According to the Union Health ministry, the number of coronavirus cases in the country rose to 562.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday while interacting with the people of Varanasi on the coronavirus lockdown said that the war of "Mahabharata was won in 18 days, the war against coronavirus would take 21 days."
PM Modi was addressing a Q and A session a day after he announced a 21-day total lockdown in the country to break the chain of transmission of coronavirus, which has infected over 560 in India.
He also expressed "pain" at people targeting doctors, nurses and other staff handling coronavirus patients.
As the lockdown came into force, many shelves in the megacities of New Delhi and Mumbai were stripped bare of staples like lentils and rice as the world's second most populous country lurched into a shutdown aimed at slowing the spread of the new coronavirus.
Amid a scramble for supplies, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal urged residents not to panic and said e-passes would be issued to vegetable-sellers and grocers among others to ensure essential supplies during the lockdown.
There is "absolutely no need to panic", centre and states are working to ensure that essential supplies are not disrupted, he said, adding that his government had set aside Rs 15,000 crore to strengthen the health infrastructure to tackle coronavirus.
According to the latest Union Health ministry update, the number of coronavirus cases in the country rose to 606 including 553 active cases, 42 cured/discharged people and 10 deaths
Here are the highlights on Coronavirus Outbreak:
Circles drawn at vegetable markets in Andhra to ensure social distancing
The administration drew circles at vegetable markets in the state to ensure that citizens maintain social distancing while buying items in the wake of the novel coronavirus outbreak.
In the market at Bobbili town of Vizianagaram district, markings are made at a two-metre distance. People stand inside the marks until their turn comes in to buy vegetables.
Two new COVID-19 positive cases in Rajasthan
Two new COVID-19 positive cases were registered in Rajasthan taking the total number of coronavirus cases to 38 in the state.
The Union Health Ministry had on Wednesday reported 606 positive COVID-19 cases in India including 43 foreign nationals.
COVID-19: Rs 1,000 each to be provided to 3.5 lakh workers in Jammu and Kashmir
Rs 1,000 each to be provided to 3.5 lakh workers registered with the Building & Construction Workers Welfare Board in Jammu and Kashmir, Principal Secretary Planning Rohit Kansal on Wednesday said.
He said that two installments of old age, disability and family pensions will be immediately released.
2,535 people held, 1,636 vehicles seized in Kerala for lockdown violation
Kerala Police on Wednesday arrested 2,535 people and seized 1,636 vehicles across the state over charges of violation of the countrywide lockdown.
Kerala has reported nine new cases of COVID-19 in the state on Wednesday, taking the total count in Kerala to 118, including six discharged.
Of the total 118 virus-infected cases reported so far in Kerala, 91 are Non-Resident Indians (NRI), who have come back to the state from overseas, eight are foreign nationals and 19 have got infected through a local contact. 12 persons have recovered completely from the disease.
Two fresh COVID-19 positive cases in Telangana
Telangana Health Department on Wednesday informed about two fresh COVID-19 positive cases in the state.
One of the two patients is a 43-year-old female from Hyderabad.
"She is the family/primary contact of a positive case. She does not have any history of international travel. She is presently admitted and stable. She is a contact of patient 34," the Health Department said in a bulletin.
Another patient is a 3-year-old boy with a history of travel from Saudi Arabia. He is stable and admitted to the hospital.
152 foreign returnees traced in Jammu and Kashmir, put under quarantine
Srinagar District Magistrate Shahid Choudhary on Wednesday said that 152 people who did not declare that they had returned from foreign countries have been traced and put under quarantine in the view of novel coronavirus outbreak.
"Control Room traced 152 undeclared cases of persons returned from UAE, Iran, Hungary, Taiwan, Malaysia, Cambodia, Italy, Saudi Arabia, Bangladesh, Malaysia, Kazakhstan. Put under quarantine.We continue to request people to come forward and self-report. Help docs, Urself, family & society," Mr Choudhary tweeted.
According to the Health Ministry, the total number of positive COVID-19 cases in India reached 606, including 43 foreign nationals.
3 new COVID-19 positive cases in Tamil Nadu
Tamil Nadu Health Minister Dr C Vijayabaskar on Wednesday informed about three new positive cases of COVID-19 in the state.
