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Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed the nation at 8 pm on Thursday over the coronavirus threat. The address comes after a high-level meeting PM Modi chaired on Wednesday to review the efforts to contain COVID-19.
The government has given several advisories asking people to avoid crowded places and stay at home as much as possible in order to prevent the spread of the disease. Jammu and Kashmir also reported its first positive case of the coronavirus; the patient lives in a congested area in Srinagar, municipal official Junaid Azim Mattu said, adding people have to be extremely careful.
Over the last weeks, various state governments have shut down educational institutions. Malls and multiplexes, cancelled sports gatherings and functions and urged people not to travel.
The number of commuters on suburban trains of the Western Railway (WR) reduced by over eight lakh on Tuesday. "The number of commuters reduced by around 25 per cent," said Ravinder Bhakar, chief spokesperson of WR. Suburban services are the lifeline of Mumbai and over 80 lakh people use them daily.
A man suspected to be infected with COVID-19 allegedly killed himself by jumping off the seventh floor of a hospital in Delhi on Wednesday, soon after he was admitted there by the airport authorities, the police said.
The police across states have reported cases of people who are showing coronavirus symptoms skipping quarantine and running away, increasing the chances of spreading the infection.
India evacuated 405 citizens, including students, stranded at Kuala Lumpur airport in Malaysia on Wednesday, the Indian High Commission in Kuala Lumpur has said.
China on Thursday marked a major milestone in its battle against the coronavirus pandemic as it recorded zero domestic infections for the first time since the outbreak emerged, but a spike in imported cases threatened its progress.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) has praised India's commitment to combat the novel coronavirus, with a special shoutout for PM Modi. "I think the commitment of the Indian government from the top level -- the Prime Minister's office himself -- has been enormous, very impressive. This is one of the reasons why India is doing very well," said Henk Bekedam, the WHO representative to India.
The virus was first detected at a seafood market in China's Wuhan in December. Wuhan and its 11 million people were placed under strict quarantine on January 23, with more than 40 million other people in the rest of Hubei province entering lockdown in the following days.