Coronavirus India lockdown Day 209 updates | October 21, 2020

Tamil Nadu health department organising awareness on hand wash methods in Chennai.   | Photo Credit: B. JOTHI RAMALINGAM

The Centre on Tuesday said it was keenly following the Solidarity trial interim report results, which indicated that remdesivir, hydroxychloroquine, lopinavir/ritonavir and interferon regimens appeared to have little or no effect on 28-day mortality or the in-hospital course of COVID-19 among hospitalised patients. “The results are interim, not peer reviewed. Debate and discussion are on and we will take the results of these trials into consideration. Alongside, the benefit of blood plasma for COVID-19 patients is under review and debate,” CMR Director General Dr. Balram Bhargava a Health Ministry press conference.

“COVID-19 reinfection in India is currently under investigation and we are collecting data on this. As per the knowledge that we have now, we understand that after COVID-19 infection, antibodies stay in the body for anywhere between 3-5 months. If the person gets infected again after 90 days, it is called reinfection,” Dr. Bhargave said.

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:


Bengaluru-Puducherry buses to run from October 23

The Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) would re-start bus operations to Puducherry from October 23 after having stopped the service due to COVID-19 lockdown.

Now that the lockdown has been relaxed, the KSRTC would resume the operations from Bengaluru to Puducherry keeping in view the density of passengers, an official press release said.

It is mandatory for all the passengers to wear masks, the release said. - PTI

New Delhi

Delhi airport emerges second safest globally on COVID-19-related safety protocols: DIAL

Delhi airport operator DIAL on Wednesday said it has been certified as the second safest aerodrome globally for effective implementation of coronavirus-related health and safety protocols. The safe travel score is an initiative by Safe Travel Barometer, which assessed more than 200 airports on their implementation of health and safety protocols during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Safe Travel Barometer is among the world’s largest and most comprehensive tools to monitor traveller health and safety protocols, a release issued by DIAL said.

“Close on the heels of Singapore Changi Airport, which scored 4.7 out of 5, Delhi’s IGI Airport has bagged the second position in the Safe Travel Barometer’s list by scoring 4.6,” the release said.

The Indira Gandhi International (IGI) airport in the national capital is operated by Delhi International Airport Ltd (DIAL), a consortium led by GMR.

According to the release, Delhi airport has also become the country’s safest airport for various safety measures taken to help control the spread of coronavirus. - PTI

New Delhi

Coronavirus | Low-cost testing method approved by ICMR

A new coronavirus diagnostic method, using a low-cost portable unit developed by researchers at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Kharagpur, has been approved by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR). The approval came after tests with patient samples showed an accuracy level slightly lower than the gold standard RT-PCR method at a fraction of the cost.

Also read: Coronavirus | Health Ministry clears COVID-19 tests without prescription

The machine cost less than ₹5,000 to make and the test kits would each cost about ₹500, IIT-Kharagpur researchers told journalists on Wednesday. Once the viral RNA was extracted, the testing process took about one hour. The IIT was in discussion with commercial manufacturers and start-ups, and hoped that the government would also subsidise the cost of test kits, they said.

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Don’t be lax due to dip in COVID-19 cases: Chief Minister

Chief Minister of Puducherry V. Narayanasamy on Wednesday said the Union Territory was now seeing a drop in COVID-19 cases but it was not good to be lax as crowding during the forthcoming festivals could cause the spread of the virus further.

While speaking to reporters, he referred to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s address to the nation asking people not to lower their guard in the fight against the coronavirus.

Also, he referred to the alarming number of people gathering in the weekly markets on Sundays, causing concern among the authorities. He said the Territorial government has decided that the Sunday market in the heart of the town would not be permitted after Ayudha Pooja and the market would be shifted to Subbiah Salai. - PTI

New Delhi

82% of COVID-19 deaths reported from 10 States/UTs

India reported 717 COVID-19 deaths in the past 24 hours, with 82% of them reported from 10 States and UTs. Maharashtra, with 213 deaths, reported the largest number of fatalities, followed by Karnataka (66), West Bengal (61), Tamil Nadu and Chhattisgarh 50 each and Delhi 41, said a release issued by the Union Health Ministry on Wednesday.