The minister said that among the three -- an 18-yr-old male is a ''contact of the second patient'' at Rajiv Gandhi Govt Hospital, a 63-yr-old male with travel history to Dubai at Walajah Hospital and a 66-yr-old male, who is a contact of Thai nationals at IRTT, Perundurai.
Three test positive for coronavirus in Goa
Three people, with a history of international travel have tested positive for COVID-19 in Goa, Chief Minister Pramod Sawant said early on Thursday. This is the first instance of a positive coronavirus cases in the state.
"I have been informed by the state Directorate of Health Services (DHS) that three individuals have been tested positive for #COVID-19 in Goa. We are providing the best healthcare facility to the diagnosed patients," Mr Sawant tweeted.
Coronavirus: China Offers To Help India Fight Coronavirus Pandemic
In a statement issued by the spokesperson of the Chinese Embassy in New Delhi, Counselor Ji Rong said, "Chinese enterprises have started to make donations to India. We stand ready to provide further support and assistance to the best of our capability in light of the needs of the Indian side.""
US coronavirus cases cross 60,000, 827 dead, news agency AFP reported.
As health officials over the world warn that older adults and people with underlying medical conditions face a higher risk of complications due to COVID-19, the Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR) has claimed people with hypertension, diabetes or heart diseases are at the same risk of contracting the new coronavirus like anyone else, news agency IANS reported.
Bengaluru NGO To Feed 20,000 Poor During Lockdown
An international hunger relief NGO (non-government organisation) would feed about 20,000 people daily in four cities, including Bengaluru, hit by the 21-day coronavirus lockdown, an official said on Wednesday.
"Our NGO -- Rise Against Hunger India (RAHI) -- will serve 2 meals a day for a month to about 20,000 daily wage and construction workers, contract labourers, street vendors in Bengaluru, Delhi, Hyderabad and Mumbai through partners," said the city-based NGO in a statement, news agency PTI reported.
The Rajasthan government on Wednesday released a sum of Rs 310 crore in order to deposit Rs 1,000 per family in the bank accounts of economically backward sections amidst the lockdown imposed to contain the coronavirus spread.
With the cash coming in the hands of people, they will now be able to meet their daily needs, an official statement said.
The eligible families have been selected on the basis of Jan Aadhaar database. Rs 1,000 will be deposited in the bank accounts of every selected family through direct bank transfers (DBT) and they will be informed through SMSs on their mobile phones, news agency PTI reported.
1 Crore Party Workers To Provide Meals To 5 Poor Persons Each During Lockdown, Says BJP
The BJP on Wednesday said its one crore workers will provide for meals of five poor persons each during the 21-day lockdown to combat coronavirus.
A meeting of its national office bearers chaired by party president JP Nadda took the decision, and a mechanism will be be put in place at the earliest in this regard, its national media head Anil Baluni said.
In the meeting, Mr Nadda called upon the party leaders and workers to ensure that one crore of them feed five poor persons each.
Officers of Trichy Customs Preventive coordinated in smooth clearance of 377 stranded Malaysian Citizens travelling by Air Asia Rescue Flights which departed on March 25, both destined to Kuala Lumpur.
In the wake of the unprecedented lockdown across India to curb spread of coronavirus which has infected more than 600 so far, the government on Wednesday banned toll collection on national highways across the country.
Delhi Police Sets Up 24x7 Helpline Number To Address Queries On Lockdown
The Delhi Police has launched a 24-hour helpline number for city residents to address their queries on the lockdown, officials said on Wednesday.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday announced a complete lockdown across the country for 21 days from Tuesday midnight, asserting that this is necessary for a decisive battle against COVID-19.
The helpline number 011-23469526 was set up as a number of queries are being received from the public with regard to circulars, instructions and prohibitory orders issued by the police, the officials said, news agency PTI reported.
Delhi Lieutenant Governor appoints IAS officer Vivek Pandey as nodal officer for unhindered delivery of essential goods through e-commerce services, news agency PTI reported.
One COVID-19 positive patient, 85-year-old, died in Ahmedabad today. She has travelled abroad and after developing symptoms of COVID-19, she was admitted at Civil Hospital Ahmedabad, Gujarat on March 22. She was suffering from many complications: Ministry Of Health
Spain's Deputy Prime Minister Carmen Calvo has tested positive for coronavirus, the Spanish government said on Wednesday, news agency Reuters reported.
