As many as 14 new cases of the novel coronavirus, officially known as COVID-19, were reported in India on Tuesday. This included three new cases each from Karnataka, and Pune, and eight in Kerala. However, the Union Ministry of Health has not confirmed them yet. There have been no deaths due to coronavirus in India so far.
The global toll from the infection passed 4,000 on Tuesday and countries around the world ramped up their restrictions to limit the spread of infections. Meanwhile, no new cases were reported in China outside Hubei province.
Italy announced severe nationwide restrictions on travel. The country’s 60-million people will only be able to travel for work, medical reasons or emergencies until April 3. All schools and universities, which were closed nationwide last week until March 15, will now not reopen before next month.
Here are the updates from the day:
9.49 pm: At least two schools in Pune have announced a shutdown till Saturday saying they would review their decision to open later amid coronavirus scare, reports The Indian Express.
9.48 pm: Greece’s government has announced that all the schools and universities in the entire country will shut down for the next 14 days, reports The Guardian. “Now is the time for all Greeks to show personal responsibility,” Greece’s health minister Vassilis Kikilias said. “All schools will be closed for 14 days to help reduce the spread of coronavirus in the community.”
9.42 pm: Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan has spoken to a few coronavirus patients through video calls, and said all those infected were stable and showing signs of recovery, reports PTI.
9.38 pm: In India’s Mizoram state, an inquiry has begun against a “fake” WhatsApp post that claimed a person tested for coronavirus in the state. C Lalruaia, the superintendent of police in Aizawl, says a “suo-motu FIR was lodged against the fake post”. “The WhatsApp post is a complete lie as no case of coronavirus has been detected in the state,” he adds, according to PTI.
9.36 pm: United States President Donald Trump says that his administration will help the airline and cruise industries affected due to coronavirus. “They’re two great industries and we will be helping them through this patch, and so far I think it’s been going very well,” Trump says, according to CNN.
9.31 pm: In India, Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education & Research in Chandigarh says, according to ANI: “Two suspected coronavirus patients, admitted yesterday [Monday], tested negative. Today one more suspected patient has been admitted with symptoms of chest pain and cough. Sampling is being done. He has travel history to Dubai.”
9.29 pm: Major American universities – including Harvard, Princeton, and Columbia – have been forced to cancel classes, affecting tens of thousands of students amid coronavirus scare. The institutes have moved their lessons online, reports AFP.
9.26 pm: Samples of 51 people test negative for novel coronavirus in Gujarat, while report of one person is awaited, reports PTI, citing an unidentified health official.
9.20 pm: The Indian administration says all regular visas (including electronic visas) granted to citizens of France, Germany and Spain on or before March 11 and “where these foreigners have not yet entered India stands suspended”, reports ANI.
9.15 pm: Electronic visas and existing visas for France, Germany, Spain, Italy, Iran, Republic of Korea, Japan and China are suspended with immediate effect, says India’s Ministry of Health Special Secretary Sanjeeva Kumar. “Passengers with travel history to China, Hong Kong, Republic of Korea, Japan, Italy, Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, Iran, France, Spain, and Germany should undergo 14-day self imposed quarantine from date of their arrival,” he adds.
8.47 pm: Malta has confirmed its fifth case of the novel coronavirus, the Times of Malta reports.
8.39 pm: In India, the Kerala Catholic Bishops Council has issued a circular with strict instructions for people amid coronavirus scare, reports The Indian Express. The notification discourages people from kissing the cross on Good Friday, and during church festivals. Priests have been asked to purify hands in a bowl of water or sanitiser before distributing holy communion.
Those showing flu-like symptoms have been asked not to come to church. Public classes and seminars must be postponed, according to the circular, and public events and health camps must be postponed.
8.25 pm: Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announces a second emergency package to combat economic impacts of the coronavirus outbreak, including $15 billion in loan programmes to support small ventures, reports AFP.
8.22 pm: DR Congo has confirmed its first coronavirus case, reports AFP, citing the health ministry.
