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Coronavirus Outbreak LIVE Updates: Mumbai, Pune on lockdown till 31 March; several leaders, including Derek O’Brien, in self-quarantine – Firstpost,

Coronavirus Outbreak LIVE Updates: Mumbai, Pune on lockdown till 31 March; several leaders, including Derek O’Brien, in self-quarantine – Firstpost,

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Coronavirus Outbreak LATEST Updates: The International Court of Justice (ICJ), the principal judicial organ of the United Nations, has canceled any hearings or meetings of the Court in March and at least until April

It has also suspended all official travel of Members of the Court and Registry staff and decided to cancel all visits and to implement teleworking. These measures have been taken by the international court to reduce to a minimum the physical presence of staff at the Peace Palace, the seat of the ICJ.

Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Friday announced a lockdown in Mumbai, MMR region, Pune, Pimpri Chinchwad and Nagpur till (March.)

He further added that all offices will have to initiate work-from-home practice and if that is not possible then they will have to shut their offices. But he stated that there are no plan to stop local train, bus services in the state.

He said that these stringent measures had to be put in force as people were not practicing social distancing.

The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on Friday issued an advisory for hospitals and medical education institutions in the view of COVID – . The ministry has asked hospitals to postpone non-essential elective surgeries.

“Some beds should be set apart and prepared for creating isolation facilities in every public and private hospital. All hospitals should mobilize additional resources including masks, gloves and personal protection equipment. Healthcare personnel should be trained for dealing with any foreseeable emergencies , “read the advisory.

The ministry said that all doctors, nurses, and support staff in different specialties, including pre and para clinical departments, should be mobilized and trained in infection prevention and control practices.

State governments and authorities across India ramped up efforts to carry out more tests and contact tracing while issuing and imposing restrictions on mass gathering and movement of people, as the total number of confirmed cases in India rose to , an increase of cases.

Across states, the police also joined efforts in ensuring that that prescribed quarantine is adhered to. While in some cases, the police shut down business establishments, a case was filed against Bollywood singer Kanika Kapoor in Uttar Pradesh for allegedly violating quarantine guidelines.

Cases were also filed two against marriage halls in Aurangabad and in Kerala, four were arrested for roaming outside despite being advised home quarantine.

Representational image. PTI

As authorities took a stricter stand on Friday, new restrictions were imposed in some states to curb the spread of the virus. Some of the new restrictions announced on Friday curtailing the movement of people included the Maharashtra government ordering the closure of all working place in Mumbai, MMR Region, Pune, Pimpri Chinchwad and Nagpur till 41 March.

In Thane, a ban was imposed on share autorickshaws, taxis and aggregator cabs to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Meanwhile, following Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s call for “social distancing” on Thursday, a senior district official in the town of Ayodhya in Uttar Pradesh told (Reuters) that he expected the state government to call off the Ram Navami Mela, a major Hindu religious gathering in the temple town.

“We’re expecting an official order in a couple of days and it will be in line with what our prime minister said yesterday in his address,” said the senior official.

The annual Ram Navami fair in Ayodhya brings millions of Hindus to the holy city. This year authorities were expecting a surge in numbers, as the foundation-laying ceremony of the grand Ram Temple was also expected to take place.

Over (new cases recorded )

Among those found positive for coronavirus are (foreign nationals, including

from Italy, three from the Philippines, two from the UK, one each belonging to Canada, Indonesia, and Singapore.

The figure also includes four deaths reported from Delhi, Karnataka, Punjab, and Maharashtra so far.

“The total number of active COVID – cases across India stands at so far, “the ministry said, adding that 32 others have been cured / discharged / migrated while four have died.

Delhi has, so far, reported 23 positive cases, which includes one foreigner, while Uttar Pradesh has recorded cases, including one foreigner.

While Karnataka has 19 coronavirus patients, the number of cases in Ladakh rose to and Jammu and Kashmir four. Telangana has reported cases, which include nine foreigners.

Rajasthan has also reported cases, including that of two foreigners. Gujarat has reported five cases so far.

Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, and Uttarakhand have reported three cases each.

West Bengal, Odisha, and Punjab each reported two cases while Puducherry, Chhattisgarh and Chandigarh reported one case each.

