Coronavirus updates | March 13, 2020

A KSRTC driver wears a protective mask use a hand sanitiser to prevent contracting coronavirus at Ernakulam. File

A KSRTC driver wears a protective mask use a hand sanitiser to prevent contracting coronavirus at Ernakulam. File

A 68-year-old woman in Delhi became the country’s second victim of coronavirus as several States went into battle mode to contain the spread of COVID-19, shutting down schools, theatres and colleges, and many public events, including the IPL, were postponed.

The number of positive cases crossed 80. The number includes the woman and a 76-year-old man from Karnataka who became the country’s first coronavirus fatality besides 17 foreign nationals, Health Ministry officials said.

Cases of the infection have been reported from at least 11 States and territories, including Delhi, Karnataka, Maharashtra and Kerala, where three patients were discharged last month after they recovered.

Addressing reporters, officials said coronavirus — a pandemic that has infected 1,31,500 people in 116 countries and territories and killed more than 4,900 — is not a health emergency and there is no need to panic.

We have been  covering the developments  related to the coronavirus pandemic as it unfolded. Here are  answers from experts  on your queries about the virus, and  a map of confirmed cases in India .

Here are the latest updates:


Delhi | 10.25 pm


Delhi reports India’s second COVID-19 death

Sixty-year-old woman who tested positive for coronavirus infection dies in Delhi, Health Ministry and Delhi government officials said.

The woman came in contact with her son, the fifth case of coronavirus in the national capital, with a history travel history to Switzerland and Italy between February 5 and 22.

Her death was caused due to co-morbidity (diabetes and hypertension), the officials said, adding she had tested positive for COVID-19.

The woman was admitted in Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital, officials said.



New Delhi | 10 pm

Masks, sanitisers declared essential commodities

Masks and hand sanitisers have been declared as essential commodities due to shortage in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak .

On March 13, the Centre notified an order under the Essential Commodities Act, 1955 to declare 2 ply and 3 ply surgical masks, N95 masks and hand sanitisers as essential commodities till June 30, 2020. It has also issued an advisory under the Legal Metrology Act, so that States can ensure these items are not sold for more than the Maximum Retail Price (MRP).


Geneva | 9.50 pm


Europe now ‘epicentre’ of COVID-19 pandemic: WHO

The World Health Organisation has warned that Europe is now the “epicentre” for the global coronavirus pandemic and reporting more daily cases than China did at the height of its outbreak.

“Europe has now become the epicentre of the pandemic,” WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in a virtual press conference, describing the more than 5,000 deaths worldwide as “a tragic milestone”. — AFP



Washington | 9.40 pm


Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro  tests negative for coronavirus, son tells Fox News

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has tested negative for the coronavirus, his son told Fox News following media reports that his father, who recently met with U.S. President Donald Trump, had tested positive.

U.S. President Donald Trump shakes hands with Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro before attending a working dinner at the Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, Florida, U.S., on March 7, 2020.

U.S. President Donald Trump shakes hands with Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro before attending a working dinner at the Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, Florida, U.S., on March 7, 2020.


“The test is negative,” Eduardo Bolsonaro told Fox News Channel in an interview.

Mr. Jair Bolsonaro’s Facebook page also said the President has tested negative.  Fox News had previously reported that an initial test had come back positive.



Chennai | 8.35 pm

Kindergarten classes in TN to be closed till Mar 31

Kindergarten classes in all schools across Tamil Nadu will remain closed from March 16 to March 31, 2020 as a precaution against the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

For seven districts - Kanniyakumari, Tirunelveli, Tenkasi, Theni, Coimbatore, Tiruppur and The Nilgrils - bordering Kerala where more number of COVID-19 cases have been reported, the kindergarten and classes 1 to 5 will be closed.

An order issued by the Commissioner of School Education on Friday said that the closure applied to all types of schools.

The decision follows a high-level meeting chaired by Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami to discuss the efforts taken to prevent the spread of COVID-19 on Friday.

