Nirmala Sitharam also announced new public sector enterprise policy
COVID-19 Live Updates: Union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman today announced the fifth tranche of Centre's Rupees 20 lakh crore fiscal stimulus package amid the lockdown situation in the country.
"All districts will have an Infectious Disease Hospital Blocks, Public health labs will be set up in every block (not just in district), to bridge inadequacy of lab network in rural areas. The Prime Minister has said that we need to be ready and self-reliant, in the face of challenges posed by any pandemic such as COVID-19. Hence, there is a big emphasis on setting up hospitals and labs, with both public and private funding," Ms Sitharaman said.
"The public expenditure on health will be increased. Investment at grass root levels will be ramped up for health and wellness centres, both in rural and urban areas," she added.
Maharashtra on Saturday reported 1,606 coronavirus cases in 24 hours, taking the total past the 30,000-mark. Mumbai's aggregate reached 18,555 with 884 people testing positive in a single day. Coronavirus cases in Gujarat crossed the 10,000 mark today with the total number of casualties in the state at 625. India recorded 3,970 new coronavirus patients and 103 deaths linked to COVID-19 in the last 24 hours, bringing the total to 85,940 cases, Union Health Ministry said this morning, a day after the country surpassed the virus tally of China where the pandemic originated in December. India is now is ranked 11th in the world in terms of coronavirus cases.
More power to India-US friendship, Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted on Saturday, thanking Donald Trump after US President said his country would donate ventilators to India in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic. Donald Trump made the announcement moments after he underlined the close partnership between the two countries and called Prime Minister Narendra Modi his "good friend".
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman unveiled the fourth tranche of the Rs 20 lakh crore special economic package announced by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday. While the first two announcements concerned MSMEs, non-banking finance companies (NBFCs), migrant workers and street vendors, the third round of her announcement focused on agriculture and farms produced related administrative reforms.
Coronavirus (COVID-19) Cases Live Updates:
Coronavirus News: 4 Passengers On Mumbai-Goa Train Test Positive Taking Goa's Tally To 26
Four passengers who travelled on the Mumbai-Goa train on Sunday, testes positive for COVID-19, reported ANI. With this, the total number of active cases in the coastal state rises to 26.
"Four passengers who had travelled on Mumbai to Goa train on Sunday test positive for COVID-19 infection during TrueNat testing. All four samples sent for the confirmatory tests at the Goa Medical College (GMC). Hundred passengers on this train have been tested," the Goa Health Ministry said.
Coronavirus News: Biggest Single-Day Spike In Patna After 57 Fresh Cases Reported
Bihar reported its eighth death due to coronavirus on Sunday with Patna alone witnessing 57 out of 106 fresh COVID cases, thus making it the number one district in terms of positive cases in the state, reported PTI.
The tally of positive COVID-19 cases has gone up to 1,284 in the state while Patna topped the list with positive cases at 163, pushing Munger at the second spot with 125 cases.
Railways has operated 1,300 Shramik trains since May 1: Officials
The Railways has operated 1,300 Shramik Special trains since May 1, ferrying more than 17 lakh workers, it said today.
During the last three days, more than 2 lakh people have been transported per day. In days to come, it is expected to be scaled up to 3 lakh passengers per day, the Railways said.
Out of the trains which have terminated so far, the maximum has been in Uttar Pradesh. The state has so far given approval for over 500 trains, followed by Bihar with almost 300 trains.
Around 10 lakh jobs lost in Punjab amid lockdown: Chief Minister
Around 10 lakh jobs have been lost in Punjab and the state is set to lose a whopping Rs 50,000 crore this year due to the coronavirus lockdown, Chief Minister Amarinder Singh said today.
He said the state was losing Rs 3,000 crore every month on the economic front. The CM said with some experts predicting a peak in coronavirus pandemic in July and August, Punjab was preparing itself "for the worst", and the massive influx of migrants and Indian returnees from abroad was emerging as the top disease management challenge.
