here, the Health Department in Jammu and Kashmir on Sunday collected a dozen samples for testing, officials said.
The samples were taken randomly during screening of Rohingya Muslims residing at Kargil colony and Beeru plot in Bhatindi, a red zone, by a team of doctors deputed to check for the symptoms of coronavirus among the population, the officials said.
They said over 540 Rohingyas, settled in two plots, were screened since Saturday and all of them were found with no symptoms of COVID-19.
The screening process will continue to cover all the settlements housing the foreigners.
5:53 pm | Bengaluru
Six new cases were detected in Karnataka on Sunday. The total cases in the State rose to 390 comprising 263 active cases and 111 recoveries. In addition, two new deaths were also reported today, raising the State’s toll to 16.
According to a media bulletin issued by the Department of Health and Family Welfare, a 65-year-woman, who was a resident of Bengaluru and was reported to have Severe Acute Respiratory Illnesses (SARI), passed away at a designated hospital in the city on Sunday. Another death was reported in Dakshina Kannada, a resident of Uppinangadi who was a 50-year-old woman died on Sunday.
5:50 pm | Paris
Global death toll crosses 160,000
The worldwide death toll from the novel coronavirus pandemic rose to 160,685 on Sunday, according to a tally from official sources compiled by AFP. More than 2,334,130 declared cases have been registered in 193 countries and territories since the epidemic first emerged in China in December.
Of these cases, at least 518,900 are now considered recovered.
The tallies, using data collected by AFP from national authorities and information from the World Health Organization (WHO), probably reflect only a fraction of the actual number of infections.
5:40 pm | Bhopal
The number of coronavirus cases in Madhya Pradesh rose to 1,407 with five more people testing positive for the disease on Sunday.
5.20 pm | Uttar Pradesh
Cases in U.P. cross 1,000-mark; death toll mounts to 17
The number of coronavirus cases in Uttar Pradesh on Sunday mounted to 1,084, with 110 fresh cases and three deaths being reported in a day, officials said.
The virus has claimed 17 lives in the state so far.
During a daily briefing on COVID-19, Principal Secretary (Medical and Health) Amit Mohan Prasad said the state has 959 active cases.
At least 1,084 people in 49 districts of the state are infected, he said, adding that 108 of them have been cured and discharged.
5.15 pm | Karnataka
18 released from quarantine in Bannur
A total of eighteen residents of Bannur, who had been quarantined at a Government facility in the town after they came into contact with a group of Tabligh Jamaat members, were discharged on Saturday after they tested negative for COVID-19.
The 18 residents of Bannur had been in quarantine since April 5 after the Tablighi Jamaat members tested positive.
–Laiqh A. Khan
Woman dies of COVID-19 in Mangaluru
A 50-year-old woman from Bantwal in Dakshina Kannada district who was down with Severe Acute Respiratory Illness (SARI) died at the Government Wenlock Hospital here in the morning.
Following SARI, the woman had been admitted to the Wenlock Hospital on April 18. She was being treated at the ICU in the hospital. Her throat swab test confirmed COVID-19 later in the day after her death at 9.15 a.m.
5.00 pm | Odisha
Odisha to hold talks with centre, States to ensure return of migrant workers post-lockdown: Patnaik
After lockdown restrictions are lifted, Odisha will hold talks with Centre and other State governments for smooth return of its migrant workers and technology will be applied to carry out the mission, announced Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Sunday.
— Satyasundar Barik
4.45 pm | Goa
No active COVID-19 case in Goa, all 7 patients discharged
Goa on Sunday became the first zero COVID-19 State in the country with the last seven positive cases also testing negative. This makes Goa the first green State in the country with no case of SARS-CoV-2 since April 3.
The coastal tourist State had a total of seven positive cases, of whom six had travel history and one was the brother of a positive patient.
“Goa is now COVID-19 free, all seven patients have tested negative. They will be quarantined at a government facility and later at home,” Chief Minister, Dr. Pramod Sawant said.
Goa has in all tested over 800 people of which seven had come positive. Dr. Sawant said though Goa was the first Indian State to be free of any tested positive case and a happy moment for everyone, especially the frontline workers, it was important to realise that this was no time to relax.
The Chief Minister said from April 20, the government would scrutinise reports of its three-day door-to-door citizens survey done last week and decide on testing people for COVID-19 wherever it felt was necessary.
4.10 pm | India
Five groups working on COVID-19 vaccines to test on humans: ICMR
The Home Minister has met officials in the Ministry and directed that relaxations offered in rural areas have to be closely monitored.
The quality of food offered to migrants at shelters is to be closely monitored, according to the Health Ministry’s daily press briefing.
386791 tests have been done so far. Yesterday, 37,173 tests were done.
7886 tests were done in private labs.
2231 people have been cured, which is at a rate of 14.19%.
