Covid LIVE: 39,923 cases in Maharashtra; BMC halts vaccination for 2 days

Coronavirus live updates: India recorded 343,144 fresh Covid-19 infections on Friday, taking the caseload tally to 24,046,809, according to MoHFW. Deaths from the virus surged by 4,000 to hit 262,317 in total. The government on Thursday said the virus may emerge again and so preparations have to be made at the national level in collaboration with states. V K Paul, Member (Health), Niti Aayog, said over two billion doses of Covid-19 vaccines will be made available in the country in five months between August and December, enough to vaccinate the entire population. He added that the Russian Covid vaccine Sputnik V is also likely to be available by next week.

Maharashtra reported 42,582 new coronavirus disease (Covid-19) cases and 850 deaths, followed by Kerala (39,955), Karnataka (35,297), Tamil Nadu (30,621), Andhra Pradesh (22,399), West Bengal (20,839), Uttar Pradesh (17,775) and Delhi (10,489) in the past 24 hours.

The six most affected states by total cases are Maharashtra (5,269,292), Karnataka (2,088,488), Kerala (2,050,889), Uttar Pradesh (1,580,980), Tamil Nadu (1,499,485), Andhra Pradesh (1,366,785), and Delhi (1,372,475).

World coronavirus update: Coronavirus cases rise unabated across the globe with 161,818,233 infected by the deadly contagion. While 140,652,101 have recovered, 3,358,164 have died so far. The US remains the worst-hit country with 33,625,697, followed by India, Brazil, France and Turkey. However, in the past seven days, India has added the highest number of fresh cases at 2,631,980, followed by the Brazil (425,222) and US (264,741).


Enact special law to protect dignity, rights of dead: NHRC to Centre, states

The NHRC on Friday issued an advisory to the Centre and all states and union territories in which it laid out a range of recommendations for protecting the dignity and the rights of the dead people in the wake of reports of alleged mishandling of bodies of Covid-19 victims.
In a statement, the National Human Rights Commission said the recommendations include enacting of a specific legislation to protect the rights of the dead, adding that "mass burial or cremation should not be allowed to take place as it is in violation of the right to dignity of the dead".
"The hospital administration should be explicitly prohibited from deliberately retaining any dead body on the count of pending bill payment; the unclaimed bodies must be stored under safe conditions," the recommendations read.
The advisory gathers significance in the context of the NHRC on Thursday, issuing notices to the Centre, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh governments on a complaint about bodies found floating in the river Ganga, it said.
"The NHRC, keeping in view the large number of deaths and reports in the media about the mismanagement/mishandling of Covid-19 affected dead bodies today issued an advisory to the Centre and states for protecting the dignity and the rights of the dead," the statement said.

Delhi Cabinet nod for financial aid for drivers of autos, taxis hit by lockdown

The Delhi Cabinet on Friday approved Rs 5,000 financial assistance to all individuals holding public service badge (drivers) of para-transit vehicles and others in the wake of the lockdown here amid the second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic, officials said.
The city transport department in a statement, also said, beneficiaries of the 2020 scheme need not reapply but will get the Rs 5,000 directly transferred to their Aadhaar-linked bank accounts subject to verification of deaths from local bodies.
"The Delhi Cabinet today approved Rs 5,000 financial assistance to all individuals holding public service badge (drivers) of para-transit vehicles and permit holders of para-transit vehicles in the wake of the second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic, and further curfew announced by the Delhi government that has left the owners of these vehicles in financial hardships," it said.
On May 4, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had announced that a one-time financial assistance of Rs 5,000 will be provided to the PSV badge and permit holders of para transit vehicles - namely auto rickshaws, e-rickshaws, taxis, 'phatphat sewa', eco-friendly sewa, Gramin sewa and maxi cabs, the statement said.
In 2020, Rs 78 crore was given as financial assistance to more than 1.56 drivers of auto rickshaws and taxis, it added.

Bengal logs highest one-day spike of 20,846 Covid-19 cases

West Bengal on Friday registered its highest single-day spike of 20,846 fresh Covid-19 cases, taking the tally to 10,94,802, the health department said in its bulletin.
The toll rose to 12,993 after 136 more people, including five eminent doctors, succumbed to the infection, the bulletin said.
Senior BJP leader Mukul Roy and his wife Krishna are among those who contracted the disease.
Roy, who is the saffron party's vice president, is currently undergoing home isolation, sources in the health department said.
Of the 136 deaths, 67 were due to the comorbidities where Covid-19 was incidental.
North 24 Parganas district accounted for 42 fatalities and Kolkata 34.
The five doctors who lost their lives are well-known pathologist Dr Subir Kumar Dutta (90), renowned physician from Barasat, Dr Utpal Sengupta (in his 70s), surgeon Dr Satish Ghata (late 70s), Dr Sandipan Mandal (37) of Murshidabad Medical College and Hospital, and gynaecologist Dr Dilip Chakraborty.
At least 19,131 recuperated from the disease since Thursday, taking the total number of recoveries to 9,50,017.