The Chief Educational Officers of all the districts have been asked to issue necessary instructions to all schools in their jurisdiction to ensure that the decision has been implemented.

In addition, based on the advisory issued by Union Ministry of Human Resource Development, CEOs of all the districts have been asked to create awareness among students who will be attending schools on preventive interventions like frequent handwash, using handkerchief to cover mouth while coughing or sneezing and staying away from school when sick. The CEOs have been asked to send reports on the efforts taken.

Neighbouring States like Kerala and Karnataka have already declared holidays for schools.

Chennai | 8.20 pm

CSK training suspended

Chennai Super Kings’ practice sessions will stand suspended from Saturday in view of the novel coronavirus pandemic, it was announced in Chennai on Friday.

The three-time IPL champions had commenced training from March 2 at the M A Chidambaram Stadium with captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Suresh Raina and Ambati Rayudu getting down to work.

“Chennai Super Kings practice sessions at M A Chidambaram stadium stands suspended from March 14, considering the present COVID-19 situation,” Tamil Nadu Cricket Association (TNCA) secretary R S Ramasaamy said in a press release.

Earlier in the day, the BCCI announced the decision to suspend IPL 2020 till April 15 as a precautionary measure.

The 38-year old Dhoni has been training with the CSK players and the practice sessions have been drawing thousands of fans each day.

The talismanic CSK skipper has been the star attraction during the team’s practice with fans expressing their love for the veteran. He indulged in some big hitting, much to the delight of the fans.

The others who took part in the team’s net sessions were Murali Vijay, Harbhajan Singh, who linked up with the squad a couple of days ago, Kedar Jadhav, new recruit Piyush Chawla, Karn Sharma, K M Asif and local players R Sai Kishore and N Jagadeesan among others

New Delhi | 8.15 pm

Masks, hand santizers declared ‘essential commodities’

The government on Friday declared masks, including N95, and hand sanitizers as ‘essential commodities’ in the wake of the coronavirus scare leading to shortages and black marketing of these items.

These items will remain under essential commodities segment till June-end, a move aimed at ensuring availability at reasonable prices and cracking down on hoarders/black marketeers.

The government has notified an order under the Essential Commodities Act to declare masks (2 ply and 3 ply surgical masks, N95 masks) and hand santizers as essential commodities up to June 30, 2020


Kerala | 8.05 pm


Three more test positive for coronavirus in Kerala: CM

Three more people, including an Italian national, tested positive for coronavirus in Kerala on Friday, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said.

With the three fresh cases, the number of affected people in the State has touched 19, he told reporters here.

“An Italian tourist, who was staying at a resort in nearby Varkala, has tested positive and is kept in isolation there itself,” Mr. Vijayan said.

Health minister K K Shailaja, who was also present, said the foreigner will be shifted to the medical college hospital later.

Mr. Vijayan also said yesterday’s unconfirmed case in Thiruvananthapuram also tested positive.

“The third person is a UK-returnee and is in the isolation ward at the medical college hospital here,” he said.

At least 5,468 people are under surveillance in the State, Mr. Vijayan said, adding that 277 have been lodged in isolation wards at various hospitals across the state.

The Chief Minister also said 1,715 samples have been sent for testing of which 1,132 turned out to be negative.

Kerala has been hit by the second round of coronavirus cases after the country’s first three positive cases in the state were successfully cured and discharged from hospitals last month.

Rome| 8.00 pm

Indian medical team in Italy to test stranded Indians for coronavirus

A medical team from India reached Italy on Friday to test stranded Indian nationals for the coronavirus so that they can be brought back.

The death toll from COVID-19 jumped over 5,000 on Friday as the number of cases around the world topped 134,000. Italy has more than 15,000 cases and over 1,000 deaths -- the most outside of China, the epicentre of the disease.

The Indian mission in Rome said it was working actively with Indian ministries and local authorities in Italy to address COVID19 situation being faced by stranded Indians

Jaipur| 7.45 pm

Rajasthan Assembly adjourned till March 26

Rajasthan Assembly Speaker C. P. Joshi on Friday adjourned the House till March 26 in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak.

