9.17 pm: Here the are the top updates of the day:

  1. Maharashtra on Saturday reported 2,940 new coronavirus cases, taking the state’s tally to 65,168. The toll reached 2,197 with 99 more deaths. Delhi’s tally rose to 18,549 with 1,163 new cases and the toll rose to 416 with 18 more fatalities. Tamil Nadu, meanwhile, reported 856 new cases and six deaths. The state’s tally rose to 21,184 and the toll reached 160.
  2. The Centre extended the nationwide lockdown to contain the coronavirus pandemic till June 30, but said that all activities will restart in a phased manner outside containment zones. The first phase of this reopening, called Unlock 1, will focus on economic activities.
  3. The Union health ministry said that India’s coronavirus recovery rate had reached an all-time high of 47.4% as 11,264 patients were “cured” in a day. However, India’s coronavirus tally rose to 1,73,763 on Saturday morning as the country recorded 7,964 new infections in 24 hours. This is the highest daily rise in infections so far. The toll is at 4,971. India is now the ninth worst-hit country, according to the Johns Hopkins University tracker.
  4. An Air India flight from Delhi to Moscow returned midway after the airline’s ground team found out that one of the pilots had tested positive for the coronavirus. The flight’s crew members have been placed under quarantine. The plane did not have any passengers and was heading to Moscow to bring back stranded Indians citizens as part of the Vande Bharat mission.
  5. Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that migrant workers and labourers have suffered “tremendously” during the coronavirus pandemic and the countrywide lockdown enforced to contain it. In his letter to the nation on completing a year of his second term in office, Modi assured the people that his government was working hard to tackle the health crisis.
  6. United States President Donald Trump said his country would terminate its relationship with the World Health Organization, after weeks of accusing the agency of helping the Chinese government cover up the early days of the coronavirus pandemic.
  7. The number of coronavirus cases across the world reached 59,68,693 while the toll rose to 3,65,796, according to the Johns Hopkins University. The United States, Russia and Brazil are the three worst-hit countries.

8.27 pm: Maharashtra reports 2,940 new cases. The state’s tally rises to 65,168. The toll reaches 2,197 with 99 more deaths.

8.25 pm: The West Bengal government announces relaxations in line with the Centre’s guidelines.

8.21 pm: Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri says 1,343 Indian citizens were brought back in the second phase of the Vande Bharat mission.

8.11 pm: New cases reported today:

Jammu and Kashmir: 177 new cases, tally rises to 2,341; toll at 28.

Chhattisgarh: 32 new cases; tally rises to 447; one more death reported.

8.06 pm: Delhi’s tally rises to 18,549 with 1,163 new cases. The toll goes up to 416 with 18 new deaths.

7.31 pm: The Centre also issues national directives to manage Covid-19. These include:

  • Wearing of face cover is compulsory in public places, workplaces and during transport.
  • Maintain a minimum distance of 6 feet in public places. Shops must ensure physical distancing among customers and won’t allow more than five people at a time.
  • Large gathering will be banned. For marriages, the maximum number of guests can be 50, while it is 20 for funerals.
  • People should work from home as far as possible.
  • Business hours must be staggered in offices, work places, shops, markets and industrial and commercial establishments.

7.25 pm: The DMRC announces that metro services will remain closed till further notice.

7.22 pm: “Vulnerable persons, i.e., persons above 65 years of age, persons with co-morbidities, pregnant women, and children below the age of 10 years, are advised to stay at home, except for meeting essential requirements and for health purposes,” the MHA adds.

7.18 pm: However, the guidelines add: “If a state/ UT, based on reasons of public health and its assessment of the situation, proposes to regulate movement of persons, it will give wide publicity in advance regarding the restrictions to be placed on such movement, and the related procedures to be followed”

7.15 pm: “There shall be no restriction on inter-state and intra-state movement of persons and goods,” the guidelines say. “No separate permission/ approval/ e-permit will be required for such movements.”

7.12 pm: Only a limited number of activities will remain prohibited throughout the country, the MHA says. These activities are

  • International air travel
  • Metro Rail operations
  • opening of cinema halls, gymnasiums, swimming pools, entertainment parks, theatres, bars and auditoriums, assembly halls and similar places
  • social/ political/ sports/ entertainment/ academic/ cultural/ religious functions/ and other large congregations

Read here:

Coronavirus lockdown 5.0: What is allowed, what’s not – here’s everything you need to know

7.10 pm: “The current phase of re-opening, Unlock 1, will have an economic focus,” the MHA says.

7.08 pm: Night curfew timing revised from 7 pm to 7 am, to 9 pm to 5 am.