A 75-year-old woman who was found positive for the new coronavirus in an initial test died early Wednesday but doctors at a Karnataka hospital said a final confirmation was awaited about whether she was infected by COVID-19.
The exact cause of her death would be known after the final report comes, two state ministers said. If confirmed, this will be second coronavirus fatality in the state.
The woman, who returned from Mecca in Saudi Arabia recently, was said to be from Gauribidanur in Chikkaballapura and undergoing treatment at Bowring hospital in Bengaluru, news agency PTI reported.
A staff nurse at the Medanta-The Medicity tested positive for coronavirus, an official said.
The nurse was deployed in the isolation ward of hospital where 14 Italian tourists, infected with COVID-19, were admitted for a month. Of the 14, 13 recuperated and discharged, news agency IANS reported.
A Chinese businessman admitted in a government hosptial in Nagpur, Maharashtra amid the coronavirus outbreak on Wednesday tested negative for the viral disease, a hospital official said.
The Chinese, a chilli trader who is in India since December 2019 on a business visa, was admitted to the Indira Gandhi Government Medical College & Hospital (IGGMCH) on Tuesday, news agency PTI reported.
Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren on Wednesday said that the government has zero tolerance against sale of any item in the black market and asked officials to take stringent action against any person indulging in such practices.
In a tweet, Mr Soren asked all district Deputy Commissioners and other officials across the state to curb sale of commodities in black market as such problems from some districts were still coming in through the 24x7 state-level control room, introduced at Suchana Bhavan in Jharkhand.
The officials should follow zero tolerance in initiating action against such people, he added, news agency PTI reported.
Over 5,500 In Surat Asked To Observe Home Isolation
Over 5,500 persons, mostly textile traders and their employees, were asked to stay in home quarantine on Wednesday after a 62-year-old man who worked in a textile market tested positive for coronavirus.
All those who came in contact with the COVID-19 patient could have been infected, and therefore they were asked to isolate themselves at home for 14 days, said Municipal Commissioner Banchhanidhi Pani.
The person who tested positive on Wednesday worked for a trader who had his shop at the Radha Krishna Textile Market, one of the largest wholesale textile hubs in the city, news agency PTI reported.
Contending that the Centre and the state government are working in tandem to contain the spread of COVID-19, West Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankar on Wednesday appealed to everyone to keep aside political differences and put up a united fight against the pandemic.
Mr Dhankar said that Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan has apprised him about the adequacy of COVID-19 testing laboratories and kits in West Bengal and hailed the central government for being "even-handed in such matters."
The governor also said that Dr Vardhan, in his letter, told him that four laboratories are currently functional in the state -- two in Kolkata, one in Midnapore and the other in Siliguri, North Bengal -- and around 2,500 testing kits have been made available, news agency PTI reported.
Andhra Pradesh: CM YS Jagan Mohan Reddy held review meeting today with officials of state govt on implementation of lockdown & availability of essential items. He instructed officials to stagger 'Rythu Bazar' to avoid rush and permit shops to operate from 6 am to 1 pm.
The Assam government said on Wednesday that there are enough food items in the stock to sustain the state for the 21-day lockdown imposed in the wake of the coronaVirus outbreak.
Addressing a press conference in Guwahati, Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs Minister Phani Bhusan Choudhury said the state will sail through the lockdown period with its food stock without considering the FCI's stock under National Food Security Act.
"At present, we have 2 lakh quintals of rice, 89,794 quintals of different dals, 75,552 quintals of sugar, 12,879 quintals of atta, 1,35,997 quintals of salt, 20,410 quintals of potato and 14,380 quintals of onion across the districts," he added, news agency PTI reported.
Coronavirus pandemic desolated vast swathes of West Bengal on Wednesday, the first day of the 21-day nationwide lockdown, with streets empty and markets closed, but some frenzied panic buying at local departmental stores prompted police to use force to disperse customers.
Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee sought a Rs 1,500 crore package from the Centre to supplement the state government's efforts to deal with the situation.
While most of the state was deserted, people in parts of Kolkata were seen jostling and squabbling in shops to buy essential goods, in violation of the lockdown guidelines against large gatherings, news agency PTI reported.
Delivery From Online Grocery Platforms Comes To Halt In Kolkata Amid Lockdown
Leading online grocery platforms have temporarily suspended their services in and around the city, following a sudden surge in demand amid the nationwide lockdown to prevent the spread of coronavirus, officials said on Wednesday.