As soon as the House passed Finance Bill and Appropriation Bill by voice vote, Mr. Joshi announced the adjournment.

“As you all know that the entire country is worried about coronavirus. The Centre has issued an advisory in this regard and the Chief Minister has also highlighted the matter. Keeping (this) in view, the House is adjourned till March 26,” the speaker said.


Kiev| 7.40 pm

Ukraine reports first death from novel coronavirus

Ukraine on Friday reported its first death from the coronavirus as authorities said the country was closing its borders to foreigners in a bid to keep the pandemic at bay.

“A woman who was diagnosed with the coronavirus yesterday... has died,” Ukraine’s Deputy Health Minister Viktor Lyashko told reporters. The ex-Soviet country, which has a population of 42 million, has so far reported three confirmed cases of the coronavirus.


New Delhi | 7.30 pm

Army postpones all recruitment rallies by a month

The Indian Army has postponed all recruitment rallies by a month, and has asked its personnel to travel only for essential duties in the wake of novel coronavirus outbreak, army sources said on Friday. The sources added that instructions have been issued to all concerned to accord adequate focus on health security and all ranks must take precautions to avoid infection.

“All recruitment rallies will be postponed by one month,” a source said.

Besides this, travel by personnel has also been restricted but only for essential duties.

They are also advised to choose video-conference facilities instead of travel.

Command headquarters have also been instructed to establish adequate quarantine facilities at following locations to support plans of the government.

Accordingly, quarantine facilities have been established at Manesar (300 beds), Jodhpur (1000), Jaisalmer (1000), Jhansi (1000), Binnaguri (300) and Gaya (300).

Jammu| 7.10 pm

J&K govt. orders closure of all malls, gyms, swimming pools in Jammu

The Jammu and Kashmir government on Friday ordered closure of all malls, gyms, swimming pools, recreational clubs in the district till March 31 as a precautionary measure to contain the spread of novel coronavirus, an official said.

Any violation of this order shall invite action under the Indian Penal Code (IPC) by order of the district magistrate, District Magistrate, Jammu, Sushma Chauhan said.

New Delhi | 7.05 pm

Kejriwal thanks Centre for cooperation

During his speech in Delhi Assembly, the Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said "I thank the Centre for all the cooperation in confronting the COVID-19 epidemic."

Mr. Kejriwal said "It is because of joint efforts like this across the country that coronavirus is at the stage of containment in India."

The Chief Minister warned "Healthy people must not wear masks, they might have the opposite effect."

Mr. Kejriwal said "Sanitisers are also not needed; all you need to do is wash your hands properly every half an hour."

He requested all the MLAs to spread the word about the precautions among the people.

New Delhi | 6.55 pm

IIT-Delhi directs students to leave hostels

The Indian Institute of Technology in New Delhi has directed students to leave hostels by Sunday in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak.

“In view of the current COVID-19 epidemic, as a preventive measure decided by the competent authority, the students are required to leave the hostels positively by midnight of March 15, 2020.

“There is no need to vacate the room though. Please fill the entry and exit register of the hostel concerned and the mess rebate form. This applies to students currently living in Nalanda and IP Apartments and in off-campus hostels in Katwaria Sarai and Jia Sarai also,” Dean of Student Affairs Rajesh Khanna said in an official communication.

The institute had on Thursday announced suspension of classes and all events till March 31.

“PhD students may stay back if their research is in crucial stage. Foreign students who are staying within the campus may also stay,” Khanna said.

Prague | 6.20 pm

Czechs close borders from March 16 over virus spread

The Czech government said Friday it would ban all foreign travellers from entering and all Czechs from leaving the country as of March 16 in a bid to stem the coronavirus spread.

“As of midnight Sunday-Monday, we ban all foreigners from entering the Czech Republic and, at the same time, all Czech citizens from leaving the Czech territory,” Interior Minister Jan Hamacek told reporters.