Air travel to remain suspended after Centre extends lockdown
E-commerce firms allowed to deliver non-essential items to red zones
Under the new guidelines for phase four of lockdown, e-commerce companies have been allowed to deliver essential and non-essential items to all places including red zones. Containment zones do not fall in this list - only essential activities will be allowed.
Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba to hold meeting with states
Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba will hold a video conference with states at 9.00 pm tonight for further elaboration of state-specific issues regarding phase four of lockdown, under which states have to decide various zones and activities to be allowed in these zones.
Delhi to announce new guidelines tomorrow
Centre's guidelines in right direction: Delhi government
The Delhi government is yet to issue any guidelines on what will open or remain shut. However, it said the Centre's guidelines are in the right direction in the fourth phase of lockdown.
"Broadly, the Centre's guidelines are in right direction of opening up the economy and leaving it to states to work out the details. We have always been saying that we all will now have to learn to live with coronavirus."
"We used the last two months of lockdown period to prepare ourselves for dealing with corona by improving necessary logistics and health infrastructure. We do expect a slight increase in cases when the economy reopens and Delhi is prepared to deal with it," it said.
Delhi metro to remain suspended in lockdown 4
Delhi Metro Rail Corporation said in light of the extension of lockdown issued by the government, metro services will remain closed for commuters till May 31.
Lockdown extended till May 31, say officials
The nation-wide lockdown has likely been extended till May 31, according to the National Disaster Management Authority which has issued a formal order in this regard. The official announcement is likely to be made later this evening following a meeting between officials of the Centre and states to fine-tune some crucial points.
There will be relaxations in terms of economic activity, which is likely to be permitted in all zones.
More Than 5,000 COVID-19 cases recorded in Rajasthan till now
Two deaths and 123 positive cases of coronavirus were reported in Rajasthan today, officials said. The deaths were reported from Jaipur, taking the total number due to COVID-19 in the state to 128, they said.
A total of 123 fresh cases were reported today and 37 of them are from Jaipur alone. This takes the total number of positive cases in the state to 5,083, the officials said.
Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu extend lockdown till May 31
Maharashtra, the state worst hit by coronavirus, and Tamil Nadu, which also has a high number of COVID-19 cases, have extended the lockdown till May 31.
The decision comes on the day when the third phase of nationwide lockdown comes to an end and the centre is expected to announce the guidelines for the fourth phase of the lockdown this evening.
Amit Shah on Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman's announcements
Union Minister Nitin Gadkari welcomes Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman's announcements
Biocon Chairperson Kiran Mazumdar Shaw on Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman's announcements
29 more COVID-19 cases reported in UP: KGMU, Lucknow
Out of the total 1,487 samples tested for COVID-19 in King George's Medical University on Saturday, 29 tested positive on Sunday. "Out of the 1,487 samples tested on Saturday for COVID-19, results of 29 are positive," (KGMU), Lucknow stated.
According to the Union Health Ministry, the Uttar Pradesh state has registered 4,258 COVID-19 cases so far while the country has reported 90,927 cases with 2,872 deaths.
Free food to migrants: Rs 3,500 crore
Interest subvention MDRA shishu loans: Rs 1500 crore
Street vendors: Rs 5000 crore
Additional working capital through NABARD: Rs 30,000 crore
Housing class: Rs 70000 crore
Additional credit through KCC: Rs 2 lakh crore
Total: Rs 3.1 lakh crore
Food micro enterprises: RS 10,000 crore
Matsya Sampada: Rs 20,000 crore
TOP to Total: Rs 500 crore
Animal husbandry infra: Rs 15,000 crore
Agri infra: Rs 1 lakh crore
Herbal cultivation: Rs 4,000 crore
Beekeeping: Rs 500 crore
Total: Rs 1.5 lakh crore
Viability gap funding: Rs 8100 crore
Additional MNREGS allocation: Rs 40,000 crore
Total: Rs 48,100 crore
TOTAL: Rs. 20,97,053 crore
Stimulus from earlier measures/revenue lost due to tax concessions
Stimulus from earlier measures/revenue lost due to tax concessions:
Measures taken since Gareeb Kalyan was launched
Revenue lost due to tax concessions: Rs 7,800 crore
Emergency working capital to business: Rs 3 lakh crore
Fund of funds for MSME: Rs 50,000 crore
EPF support: 2,800 crore
NBFC, Housing Finance, MFI: Rs 45,000 crore
Discoms: Rs 90,000 crore
Reduction in EP rates: Rs 6,750 crore
Subordinate debt reduction of MSMEs: Rs 20,000 crore
TCS/TDS: Rs 50,000 crore
Total: Rs 5,94,550 crore
A specific scheme will be notified by the Department of Expenditures Unconditional increase of 0.50%
A specific scheme will be notified by the Department of Expenditures Unconditional increase of 0.50%, the Finance Minister said.