8.17 pm: Irish budget airline Ryanair has cancelled all its flights to and from Italy until April 8 after the Italian administration’s order to impose nationwide restrictions on travel, reports AFP. “Ryanair today [Tuesday] announced the suspension of its full flight schedule to/from and within Italy, following the decision of the Italian government to ‘lock down’ the entire country to contain the spread of the Covid-19 virus,” the airline’s statement said.
8.15 pm: A total of 373 people have tested positive for the novel coronavirus in the United Kingdom as of Tuesday, the country’s department of health says, The Guardian reports.
8.12 pm: St Peter’s Square and St Peter’s Basilica have been closed to tourists and guided groups amid coronavirus scare, says the Vatican, according to The Guardian.
7.59 pm: Kerala Health Minister KK Shailaja says two more people have tested positive for COVID-19. “Parents of the three-year-old child have tested positive,” she says, according to ANI.
7.45 pm: “After two people were found positive for coronavirus in Pune yesterday [Monday], search for people who they came in contact with was going on,” says a statement from the Maharashtra Public Health Department, reports ANI. “One of their child, the driver they travelled with from Mumbai to Pune and a co-passenger also tested positive.”
7.33 pm: Three test positive for coronavirus in Maharashtra. Total number of positive cases in the state goes up to five, reports PTI.
7.31 pm: The Nepal Airlines Corporation has suspended its regular flights to and from Doha in Qatar amid coronavirus scare, reports ANI.
6.55 pm: The Jammu and Kashmir administration has put out details about its actions to curb the spread of the coronavirus.
6.42 pm: A doctor from Kerala has alleged that she was sacked by the management of the private clinic she was working with in Kochi for informing authorities about a Non-Residential Indian who declined to undergo the mandatory check for coronavirus, PTI reports.
Dr Shinu Syamalan says the patient had come to the clinic recently with suspected symptoms of the virus. “When he was asked whether he had visited any foreign countries, he said he was coming from Qatar. But he had not reported to the health department about his foreign trip,” she says. However, when asked to inform the he state health department, the patient declined and said he was going back to Qatar.
Syamalan says she informed the health authorities and the police. “Officials who let the patient go abroad do not have any problem, but I have become jobless,” she alleges.
6.35 pm: US Secretary of Defense Mark Asper has postponed his trip to India, Uzbekistan and Pakistan in order to manage the Department of Defense’s coronavirus response, The Times of India reports.
6.23 pm: Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Krutz says the country will deny entry visas to people from Italy over the spread of coronavirus, The Times of India reports.
6.11 pm: The European Union’s healthcare regulator says that no drug shortages or supply disruptions have been reported in the region, Reuters reports. However, a steering group has convened to prevent supply bottlenecks, it adds.
5.50 pm: In Israel, the number of infections has risen to 50 on Tuesday, as eight more cases have been detected, The Times of Israel reports.
5.33 pm: Chinese President Xi Jinping has said that the spread of the virus has been “basically curbed” at the epicentre, Wuhan, AFP reports. Xi says “initial success has been made in stabilising the situation and turning the tide in Hubei and Wuhan.”
4.56 pm: Two more cases of the novel coronavirus have been confirmed in Sindh, Pakistan, Dawn reports. This means the total number of cases in Sindh province are now 15, while the nationwide number is 18.
4.54 pm: Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yeddyurappa says that 1048 people have been identified for observation, ANI reports. Out of these, 446 samples have been sent for testing, he says. As many as 389 samples have tested negative, four positive, while reports of the rest are awaited.
4.48 pm: Meanwhile, Iranian Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani has urged the international community to help lift the “inhuman” sanctions the United States has imposed against his country given the coronavirus epidemic, Tehran Times reports. Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif had on Saturday called US sanctions on his country “medical terrorism”.
4.40 pm: Iran has reported 54 more deaths from the coronavirus, the single-largest in a day, AFP reports.
4.26 pm: Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa says people should use “namaste” to greet each other instead of handshakes, The Indian Express reports.
4.20 pm: Travancore Dewaswom Board President N Vasu appeals to devotees not to visit the Sabarimala temple, ANI reports. “Also, I request all the temples to cancel festivals that involve public gatherings,” he adds.