No cases have been reported from 54 districts in 23 states in the last 14 days.
It was informed that a high level task force has been constituted regarding the vaccine for COVID-19. Academia, industry and international efforts are to be coordinated by it.
Clinical cohorts will be developed to better understand disease trends.
There are to be no relaxations in containment zones of hotspots, where doubling of cases has happened in less than 4 days. Normalcy can be restored only gradually even after May 3.
There are 755 dedicated hospitals and 1389 health centres for severe and critical cases, it was informed.
Raman Gangakhedkar, ICMR: “Five groups, working on vaccines, are going to test on humans. Trial in Oxford will be recruiting 500 and results should be known in 6 months.
“Everybody in hotspots, with flu-like illnesses can get a test.”
Lav Agrawal, Joint Secretary, Health Ministry: “A very small percentage of asymptomatic cases has been turning positive.”
MHA spokesperson on ban on non-essential goods by e-commerce companies: “Some restrictions are necessary. The list of non-essential goods was found extensive and permitting all would affect efficacy of lockdown”.
3.50 pm | India
SpiceJet to send select staff on leave without pay
SpiceJet has decided to send employees earning more than Rs 50,000 per month on leave without pay on a rotational basis, sources said on Sunday amid flight services remaining suspended till May 3.
This arrangement would be in place for three months, they added.
The sources also told PTI that the salary for April is likely to be paid to staff for the days they were on duty.
Earlier, the budget carrier had sent employees on leave without pay from March 25 to 31.
3.40 pm | Jammu and Kashmir
32 more prisoners released in J&K
Thirty-two prisoners, including 16 arrested under the stringent Public Safety Act (PSA), were released to decongest jails across Jammu and Kashmir in the wake of COVID-19 pandemic, officials said on Sunday.
A total of 236 prisoners have been released this month by the Jammu and Kashmir administration on the directions of the Supreme Court.
3.15 pm | Bihar
Two more positive cases of COVID-19 have been detected in Bihar, from Nalanda and Buxar districts. The total number of COVID-19 positive cases in Bihar goes up to 89.
3.05 pm | Delhi
MHA to allow migrant labourers to move within current State after screening
New MHA guidelines say migrant labourers can be screened and those who are asymptomatic can be allowed to move within the State to reach their place of work. All such workers living in relief camps will have to be registered with the local authorities. During the journey by bus, social distancing should be ensured.
“It should be noted that there shall be no movement outside the State/UT from where they are currently located, ” the fresh Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) sent by the MHA to States said.
2.45 pm | Andhra Pradesh
One more death, 44 fresh COVID-19 cases reported; 5508 samples tested in 24 hours
In line with the increase in number of samples being tested more fresh cases of COVID-19 are emerging in the State by the day. During the past 24 hours, a total of 44 new cases and one more death was reported in six districts as a result of testing of 5508 samples, the highest number of tests conducted in a day, according to the State bulletin issued by the Health department on Saturday. The tally has gone up to 647 and toll reached 17.
2.40 pm | Tamil Nadu
Nine more patients recover from COVID-19 in Tiruppur district, discharged
As many as nine patients from Tiruppur district who recovered from COVID-19 were discharged on Saturday, District Collector K. Vijayakarthikeyan said on Sunday.
This brings the total number of patients from Tiruppur discharged from Coimbatore’s ESI Hospital to 10, he told mediapersons. As of Sunday, Tiruppur district saw the confirmation of 108 COVID-19 positive cases.
2.30 pm | Kerala
Migrant labourers: CRPF, BSF, ITBP personnel to play role of interpreters in Kerala
Personnel of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), Border Security Force (BSF) and Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) would now be assisting the Kerala police as interpreters to communicate and better understand the requirements of the migrant labourers in the State.
2.10 pm | Delhi
One-and-a-half-month-old baby dies of COVID-19 in Delhi hospital
A one-and-a-half-month-old baby has died of coronavirus infection at a hospital in Delhi, officials said on Sunday, in perhaps the first fatality of an infant due to COVID-19 in the national capital.
The baby died at Kalawati Saran Children’s Hospital attached to the Centre-run Lady Hardinge Medical College.
“The baby was brought to the hospital a few days ago. He tested positive for COVID-19. The child was admitted to SARI (Severe Acute Respiratory Illness) ward and died yesterday,” a doctor at the hospital said on the condition of anonymity.
The surveillance team has been informed for contact tracing, he said.
1.30 pm | Maharashtra
Shortage of medical kits in Maharashtra, says Uddhav Thackeray
“There is a shortage of medical kits. I won’t lie. But we are doing our best, from centre and from other sources,” said Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray.
Maharashtra has now completed six weeks of fight against the coronavirus, Mr. Thackeray said.
