10.53 pm: The Maharashtra government permits barber shops, salons, spas and beauty parlours to reopen from June 28, with restrictions. The state says in its order that these places must take in customers only by prior appointment. It adds that only the establishments cannot offer skin-related services. The employees of the establishment must wear gloves, aprons and masks, and use disposable towels and napkins on customers. Non-disposable items, including chairs, will have to be sanitised after every appointment.

10.33 pm: Pune district reports 725 new coronavirus cases and 16 deaths in a day. This takes the total number of cases to 18,240 and the toll to 655.

10.30 pm: Mumbai reports 1,365 new cases and 58 deaths in a day. The city’s total now rises to 70,990 and the toll is 4,060.

9.50 pm: New coronavirus cases in states today:

Uttar Pradesh: 654 new cases, 15 deaths; total rises to 20,193, toll stands at 611,

Manipur: 86 new cases; total rises to 1,056,

Jammu and Kashmir: 127 new cases, total rises to 6,549; toll stands at 90,

Goa: 44 new cases, total rises to 995, toll now 2,

Punjab: 142 new cases, 7 deaths; total rises to 4769, toll now 120,

Karnataka: 442 new cases, 6 deaths; total rises to 10,560, toll now 170,

Madhya Pradesh: 147 new cases, eight deaths; total rises to 12,595, toll now 542,

Rajasthan: 287 new cases; total rises to 16,296, toll now 379.

9.40 pm: Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren urges the Centre to distribute free ration to people for the next six months, ANI reports. The state on Thursday reported 42 new cases, taking the total number of cases to 2,261. the state’s toll is 12.

9.30 pm: Delhi reports 3,390 new coronavirus cases and 64 deaths in a day, taking the total to 73,780. This included 44,765 recoveries and 2,429 deaths.

9.15 pm: Chhattisgarh issues an order to reopen clubs, shopping malls, restaurants and hotels. However, movie theatres, gyms, swimming pools and auditoriums will continue to remain shut, ANI reports.

8.45 pm: The Railway Board says regular time-tabled passenger services, including Mail or Express trains, passenger trains and suburban services will now be cancelled till August 12. Tickets booked for these regular trains between July 1 and August 12 now stand cancelled, ANI reports.

8.30 pm: Maharashtra reports 4,841 new cases – a new single-day high – and 192 deaths on Thursday, taking the total count to 1,47,741, while the toll rises to 6,931. As many as 3,661 patients were discharged from hospitals, taking the total number of recoveries to 77,453.

8.15 pm: Uttar Pradesh records 654 new coronavirus cases, taking the state’s active infections to 6,463, according to ANI.

8.08 pm: The chief executive officer of Patanjali says the company followed all procedures to manufacture the medicine, which they have claimed had shown favourable results against the coronavirus, reports ANI. “We applied for the licence based on classical evidence of the compounds used in the medicine,” adds Acharya Balkrishna, also the co-founder of Patanjali. “We worked on the compounds and put out the results of the clinical trial before people.”

8.03 pm: Mumbai’s Dharavi area reports 11 new coronavirus cases, taking the total number to 2,210.

8 pm: More new coronavirus cases in states, according to ANI.

  • West Bengal: 475 new cases, total rises to 15,648.
  • Haryana: 453 new cases, total rises to 12,463.
  • Gujarat: 577 new cases, total rises to 29,578.
  • Bihar:  108 new cases, total rises to 8,381. 

7 pm: Union Human Resource Development Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal says the Central Teacher Eligibility Test examination, which was set to be conducted by the CBSE on July 5, has now been postponed.

6.30 pm: Tamil Nadu reports 3,509 new coronavirus cases and 45 deaths in 24 hours, taking the state’s total to 70,977 and the toll to 911.

6.20 pm: Kerala reports 123 new infections on Thursday, taking the total number of cases to 3,726. It currently has 1,761 active cases. The state has reported more than 100 cases for the seventh straight day.