Bengal: 'Depressed' corona positive man asks pedestrians to take son away

Apparently slipping into depression after having tested positive for Covid-19, a man on Friday came out of his residence in south Kolkata's Bhabanipur area with his infant son and asked pedestrians to take the baby away, police said.
As the man roamed aimlessly in the Elgin Road area and once tried to leave the baby on the footpath, local people informed councillor Asim Basu and the Bhabanipur police station.
"We questioned the man but he could only say that the baby is his son. He could not tell us his address. We decided to take him to SSKM Hospital where it was later found that he was corona positive," a police officer said.
Policemen as well as the councillor had a tough time identifying the infant till his mother approached the Bhowanipore Police Station.
"After scrutiny of the documents related to the baby's identity, we handed him over to the woman," the officer said.
The man had been very depressed after he tested positive for the infection earlier, he said.

Vaccination suspended in Mumbai for two days due to cyclone warning

The Mumbai civic body on Friday decided to suspend its Covid-19 vaccination drive for the next two days in view of the warning about cyclone Tauktae.
There would be no inoculation on May 15 and 16, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation tweeted.
Additional Municipal Commissioner Suresh Kakani told PTI that it was a precautionary measure as cyclone Tauktae is forecast to pass close to the city.
The decision was taken to avoid troubles for senior citizens and also possible crowding as the city is expected to get rains due to the cyclone, he added.
Presently, Mumbai has 260 active inoculation centres and 28,41,349 persons have received vaccine jabs including 23,924 on Friday.
The India Meteorological Department has warned that cyclone Tauktae is likely to pass close to Mumbai via sea route, though it won't hit the city directly, but is likely to bring strong winds and heavy rain to the financial capital of the country.

Will ask collectors to ask PM for vaccines in meet: Maharashtra Dy CM

Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar on Friday said district collectors from the state would be asked to request for vaccine doses when they interact with Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the next few days.
He said the PM is scheduled to meet collectors from across the country next week.
"No clear assurance has been received from the Centre over vaccine supply. The PM is going to have a meeting with district collectors across the country next week. If the PM happens to interact with some collectors from the state, I will ask them to request Modiji to send vaccines at the earliest," Pawar told reporters here.
He said the state government was also talking to vaccine manufacturers.
Replying to a query on pricing, he said the Supreme Court has directed the Centre to strive for uniformity in vaccine rates for states, UTs, private entities.
On Bombay High Court pulling up Pune Municipal Corporation on availability of beds for Covid-19 treatment after carrying out a test by calling the civic helpline, Pawar said he had spoken to the mayor and civic commissioner and had asked them to rectify shortcomings.

Remdesivir black-marketing: 3 nurses, medical store staff held

Four people were arrested in Nashik in Maharashtra for alleged black-marketing of Remdesivir, a key medicine in Covid-19 treatment, police said on Friday.
Three of them are women working as nurses in a hospital and the fourth is a man employed in a medical store, an official said.
"Acting on a tip-off, a joint team of Food and Drug Administration and police arrested two women selling two Remdesivir vials for Rs 54,000 in front of KK Wagh Engineering College on Thursday. The vials have a printed price of Rs 3,000 each. They named their two associates who too were held soon after," he said.
An Adgaon police station official identified them Shruti Ubale, Jagruti Shardul, Snehal Pagare and Kamesh Bachhav, and said they were remanded in custody till May 17.

Low-key Eid celebrations in Delhi amid Covid-19 restrictions

The vast expanse of Jama Masjid's courtyard wore a deserted look and families stayed home on Friday as Eid-ul-Fitr celebrations remained a low-key affair in the city amid the Covid-19 restrictions.
The celebrations, marking the end of the holy month of Ramzan, which would have been an opportunity to meet and greet relatives and friends in a different time and year, was limited to a timid affair due to the unrelenting scare of the coronavirus infection.
Shahi Imam of Jama Masjid Ahmed Bukhari said the celebrations were affected because of the pandemic. (PTI)

Coronavirus LIVE: Tamil Nadu govt intensifies norms in lockdown

Coronavirus LIVE: Maharashtra reports 39,923 new cases

Maharashtra reports 39,923 new coronavirus cases, 53,249 discharges and 695 deaths in the last 24 hours, according to the state health department

Coronavirus LIVE: 10,608 new cases in Haryana

Haryana sees 10,608 new coronavirus cases, 14,577 recoveries and 164 deaths in the last 24 hours, according to the state health department

Coronavirus LIVE: Gujarat sees 9,995 new cases

Gujarat reports 9,995 new coronavirus cases, 15,365 recoveries and 104 deaths in the last 24 hours, according to the state health department.