7.06 pm: Schools and other educational institutions will open after consultations with states and Union Territories, the MHA says. State and Union Territories will hold consultations with parents and other stakeholders on the reopening of academic institutions in July.

7.05 pm: From June 8, places of worship, hotels, restaurants and other hospitality services and malls will be open for the public.

7 pm: The Ministry of Home Affairs says all activities will be relaxed in a phased manner outside containment zones as per the health ministry’s guidelines. States, however, “may impose restrictions or prohibit activities as per assessment”.

6.55 pm: Lockdown extended in containment zones till June 30, the Centre announces.

6.28 pm: Tamil Nadu records 856 new cases and six deaths in 24 hours, ANI reports. This takes the state’s coronavirus tally to 21,184. Of this, 9,021 are active cases, while 160 have died.

6.22 pm: The Madhya Pradesh government has extended the lockdown till June 15, reports News 18.

5.53 pm: Council for the Indian School Certificate Examinations says it will allow students to appear for their remaining examination from the districts they are presently in.

5.39 pm: People from Mizoram arrive at the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus in Mumbai to board special trains home.

5.29 pm: The Union health ministry says India’s coronavirus recovery rate is now 47.40%.

3.35 pm: The Rajasthan government will reopen monuments that come under the archaeology and museum department of the state from June 1, PTI reports. But this will not apply in areas that fall under containment zones.

3.15 pm: Aviation regulator Directorate General of Civil Aviation has ordered an investigation into the lapse that led to a Covid-19 positive pilot flying an empty Air India flight from Delhi to Moscow, NDTV reports. The flight returned midway.

2.55 pm: The General Administration Department at the Delhi Secretariat has been sealed for sanitisation after an employee tested positive for the coronavirus.

2.25 pm: Air India’s Delhi-Moscow flight returns midway following reports that a crew member has Covid-19, ANI reports.

Some reports say the crew member is the pilot.

1.58 pm: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi Palaniswami holds a meeting with medical experts in Chennai to discuss the coronavirus situation in the state, ANI reports.

1.56 pm: Ten people test positive in Tripura, taking the total number of cases in the state to 254, Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb says, according to PTI. Of these, eight returned from Bangladesh recently.

1.21 pm: “Out of over 17,000 cases in the Capital, only 2,100 are in hospitals, while rest of them are undergoing treatment at their homes,” Kejriwal claims. “About 6,500 beds are ready till date and 9,500 beds will be ready by another week... There is no need to panic.”

1.15 pm: “[The rise in infections] is a matter of concern, but there is nothing to worry about,” Kejriwal adds. “I assure you that your government is four steps ahead of the Coronavirus.”

1.15 pm: Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal accepts that the Capital is witnessing a surge in coronavirus cases. “But there is nothing to worry about, I assure you that we are fully prepared,” he adds. “We cannot be in a permanent lockdown.”

1.10 pm: At least two persons in the Ministry of External Affairs test positive for the coronavirus, The Indian Express reports. While one of them work in the Central Europe division, the other works in the Legal and treaties division. Other officials, who were in contact, are now being tested and have been advised self-quarantine.

Read more here:

Coronavirus: At least two officials at Ministry of External Affairs test positive, say reports

12.51 pm: BJP President JP Nadda says that while many big and powerful countries find themselves helpless against the coronavirus, situation in India is still “under control”. He is addressing the media via video-conference to mark the government’s first year in office in its second tenure.

12.48 pm: A police station in Kathua district of Jammu and Kashmir is declared “out of bounds” on after a policeman posted there tested positive for coronavirus, PTI reports.

12.36 pm: The number of cases in Himachal Pradesh stands at 297, ANI reports, quoting the state health department. Of these, 86 have cured and five have died.

12.35 pm: Manipur reports one more case of the coronavirus, taking the state’s total tally of infections to 60, ANI reports.

12.34 pm: Bombay High Court asks the Maharashtra Government to file a report by June 2, explaining the procedure of sending stranded migrants back to their native places, ANI reports.

12.08 pm: At least 15 more persons test positive in Maharashtra’s Nashik district, taking the total count of cases to 1,166 in the region, PTI reports.

12.05 pm: Indore reports 87 more cases of the coronavirus in the last 24 hours, taking the tally of infections in the district to 3,431, PTI reports. The toll rose by three and is now 129.

12.02 pm: There will be a relaxation from a complete lockdown in Karnataka on Sunday in interest of the general public, the Chief Minister’s Office says, according to ANI. All normal services will continue tomorrow from 7 am to 7pm.

11.59 am: A senior medical official and two other members of staff at the Lok Nayak Hospital test positive for the coronavirus, Delhi Health Department says, according to ANI.

