Coronavirus live updates | Over 169 crore Covid vaccine doses administered in India: Government

India reports fewer COVID-19 deaths than during last week

February 06, 2022 07:46 am | Updated 05:02 pm IST

How it works:  When the processed sample is placed in an RT-PCR machine, the viral genetic material is amplified. Two copies of genetic material become four, four become eight in the next cycle, and so on.

How it works: When the processed sample is placed in an RT-PCR machine, the viral genetic material is amplified. Two copies of genetic material become four, four become eight in the next cycle, and so on.

The country recorded 1,06,953 new Covid-19 cases on Saturday. The total number of infections has reached 4.21 crore, and the active cases have crossed the 13.4 lakh mark.

Read | Fighting post-COVID weakness

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 updates :


Assembly polls: EC allows public meetings with 50% capacity indoor, 30% outdoor

The Election Commission (EC) on Sunday relaxed rules regarding public meetings for the ongoing five State Assembly polls, allowing attendance of up to 50% of the capacity of an indoor venue an 30% of an open ground.

The EC said the decision was taken after a meeting with the Union Health Secretary on Saturday and inputs from Chief Secretaries of the poll-bound States. The Chief Secretaries had told the EC that there had been a “significant improvement” in the COVID-19 situation and a “considerable decrease” in positive cases and hospitalisation.



Schools to reopen, night curfew to be lifted in Bihar

With the COVID-19 surge showing a significant drop in Bihar, the Nitish Kumar Government on Sunday decided to reopen schools, lift night curfew and relax many other restrictions which have been in place for a month.

Mr. Kumar announced on social media that from Monday onwards, schools will be allowed to hold physical classes with 50% attendance for up to class 8. For classes 9 upwards, there will be no restrictions.

According to Chaitanya Prasad, Additional Chief Secretary, Home, night curfews, in force since January 6 whereby people were asked to stay indoors from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m., was also being done away with. — PTI


New guidelines in Bihar from Feb. 7

Cinema halls, gymnasiums, shopping malls, clubs and swimming pools will be allowed to reopen with 50 per cent capacity. Shops will not be required to down the shutters by 8 p.m. though strict adherence to COVID-19 protocol will be expected. The number of attendees allowed at weddings and funerals has been raised from 50 to 200.

Other religious, social, cultural and political gatherings may be held but with prior permission of district administration. Government offices, functioning with 50% attendance, will now run normally and other visitors to these premises will also be allowed, though entry will be given to only those who have been vaccinated.

The guidelines, which come into force from February 7, will continue till February 13 when the situation will be reviewed afresh. — PTI


Submitted proposal to DCGI to test Sputnik Light as Covid booster dose: Dr. Reddy's

Drug major Dr. Reddy's Laboratories has submitted a proposal to the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) to register Sputnik Light vaccine as a booster dose against COVID-19, a top company official has said.

The Hyderabad-based drug major had partnered with the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) to conduct the clinical trials of Sputnik V and distribute the vaccine in India in September 2020.

Last year, the company received permission from the DCGI to import the Sputnik vaccine into India for restricted use in emergency situations in April.



Olympics | Australian pair reprieved despite positive COVID test

Australians Tahli Gill and Dean Hewitt will be able to compete in the curling mixed doubles tournament later on Sunday under the Beijing Games' close contact arrangements, only a few hours after being told their debut Olympic campaign would end early.

Gill returned a series of positive COVID-19 tests late on Saturday and had been placed in isolation ahead of her planned return to Australia but were cleared by a medical expert panel, the Australian Olympic Committee (AOC) said in a statement. - Reuters


Olympics | No large fluctuations in COVID cases expected, organisers say

A sharp drop in COVID-19 cases on February 5 among Beijing Olympics-related personnel was due to fewer arrivals at the airport and organisers said on Sunday that they did not expect any more large fluctuations in infection numbers.

China detected 10 new COVID cases among Olympic Games-related personnel on Feb. 5, the organising committee of the Games said. That was down from Feb. 4's 45 cases - the second highest daily tally since arrivals commenced last month.

Among the latest cases, four were new airport arrivals, including two athletes or team officials. The remaining six were already in the "closed loop", a bubble keeping Games personnel away from the local population during the Feb. 4-20 Olympics. - Reuters


Most fitness centres in Delhi to reopen from Monday

Most gym and spa owners in the national capital have said they will open their establishments from Monday ensuring that all COVID-19 protocols are in place and sanitisation of the premises is conducted properly.

The Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) had on Friday announced the reopening of gyms after over a month of being shut on account of rising COVID-19 cases in the city.

The decision comes as a sigh of relief for fitness centre owners who have been staging protests and urging the government to allow them to resume businesses which have registered a major slump due to successive coronavirus-induced lockdowns. - PTI


Over 169 crore Covid vaccine doses administered in India: Government

The cumulative number of COVID-19 vaccine doses administered in the country crossed 169 crore on Saturday, the Union health ministry said.

More than 40 lakh vaccine doses were administered till 7 p.m. on Saturday, it said, adding that the daily vaccination tally is expected to go up with the compilation of the final reports by late night.