“It’s a very tough measure but we think it may fundamentally contribute to stemming the spread of the coronavirus.” The measure does not concern foreigners with permanent residence or a residency permit for over 90 days in the EU member state, which has 117 confirmed cases of the virus and no deaths.

The government also ordered a mandatory two-week quarantine for people coming to the Czech Republic from 15 “risk countries” as of Friday at noon, with the exception of transit travellers.

These countries include China, South Korea, Iran, Italy, Spain, Austria, Germany, Switzerland, Sweden, Norway, the Netherlands, Belgium, Great Britain, Denmark and France.

The government has also designated the act of spreading coronavirus as a crime, Prime Minister Andrej Babis said.

On Thursday, the Czech government declared a 30-day state of emergency.


Mumbai | 5.50 pm

Remaining ODIs against South Africa called off

India’s remaining two ODIs against South Africa in Lucknow and Kolkata called off in wake of COVID-19 pandemic, says a BCCI official.


Maharashtra | 5.45 pm

Epidemic Diseases Act invoked

Maharashtra government invokes Epidemic Diseases Act in wake of coronavirus scare, announced Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray in Assembly.

Malls, gyms, cinema halls, swimming pools to remain closed in Mumbai, Navi Mumbai, Pune, Pimpri Chinchwad and Nagpur from 12 midnight, says Mr. Thackeray in Assembly.

Paris | 5.20 pm

Coronavirus deaths pass 5,000: AFP tally

The death toll from the coronavirus pandemic has risen to 5,043, according to an AFP tally based on official sources at 1630 IST on Friday.

A total of 3,176 people have died in mainland China, followed by 1,016 in Italy, and 514 in Iran — the three countries with the highest number of deaths.

Since COVID-19 was first detected in December, more than 134,300 people have been infected in 121 countries and territories

New Delhi | 5.15 pm

India evacuates more than 1000 persons

The Health Ministry officials, on Friday, said that India had evacuated 1,031 persons, including from Maldives, US, Madagascar and China.

Total number of confirmed coronavirus cases in India rise to 81, including 16 Italians, the officials said.

The officials further added that the Centre has decided to allow international traffic through 19 border checkposts out of 37.

They further said Indo-Bangladesh cross border passenger trains and buses to remain suspended till April 15, or earlier if so decided.

They said "Exercise will be undertaken on Saturday to bring back Indian passengers stranded in Iran."


London | 5.05 pm

England’s tour of Sri Lanka postponed due to coronavirus

England’s ongoing tour of Sri Lanka was on Friday called off in view of the novel coronavirus pandemic, the ECB said, calling the situation unprecedented.

The decision was announced while the English cricketers were playing the second day of their final warm-up fixture in Colombo.

A two-match Test series, part of the World Championship, was due to start in Galle next Thursday.

“Due to the COVID-19 pandemic worsening globally, and after discussions with Sri Lanka Cricket, we have today made the decision to return our players to the UK and postpone the forthcoming Test series between Sri Lanka and England,” the ECB said in a statement.

“At this time, the physical and mental wellbeing of our players and support teams is paramount. We will now look to bring them home to their families as soon as possible. These are completely unprecedented times, and decisions like this go beyond cricket.”

England’s home series against the West Indies in June and the T20 Blast might also get affected due to the novel coronavirus pandemic after the government identified a likely peak period of COVID-19 in the country.

On Thursday, the British government said it will not ban sporting fixtures immediately but didn’t rule out the option.

New Delhi | 4.55 pm

Modi calls on SAARC to fight coronavirus

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday called on the South Asian Association of Regional Cooperation (SAARC) to fight the coronavirus threat jointly. This came minutes after India evacuated 44 citizens who from the Iranian city of Qom after the cancellation of flights due to coronvirus outbreak in that country.

“I would like to propose that the leadership of SAARC nations chalk out a strong strategy to fight coronavirus. We could discuss, via video conferencing, ways to keep our citizens healthy. Together, we can set an example to the world and contribute to a healthier planet,” said Mr. Modi in a social media message.