6.15 pm: Online sale of items will now be permitted, says Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren. From Thursday, some other activities such as the opening of stadiums and sports complexes without spectators, walking, jogging, running and exercising in open spaces would be permitted.

6.10 pm: The fourth phase of the Vande Bharat Mission – the Centre’s efforts to bring back Indians stranded in foreign countries amid the coronavirus outbreak – will begin from July 3, MEA Spokesperson Anurag Shrivastava says. “Phase 4 will particularly focus on countries where we still have a large number of Indians who have registered to return,” he adds.

5.49 pm: The Centre withdraws an order which made it compulsory for every coronavirus patient in Delhi to visit government facilities for clinical assessment, NDTV reports.

5.45 pm: Delhi Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal says that only those Covid-19 patients who do not have adequate facilities at home to ensure physical distancing would be shifted to Covid Care Centres and other facilities, ANI reports.

5.38 pm: Congress leaders in Kerala stage a protest outside the secretariat, against the state government’s decision to make personal protection equipment kits mandatory for Indians returning from the Gulf countries, ANI reports. Party leaders are also protesting against the government’s decision to ask every expatriate to produce a certificate stating they tested negative for Covid-19.

5.34 pm: The Ministry of External Affairs says that the Kerala government cannot implement state-specific protocol for the expatriates who want to return to the state from Gulf countries, ANI reports. “The Kerala government’s guidelines are impractical for the MEA to implement: Minister of State for External Affairs V Muraleedharan says. “We will be observing standard operating protocols issued by the home ministry and the health ministry.”

5.32 pm: A staff member posted at the Rohini District Courts Complex in Delhi tests positive for Covid-19, PTI reports.

5.29 pm: Himachal Pradesh’s coronavirus tally rises to 807 on Thursday, ANI reports, quoting the figures released by the state health department. Of these, 319 cases are active and seven have died.

5.26 pm: United Kingdom’s Royal Mail is to cut 2,000 management jobs as it struggles to deal with the effects of the coronavirus crisis, BBC reports. The company says the pandemic accelerated the trend of more parcels and fewer letters being sent, and it had not adapted quickly enough to that.

5.20 pm: The Eiffel Tower welcomes back visitors on Thursday as it reopened after three months of lockdown imposed in Paris to contain the coronavirus outbreak, AFP reports. Strict hygiene and safety measures have been put in place for the reopening.

Thomas Samson/ AFP

5.10 pm: Eight more personnel of the Indo-Tibetan Border Police tested positive for the coronavirus in the last 24 hours, ANI reports.

5.07 pm: Mizoram has reported 145 cases of the coronavirus, so far, ANI reports, quoting state health department figures. Of these, 115 are active cases and 30 have been discharged.

5.02 pm: Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam MP Kanimozhi Karunanidhi writes to Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman asking her to consider waiving the interest amount on loans taken by self-help groups for moratorium period by banks, financial institutions and NBFCs, ANI reports.

5.00 pm: Congress leader Shashi Tharoor urges Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan to postpone state university examinations citing the health hazard posed by the Covid-19 pandemic, PTI reports. In a letter to Vijayan, Tharoor says he received over 3,500 emails this week alone from anxious students highlighting the immense strain they are currently under because of the decision.

4.56 pm: The Maharashtra government will reopen gyms and salons in the state within a week, state minister Aslam Sheikh says, according to ANI. “Guidelines will be issued for [this],” he adds. “[However,] the government has not taken any decision on allowing religious gatherings.”

4.17 pm: Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal launches a video calling facility for patients of the coronavirus admitted at the Lok Nayak Jai Prakash Hospital, ANI reports.

4.14 pm: Over 18 lakh people in Rajasthan were given an ayurvedic concoction as an immunity booster against the coronavirus, Health Minister Raghu Sharma says, according to PTI.