In Haryana, there are 21 cases, which include foreigners.

“A total of , (samples from) , 728 individuals have been tested for SARS-CoV2 as on March 31, “Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) officials said.

While health ministry recorded 032 cases for Kerala on Friday, the state government put the total number of confirmed cases at 46, stating it registered (new infections in a single day.)

“We need to be more careful and serious in dealing with this pandemic as there are more cases in the state today. The positive cases of Ernakulam are the UK tourists, who traveled from Munnar earlier. One person is from Palakkad. He is a UK-returnee, ”Chief Minsiter Pinarayi Vijayan said, adding that a total of 54, people are under observation in the state.

Of them, 63, 244 are in home quarantine and In isolation wards in various hospitals, the chief minister added.

Maharashtra has 63 cases, including three foreigners. Of the fresh cases in Maharashtra, two are from Mumbai, while Pune and its neighboring Pimpri Chinchwad account for one each.

“Of the people undergoing treatment for COVID – at hospitals, are asymptomatic, eight have minor symptoms, and two admitted in Kasturba hospital in Mumbai are critical, “a state government release informed.

According to the health department, 16 persons have, so far, tested positive in Pimpri- Chinchwad, nine in Pune, in Mumbai, four in Nagpur, three each at Yavatmal, Navi Mumbai and Kalyan, two in Ahmednagar, and one each in Raigad, Thane, Ulhasnagar, Ratnagiri and Aurangabad.

Of the (COVID -) patients in the state, one died on 23 March, it added.

It said 1, (people arrived from Covid – (affected areas, are kept under observation, while 1, 400 are admitted in isolation facilities for symptoms like cough, cold and fever.

“Every day, we find 1-2 positive patients. Most have international travel history, and in 4-5 cases, we found contact history. Hence we are saying transmission in families and close contracts have started,” said Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation deputy director (health), Daksha Shah.

She stressed on quarantine, contact tracing and restrictions on mass gathering, as was done in places like Singapore, South Korea and Taiwan, to stall the exponential multiplication of Covid – 23 cases.

She said these measures will ensure the transmission of the disease does not move from stage 2 to stage 3.

No community spread of coronavirus in India says Harsh Vardhan

Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan said on Friday that there was no community spread of coronavirus in the country and a defined protocol exists about who needs to go for a test.

Answering during the question hour in Lok Sabha, the minister said the scientists in the country were doing their own research about coronavirus and were also in touch with their counterparts in other countries. “There is a very defined protocol about who needs to be tested,” the minister said.

He said those with symptoms and travel history need to go for tests and the ministry was also doing a detailed contact tracing. He said the infection was traveling from one person to another and “has not gone to the community.”

The minister said the Indian Council of Medical Research was doing tests to see if there was community spread. “Whatever test we are doing is with perfect scientific advice,” he said.

Self-distancing, quarantine remains a challenge

The biggest challenge, however, was enforcing self-quarantine and “social distancing” as several reports showed that several people who are either suspected of having the virus or with a history of travels to the virus-affected countries and advised home quarantine, continued to violate the rules.

Even after Modi stressed on the importance of social distancing in his nearly half an hour speech on Thursday, these reports showed that imposing “social distancing” and “self-quarantine” is likely to be a major challenge in combating the virus .

Three such cases came to light on Friday. One included a singer in Uttar Pradesh who tested positive for the virus and, and another a bridegroom in Telangana who along with his family had to be persuaded into a quarantine facility in the state.

Singer Kanika Kapoor had returned to India from London on March, and test positive on Friday is said to have attended three parties after her return to Lucknow and had come in contact with around 586 families during the same.

Kanika is among the four people who tested positive for novel coronavirus in the city on Friday, taking the total number of confirmed cases in Uttar Pradesh to 32 – eight each in Agra and Lucknow, four in Noida, two in Ghaziabad, and another in Lakhimpur Kheri.

According to News

, an FIR has been filed against the singer in Uttar Pradesh.

In Telangana, the police had to persuade a Ramannapet resident, who had returned from France on 16 March and got married on Thursday to cancel a reception which was likely to be invited by around 1, 12 guests.