1% in 4 tranches of 0.25% with each tranche linked to clearly linked to reforms with measurable steps taken for One Nation, One Ration Card, Ease of doing business, Power reforms and increasing revenue of their urban local bodies.
Part of the borrowing will be linked to specific reforms: Nirmala Sitharaman
Reform linkage will be in four areas
One Nation One Ration Card
Ease of Doing Business
Urban local body revenues
Nirmala Sitharaman on supporting state governments
Support given to state governments during COVID, as states are facing sharp decline in revenues. We have consistently the needed support because they are the front end of fighting the pandemic.
States have a net borrowing ceiling. They can borrow upto 3% of state's GSDP. But now we have allowed them to borrow 75% in the first half.
States have so far borrowed only 14% of the limit authorised, 86% of the authorised borrowing remains unutilised.
Rs 46,038 crore was devolved based on budget.
Revenue deficit grants Rs 12390 crore given on time to states in April-May.
SDRF: In advance funds were released in the first week of April. Rs 11,092 crore SDRF fund released.
Health ministry has released Rs 4,113 crore for funding anti-COVID activities.
During RBI video conference, we requested them and they increased ways and means advance limits for states by 60%.
Number of days a state can stay in continuous overdraft days increased from 14 days to 21 days and from 32 to 50 days quarterly.
Increasing borrowing limit to 5% from 3%. This will give an additional Rs 4.28 lakh crore to states.
Finance Minister Announces New Public Sector Enterprise Policy
"Atmanirbhar Bharat" needs coherent policies. All sectors will be open to private sectors also.
We have policies wherein private sector will be allowed to operate in all sectors but public sector enterprises will continue to function.
Government will announce new policy - strategic sector and others. In these notified strategic sectors where public sector is present, at least one public will be present while private is also allowed to operate.
Not more than four public sector to be present in notified sectors. More than four will either be merged or brought together.
Nirmala Sitharaman Announces Decriminalization of Companies Act Defaults IBC-related matters
Many businesses were severely affected. Debts due to COVID will not be included in defaults. No insolvency proceedings initiated up to 1 year.
For MSMEs, a special insolvency framework will be notified under section 240 A of IBC
Insolvency proceedings limit raised to Rs 1 crore from Rs 1 lakh. This will be an ordinance and pass it in parliament once it is in session.
Technology driven education with equity: Nirmala Sitharaman
PM e-vidya programme will be launched. DIKSHA for school education in states and union territories for all grades
One year marked TV channel per class - One class, one channel.
Extensive use of radio and podcasts.
Special e-content for visually and hearing impaired children - good education for "divyang" students
Top 100 universities will be automatically start online courses by 30 May 2020.
Manodarpan: Many students need psychological support during this lockdown. They were stressed. An initiative for psychological support of students, teachers and families being launched immediately.
Ramping up health infrastructure
Health reforms and initiative have been put in place. Investments in grass-root level will be ramped up, including clinics and wellness centres
Viability gap funding was discussed on Saturday
All districts to have infectious diseases block in hospitals.
Lab networks in rural area are not adequate. Public health labs in block level.
This or any pandemic that pose a challenge we need to be prepared. Emphasis on hospitals and labs - both privately and publicly funded.
MGNREGS Budget Allocation
Lots of migrant workers are going back to their states. Additional Rs 40,000 crore to this scheme for migrants who have gone back to their home states. This is to ensure that these workers find jobs in their home-states.