“Till last evening we conducted 66796 tests. 95% reports are negative. Around 3600 are positive. Around 350 have recovered. 70-75% are mild symptoms. 52 patients are severe.
“Last evening, I spoke to private medical practitioners, doctors. They assured us that practice for non-COVID-19 patients will start in Mumbai.
He said the Government has demarcated red, orange and green zones. Permissions are being given in orange and green zones for certain economic activities.
“We are not opening district borders, except for goods transport.
“Intra-district movement in green and orange zones may be allowed.
“In Mumbai and Pune, which are red zones, door-to-door delivery of newspapers will not be allowed,” Mr. Thackeray said, adding that he was aware he would be criticised by journalists for this step. “In other areas, a rethink of the decision will be done in the next 2 to 3 days.”
“There are domestic violence reports coming from different quarters of the world. State govt appeals women to dial 100 in case of any such violence,” he said.
The State govt has come up with 2 more numbers:
BMC and Birla joint service – 1800120820050
Tribal development department , Project Mumbai and Praffulla- 18001024040
“These numbers are to be called in case you are feeling depressed,” said Mr. Thackeray.
1 pm | Tamil Nadu
Madras HC sticks to video conferencing
In Tamil Nadu, the Madras High Court has decided to conduct judicial proceedings only through video conferencing until further orders.
No court will be accessible for judicial functions till then. They shall be sanitised and kept hygienically fit for future use.
12.45 pm | Bihar
In Bihar, a 55-year-old man has been found COVID-19 positive, taking the total toll in the State to 87.
Two people have died in the State of COVID-19. As many as 37 patients have recovered from the infection.
12.35 pm | India
Supply of non-essential goods by e-commerce companies will remain prohibited, says MHA
The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) clarified on Sunday that supply of non-essential goods by e-commerce companies will remain prohibited during the lockdown.
On April 15, the MHA had revised its earlier guidelines issued under the Disaster Management Act, 2005, to allow the States to decide on the additional public activities to be allowed from April 20 in non-hotspot zones. It said the additional facilities will have to be based on strict compliance to the existing guidelines on lockdown measures
12.25 pm | Karnataka
Four new cases in Karnataka
Four new COVID-19 positive cases have been reported in Karnataka on Sunday. With this, the total number of cases in Karnataka is now 388.
According to a bulletin issued by the Department of Health and Family Welfare, all four patients are from Mysuru. While two of them have travel history to New Delhi, the other two are from the Nanjangud cluster, where a patient who was working in a pharmaceutical company in Nanjangud tested positive for COVID-19 last month.
12.15 pm | Delhi
No ease in restrictions in Delhi, says CM Arvind Kejriwal
Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Sunday said that there will be no ease in restrictions in Delhi, considering that situation in the districts.
“Centre has allowed us to ease lockdown restrictions from April 20 but all districts of Delhi are hotspots,” he said.
Hence, there will be no ease in any restrictions in Delhi, said the Chief Minister. “We will assess the situation after a week to see if we can extend any restrictions,” he added.
12 pm | India
New guidelines for distribution of relief materials in Chennai
The Chennai Corporation has released new guidelines for the distribution of food and relief materials for affected residents during the lockdown for COVID-19. This follows a court order based on petitions filed by Opposition parties.
According to a press release from Chennai Corporation Commissioner G. Prakash, representatives of organisations and NGOs who intend to distribute food and relief materials to affected people should inform Chennai Corporation zonal officers before 48 hours. The information pertaining to the place and time of distribution should be shared with the zonal office of the Chennai Corporation.
11.45 am | India
Chidambaram asks the government to release uniform figures for COVID-19 positive cases
Former Finance Minister P. Chidamabaram asked the government to release uniform COVID-19 figures after a huge discrepancy in Saturday’s details of positive cases released by the Ministry of Health and the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR).
In a series of tweets, Mr. Chidamabaram asked the government to explain the difference in figures between States, Health Ministry, and the ICMR.
“Numbers of positive cases put out today by the States, by ICMR and by Ministry of Health are conflicting and confusing. Usually, States’ total is the highest, followed by ICMR number, followed by M/Health’s number. Today, it is the other way around,”said Mr. Chidamabaram.
11.20 am | Gujarat
Five deaths in Gujarat, total toll 58
For the second day in a row, Gujarat saw a spike in the COVID-19 death toll as five people succumbed to the disease. This brings the total toll in the State to 58, said the health department.
The State also saw 228 new cases. Overall, 1,604 people have tested positive for the infection in Gujarat.
Of the five deaths, four are from Ahmedabad and the other from Surat. Three of the dead are female and two male. According to the health department, 94 patients have recovered so far.
With 140 new cases today, the number of cases in Ahmedabad now stands at 1,002. Twenty nine people have died in the city while 27 have recovered.