Coronavirus LIVE: BMC halts vaccinations for two days

Coronavirus LIVE: Madhya Pradesh sees 8,087 new cases

Madhya Pradesh reports 8,087 new coronavirus cases, 11,671 recoveries and 88 deaths in the last 24 hours, according to the state health department

Coronavirus LIVE: Manipur reports 726 new cases

Manipur reports 726 new coronavirus cases, 381 recoveries and 16 deaths in the last 24 hours, according to the state health department

China says price hike in anti-Covid medical supplies to India due to import of raw materials

China on Friday said the prices of some of the Covid-19 medical supplies like oxygen concentrators being procured by Indian companies from Chinese manufacturers have gone up as they had to import raw materials to meet the excess demand from India.
Responding to a question from the official media here on India's Consul General in Hong Kong Priyanka Chauhan's recent remarks calling on China to stop surging prices of medical supplies to India, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying told a media briefing that China has been encouraging its companies to meet India's procurement to meet the country's surge in coronavirus cases.
Soaring prices of medical supplies like oxygen concentrators and disruption of cargo flights to India are slowing arrivals of medical goods, Chauhan said this week. (PTI)

Coronavirus LIVE: Karnataka reports 41,779 new cases

Karnataka reports 41,779 new coronavirus cases, 35,879 recoveries and 373 deaths in the last 24 hours, according to the state health department

Coronavirus LIVE: Mumbai reports 1,657 new cases

Mumbai reports 1,657 new coronavirus cases, 2,572 recoveries and 62 deaths in the last 24 hours.

Coronavirus LIVE: Karnataka govt says second dose of Covishield only after 12 weeks

Karnataka govt asks those who took Covishield not to come to vaccination centres if they haven't completed 12 weeks of first dose

Coronavirus LIVE: Goa reports 2,455 new cases

Goa reports 2,455 new coronavirus cases, 2,960 recoveries and 61 deaths in the last 24 hours.

Coronavirus LIVE: Kerala sees 34,694 new coronavirus cases in the last 24 hours, says CM

Coronavirus LIVE: Kerala sees 34,694 new coronavirus cases in the last 24 hours, says CM

Coronavirus LIVE: Triple lockdown in Thiruvananthapuram, other cities, says CM

Triple lockdown will be imposed in Thiruvananthapuram, Ernakulam, Thrissur and Malappuram, where the test positivity rate is high, says Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan 

Coronavirus LIVE: Kerala lockdown extended till May 23, says CM

Coronavirus LIVE: Kerala lockdown extended till May 23, says CM

Odisha logs highest one-day spike of 12,390 cases, 22 more fatalities

Odisha on Friday registered its highest single-day spike of 12,390 new Covid-19 cases, which pushed the tally to 5,88,687, while a record number of 22 fatalities raised the toll to 2,273, a senior health department official said.
Accordingly, the number of active cases climbed to 1,04,016, the official said.
Of the 12,390 new cases, 6,938 were reported from various quarantine centres, and the rest detected during contact tracing, he stated. (PTI)

Coronavirus LIVE: Andhra Pradesh reports 22,018 new cases

Andhra Pradesh reports 22,018 new coronavirus cases, 19,177 recoveries, and 96 deaths in last 24 hours, according to the state health department

Coronavirus LIVE: Hope to launch Sputnik Light in India soon, says RDIF CEO

DRDO developed 2-DG drug could be game-changer, says Minister

The 2-DG drug developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) could be a game-changer in the fight against Covid, Karnataka Health Minister Dr K Sudhakar said on Friday.
"The 2-DG drug developed by DRDO is a big breakthrough and could be a game-changer in the battle against pandemic as it helps in faster recovery of hospitalised patients and reduces oxygen dependence," Sudhakar was quoted as saying in a statement issued by his office.
The Minister had visited the DRDO campus in the city where scientists briefed him about the ongoing efforts at the premier research organisation to find solutions to tackle the pandemic. (PTI)

NDMC launches medical helpline for Covid-infected employees, families

The Medical Services Department of the New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) on Friday launched a program 'NETRA' in coordination with the Information Technology Department to provide guidance telephonically and through WhatsApp to COVID-infected employees in home isolation.
According to an official media release, a team of dedicated doctors and specialists has been prepared as part of the Medical Helpline Facility for guiding employees or their family members who contracted the disease. (PTI)

Coronavirus LIVE: West Bengal CM writes to PM over PSA plants

Himachal sees 38 more Covid deaths, 924 new cases

The death toll from Covid-19 rose to 2,156 in Himachal Pradesh on Friday with 38 more fatalities, while 924 fresh cases pushed the infection tally to 1,51,597, a senior official said.
The number of active cases in the state stands at 37,789, according to data updated till 2 pm.
The recovery count increased to 1,11,621 with 3,105 more people recovering from the infection, the official said. (PTI)

Coronavirus Latest: Maharashtra CM urges sugar cooperatives to produce oxygen

Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray urged the sugar cooperative industry to produce oxygen, much needed for hospitals treating Covid-19 patients.
He was speaking after attending the virtual inauguration of an oxygen production plant of Dharashiv Sugar Cooperative in Osmanabad district.
The sugar cooperative is the first in the state to start oxygen production, an official release said. (PTI)

Telangana HC stays state govt's order to allow ambulances only if they have prior tie-up with hospitals

Telangana High Court stays the state government's order to allow ambulances with patients coming from neighbouring states only if they have prior tie-up with hospitals.

