Coronavirus India Live Updates: India records 47,262 new cases, 275 deaths; biggest spike in 2021

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Mohali police giving masks to needy people during their challaning drive against without mask visitors at a market in sector 59 in Mohali. Express photo by Jasbir Malhi  

Coronavirus India Live Updates: India recorded 47,262 new cases of coronavirus in the last 24 hours. The country reported 275 deaths on Tuesday, the highest this year. Maharashtra was off its peak, reporting 28,699 cases, but several other states continue to rise. Karnataka, Gujarat, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh reported high numbers, apart from Maharashtra and Punjab. Maharashtra reported more than 100 deaths for the first time since December 16.

Today marks a year of India’s coronavirus lockdown. India went in for the strict lockdown when just about 525 positive cases had been detected. But the epidemic was already threatening to spread in an exponential manner. The number of cases had crossed 100 on March 15, 2020, and 1,000 on March 29.

With several states recording a resurgence of Covid-29 cases, the Union Cabinet Tuesday decided to further open up the vaccination, making every person above the age of 45 years eligible for a vaccine shot from April 1. The Centre has also updated the Co-WIN platform  and communicated to states that unlike earlier, when the second dose of the vaccine would be scheduled for Day 29, beneficiaries will have the discretion to choose the date of the second dose within the extended interval of 4-8 weeks.

The second wave of coronavirus cases has also prompted authorities in Delhi and Mumbai to prohibit public celebration and gatherings on the occasion of Holi in Delhi and Mumbai. The Uttar Pradesh government, on the other hand, has issued a set of guidelines asking senior citizens and vulnerable groups to stay away from celebrations and said no processions or gatherings will be allowed without prior administrative permission.

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Coronavirus India Updates: India records 47,262 new Covid cases, 275 deaths; Karnataka, Punjab, Maharashtra, Gujarat report a surge; Amid rise, state governments issue Holi guidelines; vaccine for all above 45 years from April 1; today marks one year of lockdown. Follow latest news and developments on covid-19 in India below

The Centre has also updated the Co-WIN platform and communicated to states that unlike earlier, when the second dose of the vaccine would be scheduled for Day 29, beneficiaries will have the discretion to choose the date of the second dose within the extended interval of 4-8 weeks.

Fresh reason for worry: 81% of Punjab samples positive for UK variant

Eighty-one per cent of the 401 samples sent by the Punjab government for genome sequencing have tested positive for the UK variant of Covid-19, Chief Minister Amarinder Singh Tuesday said. The samples were sent for testing at National Centre for Disease Control.

“A total of 401 samples, collected between 1.1.2021 and 10.3.2021, were sent to NCDC for genome sequencing. The result of these samples was worrying as it showed presence of B.1.1.7 variant in 326 Covid samples,” said a government statement quoting head of the state’s Covid expert committee Dr K K Talwar.

Expressing concern, Amarinder urged the Centre to widen the vaccination net to cover those younger than 60 as the mutant strain has been found to be infecting young people more.

Record spike in Gujarat with 1,730 Covid cases, 9 MLAs positive since start of House session

GUJARAT REPORTED a record high of 1,730 new Covid-19 cases on Tuesday, surpassing Monday’s spike of 1,640 cases. At least nine MLAs have also tested positive for the infection since the budget session of the Gujarat Legislative Assembly began on March 1.

Congress legislators Naushad Solanki and Punja Vansh, and BJP MLAs Vijay Patel and Mohan Dodiya, who were among those attending the ongoing Budget session, have tested positive for the infection Tuesday, Speaker Rajendra Trivedi informed the House. In Vadodara, MP Ranjan Bhatt and BJP MLA from Dabhoi Shailesh Mehta had tested positive last week.

On Tuesday, the Assembly Speaker banned the entry of visitors as a precautionary measure. “A number of staff members of ministers have got infected. My first request is to the ministers not to call any visitors within the Assembly building till the House is in session. The minister can organise such meetings in their offices,” Trivedi said. The ongoing session is expected to conclude on April 1.

One year since lockdown 1.0: Share in workforce already falling, Covid-19 job losses hit women harder

For 28 years, Munni Devi walked from home to the Welspun Polybuttons Pvt Ltd factory on Gurugram’s Behrampur road where she headed the button assembly process on the shopfloor. Today, the 54-year-old does the same walk via her factory but to a different destination: a protest site at the Gurugram mini-Secretariat.

She is among the 200 employees laid off after the factory closed three months into the lockdown that marks a year tomorrow. Out of a job since last July, Munni’s family struggles to pay rent, cuts corners to buy medicine for her physically challenged grandson. Of the three working members in her household of five adults who lost their jobs since then, two are women.

Far away from her, at Euro Clothing Company’s factory in Karnataka’s Srirangapatna, Shobha S, a mother of two and the breadwinner in her family, was among the nearly 1,300 workers laid off in June. Nearly all the workers fired at this unit of Gokaldas Exports, which counted H&M as among its suppliers, were women like Shobha.

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