11 am | Singapore
Foreign workers’ dormitories could see more coronavirus cases, warns Singapore PM
Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong has warned that more coronavirus cases could come up at packed dormitories that house foreign workers, including several Indian nationals.
While efforts have been made to break the chain of transmission in foreign worker dormitories, it will take some time to show results, Lee said on Saturday .
“The migrant workers who are ill are getting the medical treatment they need. Fortunately, the vast majority of the cases are mild, because the workers are young. Our healthcare teams continue to monitor their conditions,” assured Prime Minister Lee in a Facebook post.
A large proportion of Singapore’s COVID-19 cases can be traced to foreign worker dormitories, which have seen a surge in confirmed cases recently.
Among the latest coronavirus cases is a 28-year-old Indian man working at a hospital who has no recent travel history to affected countries or regions.
10.20 am | Tamil Nadu
Lockdown restrictions to continue until CM’s decision: Tamil Nadu govt.
All the restrictions in place during the COVID-19 lockdown in Tamil Nadu would continue “until official announcement” (offering any relaxation) is made by the Chief Minister based on the recommendations to be made by the 21-member expert committee, the Tamil Nadu government said on Sunday.
The panel is scheduled to submit its report to the Chief Minister on Monday.
“The CM would examine its recommendations and would take a decision,” it said.
10.10 am | Rajasthan
Another death in Rajasthan, toll is now 22
A 62-year-old man died in Jaipur, taking the death toll in Rajasthan to 22. The COVID-19 patient was admitted to the hospital on Thursday with complaints of fever and breathlessness. He was identified as COVID-19 positive on Saturday, according to the State Medical and Health Department.
Forty-four new COVID-19 positive cases have been detected in Rajasthan, taking the State’s tally to 1,395. As many as 205 patients have recovered, says officials.
10 am | China
China declares Wuhan low-risk area
China has classified coronavirus epicentre Wuhan as a low-risk area, days after it revised the city’s death toll by 50%, even as 16 new COVID-19 cases were reported in the country, health officials said on Sunday.
According to the risk criteria defined in a guideline issued by China’s State Council, cities, counties and districts with no newly confirmed cases in the last 14 days are categorised as low-risk areas.
While declaring Wuhan as a low-risk area China has strengthened nucleic acid testing to detect coronavirus for people leaving Wuhan.
The test is required before people resume work, production or study elsewhere, it said.
9.30 am | Himachal Pradesh
Recovered patient tests positive again in Himachal
A man, who had recovered from the novel coronavirus, was again found suffering from the infection in Himachal Pradesh, officials said.
The man, a Tablighi Jamaat member, tested positive for the infection on Saturday within a week of his two reports coming out negative, they said.
Residents of different places in Mandi district, the man along with two other Jamaatis had been staying in a mosque of Nakroh village in Una’a Amb tehsil and all tested positive on April 2.
9.10 am | South Korea
S Korea reports single-digit rise in infections
South Korea on Sunday reported eight more cases of the coronavirus, the first time a daily increase has dropped to a single digit in about two months.
The Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said the additional figures took the country’s total to 10,661 with 234 deaths.
It said 8,042 people have recovered and been released from quarantine and 12,243 others were undergoing tests to determine whether they contracted the virus.
South Korea’s caseload has been waning in recent weeks since it recorded hundreds of new cases every day between late February and early March, mostly in the southeastern city of Daegu and nearby areas.
Despite the recent downward trend, South Korean officials have warned about the possibility of a broader quiet spread with people easing up on social distancing.
9 am | USA
China’s COVID-19 toll way ahead of U.S., says Donald Trump
President Donald Trump has expressed his doubts over the official Chinese figures on the number of deaths in their country due to the novel coronavirus pandemic, claiming that the fatalities were way ahead of the U.S.
Mr. Trump’s comments come two days after another 1,300 fatalities were added to the official count in the city of Wuhan, where the outbreak started. The revision puts China’s overall death toll to more than 4,600.
8.30 am | Dubai
Dubai extends 24-hour coronavirus curfew by a week
Dubai, the United Arab Emirates business hub, has extended by one week a 24-hour-a-day curfew imposed as part of a sterilisation drive to control the spread of the coronavirus, the government said in a Twitter post on Friday.
The UAE has imposed a nationwide nightly curfew since March 26 for the disinfection campaign, but Dubai on April 4 expanded it within the emirate to a 24-hour lockdown for two weeks.
A glimpse into the isolated existence of containment zones
P. Swaroopa, who has a business of ironing clothes, faced a difficult situation recently. Her residence in P&T Colony of Dilsukhnagar was barricaded and guarded by police, after it was declared a COVID-19 containment zone by government.
A patient was diagnosed with coronavirus infection in their locality and is being treated at Gandhi Hospital. The entire street where he lived has been barricaded, and the residents have been told to stay home. Whatever they needed from outside would be provided by authorities, against payment of money.