4.14 pm: Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announces that a two-week quarantine will be imposed on all travellers entering the country. “After a day of difficult discussions, we have taken a decision: all those coming to Israel from abroad will be placed in isolation for 14 days,” Netanyahu says in a video broadcast on his Twitter account.
4.04 pm: The Japanese Cabinet has approved a bill that would enable Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to declare a state of emergency, if needed, to fight the coronavirus epidemic, The Japan Times reports. The bill, a revision to a 2013 law for dealing with new types of influenza and other infectious diseases, would grant the power to the prime minister for two years.
3.54 pm: Lebanon’s health ministry says a 56-year-old man has become the first casualty from the coronavirus in the country, AFP reports.
3.33 pm: Several Malayalam cinema organisations in a meeting on Tuesday have decided that cinema theatres in the state will remain closed till March 31, ANI reports.
3.21 pm: A combination of two drugs used in treatment of HIV has been administered to an elderly Italian couple undergoing treatment at a Jaipur hospital, PTI reports. The Drug Controller General of India has approved “restricted use” of the combination of medications Lopinavir and Ritonavir – second-line HIV drugs – for treating those affected by novel coronavirus.
3.11 pm: An Indian Air Force C-17 aircraft has brought back 58 Indians from Iran, DD News reports. The passengers include 25 men, 31 women and two children. As many as 529 samples have also been brought back for testing.
2.47 pm: A map showing the spread of the novel coronavirus in India:
2.33 pm: Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyuruppa has held an emergency meeting with state Health Minister B Sriramulu and Medical Education Minister Sudhakar, The Indian Express reports. Three new cases of COVID-19 were reported in Karnataka on Tuesday.
2.22 pm: The Kerala Chief Minister’s Office has unveiled a number of measures to combat the spread of the coronavirus in the state:
1.29 pm: Samples of eight people for suspected coronavirus have tested negative, Tamil Nadu Health Minister C Vijayabhaskar says. “Announcing the test results, #Coronaupdate:Let me share a good news, 8 samples that were in process for #Covid19 is tested NEGATIVE,” Vijayabaskar tweets. “This includes seven samples of close contacts of the patient at @RGGH.”
1.10 pm: “Classes and exams till seventh standard will remain suspended till March 31,” Vijayan says. “Exams of Classes 8, 9 and 10 will be conducted as per schedule. All vacation, tuition classes, anganvadis and madrasas should be closed till March 31.”
1.04 pm: Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan says six more cases of COVID-19 have been diagnosed in the state, taking the count to 12, ANI reports.
12.58 pm: Karnataka Health Minister B Sriramulu says four cases (three new) have now been confirmed in Karnataka, ANI reports. “Their family members have been isolated separately and we are monitoring them,” he adds. “I urge citizens to take precautionary measures and cooperate in preventing the spread of infection.”
12.22 pm: A man under observation for suspected coronavirus infection at the isolation ward of the Pathanamathitta district hospital has been brought back after he fled from the facility, PTI reports. The man is among those who had interacted with the three-member family who returned from Italy and have tested positive for the virus.
12 pm: The Indian citizens who have been brought back from virus-hit Iran will be quarantined at Hindon, reports ANI. The Indian Air Force has activated necessary medical protocols and has put required facilities in place for adequate care and support.
11.51 am: China’s Hubei province is studying plans to allow people in areas at a medium or low-risk of contracting the coronavirus to start travelling, reports Reuters. Authorities said they will implement by using “health code”, a mobile phone-based monitoring system.
11.42 am: Romania shuts down all schools and suspends flights to and from Italy, seeking to limit the spread of the coronavirus, reports Reuters. Romania has confirmed 17 cases of coronavirus in people who have travelled to Italy.
11.38 am: Nine people in Pakistan have tested positive for coronavirus, taking the total cases in the country to 16, BBC reports. All nine are from Sindh province, which now has 13 cases.