They alleged that delivery executives were stopped by local authorities to perform their duties even though essential services were kept out of the purview of the 21-day lockdown.
In a notice to its customers, BigBasket said, "We are not operational due to restrictions imposed by local authorities on the movement of goods in spite of clear guidelines provided by central authorities to enable essential services. We are working with the relevant authorities to be
back soon," news agency PTI reported.
Chandigarh Administration released the list of chemist shops that will provide home delivery of medicines. The administration also clarified that no individual will be allowed to visit any Chemist shop for direct purchase of medicines. The residents can only place order telephonically on the nearest chemist shop for delivery of medicines at their doorstep.
The Private Schools' Association of Jammu and Kashmir (PSAJK) on Wednesday said it has offered its resources, including buildings, transport and trained manpower, to the government in its fight against coronavirus.
"We have been discussing all possible ways in which we could help government in controlling the deadly disease. We have felt that there may be a need for our resources like buildings, vehicles or trained manpower and we have offered it to the government," said PSAJK president G N Var.
He said the association has also made a list of the buildings to be offered for government's use, news agency PTI reported.
Shops Selling Essential Items To Be Open From 6 am To 11 pm In Ghaziabad
The Ghaziabad district administration on Wednesday gave assurances to the public that essential commodities will be available at retail outlets from 6 am to 11 pm, amid the nationwide lockdown to break the transmission chain of coronavirus.
"There is no scarcity of flour, sugar and other daily need items in the district. All supplies from wholesalers to retail shopkeepers have been regularised. Some of the commodities were stuck on the borders but now movement has been restored," District Magistrate Ajay Shankar Pandey told PTI.
He said the shops selling essential items will remain open from 6 am to 11 pm.
People are advised not to hoard groceries unnecessarily and shopkeepers have been instructed not to sell the goods higher than MRP. Stringent action will be initiated in case of any complaints, Mr Pandey added, news agency PTI reported.
Adequate Water Supply Will Be Ensured For Public In Tamil Nadu: Municipal Administration Minister
With people using more water for washing hands to prevent the coronavirus infection, the Tamil Nadu government has ordered its adequate supply, state Municipal Administration Minister S P Velumani said on Wednesday.
The required quantity of water will be supplied through normal pipelines or from borewells, he told reporters in Coimbatore.
As a key preventive measure against the spread of the coronavirus, people have been advised to wash their hands frequently, news agency PTI reported.
The number of coronavirus cases increased to 122 in Maharashtra on Wednesday, registering an increase of 15, while two COVID-19 patients were declared as cured of the deadly infection, news agency PTI reported.
The Delhi High Court on Wednesday took suo moto cognisance of the lockdown announced to prevent the spread of coronavirus and deferred all matters pending before it and all the district courts in the national capital till May 15 or until further orders, news agency ANI reported.
United Nations says 'whole of humanity' at risk from coronavirus pandemic, news agency AFP reported.
Centre looking for doctors, including retired, to work as volunteers to fight the COVID-19 outbreak: Official statement, news agency PTI reported.
The entry of journalists in media gallery of Chhattisgarh state Assembly has been prohibited to prevent the spread of Coronavirus. The information of the proceedings of the House will be given to them through a press release, news agency ANI reported.
Assam: In a move to combat coronavirus spread, Guwahati Police took an initiative by making encircles in front of essential commodity shops to maintain community distance or social distancing while shopping/buying goods at Fancy Bazar and Pan Bazar area on Wednesday.
District and Sessions Judges directed to permit judges, staff officials to work from home wherever possible, news agency PTI reported.
Functioning of all district court in Delhi suspended till April 15 in view of 21-day lockdown, news agency PTI reported.
Petroleum products and their supply chain; cargo handling in airports, railway stations, coal mining operations exempted from lockdown: Ministry of Home Affairs
Ministry of Home Affairs is monitoring lockdown via control room, says government, news agency PTI reported.
Nine private laboratories with over 16,000 sample collection centres have been registered so far for testing of COVID-19: Health Ministry
The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) on Wednesday extended application deadline for affiliation by schools till April 30 in view of the coronavirus outbreak.
"As per the norms, the period for applying for affiliation under various categories, including fresh affiliation, upgradation, switch-over from other board or extension of affiliation for session 2021-22 for all applicant schools is up to March 31 with requisite fee," CBSE Secretary Anurag Tripathi said, news agency PTI reported.