10.56 am: The tally of coronavirus cases in Rajasthan rises to 8,414 after the state reports 49 more infections till 10.30 am, ANI reports, quoting the state health department’s figures.

10.52 am: Nearly 80 migrants on board special trains arranged by the Centre to help them return to their native places have died between May 9 and May 27, according to data from the Railway Protection Force, reports Hindustan Times.

10.47 am: Heavy traffic is seen near Delhi’s border with Ghaziabad as police officers stop vehicles to check identity cards and travel passes of the commuters.

10.39 pm: The Delhi government declares the Guru Teg Bahadur Hospital, which has 500 beds, as a designated Covid-19 facility, ANI reports.

10.35 pm: Odisha reports 96 coronavirus cases, taking the total tally of infections in the state to 1,819, ANI reports, quoting the state health department.

10.31 am: Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot directs for continuation of night curfew in the state even after May 31 to minimise the risk of a spurt in coronavirus infections, PTI reports.

9.17 am: The number of coronavirus cases in India is up to 1,73,763, including 4,971 deaths. The number of infections has risen by 7,964 and the toll by 265, according to the Ministry of Health.

8.56 am: Kerala launches a mobile testing vehicle for the coronavirus in Alappuzha, ANI reports.

8.54 am: Heavy traffic is seen between Delhi’s border with Gurugram, as the Haryana government has sealed borders with the Capital to curb the rise of Covid-19 infections in the state, ANI reports. Police officers are checking passes and identity cards of commuters along the route.

8.53 am: The Rajasthan government will conduct board examinations for various subjects of classes 10 and 12, which had been postponed because of the pandemic, PTI reports. Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot instructs the state Education Department to make proper arrangements for conducting exams.

7.35 am: US President Donald Trump says the country is cutting all ties with the World Health Organization. “Because they have failed to make the requested and greatly needed reforms, we will be today terminating our relationship with the World Health Organization and redirecting those funds to other worldwide and deserving, urgent global public health needs,” CNN quotes Trump as saying. “The world needs answers from China on the virus. We must have transparency,”

Trump earlier called the WHO China’s “puppet” and cut funding to it. He threatened that the funding freeze would be permanent unless the health body made reforms.

7.22 am: United States records 1,225 coronavirus deaths in 24 hours, bring the toll in the country to 1.02 lakh, with 17.45 lakh overall cases of the virus, AFP reports.

7.21 am: An infant dies from Covid-19 in Switzerland, AFP reports.

7.20 am: Modi adds that India would set an example in economic revival and surprise the world like it did in its fight against the pandemic.

7.18 am: Prime Minister Narendra Modi in a letter to the nation says that migrant workers, labourers and others had “undergone tremendous suffering” during the coronavirus crisis.

Read more: Coronavirus: Migrants have undergone ‘tremendous suffering’, says Modi in letter to nation

Here are the top updates from Friday:

  1. India’s tally rose to 1,65,799 as the country recorded 7,466 new Covid-19 infections in the last 24 hours, according to figures from the health ministry. The toll in the country reached 4,706 after 175 new fatalities. India is now the ninth worst-hit country, according to the Johns Hopkins University tracker.
  2. Tamil Nadu reported 874 new positive cases, taking the state’s total to 20,246. At least 135 of the new cases were people who had returned from Maharashtra either by road or air. Nine people died today, taking the state’s toll to 154.
  3. West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said that all places of worship in the state will be open from June 1. The state has made institutional quarantine mandatory for migrants returning from five states – Maharashtra, Delhi, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu and Madhya Pradesh.
  4. Delhi added 69 virus-related deaths in the last 34 days to its overall toll, taking the total to 398.
  5. Minister of Railways Piyush Goyal has appealed to people suffering from serious ailments, pregnant women, senior citizens and children below the age of 10 to travel in Shramik special trains “only when necessary”.
  6. Coronavirus patients admitted to a government hospital in Uttar Pradesh’s Prayagraj district on Thursday protested against the lack of food and water at the centre.
  7. The number of coronavirus cases among police personnel in Maharashtra rose to 2,211 after 116 cops tested positive. Twenty-five cops in the state have died of the infection so far.
  8. A widely-circulated video on Friday showed coronavirus patients at a hospital in Uttar Pradesh’s Prayagraj district complaining of inhuman conditions.
  9. Globally, coronavirus has infected more than 58.14 lakh people. Over 3.60 lakh people have died so far, according to the Johns Hopkins University tracker. Brazil recorded a daily record of 26,417 new coronavirus cases on Thursday, Reuters reported. It has 4,38,238 coronavirus cases now, and is the second worst-hit country after the the United States.