COVID-19 | Top 10 Developments This Saturday Morning

Breaking all records, India has recorded a massive surge of 145,384 Covid-19 cases in the last 24 hours. With this, India’s tally now stands at 13,205,926, according to MoHFW. Active cases are nearing the 1-million mark. India is now the 4th-worst hit country in terms of active cases. India also witnessed a grim record of fatalities due to covid-19 in a single day in 2021, which stood at 794. The death toll from the deadly infection stands at 168,467.

Here are the top 10 developments

  1. Congress interim president Sonia Gandhi will hold a virtual meeting on Saturday with Chief Ministers of Congress-ruled states on the issue of the COVID-19 situation as the country witnessed a surge in coronavirus cases. Senior party leader Rahul Gandhi will also be attending the meet. In the meeting, the status of the COVID-19 in the states will be reviewed. The Congress leadership will also make suggestions to help the public, as per the sources.
  2.  To prevent the surge in COVID-19 cases, Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot has imposed night curfew in nine cities of Rajasthan with effect from Saturday till April 30. As per an order by the Rajasthan government, it said, “Night curfew imposed in 9 cities-Ajmer, Alwar, Bhilwara, Chittorgarh, Dungarpur, Jaipur, Jodhpur, Kota and Abu Road starting from 8 pm to 6 am, till April 30.” “In Udaipur, the night curfew will start from 6 pm to 6 am”, the order informed. Faced with a surge in Covid-19 cases, Jodhpur Police Commissioner, J Mohan on April 7 said that challans will be sent to the homes of those who flout Covid-19 norms.
  3.  Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Jaganmohan Reddy has written a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi requesting to order health ministry officials to supply 25 lakh doses of COVID vaccine for the ‘Tika Utsav’ to be held between April 11 and April 14. The Chief Minister said that there are only 2 lakh doses in the state now and another 2 lakh doses are received on Friday. He appealed to PM Modi that there is an urgent need for another 25 lakh doses for Andhra Pradesh to celebrate ‘Tika Utsav’ from April 11. “In continuation of the discussions held during the video conference yesterday on COVID management and vaccination, I wish to put-forth a few lines for your kind consideration. My state has been adhering to your call for Test, Track and Trace with the fullest vigor. The manner in which the pandemic was managed under your able guidance and leadership has earned global appreciation. I take this opportunity to thank your kind self for the support given to my State for COVID management”, read the letter.
  4. The Election Commission on Friday wrote to all national and state parties, asking them to follow all COVID-related guidelines during public meetings, rallies and other activities. The Commission also took a ‘serious view of the laxity in maintaining norms, particularly not wearing masks by political leaders on stage.’ In the letter by the Commission, it read, “It would be recalled that the Election Commission issued detailed guidelines for the conduct of general/bye-election on August 21, 2020, in view of COVID pandemic in the country, after having considered views/suggestions of various National/State political parties and Chief Electoral Officers of States/UTs.”
  5. In the said guidelines, it was inter-alia stated in Item no. 13(3) that the political parties and candidates concerned should ensure that all COVID-19 related requirements like face masks, sanitizers, thermal scanning etc are fulfilled during each of these activities. It was further stated that non-compliance of instructions during the period of the public interface will attract actions as per provisions of Sections 51 to 60 of the Disaster Management Act, 2005, besides invocation of Section 188 of Indian Penal Code, 1860 and as also specified in MHA Order no. 40-3/2020-DM-I(A). It would be recalled that Election Commission issued detailed guidelines for conduct dated 29.07.2020″, read the letter.
  6. Turkey on Friday confirmed 55,791 new COVID-19 cases, including 2,408 symptomatic patients, as the total number of positive cases in the country reached 3,745,657, according to its health ministry.
    The death toll from the virus in Turkey rose by 253 to 33,454, while the total recoveries climbed to 3,268,678 after 35,786 more cases recovered in the last 24 hours. The rate of pneumonia in COVID-19 patients stands at 3.1 percent and the number of seriously ill patients is 2,658 in the country, said the ministry. A total of 305,103 tests were conducted over the past day, with the overall number of tests in Turkey reaching 40,994,845.
  7. Brazil reported another 93,317 infections and 3,693 deaths from COVID-19 in the last 24 hours, raising the national tallies to 348,718 and 13,373,174, respectively, the Ministry of Health said Friday.
    Hospitals in 19 states and the capital Brasilia are collapsing under the weight of rising infections, as more than 90 percent of intensive care beds have been occupied. The country’s average daily number of deaths in the last seven days has increased to 2,930, the highest in the world. However, two of the states most affected by the pandemic — Sao Paulo and Rio Grande do Sul — have begun to ease restrictions.
  8. fizer and BioNTech requested the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Friday for an amendment to its emergency use authorization of its Covid-19 vaccine, to expand its use for children ages 12 to 15 in the United States. According to The Hill, the move would expand the FDA’s emergency approval for the vaccine, which is currently only available for those 16 and older. The two companies said they plan to request similar age extensions from other regulatory authorities worldwide in the coming days. Pfizer and BioNTech cited research unveiled last month that found its vaccine is 100 per cent effective in children ages 12 to 15.
  9. “The companies plan to request similar rulings by other regulatory authorities worldwide in coming days. These requests are based on data from the pivotal Phase 3 trial in adolescents 12 to 15 years of age with or without prior evidence of SARS-CoV-2 infection, which demonstrated 100 per cent efficacy and robust antibody response after vaccination with the COVID-19 Vaccine, an official statement from the two companies read.
  10. New Zealand on Thursday temporarily suspended entry for all travellers from India following a surge in COVID-19 cases arriving from there, local media reported. The ban comes after it was reported that 17 of the 23 new COVID-19 cases in managed isolation announced on Thursday had arrived from India. The ban will commence on Sunday and will remain in place until April 28, New Zealand Herald reported. The island nation has reported 2,531 cases so far. While arrivals from India had triggered the risk assessment, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said the Government would be looking at risks posed by other COVID-19 hot spot countries. “This is not a permanent arrangement but rather a temporary measure,” she said.

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