IndiGo offers government its aircraft and crew to transport medicine, equipment, relief material across country, news agency PTI reported.
Total number of COVID-19 positive cases rise to 606 in India (including 553 active cases, 42 cured/discharged people and 10 deaths): Ministry of Health and Family Welfare
Four more test positive for coronavirus in Kashmir; positive cases in JK rise to 11, news agency PTI reported quoting officials.
Government making efforts to ensure N-95 masks are available in adequate numbers to help medical fraternity in their job: Health Ministry.
Centre asks states to resolve immediately e-tailers' problems in delivering essential items, news agency PTI reported.
There is a medicine - Hydroxychloroquine. It can only be given to two particular cases - healthcare workers, dealing with suspected/confirmed cases, and the first contacts of confirmed cases. No one else should use this medicine: Lav Agarwal, Joint Secretary, Health Ministry
Those who returned from abroad and have been suggested home-quarantine should follow the guidelines. If they jump quarantine, strict measures will be taken under the Act, the Group of Ministers said. We are now capable to test 12,000 samples per day: Lav Agarwal, Joint Secretary, Union Health Ministry
Maharashtra government on Wednesday permitted the printing and distribution of newspapers from April 1.
The newspaper services were halted after the state government announced lockdown in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak in the country.
The decision was taken at a meeting chaired by Industry Minister Subhash Desai with newspaper publishers and distributors, news agency ANI reported
Tamil Nadu seeks Rs 4,000 crore Central assistance to implement measures to tackle COVID-19, news agency PTI reported.
The Madras High Court on Wednesday notified complete suspension of all judicial services across Tamil Nadu for three weeks or till further orders.
The notification has been issued in view of the prime minister's call for a 21-day nationwide lockdown to contain the COVID-19 outbreak, news agency PTI reported.
Members of Uttar Pradesh legislative assembly and council will now be able to use their Local Area Development Fund for the ongoing fight against the spread of coronavirus spread and contribute it to create facilities for medical testing and take other anti-COVID-19 steps, a senior official said in Lucknow.
"MLAs and MLCs will now be able to use their local area funds for tackling the situation arising out of the coronavirus spread. The rules in this regard are being amended and orders will be issued soon," Additional Chief Secretary (Home and Information) Awanish Awasthi told reporters, news agency PTI reported.
West Bengal Man Flees From Isolation Ward
A man from West Bengal, who was under observation at an isolation ward for suspected coronavirus infection, fled from the general hospital in Thiruvananthapuram on Wednesday morning, police said.
Police have launched a massive manhunt to trace the man, believed to be in his thirties.
Messages have been sent to all police stations about the incident, news agency PTI reported.
Government allows its employees, who were due to vacate their official flats, to stay till May 31, says statement, news agency PTI reported.
Punjab Police Distributes Free Food To Needy During Lockdown In Amritsar
Amid the nationwide lockdown due to the coronavirus outbreak, Punjab Police on Wednesday distributed free food packets and other essential commodities to the needy in Amritsar.
The cops distributed packets of milk, sugar and some other food items to the poor living in slum areas.
"Most of the people are now ordering food and other things online. But these poor people are locked up in their houses for the past three days. So, we decided to provide them milk and food packets," Neeraj Kumar, SHO, A division, told ANI.
Madhya Pradesh reports first coronavirus death, woman succumbs to viral infection, PTI reported quoting official.
Five new coronavirus cases reported in Delhi in past 24 hours: CM Arvind Kejriwal, news agency PTI reported.
"Whoever has the capability, take the pledge to take care of 9 families for 21 days, it will be a true 'Navratri'. Due to the lockdown, animals are also facing trouble. I appeal to people to take care of the animals around them": PM Modi
"Health workers in hospitals are working 18 hours a day and sleep for only 3-4 hours. We must know and understand their contribution to us all in these testing times": PM Modi
"I have told Home Ministry & DGPs to take strict action against those who are not supporting or not co-operating with doctors, nurses & other professionals who are serving us in this critical time": PM Modi
"I appeal to all the citizens, if you notice any incident where professionals, such as doctors and nurses, are ill-treated then you should take an initiative to make such people (those who are ill-treating healthcare professionals) understand that they are wrong": PM Modi
"If there are those who feel that there would be no problem at all, that things will happen flawlessly amid this global crisis are fooling themselves": PM Modi
"Our response to Corona must be with Karuna (compassion)": PM Modi
"Doctors, rescue workers who wen to Wuhan, Air India and other staff that have helped in operations to get back Indians from various parts of the world, these are our true heroes. We must help them. When I heard reports of them being harassed, I have taken it very seriously. It is a very grave issue for me. I have already told all state DGPs to take the most strict actions against those harassing them. Today, when you see doctors and nurses in their white coats, remember that they are today's gods and goddesses," said PM Modi.
