Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said that India's fight against coronavirus is moving ahead very strongly and the country has been able to avert considerable damage due to sacrifice of the countrymen. "India's fight against corona global epidemic is moving ahead very strongly. Because of your sacrifice so far, India has been able to avert considerable damage from coronavirus. I know how many problems you had to face. Somebody has trouble getting food, somebody has trouble commuting and someone is away from home," Prime Minister Modi said in his address to the nation. All passenger flights will remain suspended till May 3, the civil aviation ministry said after Prime Minister Narendra Modi extended the nationwide lockdown to fight the spread of coronavirus. Minister Hardeep Puri said after May 3, the government could consider ending the restrictions on domestic and international flights. All domestic and international scheduled Airlines operations shall remain suspended till 11.59 pm of May 3, the ministry said in a tweet.
Here are the Highlights on Coronavirus Pandemic:
The External Affairs Ministry has announced a training programme on coronavirus from April 17 for healthcare professionals from SAARC countries, reported PTI.
The training programme will be carried out by the central government's Indian Technical and Economic Cooperation (ITEC) programme.
"Taking forward @PMOIndia's vision on #PrepareNotPanic for #SAARCfightsCoronoa, @MEAIndia announces e-@ITECnetwork training programmes on #COVID19 for healthcare professionals for @SAARCsec countries starting April 17, 2020," the ITEC said in a tweet.
At an India-initiated video conference of SAARC leaders on March 15, Prime Minister Narendra Modi suggested that health professionals of the member nations could come together to jointly fight the coronavirus pandemic.
Rajasthan Food and Civil Supplies Minister Ramesh Chand Meena has written to the chief ministers of four states, demanding protection for the workers stranded in those states due to the lockdown, reported PTI.
In a letter to the chief ministers of Maharashtra, Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu, the minister sought protection for the workers from Rajasthan.
More than a thousand workers from Rajasthan's Karauli district are strnaded in these four states and are facing a major crisis of livelihood, Mr Meena said in a statement.
The minister has sent the names of the workers along with their addresses and mobile numbers, demanding that adequate food and proper lodging be provided to them.
The death of two elderly persons on Tuesday took the number of coronavirus-related fatalities to double digits in Karnataka, where 13 new positive cases were confirmed, taking the total number of infections in the state to 260, the health department said.
Expectedly, the state government welcomed Prime Minister Narendra Modi's announcement extending the lockdown till May 3 and said it will strictly implement the centre's guidelines which will be issued on Wednesday, reported PTI.
The total number of coronavirus cases in Nagpur climbed to 53 after nine new positive cases were reported on Tuesday.
"The COVID-19 positive cases in Nagpur rose to 53 after nine new cases today. The number of negative cases till today is 434 and patients recovered and discharged is 10 and under treatment is 43," Nagpur Municipal Commissioner Tukaram Mundhe said in a tweet, reported ANI.
Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) on Tuesday said the Food Corporation of India (FCI) has released over 22 lakh metric tonnes (MT) foodgrain to the states and Union Territiories till April 13, reported ANI.
"The FCI has released over 22 lakh metric tonne foodgrains to States and UTs till April 13. We are ensuring the supply of essential goods and services," Punya Salila Srivastava, Joint Secretary, MHA, said on Tuesday.
"Under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana (PMGKY), a provision has made to provide 5 kg foodgrain -- rice/wheat -- to 80 crore beneficiaries free of cost for three months," she added.
She further said that as many as 5,000 queries were solved through grievance centres till April 13.
A case has been registered against Telangana Senior Congress leader Hanumantha Rao for allegedly violating lockdown rules by approaching Dr BR Ambedkar's statue and garlanding it on the occasion of his 129th birth anniversary, reported ANI.
Speaking to ANI, Hanumanth Rao said, "Today on this occasion I went to pay tribute to Dr Ambedkar's statue at Tank Bund. I went there all alone and offered a garland. I did not do anything wrong as I was all alone and there was no person accompanying me. I did not disturb anyone, maintained social distancing but yet a case has been registered against me."
The Cyber wing of Maharashtra Police has issued 55 "Take Down" notices to Facebook, WhatsApp, Twitter and other such platforms during the lockdown period in an attempt to check the spread of hate messages and rumour-mongering on social media, an official said on Tuesday, reported PTI.
While 32 such objectionable posts have been removed, police have arrested 37 people and identified 114 others.
The Maharashtra Cyber Cell has registered 196 cases related to the circulation of fake news, rumours and hateful messages as well as for circulation of misinformation during the lockdown period till April 14, he said.