India sustained its trend of maintaining the active cases below the 7.5 lakh mark for the second successive day, it stated.

“With a high number of patients recovering every day, India’s steady trend of posting high levels of daily recoveries also continues. Recoveries numbering 61,775 have been registered in the last 24 hours, whereas the new confirmed cases are only 54,044. This is when 10,83,608 tests have been conducted in the last 24 hours in the country,’’ said the release.

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New Delhi

Election Commission reiterates COVID-19 norms for campaigning after parties flout rules

The Election Commission on Wednesday reiterated its guidelines for campaigning during the COVID-19 pandemic after finding that political parties and candidates had been lax in maintaining crowd discipline during the ongoing polls.

With campaigning for the Bihar Assembly elections and bypolls across States under way, the EC wrote to all recognised national and State parties to reiterate it’s earlier advisory to parties regarding social distancing, mask wearing and other COVID-safe measures.

On October 9, the EC had written: “As representatives of public, this onerous responsibility rests with the political parties to ensure that they not only cooperate with the district machineries in following the due norms of public health safety as prescribed, but also instil a sense of discipline for civic behaviour in their cadre while doing ground management during campaign times. It is requested that you may like to issue advisory to all your field representatives to demonstrate utmost vigil and care to abide by all the extant instructions in large interest of public health and avoid any penal action for breaching the provisions.”

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New Delhi

Active cases remain below 7.5-lakh mark

Active cases of COVID-19 in India settled below the 7.5-lakh mark for the second successive day, while the national case fatality rate (CFR) has dropped to 1.51 per cent, the Union Health Ministry said on Wednesday.

Presently 14 states and UTs including Chhattisgarh (0.96 pc), Jharkhand (0.87 pc), Andhra Pradesh (0.82 pc), Telangana (0.57 pc), Bihar (0.49 pc), Assam (0.44 pc), Odisha (0.43 pc) and Kerala (0.34 pc) are reporting case fatality rate of less than 1 per cent.

The Centre has advised states and UTs to aim at bring down the CFR below 1 per cent.

West Bengal

Calcutta HC makes minor modifications to its order but Puja pandals to remain no entry zones

Calcutta High Court on Wednesday made minor modifications to its order passed on Monday by allowing a higher number of organisers to enter the Durga Puja pandals but maintained that pandals will remain no entry zone and visitors will not be allowed inside.

Hearing a review petition filed by Forum of Durgotsav, a group of Durga Puja clubs, a Division Bench of Justices Sanjib Banerjee and Arijit Banerjee said that ‘dhakis’ (traditional drummers) may be permitted, not within the pandal area but in the no entry zone outside. ‘Dhakis’ will have to wear masks and maintain physical distancing norms, the court said.

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Very large portion of COVID-19 vaccines likely to be manufactured in India: Gates Foundation CEO

A very large portion of COVID-19 vaccines are likely to be manufactured in India through the country’s strong and robust private sector partners, said Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation CEO Mark Suzman.

In an interview to PTI, Mr. Suzman noted that India is doing everything it can right now with the resources at hand to fight the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I think India is doing everything it can right now with the resources at hand, but we are all hopeful that next year as some of these vaccines should come out...and our expectation is that a very large portion of these are likely to be manufactured in India through the strong and robust Indian private sector partners and then that will be the key area to focus on in the next phase of the COVID pandemic,” he said.


PCR tests gain traction, but rapid test numbers fall by 50%

The average number of Rapid Antigen Tests (RATs), that had touched nearly 3,000 per day last week, has dropped by nearly 50 per cent in Mysuru with about 1,404 tests per day being carried out between October 14 and 19.

However, the average number of RT-PCR tests has seen a jump last week with tests per day crossing 3,000. The average PCR tests between October 7 and 14 were 2,241 a day, according to the statistics provided by the COVID-19 War Room, Bengaluru.

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Women travel on local trains from today

Four days after the Maharashtra government allowed women to travel on suburban local trains, Union Railway Minister Piyush Goyal on Tuesday said that the move would come into effect from October 21.

“I am happy to announce that Railways will allow women to travel on suburban trains from 21 Oct between 11 am to 3 pm & after 7 pm. We were always ready and with the receipt of letter from Maharashtra Govt today, we have allowed this travel,” Mr. Goyal tweeted.