Ex-Jaunpur MP Dhananjay Singh Donates Rs 70 Lakh For Treatment Of Coronavirus Patients
Former Jaunpur MP Dhananjay Singh on Wednesday donated Rs 70 lakh to the Uttar Pradesh Disaster Management Fund for the treatment of infected patients and to fight against coronavirus in the country.
Currently, Singh does not hold any government position.
This comes as 35 people in the state, including one foreign national, have been infected by the virus.
Notably, 11 people have been treated and discharged from the hospitals and no casualties have been reported in Uttar Pradesh.
According to the Ministry of Health and Family Affairs, the number of confirmed cases of coronavirus in the country surged to 562 on Wednesday, news agency ANI reported.
We Have Opened A 24x7 Helpdesk, The Number Is 9013151515: PM Modi
"There are many who have misunderstood this illness, there are many times we believe whatever comes our way when we face difficulties. We have to be careful," said PM Modi.
He further said that instead of focusing on things that don't matter at the moment, we all must focus on is how dangerous this virus is, and what we must do to keep ourselves and our families safe.
"At the moment, this measure of social distancing is the only way to ensure we remain safe. Of course, hygiene and other precautions are essential too. We have opened a 24x7 helpdesk. The number is 9013151515," he added.
"If you write 'Namaste' on this WhatsApp number, either in English or in Hindi, then you will get an immediate response," PM Narendra Modi said.
Need to win this battle against Coronavirus: PM Modi
PM Modi holds an interaction on coronavirus with Varanasi residents through a video conference.
"Today, with a strength of 130 crore people, we need to win this battle against Coronavirus. Kashi (Varanasi) also has to play a crucial role in this endeavour," the Prime Minister tells the citizens.
"The Mahabharat was won in 18 days. The battle against Coronavirus will take 21 days," he says, according to news agency PTI.
"The whole country is preparing to win this 21-day battle against the virus. All preparations are being made to ensure this is done with minimum difficulty," he adds.
He says the holy city of Varanasi can teach the whole country the values of patience and tolerance in these testing times.
PM Modi To Interact With Citizens Of Varanasi Via Video Conferencing Today
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will hold an interaction on coronavirus with the people of his constituency Varanasi on Wednesday through a video conference at 5 pm.
The Prime Minister in a tweet yesterday said, "I will interact with the people of my constituency of Varanasi on the situation arising out of coronavirus. You can join this conversation through video conferencing at 5 pm on March 25. If you have any suggestion or question, can share it by going to the comment section of the NaMo app".
PM Modi has been interacting with various stakeholders on ways to deal with the COVID-19. Also, he has been pitching for social distancing, urging citizens to stay indoors whenever possible, news agency ANI reported.
Maharashtra's First Two COVID-19 Patients Discharged After Successfully Overcomig Disease
The first two reported cases of coronavirus positive patients in Maharashtra have been discharged from hospital on Wednesday after successfully overcoming the disease.
"Both the patients have been discharged now," said Dr Ramchandra Hunkare, Chief of Pune Municipal Corporation's health department.
The cases, both from Pune, were released from the hospital after successful treatment and following the negative outcome of COVID-19 tests performed on them, twice.
"Samples of three others in Pune are now tested negative for the first time and their samples have been sent for second testing again, the reports of which are expected by Wednesday evening. If those reports come negative again they shall be discharged with due process," Dr Hunkare said, news agency ANI reported.
Doctors From Goa To Undergo Training For COVID-19 Training
The Indian Navy on Wednesday flew a team of four doctors from Goa, who will undergo training for testing COVID-19 samples in Pune.
The team, led by Dr Savio Rodrigues, head of the microbiology department at Goa Medical College, will undergo training to set up a COVID-19 testing facility in Goa, the Navy said.
