Coronavirus roundup: Developments in India and rest of world

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TIMESOFINDIA.COM | Jun 18, 2020, 20:06 IST

NEW DELHI: A record single-day jump of 12,881 Covid-19 cases took India's tally to 3,66,946 on Thursday, while the death toll climbed to 12,237 with 334 new fatalities, according to the Union health ministry data. From June 1 till 18, the country saw a surge of 1,76,411 coronavirus infection cases with Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Delhi, Gujarat and Uttar Pradesh remaining among the top ten states accounting for the rising tally of Covid-19.
The government said that the recovery rate of Covid-19 has reached 52.95 per cent in the country and a total of 1,94,325 people affected have been cured so far.

Here are the top developments:

1

India Prime Minister Narendra Modi will on Saturday launch a Rs 50,000 crore employment scheme to provide income support to migrant workers who returned to their home states during the coronavirus lockdown. The 'Garib Kalyan Rojgar Abhiyan' will primarily focus on six states where maximum migrant workers have returned. Ahead of the sixth International Day of Yoga, PM Modi has urged people to observe the day from the confines of their homes due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Noting that this year's theme is 'Yoga at home' and 'Yoga with family', he said due to the pandemic, it has to be observed indoors. Union home minister Amit Shah favoured a unified strategy for Delhi and NCR to tackle the coronavirus pandemic and said the suburbs like Gurgaon, Noida and Ghaziabad can't be separated from the national capital in this battle. Union minister Harsh Vardhan launched a mobile laboratory for coronavirus testing which can be deployed in rural areas and help in promoting last-mile testing. The mobile lab, also called I-Lab or Infectious Diseases Diagnostics Lab, can run 50 RT-PCR and about 200 ELISA tests in a day. The Indian Council of Medical Research informed that 1,65,412 tests of coronavirus were conducted by various laboratories across the country in the last 24 hours. So far, 62, 49,668 tests have been conducted. The Supreme Court stayed this year's Puri Rath Yatra, which is attended by lakhs of people from across the world and was to start from June 23, due to the Covid-19 pandemic and said "Lord Jagannath won't forgive us if we allow" it. Mathematical models on severity of Covid-19 pandemic in India carried a "strong element of bias and used assumptions” to predict cases and deaths which "proved to be far from real", an editorial published in ICMR's Indian Journal of Medical Research has said. It said that it is a “huge risk" to solely rely on these models for policy decisions on advance planning since predicting infectious diseases for a new pathogen is an "extremely perilous proposition" and hence, it should be avoided.