270 black fungus cases reported in Pune; therapy SOPs framed

Around 270 cases of Mucormycosis, a rare but dangerous fungal infection, have been reported so far in Pune district, prompting a government task force to come up with a set of standard operating procedures (SOPs) for patient management in hospitals, officials said on Friday.
Symptoms of Mucormycosis, also known as black fungus, include headache, fever, pain under the eyes, nasal or sinus congestion and partial loss of vision.
It affects the sinuses, the brain and the lungs and can be life-threatening in people who are diabetic or have suppressed immunity.
Mucormycosis, whose treatment requires a multidisciplinary approach, has come in focus during the pandemic as it has been detected in some recovering and recovered coronavirus patients. (PTI)

German infection rate at 2-month low, vaccinations speed up

Germany's coronavirus infection rate dropped to its lowest level in nearly two months on Friday, while the health minister said the country had the most successful day yet of its vaccination campaign this week.
Still, Jens Spahn called for caution as authorities move toward allowing a more normal life, urging officials to hold off on fully reopening restaurants and calling for Germans to choose vacation destinations carefully.
The national disease control center, the Robert Koch Institute, said the number of weekly new cases per 100,000 inhabitants stood at 96.5, the first time since March 20 it has been under 100. There are still considerable variations between regions, many of which are still subject to an overnight curfew and other rules that kick in when an area's weekly infections top 100 per 100,000 people. (AP)

Coronavirus LIVE: FinMin asks states to vaccinate all bank employees on priority

Coronavirus LIVE: Over 2 million vaccine doses administered on May 13, says Health Ministry

Coronavirus LIVE: Over 2 million vaccine doses administered on May 13, says Health Ministry

Nearly 1,000 power sector employees have succumbed to Covid, says AIPEF

All India Power Engineers Federation (AIPEF) on Friday said as many as 1,000 power sector employees have succumbed to Covid-19 and more than 15,000 have been infected from the virus.
In Maharashtra, a total of more than 7,100 power employees are Covid positive and about 210 have died. While, in Uttar Pradesh, more than 4,000 power sector employees are suffering from coronavirus and there have been 140 casualties.
"Amid a record surge in Covid-19 cases in the country, around 1,000 employees working in the power sector have died and more than 15,000 employees have tested positive for the virus," AIPEF Spokesperson V K Gupta said in a statement.
In the list of casualties, there are at least three chief engineers (2 from Uttar Pradesh and 1 from Haryana), and more than two dozen superintending engineers including nine from Uttar Pradesh, it said. (PTI)

Japan to expand virus emergency ahead of Tokyo Olympics

Japan is set to further expand a coronavirus state of emergency, currently in Tokyo and five other prefectures, to nine areas as the government is determined to hold the Olympics in just over two months.
Japan has been struggling to slow the infections ahead of the Games. The three additions include Japan's northern island state of Hokkaido, where the Olympic marathon will be held, as well as Hiroshima and Okayama in western Japan.
The three areas on Sunday will join Tokyo, Osaka and four other prefectures already under the coronavirus restrictions, until May 31, Economy Revitalization Minister Yasutoshi Nishimura told reporters. Bars, karaoke parlors and most entertainment facilities are required to close. Business owner who comply will be compensated; those who don't face fines. (AP)

Coronavirus LIVE: We will get vaccines as soon as possible, says Karnataka CM

Oxygen shortage claims 13 more lives at Goa hospital; 75 dead in 4 days

Thirteen more Covid-19 patients died at the Goa Medical College and Hospital (GMCH) in the early hours of Friday, a senior health department official said, taking to 75 the number of people who have succumbed at the government-run facility here in the last four days.
The horror at the GMCH is continuing even as the Goa bench of the Bombay High Court is hearing petitions related to deaths during the "dark hours" at the premier hospital. Read here

Coronavirus LIVE: MP govt to bear Covid treatment cost of journalists

Reliance Jio announces offer free talk time for JioPhone users for pandemic

Reliance Jio on Friday said it is working with Reliance Foundation to provide 300 free minutes of outgoing calls per month, which amounts to 10 minutes per day, for the entire period of the pandemic.
The scheme will be available to JioPhone users who have not been able to recharge due to the ongoing pandemic, the company said in a statement.
Reliance Jio is the first company to announce free talk time for users in the second wave of pandemic wherein many states have imposed lockdowns or lockdown-like restrictions as a desperate measure to restrict the spread of the virus. (PTI)

