Hours after a public spat between the Union Health Minister and Opposition-led State of Maharashtra over COVID-19 vaccine availability, India has added over 1 lakh new cases of the virus for the second day in a row.
Meanwhile, Serum Institute of India, the world’s biggest vaccine manufacturer based in Pune, has asked the government for a grant of ₹3,000 crore to increase its capacity to make AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine.
You can track coronavirus cases, deaths and testing rates at the national and State levels here. A list of State Helpline numbers is available as well.
Here are the latest updates:
Tamil Nadu government announces Covid-19 restrictions
Temple festivals, religious events banned from April 10.
Small traders at Koyambedu wholesale market alone banned from April 10.
Fruit and vegetables shops, shopping malls, large format stores, jewellery stores can operate only with 50% capacity till 11 p.m.
Only 50% capacity allowed at tea shops, restaurants, allowed to operate till 11 p.m.
Recreation clubs, Entertainment parks, large event venues, zoos, parks, museums allowed to function with only 50% capacity.
Cinema halls in malls and stand alone theatres allowed to function with only 50%% capacity.
Social, political, educational, entertainment, sporting and cultural events allowed in indoor venues with a maximum capacity of 200 persons.
Buses between districts and within Chennai allowed to operate with only seated passengers. No standing passengers allowed in buses. – T.K. Rohit
RT-PCR negative report must to visit tourist places in Mysuru
A travel advisory has been issued to people travelling from Bengaluru to Mysuru to carry an RT-PCR negative report with them in a bid to curb the spread of the pandemic in the district.
However, this is only in the nature of an advisory and will come into force from April 10 and be valid till April 20. The district administration in Mysuru has appealed to the travellers to comply with the advisory and cooperate to prevent COVID-19 from spreading to the rural hinterland.
The appeal comes in the wake of rise in COVID-19 cases in Bengaluru.
Students of classes 10, 12 want board exams cancelled
Amid a surge in COVID-19 cases, over one lakh students of classes 10 and 12 have signed petitions urging the government to either cancel board exams scheduled to be held in May or conduct them in online mode.
The hashtag “cancelboardexams2021” has been trending on Twitter for the past two days.
However, both the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) and Council for the Indian School Certificate Examinations (CISCE) have said that adequate safety arrangements are being made for students and all COVID-19 guidelines will be followed during the exams. – PTI
Maharashtra CM takes second dose of COVID-19 vaccine
NCP president Sharad Pawar on Thursday said the Centre has assured to help Maharashtra where the COVID-19 situation is currently “grim”.
In a live address on Facebook, Mr. Pawar, whose party shares power in Maharashtra with the Shiv Sena and Congress, said he spoke to Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan on Wednesday and the latter assured to support Maharashtra and other states to tackle the situation.
Mr. Pawar said the rapid spread of the viral infection and the rising number of active cases was a cause of concern, and the state government had no option but to impose curbs as the gravity of the situation cannot be ignored. – PTI
PM Modi gets 2nd dose of COVID-19 vaccine at AIIMS
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday took the second dose of COVID-19 vaccine at the All India Institute Of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), New Delhi. He received the first dose of Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin on March 1.
In a tweet, the Prime Minister shared a picture of himself taking the second dose of the vaccine and said: “Got my second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at AIIMS. Vaccination is among the few ways we have, to defeat the virus. If you are eligible for the vaccine, get your shot soon. Register on CoWin.gov.in.”
India reports highest daily spike of over 1.26 lakh new cases
India registered a record single-day spike of 1,26,789 new COVID-19 cases, pushing its infection tally to 1,29,28,574, while the number of active cases too went upwards to breach the nine lakh-mark again, Union Health Ministry data updated on Thursday showed.
The death toll due to the disease in the country increased to 1,66,862, with 685 new fatalities being reported in a day, according to the data updated at 8 a.m.
New Zealand suspends entry for travellers from India
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern on Thursday temporarily suspended entry for all travellers from India, including its own citizens, following a high number of positive coronavirus cases arriving from that country.
The suspension will start from 1600 local time on April 11 and will be in place until April 28, Ms. Ardern said in a news conference. During this time the government will look at risk management measures to resume travel.
Private hospitals seek time to hand over 50% beds
Although the State government has directed private hospitals to reserve 50% beds for government-referred COVID-19 patients, the hospital managements say it may take a couple of weeks to begin the system as they already have other patients admitted.
Members of the Private Hospitals and Nursing Homes Association (PHANA) said that officials had discussed bed reservation of upto 40% with them.
PHANA president Prasanna H.M. said, “While we have no objection to reserving 50% as we had done last year, beds in most hospitals are now occupied by private COVID-19 and non-COVID-19 patients.” He further added, “We will be in a position to hand them over as and when the beds fall vacant.”
(With inputs from Correspondents and Agencies)