Maharashtra recorded its highest single-day increase of 14,888 new coronavirus cases on Wednesday, pushing its tally to 7,18,711. The state also reported 295 more deaths, taking its toll to 23,089. Meanwhile, Delhi witnessed the highest number of daily new cases in August after 1,693 cases were reported. The total number of cases in the city stood at 1,65,764.
Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh said that 23 MLAs have tested positive for the coronavirus ahead of the Assembly session on August 28. Haryana Agriculture Minister JP Dalal and former Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi also tested positive for the coronavirus.
India’s tally rose to 32,34,474 after the country reported 67,151 new cases in 24 hours. The toll rose by 1,059 to 59,449. As many as 24,67,758 people have recovered from the infection in the country.
Globally, the coronavirus has infected more than 2.39 crore people and killed 8,20,835, according to the Johns Hopkins University’s tracker. Over 1.56 crore people across the world have recovered from the infection.
The national helpline number for the coronavirus is 011-23978046, and a toll-free number 1075.
8.42 pm: Maharashtra reports its highest single-day increase of 14,888 new coronavirus cases. This takes the total tally to 7,18,711. The toll rises to 23,089 with 295 deaths.
8.40 pm: In Andhra Pradesh, 10,830 persons have tested positive for the coronavirus today, taking the total to 3,82,469. With 81 more deaths, the toll is at 3,541.
8.38 pm: Delhi reports 1,693 new coronavirus cases, the highest single-day increase in August, according to PTI. The city’s tally rises to 1,65,764. The toll is at 4,347 after 17 deaths.
On June 23, the national Capital had recorded the highest single-day rise of 3,947 new cases.
8.35 pm: Karnataka records 8,580 new coronavirus cases, taking the state’s tally to 3,00,406. With 133 fatalities, the toll rises to 5,091.
7.35 pm: Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray says all examinations of the state Public Service Commission have been postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic. “The revised schedule will be announced in due course,” he tweets.
7.28 pm: Five persons of Didayi, a vulnerable tribal group in Odisha’s Malkangiri district have tested positive for the coronavirus, reports The Hindu. “We have received information about five persons belonging to the Didayi community in Oringi village testing positive for Covid-19,” says Hruday Ranjan Sahoo, in charge of Didayi Development Agency. “Now, steps are being taken to prevent further spread of the contagion.”
7.25 pm: Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant says over 19,000 students took secondary and higher secondary exams this year and none of them tested positive for the coronavirus, reports ANI. “We took sanitation measures,” he adds. “Even the Goa Common Entrance Test was conducted with success. JEE and NEET can also be conducted with the same measures.”
6.45 pm: Tamil Nadu reports 5,958 new coronavirus cases, 5,606 recoveries and 118 deaths today, according to ANI. This take’s the state’s active cases to 52,362, recoveries to 3,38,060 and toll stands at 6,839.
6.36 pm: Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh says 23 of the 117 MLAs in the state have tested positive for the coronavirus, reports Hindustan Times. This comes two days before the state’s Assembly session. “If this is the state of legislators and ministers, one can only imagine how grave the situation is on the ground [in the state],” the chief minister adds.
6.30 pm: At least five members of the Great Andamanese tribe in Andaman and Nicobar Islands have tested positive for the coronavirus, says Survival International, a human rights organisation.
“It is extremely alarming that members of the Great Andamanese tribe tested positive for Covid-19,” says a senior researcher Sophie Grig. “They will be all too aware of the devastating impact of epidemics that have decimated their people. The Andaman authorities must act urgently to prevent the virus reaching more Great Andamanese and to prevent infection in the other tribes. The waters around North Sentinel must be properly policed and no outsiders should enter the territories of any of the Andaman tribes without their consent.”
6.26 pm: Kerala records 2,476 new coronavirus cases, taking the state’s active cases to 22,344, according to ANI. As many as 41,694 people have recovered from the infection.
6.22 pm: Banerjee also says that educational institutes will remain closed in West Bengal till September 20, reports PTI. She urges the Centre to distribute money from PM CARES Fund to states to tackle the health crisis.
5.47 pm: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee says the state government wants to lift ban on flight operations from six coronavirus-hotspot states and resume services thrice a week, reports PTI.