The Navy received the request on Tuesday, after which officials initiated necessary procedures and the aircraft took off for Pune on Wednesday morning.
The team has also taken some samples of suspected coronavirus patients to Pune for confirmation and it will return to Goa on March 27 after completion of the training, the Navy stated, news agency PTI reported.
Home-Delivery Of Ration In Srinagar To Begin From March 28
Home delivery of monthly rations to 1.60 lakh households in Srinagar city will start on March 28 to ensure that the residents of the 12.5 lakh-strong Srinagar city stay indoors.
Shahid Iqbal Chaudhary, District Magistrate Srinagar, said under strict safety protocol, departments of public distribution, agriculture, police, magistrates, Srinagar municipal Corporation and road transport corporation will start home delivery of rations to 1.6 lakh families from March 28.
The decision has been taken to ensure that residents of Srinagar city remain indoors for 21 days to break the COVID-19 infection chain.
In a related development, the Srinagar District Magistrate made another fervent appeal to citizens to remain indoors.
The DM said the number of COVID-19 positive cases is probably more than those who have so far tested positive for the virus, news agency IANS reported.
Jharkhand Government Issues Rate-List To Check Ration Shops Overcharging Customers
Acting on reports of a few ration shops providing commodities at a higher price while some others selling them in the black market taking advantage of the lockdown prompted by the coronavirus pandemic, the Jharkhand government on Wednesday released a rate-chart of various essential items.
It asked the buyers to report to the officials concerned if any ration shop overcharged them.
According to the rate-chart, pulse has been fixed at Rs 75 a kg, wheat flour between Rs 22 and Rs 25 every kg, mustard oil is priced between Rs 90 and Rs 95, rice between Rs 20 and Rs 24 each kg, refined oil between Rs 75 and Rs 80 and channa priced at Rs 60 a kg.
The step followed concerns expressed by Governor Droupadi Murmu and Chief Minister Hemant Soren over the matter. Mr Soren renewed his appeal to the people to remain indoors during the 21-day lockdown announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to prevent spread of COVID-19, news agency PTI reported.
Prince Charles has tested positive for Coronavirus, news agency AFP reported.
Jammu And Kashmir Offices Closed Till April 14
Jammu and Kashmir Principal Secretary Planning Rohit Kansal on Wednesday said that all government offices, which are not providing essential services, in the Union Territory will remain closed during the 21-day lockdown to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
"All government offices except those providing essential services closed till April 14," Mr Kansal tweeted.
The decision comes after Prime Minister Narendra Modi, on Tuesday, announced a 21-day lockdown in the entire country to deal with the spread of coronavirus, saying that "social distancing" is the only option to deal with the highly contagious virus, news agency ANI reported.
Class 1-9 Students Will Be Promoted In Tamil Nadu: Chief Minister
All students from first to ninth standard in Tamil Nadu will be promoted considering the closure of schools to prevent the spread of the new coronavirus, Chief Minister K Palaniswami said in Chennai on Wednesday.
Considering the welfare of students, who could not sit for their annual examinations due to closure of schools, Palaniswami said he ordered the School Education Department to announce promotion of all students from first to ninth standard.
For plus-two students who could not sit for write exam on March 24, exams will be separately held and a date notified later, he said, news agency PTI reported.
Rescheduled Tokyo Olympics Need Sacrifices From All Stakeholders: International Olympic President Thomas Bach
International Olympic President Thomas Bach said Wednesday that the postponed Tokyo Games would require "sacrifices and compromises" from all sides to make them work.
"These postponed Olympic Games will need sacrifices, will need compromises from all stakeholders," Bach told reporters in a conference call the day after the IOC decided to delay the 2020 Games because of the coronavirus pandemic, news agency AFP reported.
Jammu And Kashmir Urges People With Foreign History To Report To Authorities As Some Evade Screening
The J&K government has urged people to voluntarily report to authorities if they have a recent travel history to coronavirus-hit countries amid heightened concerns that those returning from abroad were evading screening and raising the possibility of the spread of the virus.
Srinagar Deputy Commissioner Shahid Iqbal Choudhary said authorities were flooded with messages about travellers concealing their travel history, and urged them to "act responsibly" to break the chain of transmission.