11.33 am: Passengers aboard a virus-hit cruise liner in California have begun disembarking, reports AFP. An initial round of testing aboard the ship last week found that 21 people, mostly crew, were infected with the coronavirus.
11.26 am: Canada announces its first coronavirus death, reports AFP. “The patient, a man living at an elderly care facility, was infected with COVID-19 and passed away last night,” British Columbia
Health Officer Bonnie Henry tells reporters.
11.20 am: Samsung Display, a supplier for Samsung Electronics and Apple, urges Vietnam to exempt 700 engineers from coronavirus-hit South Korea from a mandatory quarantine, saying they need to prepare for the production of screens for new smartphones, reports Reuters. South Korea has reported one of the highest number of infections outside China.
11.11 am: All 58 Indians who were evacuated from Iran have tested negative for coronavirus, tweets Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan. Swab samples of the Indians were brought to India on March 6, ahead of the evacuation. Only those who have tested negative for coronavirus were brought back on Tuesday – as per international norms, COVID-19 cannot be transported. An estimated 1,200 Indians are still in Iran.
11 am: Albania closes schools for two weeks and also suspends flight and ferries to Italy until April 3 after reporting its first cases of the coronavirus on Monday.
10.55 am: Pune Mayor Murlidhar Mohol urges people not to panic after a couple tested positive for novel coronavirus infection in the city, reports PTI. “We all should take utmost care and avoid going to the crowded places,” he says.
The couple, who had returned from Dubai, reported the first case of COVID-19 from Maharashtra.
10.52 am: Mongolia has barred anyone from entering or leaving its cities for six days after confirming its first coronavirus case, reports Al Jazeera.
10.49 am: The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and two other charities pledge as much as $125 million to help speed the development of treatments for the coronavirus. “The money will be used to identify potential treatments for COVID-19, accelerate their development, and prepare for the manufacture of millions of doses for use worldwide,” the foundation says. “The expertise of pharmaceutical companies will be critical to this endeavor, named the COVID-19 Therapeutics Accelerator.”
10.44 am: Foreign visitors will have to pay if they are treated for coronavirus at Singapore’s public hospitals to “prioritise” resources amid rising cases, the Ministry of Health says in its daily update on the COVID-19 situation in the country. The decision came into effect on March 7.
10.40 am: Japan government approves draft “state of emergency” measures to stem the coronavirus outbreak, reports AFP. If approved by parliament, the draft bill would give Prime Minister Shinzo Abe the power to declare a state of emergency and impose drastic measures.
The COVID-19 has infected more than 500 people across the country and nine people have died so far.
10.36 am: There are 4,024 virus-linked deaths globally and the number of confirmed cases is 114,219, according to Johns Hopkins university’s update.
10.20 am: The toll from the collapse of a five-storey hotel that was used as a coronavirus quarantine facility in China rises to 20, reports AFP.
10.15 am: Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison says the government will soon announce a package to stimulate the economy hammered by the effects of the coronavirus outbreak, reports Reuters.
10.05 am: Mongolia confirms first coronavirus case, reports Reuters. The National Emergency Commission says the patient travelled to Mongolia from France and transited through Moscow. The government has identified 42 people the patient has met with and another 120 individuals who had close contact with the person.
10 am: Fears about the coronavirus spread has not stopped people from taking to the streets in India to celebrate Holi. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had said last week that he would not attend Holi celebrations because of advice from experts to avoid mass gatherings.
9.47 am: The US now has at least 728 coronavirus cases and reported 26 deaths.
9.45 am: Concerns are growing that US President Donald Trump himself could have been exposed to the coronavirus through contact with two Republican lawmakers, reports AFP. The White House says president has not been tested and is not showing any symptoms. Trump has dismissed the seriousness of coronavirus in the past.
9.40 am: South Korea reports 35 new coronavirus cases on Tuesday, according to Reuters. The toll rose by three to 54, says the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The daily rate of new infections in the country fell to its lowest level in 11 days.
Meanwhile, President Moon Jae-in says the downward trend in new infections could lead to a phase of stability, while also warning that it was too early to be optimistic.