5.45 pm: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee says total lockdown will be imposed in the state on September 7, 11 and 12 to rein in the coronavirus pandemic, reports PTI.
5.09 pm: A one-day session of the Haryana Assembly, with all safety protocols in place, has begun in Chandigarh with the House paying tributes to 20 Indian soldiers killed in the Galwan Valley clash, PTI reports.
5.07 pm: Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Adityanath has asked officials to increase the number of daily coronavirus tests in the state to 1.5 lakh.
5.04 pm: The University of Cambridge has confirmed plans to begin trials of a potential new vaccine, not just against the Covid-19 coronavirus but all future coronaviruses that travel from animals to humans. DIOS-CoVax2 uses banks of genetic sequences of all known coronaviruses, including those from bats, believed to be the natural hosts of many relatives of human coronaviruses.
4.55 pm: Karnataka Deputy Chief Minister and Higher Education Minister CN Ashwath Narayan announces that full-time online classes for degree students will resume from September 1, and colleges will reopen from October, The Hindu reports. “As per the guidelines of UGC, exams for final year students, be it degree, diploma or engineering, will be held before September,” he says. “Exams for students who have backlogs will also be held.”
4.48 pm: Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren agrees that the chief ministers should go to the prime minister or president on the exams matter before approaching the Supreme Court.
4.38 pm: Puducherry Chief Minister V Narayanasamy says in Sonia Gandhi’s meeting that holding exams during the pandemic will increase the number of cases of coronavirus in the country, ANI reports. He says the central government will be responsible for this.
4.28 pm: Congress leader Rahul Gandhi urges the Centre to listen to the grievances of the NEET and JEE students. “NEET-JEE aspirants are worried about their health and future,” he tweets. “They have genuine concerns of: fear of Covid19 infection, transport and lodging during pandemic and flood-mayhem in Assam and Bihar. GOI must listen to all stakeholders and find an acceptable solution.”
4.18 pm: Uttar Pradesh reports 82 fatalities, taking the toll due to the coronavirus to 3,141, while the highest single-day spike of 5,898 new cases takes the infection tally to 2,03,020.
4 pm: In Tripura, 329 more people have tested positive for the coronavirus, taking the number of cases to 9,542, PTI reports. Four more people have died, taking the toll to 83.
3.31 pm: Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray attends Sonia Gandhi’s virtual meet with chief ministers of states. “There was a report from the US that about 97,000 children were infected by Covid-19 when schools were opened,” Thackeray says at the meeting. “What will we do if such a situation arises here?”
3.25 pm: Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh says at Sonia Gandhi’s virtual meet that the Covid-19 situation in the state is worsening, ANI reports. He says the government has spent nearly Rs 500 crore. He agrees with Mamata Banerjee’s suggestion that all chief ministers should jointly meet the prime minister, as their states have not received Goods and Services Tax compensation. He says Punjab may face a revenue deficit of Rs 25,000 crore this year due to the coronavirus pandemic.
3.11 pm: Sonia Gandhi says in a virtual meeting with Opposition chief ministers that the Centre’s refusal to pay Goods and Services Tax compensation is “nothing short of betrayal of the states and people”, PTI reports. “We have to work and fight together against the central government,” she adds.
2.53 pm: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee urges all chief ministers to together move the Supreme Court to postpone NEET and JEE exams, PTI reports. She says that the state governments have been “bulldozed” by the Centre in the name of cooperative federalism.
2.22 pm: The number of Covid-19 cases in Himachal Pradesh has risen to 5,206, according to ANI. The number of active cases is now 1,352.
2.11 pm: “Symptoms like breathlessness and low oxygen level remain in some recovered patients,” says Kejriwal. “Few such patients have died too. Our health minister [Satyendar Jain] also took time to recover fully. We’ll provide oximeters at home to them and oxygen concentrators if their levels drop.”
2.00 pm: Bihar reports 2,163 new cases on Wednesday, taking its tally of active cases to 21,814. The state’s toll stands at 519.
1.56 pm: Puducherry reports 511 new coronavirus cases on Wednesday, taking its tally to 11,930, according to PTI. The Union Territory’s toll rises by eight to 180.