Online Education during COVID-19 crisis
Schools are now using tech. Swayam prabha DTH channels are being used.
3 channels in use and 12 more to be added. This will be of great help in rural areas. Children love and adapt to new tech.
HRD made best use of time for tech-based curriculum. Channels bring in experts through skype. Tata Sky and Airtel tie-ups to air educational channels.
200 new books have been published for e-pathshala. Provisions have been made for Live interactive sessions.
States have been asked for 4-hour content each day for the channels.
Containment of coronavirus and ensure businesses are not affected and students' education is not hampered.
Rs 50 lakh insurance for health workers was announced, e-sanjivini service and capacity-building services were launched. Amendments were made to EDA. This challenge gave us opportunity to show the world that we can ramp up production in a crisis.
Over 300 domestic manufacturers of PPE now from 0 before the crisis. Supplied 51 lakh PPE, 81 lakhs N95 masks and HCQ tablets.
During COVID, compliance burden was a matter of concern. There has been timely action to reduce compliance burden. AGMs could be conducted through video calls, which was major step forward in corporate governance.
7 steps in Nirmala Sitharaman's final tranche
Healthcare and education
Decrimilisation of Companies Act
Ease of doing business
Business during Covid-19 crisis
PSUs and policies
State government and resources
Shramik special trains were started when it was possible for workers to move: Nirmala Sitharaman
When lockdown was extended, free grains and pulses was given for 2 more months.
Trains were allowed to ensure migrant workers can go home. State governments were requested.
85% of the cost of travel was borne by central government. As part of the train travel, food was given to workers.
It is important to now provide support in the post-COVID era. When lockdown is lifted and when businesses after facing severe stressful conditions, they will come back and resume work, buy raw materials and pay wages.
Today, 7 steps to tell you. MGNREGS, Heath (Rural and Urban), Education, Businesses and COVID, Decriminalisation of Companies Act, Ease of doing business, private sector, State governments
Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan package used technology to do direct benefit transfer to people. We could do what we did because of the initiatives taken during the last few years: Nirnala Sitharaman
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman at Press Conference says "Turning crisis into opportunity"
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman quotes Prime Minister Narendra Modi, says 'turning crisis for India into an opportunity'.
- Number of people benefitted from money through DBT. Direct benefit transfer of Rs 2,000 each has been done to 8.19 crore PM KISAN beneficiaries during lockdown period
- PM Kisan beneficiaries as of 16 May, one-time payment of Rs 2,000, 8.19 crore farmers (16,394 crore)
- NACP beneficiaries, 1st installment, Rs 1405 crore and Rs 1402 crore in 2nd. Target was Rs 3,000 crore
- Jan Dhan Account (women) - 20 crore accounts (Rs 10,025 crore)
- Building and construction workers - Rs 3,950 crore to 2.20 crore people
- Over 12 lakh EPFO holders (non-refundable withdrawal) - Rs 3,360 crore
Coronavirus Lockdown: Migrant workers at Sahranpur-Ambala highway
Coronavirus Cases: Received 5,000 PPE Kits From BMW India Foundation, Says Delhi Government
The Delhi government has received 5,000 personal protection equipment (PPE) kits donated by a foundation for use in city hospitals, Health Minister Satyendar Jain said. The coronavirus death toll in Delhi has mounted to 129 and the number of COVID-19 cases climbed to 9,333 on Saturday, authorities said.
"Received 5000 PPE kits donated by BMW India Foundation to Delhi hospitals. These kits will greatly help in our fight against COVID-19. Thank you @bmwindia for supporting us in these challenging times," Jain tweeted.
On Thursday, the city had recorded 472 fresh cases, the highest single-day spike.
Over 400 healthcare workers, including doctors, have tested positive in Delhi till date, Mr Jain had earlier said.
COVID-19 Lockdown: Migrant workers in Punjab's Ludhiana
COVID-19: 95 coronavirus cases in Assam
A youth tested positive for COVID-19 in Assam, taking the total number of coronavirus cases in the state to 95 on Sunday. The new case has been identified from Sibsagar district of the state.