While 188 of the total 196 cases are converted into FIRs, the rest eight cases were registered as Non-Cognizable offences, he said.
Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma on Tuesday said the health authorities have established 2,000 contacts of the 69-year-old doctor attached to the Bethany Hospital who has tested positive for COVID-19.
The senior doctor has no travel history except that his son-in-law, who is a pilot, had been to coronavirus infected countries, and had returned home on March 22, reported PTI.
The doctor tested positive on Monday.
"We have established 2,000 contacts approximately. We have also established about 200 primary contacts including his immediate family members and those who had come in close contact with the patient," the chief minister told journalists.
At least 10 more have tested positive for coronavirus in different parts of West Bengal over the last 24 hours, taking the total number of active cases in the state to 120, health department officials said on Tuesday, reported PTI.
The number of deaths due to the virus remained unchanged at seven.
The department did not mention anything about the number of recoveries in the last 24 hours on its bulletin.
Taking into account the fresh cases that were reported on Tuesday, the total number of people who tested positive for coronavirus in Bengal stood at 147.
The Union health ministry, however, put the total at 190 on its website.
The ministry also said that the number of people discharged from different hospitals in the state was 36.
Two doctors at Delhi's RML hospital have tested positive for coronavirus. Both are admitted at the hospital for treatment. There is a possibility that they were exposed to COVID-19 patients. Contact tracing has started, a hospital official to ANI.
Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani announced on Tuesday that curfew will be imposed in Old City and Danilimbda areas of Ahmedabad from 6 am on Wednesday to contain COVID-19 cases, reported PTI.
The curfew will continue till April 21, he said. Ahmedabad city has over 350 cases of coronavirus and most of them are from the Fort area (Old City).
"We have decided to impose a curfew in the Old Fort and Danilimbda areas of the city from Wednesday morning," Mr Rupani said in a video message on Facebook.
Railways is set to cancel around 39 lakh tickets booked for travel between April 15 and May 3 due to the extension of the nationwide lockdown and suspension of passenger trains till then amid the coronavirus pandemic, sources told PTI.
With the national transporter allowing tickets to be booked during the 21-day lockdown for journeys after April 14, around 39 lakh bookings were made by passengers hoping that trains will resume operation after the lockdown is lifted.
However, after the lockdown extension was announced, railways on Tuesday not only cancelled all its passenger services till May 3 but have also stopped all advance bookings.
All passengers will, however, get full refund on tickets booked for the cancelled trains as well as for those booked in advance.
Railways has also said full refunds will be automatically provided by the national transporter for its online customers, while those who have booked at the counters can take the refunds up to July 31.
Mizoram Chief Minister Zoramthanga on Tuesday directed the state police and urged the security forces to ramp up surveillance along the inter-state and international borders to prevent any movement as the cases of coronavirus in neighbouring states and countries continue to rise.
During a meeting with top officers of Assam Rifles, Border Security Forces (BSF), state police and those of the state government, the chief minister said stricter measures should be taken along the inter-state and international borders to prevent movement without permission, a statement said.
He asked the security forces and state police to coordinate with village-level task forces and other local volunteers to protect the state borders, reported PTI.
Jammu and Kashmir saw a drop in the number of active COVID-19 cases on Tuesday as 14 patients were discharged from hospitals and only eight fresh cases were detected in the Union Territory, officials said.
The total number of novel coronavirus cases now stand at 278, they said, reported PTI.
"For now our luck seems to be holding!!! Eight new cases, 14 recoveries. New cases -- six from Kashmir and two from Jammu division. Fourteen recoveries, all from Kashmir. Total cases now 278," Government spokesman Rohit Kansal said on Twitter.
Earlier in the day, officials said 14 patients were discharged from hospitals in Kashmir and placed under home quarantine as per the standard operating procedure.
With this the total number of patients who have recovered in the Union Territory has gone up to 20, while four patients have died due to the infection.
The Defence Research and Development Laboratory (DRDL), Hyderabad has added another product to the portfolio of Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) to fight the coronavirus by developing COVID Sample Collection Kiosk (COVSACK), said the Defence Ministry in a statement on Tuesday, reported ANI.
The unit has been developed by the DRDL in consultation with the doctors of Employees' State Insurance Corporation (ESIC), Hyderabad.
The COVSACK is a kiosk for use by healthcare workers for collecting samples from suspected COVID-19 patients.
"Patient under test walks into the kiosk and a nasal or oral swab is taken by health care professional from outside through the built in gloves," the statement read.