4.06 pm: Union AYUSH Minister Shripad Y Naik says Patanjali should not have advertised its drug which they claim can cure the coronavirus, before getting final approvals, ANI reports. “We have asked them to complete the requisite procedures,” he adds. “They have sent it to us and we will take a decision soon.”

4.01 pm: Telugu Desam Party chief N Chandrababu Naidu accuses the YSR Congress Party-led government of conducting “false ovid-19 tests” on his party leaders and sending them for official quarantine to “settle political scores”, PTI reports.

3.52 pm: The All India Institute of Medical Science in Delhi restarts its outpatient department services, which have been shut for three months, with priority to follow-up patients, The Hindu reports.

3.47 pm: The Gujarat Home Department has asked the state Director General of Police and other senior officers not to grant any leave to the police personnel, saying that their presence was necessary for the effective implementation of Unlock-1, The Indian Express reports.

3.27 pm: As many as 76 new coronavirus cases were reported in Rajasthan on Thursday, taking the total number of positive cases to 16,085, PTI reports. The toll from the outbreak in the state is 375.

3.22 pm: Uttarakhand registers 20 new cases of the coronavirus till 2:30 pm on Thursday, ANI reports. The state now has 2,632 infections.

3.19 pm: A central team led by Joint Health Secretary Lav Agarwal will visit Gujarat, Maharashtra and Telangana between June 26 and June 29 to hold meetings with state officials on ways to strengthen the ongoing efforts to contain the coronavirus, the health ministry says, according to ANI.

2.57 pm: The Supreme Court will pass an order on the matter at 10:30 am on Friday, Bar and Bench reports.

2.48 pm: The Indian Certificate of Secondary Education also agrees with CBSE’s proposition and says it will also cancel the Class 10 and Class 12 exams, Bar and Bench reports. “We will declare the assessment results at once,” the board tells the court. “Later, we may hold the board exams.”

2.41 pm: The Centre tells the Supreme Court that CBSE has scheme in which marks scored in past three exams will be taken in account, in order to do the evaluation, Bar and Bench reports. For Class 12, exams will be conducted “as soon as [the] situation is conducive,” and will be optional, it says. However, there will be no such option given to Class 10 students and exams for them stand cancelled.

2.32 pm: The Central Board of Secondary Education decides to cancel all pending board examinations for Class 10 and Class 12 students scheduled between July 1 to July 15, the Centre tells the Supreme Court, according to ANI.

1.24 pm: A 35-year-old suspected patient of the coronavirus dies in Gujarat after he allegedly stabbed himself with broken glass pieces, The Indian Express reports. He was admitted in the isolation ward of the SSG hospital in Vadodara after he developed Covid symptoms and his test results were awaited.

1.22 pm: The Delhi High Court asks the Centre and the Aam Aadmi Party-led government to reply to a petition seeking directions to issue guidelines for Covid-19 testing of mentally ill homeless persons in the Capital, PTI reports.

1.17 pm: Kerala Health Minister KK Shailaja says the health ministry’s Women and Child Department is strengthening counselling services for people who are under stress because of the coronavirus outbreak, ANI reports. “We are counselling people through phone [calls] and in isolation wards,” she says. “So far, we have provided counselling to over five lakh people.”

1.14 pm: Rajasthan Health Minister Raghu Sharma says the state will not give permission to Patanjali to sell a drug they claim can cure the coronavirus, until it gets the approval of the Indian Council of Medical Research, ANI reports.

1.05 pm: Arunachal Pradesh records its first Covid-19 fatality after a 43-year-old woman succumbed to the disease, PTI reports. The total tally of the infection rises by two and is now 160.

12.56 pm: The Maharashtra government will take legal action against Yoga guru Ramdev’s Patanjali, if they try to advertise or sell the drug they claim can cure the coronavirus, in the state, Home Minister Anil Deshmukh says, according to ANI.