Iran | 4.50 pm

Iran reports 85 new virus deaths, taking total to 514

Iran announced Friday that the new coronavirus has claimed another 85 lives, the highest single-day death toll in one of the world’s worst affected countries.

“Sadly, 85 people infected with the COVID-19 disease have died in the past 24 hours”, bringing to 514 the overall number of deaths in Iran, health ministry spokesman Kianoush Jahanpour said in a televised news conference.


Pune | 4.40 pm

One more tests positive in Pune

One more person, with travel history to US, tests positive for coronavirus in Pune, taking number of cases in city to ten and that in Maharashtra to 17.

The total number of positive COVID-19 cases in the country stands at 79. One person has died so far.

Patna | 4.40 pm

Schools, Colleges and Cinema halls in Bihar to be shut till March 31

After a high level meeting with chief minister Nitish Kumar and top officials, Bihar chief secretary on Friday said that all schools, colleges, Cinema halls and coaching institutes will be closed till March 31. All parks and botanical garden in the state too will be shut during this period.

A nine-bed isolation ward has been made in the government owned Patna Medical College and Hospital. Currently two suspected patients of Coronavirus are admitted there.

Chandigarh| 4.30 pm

Haryana shuts down all colleges, universities

Haryana government has decided to close all universities and colleges (government and private) in the state till March 31 as a precautionary measure in the wake of Coronavirus disease (Covid-19).

Separately, the department of school education has also decided to close all government and private schools in five districts including - Sonepat, Rohtak, Jhajjar, Faridabad and Gurgaon till March 31.

An order issued in this regard, said that the examinations in these schools will be held as per schedule.The schools in the remaining districts of Haryana would continue to function as usual.

Bengaluru | 4.35 pm

Bengaluru malls, pubs, theatres closed for a week from March 14

To curb the spread of COVID-19 , all malls, cinema halls, pubs, exhibitions and summer camps in Bengaluru will be closed for a period of one week starting from March 14, 2020.

Briefing the media after a meeting with several departments, Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa stated that even colleges and universities will be closed. He said that all IT professionals and those working in AC rooms will also be advised to work from home. He said that all wedding functions and sport activities will also have to be cancelled.

Lucknow | 4.20 pm

All schools, colleges in UP to be shut till March 22

The Uttar Pradesh government announced on Friday that all schools and colleges in the state where exams were not going on, have been closed till March 22 in view of the coronavirus scare.

Exams would go on according to schedule, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath said, adding the people concerned have been instructed to take all precautionary measures and maintain hygiene.

The decision would be reviewed on March 20 on the basis of which the future course of action would be decided

Mumbai | 4.10 pm

AI cancels flights to Italy, France, Germany, 3 other countries till April 30

National carrier Air India has cancelled flights to Italy, France, Germany, Spain, South Korea and Sri Lanka till April 30, an airline official said on Friday.

The decision has been taken in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak.

On Thursday, the carrier said it was curtailing services to various other countries, including Spain, France and Sri Lanka.

The carrier has already cancelled flights to Kuwait.

Maharashtra | 3.50 pm

2 more test positive in Nagpur

Two more persons tested positive for coronavirus in Nagpur, on Friday, officials said.

Two days after a 45-year-old man was found to be infected with coronavirus in Nagpur, his wife and friend also tested positive on Friday, Divisional Commissioner Sanjiv Kumar said.

“The man had returned from the US last week along with his wife and the friend,” he added.

He was admitted to the city-based Indira Gandhi Government Medical College and Hospital (IGGMCH), officials said.

After he tested positive for coronavirus, 15 persons who were in close contact with him, including his wife and the friend, were put under observation and their samples were sent to lab testing, they said.

His wife and friend, who have now tested positive, are being treated at the Government Medical College and Hospital (GMCH) here, they added.

Manesar | 3.15 pm

Positive COVID-19 cases rises to 76

One individual who had returned from Italy on March 11, 2020 and quarantined at Army’s facility at Manesar has been tested positive for COVID-19. 