"The kiosk is automatically disinfected without the need for human involvement, making the process free of infection spread. The shielding screen of kiosk cabin protects the health care worker from the aerosols/droplet transmission while taking the sample. This reduces the requirements of PPE change by health care workers," it added.
Two more people, including a woman, tested positive for coronavirus on Tuesday in Chhattisgarh's Korba district, taking the number of such cases in the state to 33, officials said, reported PTI.
Both cases were reported from Katghora town, which has emerged as the top COVID-19 hotspot in the state. The town, located around 200 km from the state capital Raipur, has reported 24 of the 33 infections detected so far in the state.
Superstar Rajinikanth urged Tamils in every nation to follow restrictions imposed by governments to protect themselves and said "this too shall pass".
In a video message released to extend his Tamil New year greetings, he urged Tamils living everywhere, including in foreign countries, to follow the restrictions to protect themselves from the contagion, saying this would be their "biggest gift" to their family members this year, reported PTI.
The RPF, IRCTC and NGOs are preparing and distributing food daily among the needy at different locations in West Bengal and neighbouring Jharkhand in the wake of the lockdown over the novel coronavirus spread, PTI quoted an official as saying on Tuesday.
As part of the service for the poor and needy that began since the lockdown commenced three weeks ago, the Railway Protection Force (RPF) distributed cooked lunch at locations in and around Kolkata and far-off places in the districts, the Eastern Railway official said.
With two more positive cases of coronavirus reported on Tuesday, Haryana's COVID-19 count has gone up to 184.
"Two more cases of COVID-19 were reported from Faridabad today," said the state's Health Department in a statement on Tuesday.
"Out of 184 confirmed cases, 10 are foreign nationals -- 6 from Sri Lanka and one each from Nepal, Thailand, Indonesia and South Africa," the statement added.
The statement further said that as many as 64 COVID-19 patients in the state are from other states, reported ANI.
Alcohol production in Haryana has begun at full capacity to ensure a stable supply of the commodity for manufacturing hand sanitisers, state's Deputy Chief Minister Dushyant Chautala said In Chandigarh on Tuesday.
Hand sanitisers are in great demand as the country grapples with the contagious coronavirus. Doctors and experts have advised people to frequently use hand sanitiser, among other things, to check the spread of the novel coronavirus.
"A major portion of the alcohol industry's production is used in making sanitisers. The stock of 70 lakhs proof litre that we had was transported in the amount of 2 lakh proof litre every day to various states for manufacturing sanitisers," Mr Chautala told ANI.
2.3 lakh samples have been tested for coronavirus so far, ICMR said at a press conference. The Health Ministry said 1,211 new coronavirus cases were reported in the last 24 hours with 31 deaths, reported PTI.
Over 32 crore poor people have been provided financial support of Rs 29,352 crore till April 30, says government, reported PTI. Free ration and food grains were distributed among 5.29 crore beneficiaries under Garib Kalyan Yojna, the centre said.
Goa Health Minister Vishwajit Rane on Tuesday said air travellers will not be allowed to enter the coastal state without a health certificate, after the centre opens up airports once the lockdown is eased or lifted.
Speaking to PTI, Mr Rane said he had already urged Chief Minister Pramod Sawant to take up the issue with the Union Civil Aviation Ministry to not allow air travellers to enter the state without a COVID-19 certificate.
A 49-year-old COVID-19 patient died at the TMU Hospital In Uttar Pradesh's Moradabad on Monday, Moradabad Chief Medical Officer MC Garg said.
Sixteen more COVID-19 cases have also been reported on Monday, Mr Garg added.
The 16 people, who tested positive for coronavirus, include a 39-year-old doctor from Moradabad, reported ANI.
Out of the fresh cases, two are residents of Sambhal and one from Amroha, while rest of the patients are from Moradabad.
Mr Garg appealed to the people of Moradabad to strictly follow the lockdown rules in order to stay safe.
According to the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, the total number of COVID-19 cases in Uttar Pradesh is 558. Till now, 49 people have been discharged, while five deaths have been reported.
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday said mass testing for coronavirus infection is key to fighting its spread but the country is currently "nowhere in the game".
Stating that the country has quite low level of testing for coronavirus infection, he said with only 149 tests per million population, India is currently in the company of countries like Laos, Niger and Honduras, reported PTI.
India delayed the purchase of testing kits & is now critically short of them.- Rahul Gandhi (@RahulGandhi) April 14, 2020
With just 149 tests per million Indians, we are now in the company of Laos (157), Niger (182) & Honduras (162).
Mass testing is the key to fighting the virus. At present we are nowhere in the game.