12.52 pm: Andhra Pradesh reported 477 new cases of the coronavirus and seven deaths in the last 24 hours, ANI reports, quoting the figures by the state health department. The state now has 8,783 cases, including 136 deaths.

12.48 pm: Hyderabad-based drugmaker Hetero, which has approval to manufacture and market the generic version of the experimental Covid-19 drug Remdesivir, sends 20,000 vials to Maharashtra and Delhi, NDTV reports. Gujarat, Tamil Nadu and Telangana’s capital Hyderabad, will also receive the first consignment.

12.26 pm: Three Maharashtra Police personnel, including an officer, died of Covid-19 in the last 24 hours, taking the toll in the state force to 54, PTI reports.

12.22 pm: With 210 new coronavirus cases in Odisha, the total tally of infections in the state rises to 5,962 on Thursday, PTI reports. The toll from the disease is 17.

12.17 pm: The State Disaster Management Authority will meet on Thursday evening in the Capital to discuss the coronavirus situation, ANI reports. A decision will also be taken on the current format of home isolation rules for Covid-19 patients in the city.

12.08 pm: The Delhi High Court asks the Centre and the Aam Aadmi party-led government to take strict action against hospitals not providing real time updates on the availability of beds for coronavirus patients, ANI reports. The court asks the state government to appoint dedicated officers so that there is “no communication gap” with the hospital authorities.

11.55 am: The number of coronavirus cases in Pakistan crosses the 1,92,000-mark after 4,044 new infections were detected in the last 24 hours, PTI quotes the country’s health ministry as saying. The toll rises to 3,903 with 148 more deaths.

11.45 am: Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa will hold a meeting with all MLAs of Bengaluru to discuss the restrictions imposed to curb the rising coronavirus cases in the city, ANI reports. “I urge people to maintain social distancing and sanitisation if they don’t want the city to be sealed again,” he says.

11.40 am: A doctor of Indian origin in New York, who was previously charged with healthcare fraud, was held for fraudulently obtaining nearly $6,30,000 in government-guaranteed loans aimed at helping small businesses during the Covid-19 pandemic while he was on pretrial release, NDTV reports.

11.35 am: The Delhi government starts installing file sterilisation machines with UV light in offices in the Delhi Secretariat from this week as a precaution against the spread of Covid-19, The Hindu reports. It has also installed contactless hand sanitiser dispensers in the premises.

11.28 am: The Chennai division of Southern Railways introduces a contactless technique to let passengers access railway stations, The Indian Express reports. The Automated Ticket Checking and Managing Access – installed at Puratchi Thalaivar Dr. MGR Chennai Central Railway Station –facilitates contactless verification of tickets, body temperatures, and face masks of passengers entering and exiting the station premises.

11.23 am: Australian airline Qantas says it will axe 6,000 jobs as part of its plans to survive the coronavirus pandemic, BBC reports. The cuts equate to about a fifth of the airline’s workforce prior to the Covid-19 crisis. In March, it furloughed more than 80% of its staff.

11.06 am: The Kerala government says it will not insist on Covid-19 negative certificate for expatriates coming on “Vande Bharat” flights, chartered flights, and private aircraft to the state from Thursday, The Hindu reports.

10.54 am: Rajasthan reports 76 new cases of the coronavirus on Thursday till 10.30 am, ANI reports, quoting the state health department. With this the total tally of infections in the state rises to 16,085 and the toll is 375.

10.48 am: Twelve army personnel test positive for the coronavirus in Nagaland’s Kohima district on Thursday, PTI reports.

10.37 pm: The Indian Institute of Technology in Mumbai becomes the first major educational institution in the country to scrap all face-to-face lectures for the rest of the year because of the coronavirus pandemic, The Indian Express reports.

Read more here:

Coronavirus: IIT-Bombay suspends classroom lectures for the year, will go fully online

9.21 am: Brazil registers 42,725 new cases and 1,185 deaths in the last 24 hours, reports Reuters.