2

States UP: Uttar Pradesh recorded its highest single-day spike in Covid-19 cases, with 604 people testing positive for the disease in the last 24 hours, officials said as the virus count rose to 15,785 in the state. Kerala: The Covid-19 tally in Kerala rose to 2,794 with 97 fresh cases being reported, while the toll touched 21 after an excise department personnel succumbed to the disease. Delhi: The Delhi government commenced Covid-19 testing through the rapid antigen methodology at 169 centres in and around containment zones of the city. The government has decided to cap the rate of Covid-19 RT-PCR test at Rs 2,400, deputy CM Manish Sisodia said. Puducherry: Chief minister V Narayanasamy said the territorial administration has intensified measures to prevent people from neighbouring Tamil Nadu districts of Chennai and Villupuram from intruding into the Union territory. Uttarakhand: A wholesale vegetable market in Uttarakhand's Rishikesh was sealed after seven traders there tested positive for Covid-19. All traders at the wholesale market have been quarantined. Maharashtra: A 92-year-old woman, who had tested positive for coronavirus in Dombivli town of Maharashtra's Thane district, was discharged from a hospital following recovery. The nonagenarian walked out of the hospital under a shower of flower petals. Andhra: The Covid-19 surge continued unabated in Andhra Pradesh with a record single day high of 425 new cases being added, taking the overall tally to 7,496. J&K: Jammu and Kashmir reported seven Covid-19 related deaths in the last 24 hours, taking the total number of fatalities due to coronavirus in the Union territory to 71. Assam: One more person died of Covid- 19 in Assam, raising the death toll due to coronavirus in the state to nine, while 82 people tested positive taking the total number of cases to 4,777. Tamil Nadu: The ruling AIADMK's flagship Amma Canteens will provide free food for 12 days from Friday onwards in Chennai and three neighbouring districts where the lockdown curbs are being tightened to prevent the spread of Covid-19, chief minister K Palaniswami said. Tripura: Forty-three fresh Covid-19 cases were reported in Tripura, taking the northeastern state's tally to 1,138. West Bengal: At least 16 slum dwellers in the city's Bagbazar area have tested positive for Covid-19, following which they were sent to a quarantine centre on the outskirts of the metropolis. Odisha: 174 fresh cases of Covid-19 were reported, taking the total to 4,512 in the state. Mizoram: Nine more people have tested positive for Covid-19 in Mizoram, taking the northeastern state's tally to 130. Rajasthan: The state registered 10 Covid-19 deaths and 84 positive cases of coronavirus. With this, the number of fatalities due to coronavirus in the state has gone up to 323, while 13,626 patients have tested positive. Meghalaya: The Meghalaya government has decided to allow restaurants, beauty parlours, salons and barbershops to re-open from next week, deputy chief minister Prestone Tynsong said. Arunachal Pradesh: The number of novel coronavirus cases in Arunachal Pradesh has crossed the 100-mark with four Border Roads Task Force personnel testing positive for the infection. The four new cases have taken the virus count in the state to 103. Himachal Pradesh: Three new Covid-19 cases have been reported in Himachal Pradesh in the last 24 hours, taking the total number of cases in the state to 589. Nagaland: The state did not report any fresh coronavirus positive case, while the recovery of six patients has brought down the number of active cases in the state to 84. Chandigarh: The UT's Covid-19 cases stand at 373. There are 61 active cases in the Union territory and 306 patients have recovered from the lethal infection. Jharkhand: The Jharkhand government banned the consumption of all types of tobacco products at public places in the entire state, in view of rising Covid-19 cases.

3

World The chief scientist at the World Health Organization said the agency hopes there will be about 2 billion doses of a vaccine against Covid-19 by the end of next year that would be reserved for “priority populations.” Dr Soumya Swaminathan told a press briefing: "It's a big if because we don't have any vaccine that's proven.” She said that because of the numerous vaccine candidates currently being tested, WHO hoped at least some might prove ready for use next year. The novel coronavirus has killed at least 448,994 people since the outbreak began in China last December. At least 8,366,000 cases of coronavirus have been registered in 196 countries and territories. The United States is the worst-hit country with 117,717 deaths from 2,163,290 cases. At least 592,191 people have been declared recovered. China imposed travel restrictions on nearly half a million people near its capital to contain a fresh coronavirus outbreak as deaths surged in other parts of the world. Another 21 cases of the virus were reported in the past 24 hours in Beijing, taking the total to 158 since a fresh cluster was detected last week after months of no confirmed local transmissions. Bangladesh's coronavirus cases crossed the 100,000-mark after 3,803 new Covid-19 infections were reported in the last 24 hours. The death toll due to the Covid-19 rose to 1,343 after 38 people died. The total number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Bangladesh are 102,292. Pakistan's coronavirus death toll crossed 3,000 with 118 more patients succumbing to the disease in the last 24 hours, while the total number of infections surpassed the 1,60,000-mark. Turkish authorities have made the wearing of masks mandatory in three major cities to curb the spread of Covid-19 following an uptick in confirmed cases since the reopening of many businesses. Masks are now obligatory in 47 out of 81 provinces. Singapore confirmed 257 new Covid-19 infections among foreign workers, taking the total number of coronavirus cases in the country to 41,473.

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