1.51 pm: Two Indian researchers, Padmanabha Prasanna Simha from the Indian Space Research Organisation and Prasanna Simha Mohan Rao from the Sri Jayadeva Institute of Cardiovascular Sciences in Karnataka, say N95 masks may be the most effective in reducing the possibility of the spread of the coronavirus, PTI reports.
1.44 pm: Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal says that his government will double coronavirus testing in the Capital since there has been a small increase in the number of new cases.
12.21 pm: Former Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi also tests positive for the coronavirus. The Congress leader asks those who have been in contact with him to get themselves tested immediately.
12.18 pm: Arunchal Pradesh reports 100 new coronavirus cases on Wednesday, taking its tally to 3,412, according to PTI.
11.55 am: Haryana Agriculture Minister JP Dalal tests positive for the coronavirus.
11.49 am: China recorded 15 new coronavirus cases on Tuesday. All of the new cases are imported.
11.47 am: Two recovered patients in Belgium and the Netherlands have been re-infected with the coronavirus, according to Reuters.
11.44 am: Myanmar records its biggest one-day rise of 70 coronavirus cases on Wednesday, Reuters reports. The country has reported 574 cases and six deaths so far.
11.41 am: The coronavirus tally of Maharashtra’s Thane city rises to 1,16,413 on Wednesday as it records 788 new cases, PTI reports. The city toll rises by 47 to 3,348.
11.38 am: Odisha records 3,371 new coronavirus cases and 13 deaths on Wednesday, ANI reports, citing the state’s health department. Odisha’s tally rises to 87,602 and its toll reaches 441.
11.35 am: The Army’s Research and Referral hospital in Delhi says Former President Pranab Mukherjee is still on ventilator support, ANI reports.
11.34 am: Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal begins his meeting on the Capital’s coronavirus crisis.
10.44 am: The police of Jharkhand arrests a constable for allegedly raping a lady constable at a Covid-19 quarantine centre in Sidhgora Professional College in Jamshedpur on Tuesday, the Hindustan Times reports.
10.39 am: Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal calls a high level meeting to discuss the overall Covid-19 situation in the Capital on Wednesday amid the rising number of infections, the Hindustan Times reports. The meeting will take place at 11am and will be attended by Health Minister Satyendar Jain and other officials of the health department.
10.37 am: The Indian Council of Medical Research says a total of 3,76,51,512 samples have been tested for Covid-19 in the country so far. Of these, 8,23,992 were tested on Tuesday.
10.35 am: Telangana on Tuesday recorded 3,018 coronavirus cases, 1,060 recoveries and 10 deaths, pushing the state’s tally of infections to 1,11,688, ANI reports. The toll stands at 780 and as many as 85,223 people have recovered so far.
10.30 am: Germany’s tally of coronavirus cases rises to 2,36,429, with 1,576 new cases on Wednesday, Reuters reports, quoting data from the Robert Koch Institute. The toll rises by three to 9,280
10.25 am: South Korea orders doctors in the Seoul area to return to work on Wednesday as they began a three-day strike in protest of several government proposals, including one to boost the number of doctors to deal with the coronavirus, Reuters reports. The strikes come as South Korea recorded 320 new cases on Tuesday, the latest in more than a week and a half of triple-digit increases.
10.21 am: The British government revises its guidelines to make masks compulsory for students in school corridors in local lockdown areas of England, BBC reports. This will be in “communal areas” of schools such as corridors, where it is difficult to have social distancing, and when schools “believe that is right in their particular circumstances”, the government says.
10.18 am: Kentucky Fried Chicken, or KFC suspendeds its “It’s Finger Lickin’ Good” tagline after 64 years, deeming it “the most inappropriate slogan for 2020” amid the coronavirus pandemic, AP reports.
10.13 am: The West Bengal government starts a survey to identify Covid-19 patients who suffer from comorbidities, the Hindustan Times reports. The survey is being conducted to identify those who are more vulnerable to the disease and bring down the mortality rate in the state. “The Kolkata Municipal Corporation has already started the survey,” Rajiva Sinha, chief secretary of West Bengal says. “Within the next one week it would be launched in other districts.”
10.07 am: The first dose of the Oxford University’s Covid-19 vaccine will be administered to six trial participants at the Bharati Vidyapeeth Medical College and Hospital in Pune on Wednesday, The Indian Express reports. The Phase 2 clinical human trials of the vaccine candidate, which is manufactured by the Serum Institute of India, began on Tuesday.