"India delayed the purchase of testing kits & is now critically short of them," he said on Twitter.
"With just 149 tests per million Indians, we are now in the company of Laos (157), Niger (182) & Honduras (162). Mass testing is the key to fighting the virus. At present we are nowhere in the game," he added in his tweet.
Hookah smoking sessions - a common sight in villages of Haryana - have now taken a break as village heads have prevailed upon locals not to share the smoking pipes to contain the spread of coronavirus.
Playing their part in spreading awareness on coronavirus in the hinterland, the village heads or sarpanch are also ensuring that farmers follow social distancing norms during the harvest season, reported PTI.
"Smoking hookah is part of our culture as villagers, especially the elderly gather at a common place in the village to socialise and share the hookah. Initially, it was a bit difficult to make them understand, but we prevailed upon them and soon everyone realised that it can be dangerous in view of the coronavirus outbreak and now no one can be found smoking hookah outside," said Hoshiar Chand, sarpanch of Nazelda Kalan in Sirsa.
प्रधानमंत्री श्री @narendramodi ने कोरोना से लड़ाई में पुनः मार्गदर्शन किया है। लॉकडाउन को लेकर प्रदेश में केंद्र की गाइडलाइन का अक्षरशः पालन होगा।- CMO Madhya Pradesh (@CMMadhyaPradesh) April 14, 2020
कल विस्तार से गाइडलाइन घोषित होगी।उसी आधार पर हम भी अपनी रणनीति बनाएंगे। 3 मई तक प्रदेश में भी लॉकडाउन रहेगा: @ChouhanShivrajpic.twitter.com/LRL6R6a2XR
CMs' demand for money elicited no response. Not a rupee has been added to the miserly package of March 25, 2020- P. Chidambaram (@PChidambaram_IN) April 14, 2020
From Raghuram Rajan to Jean Dreze, from Prabhat Patnaik to Abhijit Banerji, their advice has fallen on deaf years.
11 new positive cases have been reported in Karnataka from yesterday 5pm till noon today; the total number of positive cases in the state are now 258 including 9 deaths and 65 discharged: Govt of Karnataka#COVID19pic.twitter.com/d5jCUHuDqk- ANI (@ANI) April 14, 2020
Delhi will fully implement PM's lockdown measures- Arvind Kejriwal (@ArvindKejriwal) April 14, 2020
Metro services will remain cancelled till 3rd May 2020 due to the Coronavirus pandemic- METRO RAIL KOLKATA (@metrorailwaykol) April 14, 2020
There were good reasons for the Lockdown to be extended till 3rd May.- Hardeep Singh Puri (@HardeepSPuri) April 14, 2020
We can consider lifting restrictions on both domestic & international flights thereafter.
I understand the problems being faced by people who need to travel & request them to bear with us.
All passenger train services on Indian Railways including Premium trains, Mail/Express trains, Passenger trains, Suburban Trains, Kolkata Metro Rail, Konkan Railway etc shall continue to remain cancel till the 2400hrs of 3rd May 2020. #IndiaFightsCorona- Ministry of Railways (@RailMinIndia) April 14, 2020
A re-adapted #Saptapati from @PMOIndia@narendramodi- Nirmala Sitharaman (@nsitharaman) April 14, 2020
1. Care for elders
2. Stay within Laxman Rekha
3. Use homemade masks
4. Follow precautions from @moayush + use #AarogyaSetu app
5. Extend help to the poor
6. Pls don't lay-off employees
7. Respect doctors & medical workers
I support the announcement by @PMOIndia@narendraModi of #Lockdown extension. Can't discard the gains being made. But he should have also announced serious relief for those who cannot make ends meet. MNREGA payments, JanDhan accounts, GST dues to states,&aid to sweeten the pill.- Shashi Tharoor (@ShashiTharoor) April 14, 2020
Bathindi area of Jammu has been identified as a COVID19 'red zone', the movement of people is restricted here. pic.twitter.com/bXpprrpt0a- ANI (@ANI) April 14, 2020
Greetings to people across India on the various festivals being marked. May these festivals deepen the spirit of brotherhood in India. May they also bring joy and good health. May we get more strength to collectively fight the menace of COVID-19 in the times to come.- Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) April 14, 2020
Haryana: 15 buses of state transport corporation have been converted into mobile clinics in Rohtak, in wake of #Coronavirus outbreak. Dr. Anil Birla, Civil Surgeon, "we have made 15 mobile health teams of which 11 are for rural areas and 4 are for urban areas." (13.4.2020) pic.twitter.com/NdrxW5MaRT- ANI (@ANI) April 14, 2020