40 new cases take Covid-19 tally of Andamans to 6,510

The Covid-19 caseload in Andaman and Nicobar Islands rose to 6,510 as 40 more people tested positive for the disease in the Union Territory, a health department official said on Friday.
Thirty-nine new cases were detected during contact tracing and one fresh patient has a travel history, he said.
The death toll rose to 83 as two more persons succumbed to the disease in the last 24 hours, the official said. (PTI)

Will bear cost of education and other expenses of those children who were orphaned by Covid: Delhi CM

We will bear cost of education and other expenses of those children who were orphaned by Covid-19 pandemic: Delhi CM Kejriwal

Delhi govt will extend all help to families which have lost earning members to Covid-19, says CM

Delhi govt will extend all help to families which have lost earning members to Covid-19, says CM Arvind Kejriwal

Centre to supply nearly 19.2 million of vaccines to states during May 16-May 31

The allocation of Central government supplies to the State/UT is decided on the consumption pattern and beneficiary load for 2nd doses during the upcoming fortnight. During the 16th-31st May 2021 fortnight, 191.99 lakh doses of Covishield and Covaxin will be supplied to the States and UTs, free of cost.  This will include 162.5 lakh of Covishield and 29.49 lakh of Covaxin. Read full govt release here

Doubling farmers income is our goal: FM Nirmala Sitharaman on PM-Kisan scheme

DATA STORY: India's active Covid cases down by 5,632, but daily deaths still at 4,000

India has so far administered 179,298,584 vaccine doses. That is 756.44 per cent of its total caseload, and 12.88 per cent of its population. Read on...

Covid-19 is spreading fast in rural India; villagers must take necessary precautions: PM Modi

Covid-19 is spreading fast in rural India; villagers must take necessary precautions: PM Modi

Coronavirus vaccine: Sputnik V launched in India, first shot administered in Hyderabad

Coronavirus vaccine: Sputnik V launched in India, first shot administered in Hyderabad

PM asks states to take action against black-marketing of medicines, essential supplies

PM asks states to take action against black-marketing of medicines, essential supplies

Sputnik V vaccine (imported) to cost Rs 995.40 per shot, made-in-India doses may be cheaper, reports NDTV

Sputnik V vaccine (imported) to cost Rs 995.40 per shot, made-in-India doses may be cheaper, reports NDTV

Covaxin stock has almost ended in Delhi

Covaxin stock has almost ended. We only have 2-3 days of stock for Covidshield vaccines for 18- 44 years of age group. We can't mix already assigned centers for Covaxin & Covishield vaccines: Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain

Amid the difficult challenges of Covid-19, farmers have made records in agriculture and gardening: PM Modi

Amid the difficult challenges of Covid-19, farmers have made records in agriculture and gardening while Govt is also setting new records on procurement on MSP every year. In comparison to last year, 10% more wheat has been purchased on MSP this year: PM Modi

Japan prepares for Tokyo Olympics amid Covid-19

Despite the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic, preparations for Tokyo Olympics & Paralympics are in full swing in Japan.
The torch relay launched on March 25 from J-village football training center in Fukushima prefecture is continuing around Japan. This preparation is being progressed decisively because Tokyo Olympics is the symbol of overcoming the Corona crisis.
In March 2020, the Olympics torch arrived at Fukushima from Athens. After the decision of postpone of Tokyo Olympics torch relay was suspended.
Fukushima, which suffered a massive earthquake in 2011, has the importance to launch torch relay because it is a symbol of getting light over a big disaster.
The torch relay is going around Japan to prevent Corona infection. The audiences to support the Olympic torch relay are limited due to pandemic.

Coronavirus LIVE updates: Five most affected states by cases

Maharashtra (5,269,292)
Karnataka (2,088,488)
Kerala (2,050,889)
Uttar Pradesh (1,580,980)
Tamil Nadu (1,499,485)

Coronavirus LIVE: PM releases Rs 20,000 cr for farmers as pandemic hits villages

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday released the eighth installment of over Rs 20,000 crore to more than 9.5 crore farmer beneficiaries under the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi (PM-KISAN) scheme on Friday via video-conferencing.
Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar, who was present on the occasion, said West bengal has joined the scheme with more than 7 lakh farmers of the state getting the benefit today.
Under the PM-KISAN scheme, the government is providing Rs 6,000 in three equal installments to 14 crore farmers annually. The amount is directly transferred into the bank accounts of the beneficiaries through direct benefit transfer (DBT) mode.
An amount of over Rs 1.15 trillion has been transferred to farmer beneficiaries so far under the PM-KISAN scheme, launched on February 24, 2019.
PM Modi will also interact with five farmers from states like Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Meghalaya, Jammu and Kashmir and Andaman and Nicobar on the occasion.