He said authorities were concerned as the travellers would have mingled with the local population. The government appealed to students, particularly, who have not declared their travel history and asked family members, neighbours to report such cases through helpline numbers 0191-2549676 at UT level, 0191-2520982, 2674444, 2674115 (Jammu division) and 0194-2440283, 2430581.
"Trust me if I share a summary of daily events NONE in Kashmir will sleep. Let's keep our egos aside, work collectively and instead of raising panic and alarm help each other to improve. This 3rd World War. Nothing less. If it passes we will have a Lifetime for all that," the senior official warned, news agency PTI reported.
We have to ensure that there is no scarcity of food. All Police stations will take responsibility to deliver food at doorsteps and it will be monitored by District Magistrates & Police Superintendents: West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee
Cabinet nod to Rs 1,340 crore recapitalisation of regional rural banks to improve capital to risk weighted asset ratio: Union Minister Prakash Javdekar
Prakash Javadekar briefs media on steps taken by government against coronavirus
Stay at home to avoid coronavirus. Wash your hands for 15-20 times. Social distancing is very important
7 kilo wheat at Rs 2 per person will be available for 80 crore people
For 80 crore people, rice would be available at Rs 3 instead of its usual price which is Rs 37
Odisha Mining Corporation gives Rs 500 crore to CM''s Relief Fund
The Odisha Mining Corporation (OMC) has contributed Rs 500 crore to the Chief Minister''s Relief Fund for supporting the state government''s fight against coronavirus.
The OMC added that this sum is in addition to the Rs 100 crore already contributed by the public sector company to the CMRF in February, 2020.
YSRCP MPs to donate salary to relief funds
The YSR Congress Party on Tuesday announced that all its Members of Parliament will donate two month''s salary, to help curb the spread of COVID-19.
All YSRCP MPs, will contribute a month''s salary to the Prime Minister''s Relief Fund, and they will further donate another month''s salary to the Chief Minister''s Relief Fund. The amount would be utilised in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic.
"Mankind is facing a crisis as never before. Fighting the coronavirus is no mean task. Doctors and health personnel have exhibited rare and selfless courage to save lives. Governments the world over have requested people to socially isolate themselves," YSRCP leader V Vijayasai Reddy said in a statement.
Bengaluru Residents Stock Up On Essentials Ahead Of 21-Day Lockdown
Soon after Prime Minister Narendra Modi declared a 21-day lockdown across the country, India's tech hub witnessed cautious buying of essential goods by the denizens on Tuesday night.
Though Karnataka and Bengaluru have been under partial-to-complete shutdown since March 14 to contain the spread of coronavirus or COVID-19, people have not faced shortage of groceries, vegetables, fruits, milk and other goods for panic buying, a shopkeeper said.
While business has been less than normal due to the shutdown, shops witnessed moderate to brisk buying in many provision and general stores across the city, including the IT corridor in the southern suburb.
"As am not sure if groceries will be available from tomorrow (Wednesday), am buying essential goods like rice, dal, wheat flour, vegetables and fruits," Uber staffer Zishan Ali told IANS at Kodathi on Sarjapur Road in the city's southeast suburb.
Government gives power to zonal DCs to take strict action against landlords evicting doctors, paramedics
The government on Wednesday gave power to zonal Deputy Commissioners to take "strict penal action" against landlords who have been forcing doctors and paramedical staff, engaged in fighting the novel coronavirus, to vacate their rented premises.
According to a government notification, such behaviour "not only strikes at the root of the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic but also tantamount to obstruction of duty of essential services".
Invoking the Delhi Epidemics Diseases, Covid-19 Regulations, it said the district magistrates, zonal deputy commissioners of municipal corporations and the deputy commissioner of police are "directed to take strict penal action against such landlords and house owners under the relevant provisions of law".
India has more than 500 coronavirus cases. 10 people have died. Experts worry that without stringent measures like social distancing and quarantine, the virus will take on frightening proportions the world's second most populous nation.
There is "absolutely no need to panic", centre and states are working to ensure that essential supplies are not disrupted, he said, adding that his government had set aside Rs 15,000 crore to strengthen the health infrastructure to tackle coronavirus.
Over 1.3 billion people will go under "total lockdown" from today for three weeks as India looks to contain the spread of coronavirus. The drastic measure was needed to "save its every citizen, you, your family... every street, every neighbourhood" from the virus, the PM Modi said, warning that India was at a critical stage where even a single misstep could will put the county "backwards by 21 years".