9.33 am: India’s tally on Wednesday rises to 32,34,474 with 67,151 new cases in the last 24 hours. The country’s toll rises by 1,059 to 59,449. As many as 24,67,758 people have recovered from the infection in the country.
8.38 am: Congress President Sonia Gandhi will hold a meeting with the chief ministers of Congress-ruled states on Wednesday to discuss NEET (National Eligibility cum Entrance Test) and JEE (Joint Entrance Examination) exams, ANI reports.
8.10 am: The Union health ministry on Tuesday said India and Russia are discussing a collaboration to manufacture the Sputnik V vaccine against the coronavirus, according to ANI.
8 am: The Union health ministry says that India has rapidly increased its testing to 10 lakh every day in August. “With positivity rate progressively falling, testing has worked as an effective tool to limit the spread of Covid-19 infection,” it says.
7.50 am: Jharkhand on Tuesday registered 1,056 new coronavirus cases, taking the state tally to 32,174, reports PTI. The toll went up by 12 to 347.
7.40 am: Nagaland on Tuesday recorded the most number of single-day recoveries of 215 patients, and only 38 new cases were detected, reports PTI, citing the health department.
7.30 am: Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Adityanath on Tuesday instructed the police and local officials to take all the required security measures for upcoming occasions like Ganesh utsav, Anant Chaturdashi and Muharram, reports PTI.
7.20 am: Here are the top updates from Tuesday:
- India’s coronavirus tally on Tuesday rose to 31,67,323 cases after the country reported 60,975 new infections in 24 hours. The country’s toll rose by 848 to 58,390. As many as 24,04,585 people have recovered. The Centre said active cases are only 22.2% of total cases and recovery rate in India is more than 75%. More than 3.6 crore tests have been conducted so far, over 24 lakh patients have recovered, which is 3.4 times the active cases, it added.
- Maharashtra recorded 10,425 new coronavirus cases, taking the total count to 7,03,823. The state had crossed the six lakh-mark on August 17. The toll due to the pandemic rose to 22,794 . Tamil Nadu recorded 5,951 new coronavirus cases and 107 deaths in the evening. The state’s tally rose to 3,91,303 and the toll stood at 6,721. Andhra Pradesh recorded 9,927 new cases and 92 deaths in a day, taking the state’s total count to 3,71,639 and the toll to 3,460.
- Kerala’s coronavirus count has crossed the 60,000 mark with 2,375 new cases. With 10 more fatalities, the toll has risen to 244. The state now has total 61,878 cases, while as many as 40,343 have recovered from the infection.
- The Indian Council for Medical Research blamed irresponsible people who refuse to wear masks for the spread of the coronavirus. “I wouldn’t say young or old, but irresponsible, less cautious people who are not wearing masks are driving the pandemic in India,” ICMR Director General Professor Balram Bhargava said at a press briefing.
- Manipur minister Nemcha Kipgen said she has tested positive for the coronavirus and asked those who came in contact with her to get themselves tested. Haryana Transport Minister Mool Chand Sharma too contracted the infection, but said he was asymptomatic. Karnataka Congress chief DK Shivakumar also tested positive and said he had been hospitalised as a precaution.
- The Reserve Bank of India said that improvement in the economic activity in May and June seems to have lost strength in July and August, mainly due to the reimposing of lockdown restrictions to combat the spread of the coronavirus. Therefore, contraction in the Indian economy could continue into the second quarter of 2020-’21, i.e. July-September.
- Children between the age of 5 and 17 are the most exposed cohort to the coronavirus in New Delhi, according to a serological survey. A prevalence rate of 34.7% was found among the age group concerned, the survey showed.
- Climate change activist Greta Thunberg said that it was “deeply unfair” that Indian students had been asked to appear for the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test and the Joint Entrance Examination during the coronavirus pandemic.
- US top health expert Anthony Fauci said that rushing to distribute coronavirus vaccines under special emergency use guidelines before it has been proven safe in large trials had risks and was a bad idea. Meanwhile, United States’ Food and Drugs Administration Commissioner Stephen Hahn on Tuesday apologised for overstating the benefits of treating coronavirus patients with convalescent plasma.