More than 1.46 crore (1,46,98,311) precaution doses have been administered to healthcare workers (HCWs), frontline workers (FLWs) and those aged 60 years and above, the ministry said. - PTI


Lata Mangeshkar, legendary singer, passes away at 92

Legendary singer Lata Mangeshkar , known by the affectionate moniker  ‘Nightingale of India’ , passed away on Sunday aged 92, said medical sources.

She passed away at 8.12 a.m. after suffering a multiple-organ failure on Saturday night. Confirming her death,  Breach Candy Hospital  CEO N. Santhanam attributed the iconic singer’s death to post-COVID-19 complications.


Haryana further eases Covid restrictions, allows all offices to function at full capacity

The Haryana government further eased some COVID-19 restrictions in the state on Saturday, allowing all offices including the private ones to function at full capacity while entertainment parks and B2B exhibitions are now allowed to open at 50% capacity.

"All offices are allowed to function with their full capacity while adopting regular sanitisation and COVID-19 appropriate behavioural norms," according to an order issued by the Haryana State Disaster Management Authority (HSDMA).

Earlier, only 50% of the staff was allowed to physically attend offices. - PTI


Protests against COVID-19 measures spread across Canada

Protesters opposed to vaccine mandates and COVID-19 restrictions held rallies in cities across Canada on Saturday in a show of solidarity with a week-long demonstration in the national capital.

Officials in Ottawa and numerous provincial capitals worked to ensure that escalating protests against pandemic-related public health measures remained peaceful Saturday.

By midday Saturday in Ottawa, thousands of demonstrators mingled near open fires on the snow-plastered lawn in front Parliament Hill. Participants roasted hotdogs and doled out baked goods under tarps, while two men on horseback traipsed through the town, one carrying a flag in support of former U.S. President Donald Trump. - AP


Violations on the rise yet again in Delhi as COVID restrictions turn lax

After a brief lull — thanks to strict enforcement — daily violations of COVID Appropriate Behaviour (CAB) are on the upswing in the Capital yet again. Almost all fines issued were for offences related to masks and non-adherence to social distancing norms.

With most restrictions aimed at breaking the chain of COVID infection having been lifted now, both violations and fines issued for them, are expected to spike over the coming days, according to government sources.

As the city unlocked progressively, fines worth around ₹19 crore were issued during a recent 19-day period, government records posit.


India reports fewer COVID-19 deaths than during last week

The country recorded 1,06,953 new Covid-19 cases on Saturday. The total number of infections has reached 4.21 crore, and the active cases have crossed the 13.4 lakh mark.

The figures are based on the State bulletins released until 10 p.m. on Saturday. However, Ladakh, Tripura, Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu, Jharkhand, and Lakshadweep had not yet released data for the day.

Kerala recorded 33,538 infections on Saturday, followed by Karnataka (12,009) and Maharashtra (11,394).



Kerala government issues new COVID-19 testing norms for international travellers

Kerala has issued new guidelines for international travellers in the context of the SARS-CoV2 variant Omicron.

Accordingly, all international travellers to the State, irrespective of the duration of their stay, will undergo symptom surveillance. If they develop symptoms, they will undergo RT-PCR testing at their own cost and undertake further action as per test results. However, random testing of 2% of international travellers currently done by the State will continue.

Home quarantine is advised for international travellers. They should continue self-monitoring for seven days from the date of arrival, and if they develop symptoms, should undergo testing. The samples of all international travellers who are tested RT-PCR positive will be sent for whole genomic sequencing.



RT-PCR: Cycle threshold value does not hold clinical relevance

The art of medicine is taught by the bedside. It involves detailed history-taking, followed by a physical examination which employs the senses of the physician. Humans, however, prefer concrete numbers to abstract skill and intuition. Unfortunately, most of these numbers do not have any clinical relevance. Yet, they continue to be used indiscriminately to drive irrational and often expensive treatments, including unnecessary hospitalisations. At present, the most often repeated number appears to be the cycle threshold value (Ct value) reported on an RT-PCR at the time of diagnosis.



IGIB develops future-proof primers, kits for RT-PCR test

Using its expertise in genome sequencing and analysis pipeline of genome sequence data, the Delhi-based CSIR lab Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology (IGIB) has successfully developed a unique pool of primers and kits to be used in RT-PCR testing of SARS-CoV-2 virus. The most distinguishing aspect of the work carried by a team led by Dr. Sridhar Sivasubbu and Dr. Vinod Scaria at IGIB that was developing primers that will not be affected by mutations seen in SARS-CoV-2 variants. This may allow the primers to detect any new SARS-CoV-2 variants that might emerge immaterial of the novel mutations that the variants might have. The primers developed in a way future-proofs the ability to detect without fail any new SARS-CoV-2 variants that may emerge.



82% adolescents vaccinated with first COVID-19 dose in Delhi

With schools gearing up to reopen for classes 9 to 12 from Monday, authorities have inoculated 82% adolescents in Delhi with the first dose since the exercise to vaccinate them against coronavirus commenced from January 3.

According to official data, 8.33 lakh adolescents have received the first dose and 0.39 lakh have been jabbed with the second dose.

Delhi has around 10.14 lakh beneficiaries in the 15-18 age group.


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