"One young boy from Sibsagar has tested COVID-19 positive. Total positive cases rise to 95 in Assam," Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma tweeted.
The state has 50 active coronavirus cases so far with two deaths.
Coronavirus: 8 COVID-19 vaccine candidates in clinical trial, WHO
A total of eight vaccine candidates for COVID-19 are in the clinical trial while another 110 are in various stages of development across the globe, according to World Health Organisation (WHO) data.
As governments' around the world scramble to curb the contagion, pharmaceutical companies and health institutes in countries like United States, China, and Germany are leading the development to combat the virus, South China Morning Post reported.
As things stand, several countries like the US, and China have even announced tentative dates by when they plan to get a vaccine ready.
On Saturday, Chinese health official, Zhang Wenhong said a successful vaccine against the coronavirus can be administered to humans as early as March in 2021.
Number of deaths due to COVID-19 rises to 2,872, cases climb to 90,927 in India: Union Health Ministry
COVID-19: Health, social distancing norms followed during evaluation of exam answer sheets in UP
Teachers in Uttar Pradesh's Prayagraj are evaluating board exam answer sheets while maintaining social distance at the centre amid COVID-19 pandemic. The centre was sanitised and thermal screening of teachers was also conducted before entry at the venue.
YC Tripathi, Principal, Bharat Scout and Guide Inter College said, "We're following all government guidelines. Thermal screening of teachers is being done and the premises has been sanitised."
According to the Union Health Ministry, the state has reported 4,057 confirmed cases of COVID-19 with 95 deaths while the country's count has reached 85,940.
Coronavirus Lockdown: Migrant labourers in large numbers gather in Gazipur at Delhi-Uttar Pradesh border
COVID-19: China reports five new coronavirus cases, down from eight a day earlier
China reported five new confirmed COVID-19 cases for May 16, down from eight the previous day, the National Health Commission (NHC) said in a statement on Sunday.
Two of the five confirmed cases are so-called imported infections, while three are locally transmitted in northeastern Jilin Province.
The number of new asymptomatic cases of the coronavirus fell to 12 from 13, the NHC said.
The number of confirmed cases in the mainland stands at 82,947 and the death toll at 4,634
COVID-19: Taxis being sanitised in Bengal
Coronavirus Lockdown: Migrant labourers in large numbers gather in Gazipur at Delhi-Uttar Pradesh border.
Distribute Free Ration To 8 Crore Migrants Within 15 Days: Centre To States
As hundreds of migrants continue to travel a long distance in this COVID-19 crisis, Union Food Minister Ram Vilas Paswan on Saturday appealed to state governments to immediately lift food grains and pulses from the godowns and distribute them for free within a fortnight to 8 crore migrants who neither have centre nor state ration card. Read more
Coronavirus Cases Rise In Northeast States, 29 Report Positive In 4 Days
The states in the northeast region of the country have witnessed a sudden rise in the number of coronavirus cases as migrants stranded in other parts of the country return. Since Thursday, 29 people have tested positive in the region. 12 cases were reported in Assam, 12 in Tripura and five in Manipur, sources said. 17 among them were those who came from outside. Read more
4,678 migrant workers leave for Bihar in special trains from Greater Noida
A total of 4,678 migrant workers from Bihar embarked on a journey to their hometowns on four special trains from Greater Noida on Saturday, officials said.
Two of the trains left from the Dadri railway station to Aurangabad and Sasaram, while the other two from the Dankaur railway station to Buxar and Siwan, the officials in Gautam Buddh Nagar said.
"Total 4,678 migrant workers were on board the trains. Around 978 of them left for Aurangabad, 656 for Buxar, 1,524 for Sasaram and 1,520 for Siwan," according to a statement from the district administration.
Pune records highest one-day increase in cases, deaths
The Pune district on Saturday registered its highest single-day spike in the number of coronavirus cases at 228, and highest single-day death count at 11.