The individual was employed in one of the restaurants in Italy since last 14 years.

As per procedure, has has been shifted to an isolation facility at Safdarjung Hospital for further medical examination and recovery, Army sources said.

New Delhi| 2.40 p.m.

IPL suspended till April 15

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Friday decided to suspend the Indian Premier League (IPL) till April 15 as a precautionary measure against COVID-19 pandemic.

"The BCCI is concerned and sensitive about all its stakeholders, and public health in general, and it is taking all necessary steps to ensure that, all people related to IPL including fans have a safe cricketing experience," Jay Shah, Honorary Secretary, BCCI, said.

The decision comes a day after the Sports Ministry asked all national federations, including the cricket board, to follow the Health Ministry’s advisory and avoid large gatherings in sports events.

Kerala | 2 p.m.

68-year-old man under observation for coronavirus dies in Kottayam

Panic gripped Chengalam near in Kottayam when a 68-year-old man who had been under observation for suspected COVID-19 infection died on Friday.

According to officials, the deceased was under isolation at his residence when he developed uneasiness. He was shifted to the Kottayam Medical College, but was declared brought dead.

“His son had come into direct contact with one of the COVID -19 patients from Chengalam between February 29 and March 8. Accordingly, the youth was listed as a primary contact while his father was marked as a secondary contact”, said an official.

New Delhi | 1.30 pm


44 Indian pilgrims evacuated from Iran

India on Friday evacuated 44 citizens who were stuck in the Iranian city of Qom after flights were cancelled due to coronvirus outbreak in Iran. The evacuation came a day after External Affairs Minister Dr S Jaishankar assured the parliament that limited number of commercial flights would be allowed to fly back the Indians who were stranded in Qom, Tehran and other Iranian cities.

“Second batch of 44 Indian pilgrims has arrived today from Iran. Our efforts to bring back the others continue,” said Mr Jaishankar announcing the arrival of the latest batch of evacuees who landed in Mumbai in an Iran Air flight.

Odisha | 1 p.m.

Odisha imposes restrictions on congregation, to regulate social functions

Odisha government on Friday announced to impose restrictions on congregations aiming at ‘social distancing’ to contain the spread of COVID-19 by invoking powers under the Epidemic Diseases Act, 1897 and the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973.

The State Cabinet which met on Thursday declared COVID-19 as a ‘disaster’ for the State under the provisions of the Disaster Management Act, 2005 to adequately empower our public officials to combat the spread of COVID-19. It also approved COVID-19 Odisha Regulations, 2020.

The government moved to regulate social gatherings and assemblies like religious functions, marriage receptions and parties by local authorities. The competent officers have been authorised to impose required restrictions on assemblies and congregation.

The government has earmarked ₹200 crore to augment the Public Health Response Fund to combat the threat of the pandemic and for making required expenditure.


New Delhi | 12.40 pm

The Jawaharlal Nehru University and the Jamia Millia Islamia on Friday suspended classes with immediate effect till March 31 and advised students to avoid large gathering in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak.

New Delhi | 12.30 pm

A day after declaring COVID-19 epidemic, Delhi government has decided to not allow any sporting events in the national capital, until further orders. This would mean IPL matches scheduled to be held in Delhi have to be shifted out.


Kalaburagi | 12.15 pm

Kalaburagi put on high alert after man dies of COVID-19

Just as the death of a 76-year-old man from Kalaburagi was confirmed to have been caused by COVID-19 at the late night on Thursday,  the Kalaburagi district was put on high alert.

According to Deputy Commissioner B. Sharat, 31 people who were in direct contact with the deceased person and who were home-quarantined have now been shifted to quarantine ward in State-run ESIC medical complex. They are considered as high-risk suspects and each one of them is provided with one medical officer.

Four medical professionals who had treated the patient before his death in a private hospital are also among the high-risk suspects.

Fifteen more people who were also in contact with the dead man in one or the other way also quarantined in ESIC isolation ward.