PM releases 8th installment worth over Rs 20,000 cr to 9.5 cr farmers under PM-KISAN

PM releases 8th installment worth over Rs 20,000 cr to 9.5 cr farmers under PM-KISAN

We received last Covid vax batch on May 9, not certain about next: Baghel

Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel on Thursday said that the state had received a batch of Covid vaccines on May 9 and neither the Centre nor the vaccination manufacturers are certain about the availability of the next batch.
"Vaccines are most essential to fight against Corona. Money is needed for vaccination. All states are carrying out their duties. But the way in which Centre gave free vaccines to healthcare and frontline workers should have been decided for common citizens too," Baghel told ANI. Read on...

Andhra govt issues global tender for procurement of Covid-19 vaccines

The Andhra Pradesh government on Thursday called for global tenders for procuring Covid-19 vaccines.
Speaking to the media, Andhra Pradesh Medical and Health Principal Secretary Anil Kumar Singhal said that the last date for filing bids is June 3, 2021.
He further said that the pre-bid meeting is likely to be held on May 20 or May 22.
"Other states are following the decisions taken by Andhra Pradesh in the fight against coronavirus like calling global tenders for purchase of vaccines, gearing up for giving permissions for production of vaccine in the state, and requesting Center to let 45 plus people inoculate both the doses at first before providing vaccine to 18 to 45-year-old people," he said. Read on...

PM Modi releases the 8th installment of financial benefit under the PM-KISAN scheme

PM Modi releases the 8th installment of financial benefit under the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi (PM-KISAN) scheme via video conferencing

Global Covid-19 caseload tops 160.8 mn; deaths surge to more than 3.34 million

The overall global Covid-19 caseload has topped 160.8 million, while the deaths have surged to more than 3.34 million, according to the Johns Hopkins University.
In its latest update on Friday morning, the University's Center for Systems Science and Engineering (CSSE) revealed that the current global caseload and death toll stood at 160,825,974 and 3,340,130, respectively.
The US continues to be the worst-hit country with the world's highest number of cases and deaths at 32,852,543 and 584,478, respectively, according to the CSSE. Read on...

With 12,390 new infections, Odisha sees sudden increase in Covid-19 cases

Odisha recorded a sudden surge in Covid-19 cases on Friday as the state reported 12,390 new cases in the last 24 hours, according to the state health bulletin.
As many as 10,649 new Covid-19 cases were reported in Odisha on Thursday.
The state also recorded 22 Covid-related deaths while 8,665 people recovered from the disease in the last 24 hours.
Out of fresh Covid cases reported, 6,938 people got injected in quarantine, while 5,452 caught the infection from local contacts. Read on...

Black fungus has claimed 52 lives in Maharashtra so far

As many as 52 people have died due to Mucormycosis, a rare but dangerous fungal infection, in Maharashtra since the Covid-19 outbreak last year, a senior health department official said on Friday.
Mucormycosis, also known as black fungus, became a much talked about subject after some recovering and recovered coronavirus patients were found infected with the disease, whose symptoms include headache, fever, pain under the eyes, nasal or sinus congestion and partial loss of vision.
As many as 52 people in Maharashtra have died due to the Mucormycosis disease since the Covid-19 outbreak last year. All of them were Covid-19 survivors, but succumbed to the black fungus infection, the official told PTI.

India records 3,43,144 Covid-19 cases, 4000 fatalities in last 24 hours

With 343,144 people testing positive for coronavirus in a day, India's Covid-19 tally of cases climbed to 24,046,809, while the death toll rose to 262,317 with 4,000 daily fatalities, according to the Union Health Ministry data updated on Friday.
The active cases have reduced to 3,704,893 comprising 15.41 per cent of the total infections, while the national Covid-19 recovery rate has improved to 83.50 per cent, the data updated at 8 am showed.
The number of people who have recuperated from the disease surged to 2,00,79,599, while the case fatality rate was recorded at 1.09 per cent, the data stated. Read on...

Karnataka: People offer Eid-Ul-Fitr namaz at their home following Covid protocols in Hubli

Thane district reports 1,782 new Covid-19 cases, 70 deaths

With the addition of 1,782 new coronavirus cases, the infection count in Thane district of Maharashtra rose to 4,96,104, an official said on Friday.
The new cases were reported on Thursday.
The virus claimed the lives of 70 more patients, pushing the death toll in the district to 8,311, he said.
The mortality rate stood at 1.67 per cent, he added.