The total number of coronavirus cases in the district reached 3,795. With 11 deaths in a single day, the death toll so far now stands at 197 in the district, a health official said.
Jagan Reddy asks officials to prepare SOP for preventing, containing spread of coronavirus
Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy on Saturday directed officials to come up with a Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for preventing, containing and minimizing the spread of coronavirus, especially in the crowded spaces in tune with the lockdown guidelines besides creating awareness on safety measures and instilling confidence in migrant labour.
He made the remarks at a review meeting on the COVID-19 situation in the state.The officials informed the Chief Minister that the number of recoveries is gradually increasing, and 101 cases have been discharged in the last 24 hours. The officials also said that the testing capacity in Kurnool and Krishna districts will be increased further.
An official release said the chief minister also discussed the exit plan to be implemented for controlling the spread of the virus.
He asked the officials to prepare an SOP with measures to be taken to contain the spread of coronavirus, social distancing and other general measures.
Every request of states to facilitate transportation of migrants considered: Union Minister
The Centre is seriously considering every single request of state governments to facilitate transportation of migrant workers, Union minister Jitendra Singh said on Saturday.
During a video conference with chief secretaries and senior officials of the eight northeastern states, Mr Singh said a mechanism has been put in place to receive the list of passengers from governments of the northeastern region while the Ministry for Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER) coordinates with resident commissioners and nodal officers for smooth transportation of migrant workers and other people.
Every request from any state government is being seriously followed up, he said.
Chhattisgarh to give 5kg free food grains to migrants for 2 months
Migrant labourers who have returned to Chhattisgarh from other states will get free food grains for the months of May and June from fair price shops as per a decision taken on Saturday by Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel, said an official.
The move would help migrants who have returned amid the coronavirus-induced lockdown and do not have ration cards under any scheme of the state or Centre, the public relations
department official said.
"They will be provided 5 kg of free food grains per person each month in May and June. Under the scheme, about 10.38 thousand tonnes of food grains have been allocated. The state's civil supplies corporation and consumer protection department has issued a directive to all district collectors for its implementation," he said.
In the circular, the district administration has been asked to make a list of beneficiaries taking the help of officials of panchayat and rural development, revenue and labour departments, he added.
Over 1,300 workers leave UP's Moradabad for Bihar in special train
A special train with over 1,300 migrant workers left Moradabad for Bihar's Purnia on Saturday.
Moradabad DRM Tarun Prakash said the train was booked for 1,368 workers up to Purnia.
According a press release, the train was run only for migrant workers who were stuck here for the past several days.
"All safety measures were adopted to protect the passengers from coronavirus. The train was sanitised by the railway staff and a lunch packet with a water bottle was given to every passenger," he said.
90 churches to lend their halls to Mizoram government for quarantine facility
Over 90 churches belonging to various denominations in Mizoram will lend their halls to the
state government for use as quarantine facility, an officials said on Saturday.
The Mizoram government had asked the churches to requisition the halls to accomodate people returning from outside the state as there is shortage of quarantine facility, an official of the task group on quarantine facility told PTI.
On Thursday 884 people stranded in Tamil Nadu and Puducherry had returned to the state and more than 10,000 people are yet to do so, he said.
The official said a total 96 churches belonging to three denominations have volunatarily allowed the government to use their halls.
Of them 75 belong to the Presbyterian Church, 15 to the Baptist Church of Mizoram and six to the Salvation Army, he said adding some other denominations are also considering the government's request.
53 new COVID-19 cases reported in Mumbai's Dharavi
At least 53 new cases of COVID-19 were reported in Mumbai's Dharavi on Saturday, taking the total number of cases in the area to 1,198, said the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC).
According to the BMC, no new death was recorded from Dadar, Mahim and Dharavi today.
Coronavirus: Gujarat cases cross 10,000
BREAKING: With 1,057 new patients detected, number of coroanvirus cases in Gujarat goes up to 10,989; 19 more die taking death count to 625: news agency PTI quoting official.
Migrant couple returning home in auto killed in accident in UP
A migrant couple on its way to Bihar from Haryana in their auto rickshaw was killed while their six-year-old son escaped unhurt when a loader hit them on the Lucknow-Agra Expressway on Saturday, police said.