Ghaziabad | 11.20 am

700 employees of a Noida firm told to work from home

Around 700 employees of a private company in Noida have been asked to work from home after one of its senior executives was tested positive for COVID-19 .

Anurag Bhargava, Chief Medical Officer, Gautam Buddh Nagar, confirmed to The Hindu that the employees have been put under “surveillance”.

“The patient, a resident of Delhi, used to travel to Noida every day. It has been learnt that he came into contact with many people before he was detected positive. Right now, he is in Delhi’s Safdarjung Hospital. As a precautionary measure, his colleagues have been asked to work from home,” he said.


Vijayawada | 11.06 am

A.P. Govt. looking for 105 people who returned from COVID-19 hit countries

The Department of Health is still looking for 105 foreign returnees from COVID-19 hit countries in the State as of Thursday.

It is not known if these people had undergone basic screening for the symptoms of novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) upon arrival in the country. The department has traced 57 such persons and put them under home isolation since Wednesday.

According to the evening bulletin on COVID-19 outbreak, one person tested positive to COVID-19 and 328 people, including 319 at homes and 9 at hospitals, have been placed under isolation.


10.45 am

CRPF cancels anniversary celebrations

The CRPF on Friday postponed its raising day celebrations planned to be held next week in view of the coronavirus outbreak.

The 3.25 lakh central force was supposed to hold the main ceremonial parade and display of martial skills with the involvement of thousands of troops at its officers academy campus in Gurgaon on March 19 to mark its 81st raising day.

Taking a similar action, the Central Industrial Security Force had last week postponed its anniversary day celebrations to be held on Friday.

However, the CISF is now mulling to hold this event on March 28 after reviewing the threat posed by the disease. - PTI

10.20 am | Kerala

A glimpse into an isolation ward in Kerala

At the reception desk of the administrative block of Government Medical College Hospital, Ernakulam, you are asked to disinfect your hands using a sanitiser. On the wall across from the desk is a white board screaming out the word of the day, ‘Alert’ in English and ‘Jagrata’ in Malayalam.

KOCHI, Kerala, 12/03/2020 : Health officials and ambulance drivers in personal protective gear by the side of the seven-storey COVID19 screening and 30-room isolation facility at Ernakulam Medical College, Kalamassery on Wednesday. While the 30-room isolation facility in the seven-storey structure has almost 29 in patients including three confirmed cases, scores get screened at the triages every day. Photo : Thulasi Kakkat/The Hindu

KOCHI, Kerala, 12/03/2020 : Health officials and ambulance drivers in personal protective gear by the side of the seven-storey COVID19 screening and 30-room isolation facility at Ernakulam Medical College, Kalamassery on Wednesday. While the 30-room isolation facility in the seven-storey structure has almost 29 in patients including three confirmed cases, scores get screened at the triages every day. Photo : Thulasi Kakkat/The Hindu


At the other end of the lobby is a wide glass door, behind which a white curtain running across the small courtyard leading to a towering seven-storey building segregates two sets of people, all wearing face masks. Some are seated in chairs, while a few stand around having animated talk over their phones. A few desks with people in personal protective equipment (PPE) are seen in the portico and inside its opaque glass doors. It houses the largest isolation facility in the State for symptomatic suspected COVID-19 cases and confirmed patients.


10 am | United Kingdom


Premier League in doubt as Arteta, Hudson-Odoi get coronavirus

The Premier League was thrown into chaos as Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta and Chelsea winger Callum Hudson-Odoi both contracted the new coronavirus, leaving at least one game postponed and other fixtures in doubt.

Arsenal's match at Brighton was put on hold after Arteta's diagnosis sent the London club into lockdown, while Chelsea's players and coaching staff were also ordered into isolation.

Chelsea said they would discuss their upcoming games, starting with Sunday's trip to Aston Villa, with Premier League officials.

The league will hold emergency talks on Friday “regarding future fixtures” in light of the pandemic, which has shut down football and other sports around the world.