9.17 am: Over 2 lakh samples have been tested on Wednesday, says the Indian Council of Medical Research.

9.08 am: India records 16,922 new infections, taking the overall count to 4,73,105. The toll rose to 14,894 with 418 new deaths. This is by far the biggest single-day rise in the number of new cases.

8.58 am: Students arrive at a school in Bengaluru for their pending board exams.

8.12 am: New York, New Jersey and Connecticut have asked people to go into self-isolation for 14 days if they travel from nine states where virus cases are rising, according to BBC. Those states are Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, Texas, Washington and Utah, says New York Governor Andrew Cuomo.

7.59 am: Pharmaceutical firm Hetero prices the generic Covid-19 drug at Rs 5,400 per vial, reports Reuters.

7.14 am: United States records more than 35,900 cases in the last 24 hours, according to AFP.

7.10 am: The president of All Goa Hoteliers Association says they have requested Chief Minister Pramod Sawant to allow opening hotels with minimum SOPs, reports ANI.

7.08 am: The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation allows shops in Mumbai will to operate on odd-even basis, reports NDTV. “Traders, vendors and customers will be required to adhere to the Covid-19 guidelines while operating their establishments on both sides of these markets alternately on odd-even basis,” the civic body says in its order.

7.06 am: Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan announces a fresh set of mandatory rules for expats returning to the state, reports NDTV. “On arriving at airports in Kerala, repatriated Indians will undergo Covid rapid tests at the airport,” says Vijayan. “If tested positive, further tests would be done. Only after approval of health officials, will they be able to leave the airport. Irrespective of the test results, all will have to undergo 14 days of mandatory quarantine.”

Also read

Coronavirus: Kerala directs expats to wear protective equipment, get tests in new guidelines

7.05 am: Here are the top updates from Wednesday

  • India on Wednesday recorded 15,968 new coronavirus cases, taking the overall count to 4,56,183, according to the Union health ministry’s update. The toll rose to 14,476 with 465 new deaths. Of the total patients, 1,83,022 are active cases, 2,58,684 have recovered. Maharashtra reported 3,890 new infections and 208 deaths, taking the total tally of coronavirus cases in the state to 1.42 lakh. The toll from the disease is 6,739. In Tamil Nadu, the number of infections rose to 67,468, with 866 deaths. 
  • Delhi, meanwhile, crossed the 70,000-mark with 3,788 new cases of the coronavirus and 64 deaths. With a total of 70,390 cases and a toll of 2,365, the Capital now has more infections than Mumbai, which has recorded 69,625 cases, including 3,962 deaths, so far. Earlier in the day, the Arvind Kejriwal-led government will screen every house in the Capital from July 6 as a part of its new coronavirus response plan.
  • West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee extended the lockdown to curb coronavirus cases in the state till the end of July. The government had on Tuesday announced that all educational institutions in the state would be closed till July 31.  
  • The International Monetary Fund said that India’s Gross Domestic Product will contract by 4.5% in the 2020-’21 financial year, thanks to the lockdown imposed to fight the coronavirus pandemic. This is much lower than the 1.9% positive growth the IMF had forecast in its World Economic Outlook for April.
  • The Tamil Nadu government has claimed that some Siddha treatments have ensured 100% recovery from the coronavirus. Siddha is an ancient way of treatment originating in Tamil Nadu. Though there is “no empirical verification”, a state minister claimed that there was 100% success.
  • The reliability and capability aspects of 10,000 low-cost ventilators, ordered by the Centre under the PM Cares fund, have been questioned by two government-appointed panels. The Narendra Modi-led administration on Tuesday allocated Rs 2,000 crore from the PM Cares fund towards the supply of 50,000 “Made in India” ventilators.
  • Globally, the coronavirus has infected more than 92 lakh people and claimed over 4.77 lakh lives, according to the Johns Hopkins University. More than 46 lakh people across the world have recovered.