Ashok Chaudhari, 35, who earned his living driving an auto rickshaw in Jhajjar, Haryana, was returning home in Bihar's Darbhanga district with his wife Chhoti, 33, and son when the accident occurred, they said.
Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has announced compensation of Rs 2 lakh each for the victims, and directed officials to make arrangements for sending the bodies home.
Police said the auto rickshaw had run out of petrol and Chaudhari was filling the tank with the help his wife when a speeding loader hit them from the rear side.
The couple died on the spot, the police said, adding that they were identified with the help of the driving licence and Aadhar card recovered from them.
Over 200 trains to ferry migrants to native places in next 10 days: Punjab official
Over 200 trains will carry migrant workers to their native states from Punjab in next 10 days, an official said on Saturday.
The officials said till now, over 1.80 lakh workers have been in sent to their native places from the state in 150 special trains.
"By facilitating the return of over 1,80,000 migrant workers to their home states through 150 special trains, Punjab has ensured those wishing to go back are united with their families without any hardship," said Nodal Officer Vikas Pratap Singh in an official release.
He, however, said the state government has been working round the clock to provide relief to workers.
Ensure no one in Jharkhand reaches home on foot: Hemant Soren to officials
Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren on Saturday asked district administrations to ensure no worker travels on foot to reach home within or outside the state during the lockdown due to coronavirus.
The instruction came in the wake of reports of several people walking on the highways to return to their native places.
All officials of the districts and the police should ensure that any person, be it from Jharkhand or outside, should not walk to his/her destination, Mr Soren said.
He asked officials to take care of such people and directed that they be sent to their destination in groups in buses after undergoing a medical test.
Soren instructed officials to take care of people of other states and approach their respective nodal officers to ensure that they reach their destinations.
It is our responsibility to see that no shramik (worker) faces any difficulty at the borders of Jharkhand, the chief minister said.
West Bengal reports 115 fresh COVID-19 cases, 7 deaths in last 24 hours
With 115 new COVID-19 cases reported in West Bengal in the last 24 hours, the count of people infected with the virus has climbed to 2,576 including 892 recoveries.
Seven people succumbed to the infection in the last 24 hours, taking the total death count to 160.
"115 fresh cases of COVID-19 and seven deaths have been recorded in the last 24 hours in West Bengal, taking the total number of cases to 2,576 and toll to 160 in the state. The number of recoveries stands at 892," Home Secretary Alapan Bandyopadhyay said at a conference.
Institutional quarantine facilities for persons returning from abroad already in place in the state. He further informed that the first flight carrying 160 stranded persons from abroad will arrive on May 18.
Coronavirus news: 135 BSF personnel have recovered from COVID-19 so far
As many as 135 Border Security Force (BSF) personnel have recovered from COVID-19 so far, as per information provided by BSF.
Since yesterday, 98 BSF personnel have been discharged from the hospitals after testing negative for COVID-19 post treatment. They had tested positive for the virus earlier.
While 42 personnel were discharged from Jodhpur, 31 were discharged from Tripura and 25 from Delhi.
COVID-19 news: 105 new cases of coronavirus in Bengal
Over 5.64 lakh migrants brought to UP in 449 trains so far: Official
A total of 449 trains have so far brought over 5.64 lakh migrants back to Uttar Pradesh, the highest in the country, Additional Chief Secretary Awanish Awasthi on Saturday said.
Seventy-three trains are scheduled to arrive on Saturday while permission for 286 trains has been given for Sunday. In this way, about 9.50 lakh migrant labourers and workers have either returned or arrangements for their return have been made, Mr Awasthi said.
More than 15 lakh workers have returned to Uttar Pradesh by trains, buses and other modes of transport till now, the additional chief secretary added.
First trains ferrying migrants to Bengal and Bihar leave Maharashtra
The first trains carrying migrant workers to Bihar and West Bengal, which had so far disallowed
labourers to come back, departed on Saturday from Maharashtra after Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray and NCP president Sharad Pawar spoke to respective chief ministers, state Home Minister Anil Deshmukh has said.