9.45 am | Australia

Australian pacer Kane Richardson tested for coronavirus, results awaited

Australian fast bowler Kane Richardson has been tested for the novel coronavirus after he reported illness and will miss the first ODI against New Zealand on Friday.

The right-arm pacer, who returned with Australian team from South Africa earlier this week, informed the medical staff of a sore throat on Thursday and was tested for the virus, though the results of the test are awaited.

“Our medical staff are treating this as a typical throat infection but we are following Australian Government protocols that require us to keep Kane away from other members of the squad and perform the appropriate tests given he has returned from international travel in the last 14 days,” a Cricket Australia spokesperson was quoted as saying by

“Once we receive the results of the tests and Kane recovers in the next few days we expect he will re-join the team. We will not be making further comment until something changes.”




9.30 am | Delhi

112 housed at ITBP quarantine test negative for coronavirus

All 112 people admitted to an ITBP quarantine facility here for over a fortnight have tested negative for coronavirus and are expected to be released on Friday, a senior official said.

All of them were evacuated last month from Wuhan in China.


9.15 am | Delhi

Delhi shuts schools, colleges and cinemas

The  COVID-19  was declared an epidemic by the Delhi government on Thursday. Lieutenant-Governor Anil Baijal chaired a meeting at Raj Niwas with Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal to review the  preparedness to contain the disease .

All cinemas, schools and colleges — except those where exams are on — will remain shut till March 31. Disinfecting all public and private places will be made compulsory.

The Delhi government is preparing more quarantine facilities.



9 am | Karnataka

Bengaluru-based software engineer tests positive

A software engineer, who works in Bengaluru, has tested positive for  COVID-19  on Thursday taking the total number of confirmed cases in Karnataka to five.

The newly married 26-year-old software engineer, who returned on March 6 from his honeymoon to Greece, first landed in Mumbai with his wife to meet his parents who live there. From there, his wife travelled to her parents’ home in Agra from Mumbai.


8.30 am | Kerala

Kerala vlogger documents his stay in isolation ward

“My lab result has come. It is negative. The doctor also has approved my discharge. As I told you all, be fearless. This coronavirus won’t affect us,” says a cheerful Shakir Subhan, better known as the ‘Mallu Traveller’, in Malayalam in one of his latest videos, which shows him still sporting a mask.


The avid vlogger from Iritty, Kannur, whose videos documenting his three days in an isolation ward at a Government hospital have gone viral, is happy to be home. The globe-trotter had been on “a solo world bike tour” when he was forced to discontinue his odyssey in Azerbaijan just as he was to enter Georgia, due to the global coronavirus outbreak. His videos, posted in his YouTube channel the ‘Mallu Traveller’ that has over 6,62,000 subscribers, attempt to bust some quarantine myths and throw light on what life is like in an isolation ward.


7.40 am | Canada

Canada PM's wife tests positive for new coronavirus

The wife of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has tested positive for the new coronavirus, his office said late on Thursday.

“Sophie Gregoire-Trudeau was tested for COVID-19 today. The test came back positive,” the Prime Minister's office said in a statement.

“Following medical advice, she will remain in isolation for the time being. She is feeling well, is taking all the recommended precautions and her symptoms remain mild,” it said.

“The Prime Minister is in good health with no symptoms. As a precautionary measure and following the advice of doctors, he will be in isolation for a planned period of 14 days,” but will not be tested.


COVID-19 vaccine will take at least two years to develop: health officials

Senior health officials have said a COVID-19 vaccine will take at least two years to develop even with expedited clinical trials and approvals. The virus has affected 74 people in the country, including 17 foreign nationals (16 Italians and a Canadian).

Raman. R. Gangakhedkar, head of the Epidemiology and Communicable Diseases-I (ECD-I), Division of the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), said Indian scientists have managed to “successfully isolate the COVID-19 virus. This is needed for making a vaccine. There are two ways of going for vaccine preparation — either you look at the sequences of the gene which then may lead to development of antibodies, or you actually have the strain and then you try to develop a vaccine which is always an easier option,” he said.


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Printable version | May 13, 2022 7:16:04 pm |