India's vaccine supplies to improve as it braces for Covid-19 third wave

Supplies of Covid-19 vaccines are expected to rise sharply by the end of this year as more candidates become available and raw material bottlenecks are ironed out. This suggests that India will be in a better position to handle a likely third wave, provided it doesn’t strike earlier than year-end.
So far, India has vaccinated 37.2 million people with both doses of a Covid-19 vaccine, and about 135.5 million have received at least the first jab.
Several Indian states have raised concerns over the depleting stocks of vaccines available with them, which will hamper their ability to go ahead with the inoculation drive. Maharashtra, for example, has decided to use the available stocks to vaccinate those above 45 years and suspend the inoculation drive for the 18-44 age group for now. Read on...

The first oxygen express has reached Chennai from Durgapur: Piyush Goyal

"The first oxygen express has reached Chennai from Durgapur with medical Oxygen for Covid-19 patients in Tamil Nadu," tweets Railways Minister Piyush Goyal


Coronavirus in India: Latest update by MoHFW

Active cases: 3,704,893 (Net reduction: 5,632)
Deaths: 262,317 (Net increase: 4,000)
Cured: 20,079,599 (Net increase: 344,776)
Total cases: 24,046,809 (Net increase: 343,144)
Total vaccination: 179,298,584 (Increase over previous day: 2,027,162)

Coronavirus a living organism, has right to live like the rest of us: Trivendra Singh Rawat

Former Uttarakhand chief minister Trivendra Singh Rawat on Thursday said that coronavirus is a living organism which has a right to live.
"Seen from a philosophical angle, coronavirus is also a living organism. It has the right to live like the rest of us. But we (humans) think ourselves to be the most intelligent and are out to eliminate it. So it is constantly mutating itself," he told a private news channel here.
However, he said man needs to outpace the virus to stay safe.
Rawat was trolled on social media for his unusual observation on coronavirus as it went viral at a time when the entire country is battling a strong second wave of Covid-19.
One Twitter user sarcastically said, "This virus organism should be given shelter in the Central Vista.

Bodies found floating in river Ganga: Plea in SC seeks probe into deaths

A plea was filed in the Supreme Court on Thursday seeking constitution of a special investigating team headed by a sitting or retired apex court judge to supervise the probe into the death of several persons whose bodies were recently found floating in river Ganga in Bihar and Uttar Pradesh.
The petition has sought directions to the Centre, authorities in states of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar to conduct post-mortem of the bodies which are found floating in river Ganga to ascertain the cause of death. The plea, filed by advocates Pradeep Kumar Yadav and Vishal Thakre, has claimed that recovery of these decomposed corpses raises issue of serious concern as the river acts as a source of water for many areas and if the bodies were infected by Covid-19, then it might spread in the villages in both the states.

120 prisoners test positive for Covid-19 in Odisha jails; 2 people die

Two individuals lost their lives and at least 120 prisoners tested positive for Covid-19, as per an official on Thursday.
While speaking to the reporters, DIG (Prisons), Subhakanta Mishra said, "Two individuals lost their lives and at least 120 prisoners tested positive for Covid-19. Critical patients shifted to Covid hospitals and 449 convicts released on 90-day parole."
To curb the spread, Mishra informed, "Patnagarh Sub-Jail and a cell of Berhampur Jail has been converted into Covid-19 care centre. We are looking into the matter." Read on...

As many as 311,324,100 samples have been tested in the country up till May 13: ICMR

 As many as 311,324,100 samples have been tested in the country up till May 13 including 1,875,515 samples tested yesterday: Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR)

7.35 million job losses in April due to coronavirus second wave: CMIE

As the severe second wave of Covid-19 and the resultant lockdowns bring economic activities to a halt, India's job scenario worsened in April 2021.
As per data published by the Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE), India's unemployment rate rose 8 per cent in April, against 6.5 per cent in March.
"April 2021 turned out to be worse than expectations. We had expected labour participation rate to stabilise at its March 2021 level. The LPR had dropped sharply in March already after a modest fall in February. But, the LPR fell for a third consecutive month in April," CMIE's CEO Mahesh Vyas said. Read on...

Mixing AstraZeneca and Pfizer shots triggers more fatigue, headaches: Study

Mixing doses of two leading Covid-19 vaccines increased patients’ side effects such as fatigue and headaches in early findings from a study that has yet to show how well such a cocktail defends against the virus.
People who got a first dose of AstraZeneca Plc’s shot followed by Pfizer Inc.’s vaccine four weeks later reported more short-lived side effects, most of them mild, researchers from the University of Oxford reported in The Lancet medical journal. That was also true when the order of the shots was switched. Read on...

States go slow on projects, halve borrowing even as Covid wreaks havoc

States are going slow on fundraising from the market at a time when the second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic has turned out to be far more disastrous than the first wave. Ratings agency Care Ratings has said the aggregate state government borrowing so far this fiscal year has been 54 per cent less than the corresponding borrowings last year. “Only 12 states and one Union Territory (UT) have raised a total of Rs 37,200 crore so far in FY22, as opposed to the 22 states and one UT that raised Rs 81,005 crore in the comparable period of FY21,” it said. Read on...