He said the Maharashtra government so far transported about 2.45 lakh migrant workers to their respective home states (excluding Bengal and Bihar) in special trains amidst the coronavirus-induced lockdown.
"Will establish research reactor in PPP model for production of medical isotopes"
- Will establish a research reactor established in a PPP model for production of medical isotopes only.
- We have see how strong India's pharma sector is and how Indian medicines were sent tp the world for COVID-19 vaccinetesting. It will also help improve research for cancer treatment.
- There will be facilities established in PPP mode to allow the use of radiation tecnology for food preservation. This will help setup incubation centres and help increase the preservation of food. This too will be allowed only for this purpose. This will help the agri sector.
Currently the Atomic Energy sector is completely under the government.
"Will give private players a level-playing field to boost India's space sector further"
- India already has the benefit of an extraordinary institution like ISRO, but now lots of private players are also coming in with innovative tech and space tech.
- For this we will allow private players to benefit from ISRO's assets and give them a level-playing field to boost India's space sector further.
- There is a lot of geo-spacial data available in India, Currently start-ups and private companies have to go abroad, but that will now change, This is a sensitive area and will follow strict huidelines, but will make info available to start-ups and private firms.
Government has provisioned Rs 8,100 crore outlay - for viability gap-funding. The government has decided to improve the quantum in this sector tom 20% to 30%.
"India to become a global hub for Aircraft Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO)"
Most Indian planes go abroad. India has capacities, manpower. India can then be centre for flights which go to SE Asia, Australia and westwards too. Tax regime is being altered so that it favours setting up MRO in India. Defence aircraft can also benefit from this, apart from civil aircraft. Maintenance cost of all aircrafts will come down.
6 airports to be auctioned, AAI shall do it on PPP basis: Nirmala Sitharaman
- All these decades, we have been flying not through the shortest route but slightly longer route. Rationalisation is going to happen, we will be able to get to our destination in the shortest possible time.
- Restrictions on the utilisation of Indian Air Space will be eased so that civilian flying becomes more efficient.
- This will bring a total benefit of Rs. 1,000 crores per year for the aviation sector
- Civil Aviation is up for a big leap. 6 more airports for auction, AAI shall do it on PPP basis. Additonal investments likely by private players in about 12 airports which they are already holding. Airports will be much better.
Foreign Direct Investment limit in defence manufacturing under automatic route is being raised from 49% to 74%: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman.
Nirmala Sitharaman on defence production
- Make in India and self-reliance have now become a partner in the sense that for self-reliance make-in-India is necessary, particularly in critical industries.
- Forces require best of equipment, the latest tech-driven equipment, some hi-tech equipment can be imported if needed. We have come to a conclusion, we shall notify a list of weapons and platforms which arent allowed for imported, the import shall be banned and the list will expanded.
"Ministry of Mines in process of developing a mineral index for different minerals"
- As per prevailing setup, if somebody need bauxite, which is raw material, he would have to go for a separate auction of bauxite. Many people had exited the nation due to mismatched policy. Now joint auction, for Bauxite and Aluminium.
- We would like to remove distinction between captive and non-captive mines. Mining lease can be transferred, the unused mineral can be used. Ministry of Mines in process of developing a mineral index for different minerals. Rationalisation of stamp duty.
"Commercial mining of coal will be done on revenue-sharing basis": Nirmala Sitharaman
- We are bringing in commercial minig in the coal sector. Coal is currently a government monopoly. We are now removing that monopoly. Commercial mining will now happen at market rates, which will make it far more lucrative.
- India has the 3rd highest and 3rd most valuable deposit of coal in the world, but we still import. So these regulations are required, so that we can produce ample coal.
- We are conscious that coal is not a very environment-friendly fuel. So, we will have an concession for gassification of coal, so that it can be turned for coal.
- There will be up to 50 coal blocks coming up for auction soon. Successful bidders will get a rebate.
- Rs 50,000 crore is allocated for this initiative.