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Tamil Nadu

After a long interval, theatres look towards resuming shows

After waiting for almost seven months, cinema hall owners in Tamil Nadu are eager to get back to business. They are waiting for the State government to give a go ahead, but film producers insist that it cannot be “business as usual” until the theatre owners agree to their many demands.

Members of the Tamil Film Active Producers’ Association (TFAPA) have placed three main demands, among others: abolish the virtual print fee (VPF); renegotiate theatrical revenue-sharing formula and provide a share in the revenue made via online ticketing.

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New Delhi

Feluda test to be commercially available by month-end

The Feluda test, a coronavirus detection test developed by the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) and to be commercialised by Tata Sons, will be commercially available in laboratories this month.

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Andhra Pradesh

It’s back to school in Andhra Pradesh from Nov. 2

The schools in the State will be reopen from November 2, but the students can attend the schools only with the written consent of the parents.

The State government has also finalised the guidelines, which include staggered timings for the students.

For instance, students belonging to Classes 1, 3, 5 & 7 will be attending school on one day and those of Classes 2, 4, 6 & 8 will attend the other day. If the student strength is more than 750, classes will be conducted once in every three days. All schools will function for half day from November 2

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Cracking down on drunk driving even while maintaining distance

With 454 Chennai traffic police personnel testing positive for COVID-19 till date, personnel are taking every possible precaution to prevent getting infected.

To avoid physical contact while checking drunk driving cases, the traffic policemen are asking motorists to walk over to breathalysers mounted on the patrol vehicles and blow into them.

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Maharashtra’s COVID-19 cases outpace recoveries for first time in 2 weeks

Maharashtra reported 8,151 new COVID-19 cases on Tuesday to take its total case tally to 16,09,516. For the first time in nearly a fortnight, the recoveries were less than the case surge, with 7,429 patients being discharged. The State’s active cases stand at 1,74,265.

With 213 more deaths, the death toll has reached 42,453. The cumulative recoveries have risen to 13,92,308, with the recovery rate rising to 86.5%.

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West Bengal

Puja festivities begin; Bengal sees record case surge

The week-long Durga Puja festival in West Bengal began on Tuesday as the State recorded its highest single-day surge of 4,029 new COVID-19 cases, taking the total tally to 3,29,057.

With 61 more patients succumbing to the virus, the death toll has reached 6,180. While the active cases in the State rose to 35,170, the discharge rate marginally dropped to 87.43%. The percentage of positive cases out of the samples tested has gone up to 8.07%.

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New Delhi

Active coronavirus cases rise after dip

As many as 3,579 new COVID-19 cases were reported in the Capital in the past 24 hours, taking the total number of cases to 3,36,750, according to a health bulletin released by the Delhi government on Tuesday.

Also, 41 more deaths have been reported, taking the total number of deaths to 6,081. Of the total cases, 3,06,747 people have recovered and there are 23,922 active cases.

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Gymkhana Club’s bar licence cancelled

The bar licence of Gymkhana Club has been cancelled for allegedly selling liquor during the lockdown in violation of guidelines as well as other infractions, read an official order.

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Doctors voice concern over the long-term effects of COVID-19

At the launch of post-COVID recovery clinics, doctors flagged concerns on long-term persistent effects of the disease and the need for continuum of care for patients.

From persistent fatigue to breathlessness, loss of appetite, sleeplessness, scarring of lungs, risk of blood clots and cardiac manifestations, doctors are seeing patients, who have recovered from COVID-19, with many such symptoms.

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Two southern States register decline in positivity rate

Data from Kerala’s Health department appeared to show a downward trend in COVID-19 cases with a decline in many districts on Tuesday. However, the trend could be decided by factors such as school reopening, the Sabarimala pilgrimage and local body polls, public health experts who did not wish to be identified said. On Tuesday, Kerala registered 6,591 cases from 53,901 samples.

Karnataka on Tuesday reported 6,297 new cases and 66 deaths. While the positivity rate for the day reduced to 6.41%, the Case Fatality Rate (CFR) touched 1.04%.

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Printable version | Sep 26, 2021 1:18:45 PM |

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