9.36 am: The Indian Air Force flight carrying Indians stranded in Iran lands in Hindon airbase, say officials, according to PTI.
9.27 am: Panama announces the country’s first case of coronavirus, reports CNN. The 40-year-old patient who contracted the virus had recently travelled to Spain, where at least 647 infections have been confirmed and 28 have died.
9.22 am: Congress postpones its 27-day “Gandhi Sandesh Yatra”, which was scheduled to start on March 12 from Ahmedabad amid the coronavirus scare, reports PTI. It was aimed to highlight the current situation of the country through a symbolic dandi march.
9.16 am: External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar says first batch of 58 Indian pilgrims are being brought back from Iran. “IAF C-17 taken off from Tehran and expected to land soon in Hindon,” he tweets. “Thanks to the efforts of our Embassy and Indian medical team there, operating under challenging conditions. Thank you IAF. Appreciate cooperation of Iranian authorities. We are working on the return of other Indians stranded there.”
Iran is the epicenter of the outbreak in West Asia, with more than 7,000 cases and over 200 deaths.
9.10 am: United Nations economists’ urge governments to ramp up spending to mitigate the impact of coronavirus, reports AFP. They warn that the outbreak could cost the global economy between $1.0 and $2.0 trillion this year.
9 am: Chinese President Xi Jinping is in Wuhan, the epicentre of the outbreak, today. He will inspect medical facilities and epidemic control efforts, reports Reuters. This is his first visit to Wuhan since the virus outbreak began.
8.50 am: India closes its border with Myanmar, reports ANI.
8.30 am: The Grand Princess cruise ship, which was docked off San Francisco, was taken ashore. Passengers will disembark through the day. Twenty-one people on the ship have tested positive for the virus so far.
8.20 am: Two Republicans who were in close contact with US President Donald Trump in recent days have self-quarantined over concerns that they were also in contact in the same period with a known carrier of the coronavirus at a conference, reports AFP. Matt Gaetz of Florida and Doug Collins of Georgia announced on Monday that they had begun two weeks of self-imposed isolation.
8.15 am: China has no new coronavirus cases outside of Hubei province, the epicenter of the outbreak, for the third straight day, reports Reuters. The country reported 19 new cases of coronavirus infections on Monday, the National Health Commission said on Tuesday, down from 40 cases a day earlier.
8.11 am: The global toll from the coronavirus passed 4,000 on Tuesday, reports AFP. It has spread to over 100 countries with more than 110,000 cases of infection.
8.10 am: Israel announces a 14-day quarantine for all international arrivals. “All those coming to Israel from abroad will be placed in isolation,” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says in a video address posted to Twitter.
8.08 am: Italy extends restrictions on movement to the entire nation, joining a list of countries ratcheting up their control measures to fight coronavirus. The only travel allowed will be for proven work reasons, health conditions or other cases of necessity, reports AP.
Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte tells reporters that measures introduced just two days ago are no longer sufficient after a jump in deaths. “Our habits must be changed, changed now,” he adds. “We all have to give up something for the good of Italy. When I speak of Italy, I speak of our dear ones, of our grandparents and of our parents. We will succeed only if we all collaborate and we adapt right away to these more stringent norms.”
8.05 am: Officials say two people from Pune, who came back from Dubai in the UAE, have tested positive for the coronavirus on Monday, reports PTI. Both the patients have been quarantined in the city’s Naidu Hospital and their condition is said to be stable.
8.02 am: Here’s a list of people who have tested positive for coronavirus in India
- March 9: A three-year-old in Kerala tested positive, along with a case each in Punjab, Karnataka, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi and Jammu and Kashmir.
- March 8: Five new patients in Kerala
- March 7: Two cases confirmed in Ladakh and one in Tamil Nadu
- March 6: 31 positive cases of the virus in India – 17 people, including 14 Italians, tested positive in Delhi, two Italian tourists in Jaipur, six Indians in Agra, and one each in Hyderabad, Ghaziabad and Gurugram. This also includes three patients who have recovered in Kerala.