World Coronavirus Dispatch: Vaccine spree by rich hiding global suffering

Falling case loads in wealthy nations due to rocket-speed vaccinations may give a false sense of security that everything is fine and may also hide the suffering of millions of people from the pandemic who don't have access to vaccines. Despite declining trends in the developed world, more than 600,000 new Covid cases are being reported globally each day on an average, as epidemics in countries like Colombia, Brazil and Malaysia refuse to die down. Global health officials stress that more international coordination is required to fix the inefficiencies and inequities in vaccination drives. READ ON...

Coronavirus in India: Puducherry reports 1,942 new Covid-19 cases

Puducherry reports 1,942 new Covid-19 cases, 912 recoveries and 24 deaths in the last 24 hours
Active cases: 16,568

40% of India's total Covid-19 deaths during a relentless second wave

The second wave of Covid-19 has seen a significant rise in the number of recorded deaths, with the total toll since the pandemic hit India in 2020 crossing 250,000 this week. Around 40 per cent of these deaths have occurred since the beginning of March this year. Read on...

Karnataka SSLC Examination slated to begin from June 21 postponed

Karnataka SSLC Examination slated to begin from June 21 have been postponed

Huge public-pvt effort needed to boost health if there's third Covid wave

For the inevitable third wave of Covid-19, the public and private sector will have to unite for a massive ramp-up of medical infrastructure that goes far beyond hospitals and equipment.
Experts say India must draw lessons from its own and other countries’ experience by anticipating needs, from fixing the supply chain for medicines, equipment and raw materials to scientific analysis of how the virus might behave in future and the groups likely to be impacted.
One first step, they say, is to understand that India needs at least three times the number of beds from its current capacity of 1.35 beds per 1,000 people (industry estimates). According to rough estimates, India has 100,000 ICU beds. It needs 400,000. Read on...

Times Group chairperson Indu Jain dies at 84 due to Covid-19

Times Group chairperson Indu Jain died on Thursday due to Covid-related complications. She was 84.
Hailing her as a visionary, Times Now TV channel, part of the Times Group, described Jain as a lifelong spiritual seeker, pioneering philanthropist, distinguished patron of the arts, and passionate proponent of women's rights.
She breathed her last in Delhi, the sources said.
As tributes poured in for her from statesmen, captains of industry and spiritual masters, friends and admirers spoke fondly of her unquenched youthful spirit, zest for life, and determination to make the world a better place.
After becoming chairman of the Times Group in 1999 she evolved a distinctive leadership style, characterised by compassion and inclusiveness, that helped propel the group to new heights.

India would be reasonable in extending gap between Covishield shots: Fauci

Dramatically ramping up Covid-19 vaccination drive is key to ending the crisis in India and extending the gap between two doses of Covishield is a "reasonable approach," White House chief medical adviser Dr Anthony Fauci told ANI in an exclusive interview on Thursday.
"When you are in a very difficult situation, the way you are in India, you have to try and figure out ways to get as many people vaccinated as quickly as you can, so I believe that it is a reasonable approach to do," Fauci said.
On Thursday, the Government of India announced that the gap between the first and second doses of the Covishield COVID-19 vaccine has been increased to 12-16 weeks - from the existing 6-8 weeks. This is for the second time in three months that Covishield dosage intervals have been widened and this move has once again garnered criticism, as a cover-up for not having enough vaccines for the people in India. However, Dr Fauci said that this "extended interval" is beneficial even from the efficacy standpoint. Read on...

2 vaccine producing companies should share their formula with other companies: Delhi health minister

If states have to buy vaccines from outside, Centre should provide to all states. The 2 vaccine producing companies should share their formula with other companies. They shouldn't be allowed to sell vaccines for more than Rs 150. I've requested Union Health Min: Delhi Health Minister

Karnataka getting 765 MT of Oxygen as against 1015 MT allocated by Centre, says CM

Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa on Thursday informed that the Centre had increased the state's oxygen supply from 965 metric tonnes (MT) to 1015 MT. However, he said that the state is getting only 765 MT daily.
While addressing a press meet, CM Yediyurappa said, "Centre increased our oxygen supply from 965 MT to 1015 MT. We are getting 765 MT within the state. We are trying to get oxygen from other states as well." Read on...

Coronavirus India update: 187 districts continue to show decline in cases since last 2 weeks

187 districts continue to show decline in cases since last 2 weeks: Lav Agarwal, Union Health Ministry, Joint Secretary

Delhi coronavirus update: 10,489 new Covid-19 cases and 308 deaths in the last 24 hours

Delhi reports 10,489 new Covid-19 cases, 15,189 recoveries and 308 deaths in the last 24 hours.
Total cases 13,72,475
Total recoveries 12,74,140
Death toll 20,618
Active cases 77,717

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