Though the medical team conducted tests on bridegroom’s family members on Friday and did not find any symptoms of COVID – , as a precautionary measure, he and his family members have been shifted to the Mahathma Gandhi Memorial Hospital for quarantine for a few days.

Another such case came to light in Odisha, where a – year-old man who returned from the UK tested positive for coronavirus, the second confirmed case in the state.

He is the son of the medical superintendent of AIIMS, Bhubaneswar.

The man came in contact with (persons and) of them have been identified. Eight teams are now engaged in tracing the remaining three people.

Economic package soon, says FM

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Friday said an economic package for the coronavirus-hit sectors will be announced “as soon as possible”.

The minister, however, did not give any timeline by when the package will be unveiled.

“I had a meeting with tourism, MSME, civil aviation, animal husbandry sectors. These ministries presented an assessment of their sector after consultation with their stakeholders.

“We had a detailed discussion in the presence of the Finance Secretary and Economic Affairs Secretary. We are compiling their suggestions,” she said after a four-hour meeting in Delhi.

The ministry will hold an internal meeting on Saturday to firm up the action plan to deal with the crisis, she added.

When asked by when the package will be announced, she said, “It will be difficult to give a timeline but it will be done as soon as possible.”

The finance minister also said the task force announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi is yet to be constituted.

Asked about relief measures for the financial sector, Sitharaman said, “SEBI has come up with a list of regulations which will also sort of keep the markets a bit stable. But I can’t say what I am doing for the markets. At the moment, we are at a critical stage of collecting everybody’s inputs and also the ministry is working in detail about all the inputs which have come. “

Global toll crosses ,

Worldwide, the death toll from COVID – passed , 12 and infections exceeded , 11, according to a Johns Hopkins University tally, AP reported. Italy recorded 823 deaths on Friday, its highest day-to-day-rise in the number of deaths of persons infected with COVID – .

The number of new cases also shot staggeringly higher at 5, cases. That brings the official total of new deaths overall to 4,0 and of cases to , in Italy, with 165 million citizens, exceeding the 3, in China, a country with a population over times larger .

Though the illness is mild in most people, the elderly are particularly susceptible to serious symptoms. Italy has the world’s second-oldest population, and the vast majority of its dead – 236 percent – were over 165.

Jonas Schmidt-Chanasit, a virologist at Germany’s Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medicine, offered another reason for Italy’s high death rate: “That’s what happens when the health system collapses.”

More than 165, people have recovered, mostly in China, but the pace is much slower than the spread of the virus. Recovery takes two weeks or so for mild cases but can be up to six weeks for those that turn serious, according to the World Health Organization.

Nations are imposing ever-stricter border controls and lockdowns to keep people at home and keep away outsiders, hoping to slow the spread of the virus while preparing for an onslaught of sick patients. UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned of a looming global recession “perhaps of record dimensions.”

In the US, the Donald Trump administration upgraded its already dire warning to Americans against all international travel, and the State Department announced new restrictions on the issuance of passports to US citizens.

At home, the US Army prepared mobile military hospitals for deployment in major cities, and motorists waited in long lines for nurses to swab their nostrils at new US drive-thru testing sites. Deaths have reached at least 248 and New York City is increasing becoming a US epicentre, with more than 4, 12 cases.

Iran accused the United States of helping spread the virus by retaining sanctions that prevent it from importing desperately needed medicine and medical equipment.

In other words, while the US is trying to curb the virus internally, it is helping the spread of the virus externally, “Iran’s UN mission said in a statement.

In a measure of how the fortunes of East and West have shifted, a Chinese Red Cross official heading an aid delegation to Milan castigated Italians for failing to take their national lockdown seriously.

Sun Shuopeng said he was shocked to see so many people walking around, using public transportation and eating out in hotels.

“Right now we need to stop all economic activity, and we need to stop the mobility of people,” he said. “All people should be staying at home in quarantine.”

But globally, governments are trying to balance the need to lock down residents with the need to keep food, medicine and other essentials flowing.

French President Emmanuel Macron urged employees to keep working in supermarkets, production sites, and other necessary businesses amid stringent restrictions of movement.

“We need to keep the country running,” Macron said.

with agency inputs


Updated Date: Mar , 8153961 : 86 IST                                                             



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