Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Wednesday said Covid-19 vaccination would be given to pregnant women and those above 60 years of age, along with healthcare workers, on priority.
Pharmaceutical company Pfizer said its experimental Covid-19 vaccine was found to be 95% effective in the late-stage trials with no side effects. The company said it was planning to seek approval from the United States Food and Drug Administration for emergency authorisation “within days”. Pfizer is developing the vaccine with biotechnology company BioNTech.
India recorded 38,617 new coronavirus cases taking the country’s total to 89,12,907 on Wednesday, data from the health ministry showed. The toll rose to 1,30,993 with 474 more deaths. The number of active cases stood at 4,46,805. As many as 83,35,109 people have recovered from the disease so far.
Globally, the coronavirus has infected more than 5.55 crore people and killed 13,36,892, according to the Johns Hopkins University.
The national helpline number for the coronavirus is 011-23978046, and a toll-free number 1075.
Here are the day’s updates:
10.32 pm: Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik says Covid-19 vaccine would be given to pregnant women and those above 60 years of age, along with healthcare workers on priority, reports PTI.
10.28 pm: Himachal Pradesh allows a maximum of 50% of hall capacity in social, academic, sports, entertainment, and other events, with a ceiling of 100 persons, according to ANI.
10.18 pm: Himachal Pradesh records 661 new cases, taking the state tally to 31,401, reports ANI. The toll goes up by 13 to 468.
10.16 pm: A 36-year-old home-quarantined Covid-19 patient allegedly committed suicide out of depression, reports PTI, citing the police.
9.38 pm: Mumbai reports 871 new Covid-19 cases, 1,372 recoveries, and 16 deaths today, reports ANI. The overall cases in the city are 2,71,525 and the toll is 10,612.
9.37 pm: Assam’s tally stands at 2,10,865, and toll at 969, reports ANI.
9.35 pm: With 3,668 new coronavirus cases, West Bengal’s case count rises to 4,41,885. The toll goes up by 54 to 7,820, reports ANI.
8.31 pm: Odisha Assembly Speaker SN Patro says the 40-day winter session of the House will begin on November 20 and sit for truncated hours in view of the coronavirus pandemic, reports NDTV. Patro adds that there would be no Question Hour.
8.29 pm: Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan says the government took a three-pronged approach to tackle the coronavirus, reports NDTV. A “whole of society and whole of government approach” with strong leadership, communication and decisions based on science was undertaken by the government, Bhushan says at the inaugural session at Asia Health 2020 organised by the Confederation of Indian Industry.
8.26 pm: Telangana government reduces RT-PCR testing rates for private labs from Rs 2,000 to Rs 850 when the samples are collected at the lab, The Times of India reports. The price when samples are collecting at home is reduced from Rs 2,600 to 1,200.
8.20 pm: The coronavirus tally in Gujarat rises to 1,91,642 with 1,282 new Covid-19 infections, reports ANI. The overall tally includes 1,75,362 recoveries, 3,823 deaths and 12,457 fatalities.
8.18 pm: Manipur registers 110 new coronavirus cases, 194 recoveries and 6 deaths on Wednesday, reports ANI. The tally in the state is now 22,318, including 19,259 recoveries, 2,828 active cases and 231 deaths.
8.16 pm: Haryana reports 2,562 new Covid-19 cases, pushing the tally in the state to 2,07,039, according to ANI. The overall tally includes 1,85,403 discharges, 2,093 fatalities and 19,543 active cases.
8.13 pm: Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik says people above 60 years, pregnant women and health workers will be given priority during the vaccination process in the state, reports ANI.
8.11 pm: The coronavirus tally in Maharashtra rises to 17,57,520 after the state reports 5,011 fresh infections, reports PTI. With 100 fatalities, the toll climbs to 46,202. There are 80,221 actives cases and 16,30,111 recoveries in the state.
8.08 pm: Goa registers 162 new Covid-19 infections, pushing the tally in the state to 46,344, reports PTI. The toll climbs to 670 after 3 more people die. There are 1,364 active cases and 44,310 recoveries in the state.
5.48 pm: Pharmaceutical company Pfizer says its experimental Covid-19 vaccine was found to be 95% effective in the late-stage trials with no side effects, reports The New York Times. The company says it is planning to seek a regulatory approval from United States Food and Drug Administration within days.
5.42 pm: The European Medicines Agency says that pharmaceutical company Pfizer and biotechnology company BioNTech have submitted data from a large-scale trial of their potential Covid-19 vaccine for the agency’s rolling review, but have not yet applied for approval, reports Reuters.
5.41 pm: Several thousand people gather in central Berlin to protest against German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s plans to give her government powers to enforce restrictions to curb the spread of the coronavirus, according to Reuters.
5.37 pm: A sero survey in Kashmir shows that that two out of every five people in the valley have developed antibodies against the coronavirus, report PTI. The survey, conducted in October, finds that the highest prevalence of antibodies us in Pulwama at 43.1% and the lowest in Kulgam at 28.5%.
5.34 pm: Seventy-two students from 12 government colleges in Rewari, Harayana, test positive for the coronavirus, reports ANI. “Due to the festive season, there is movement and people are meeting each other so we tested students of 12 schools,” says the nodal officer. “We will continue testing students to curb Covid-19 spread.”
5.29 pm: Delhi Chief Minister says Arvind Kejriwal that he believes over 600 intensive care unit beds will be added in hospitals in the next few days, reports ANI. Kejriwal adds that the Centre has assured to provide 750 beds more beds at the Defence Research and Development Organisation facility.
5.23 pm: Gujarat Additional Chief Secretary Rajiv Kumar Gupta says there is no need to panic even though coronavirus cases are rising in Ahmedabad as 40% beds in Covid-19 hospitals are unoccupied, reports PTI. Ahmedabad registered 218 cases on Tuesday.
2.22 pm: Karnataka Health Minister Sudhakar K says that Bengaluru’s coronavirus case fatality rate of 1.1% is the lowest among all major cities in the country, PTI reports.
2.20 pm: Puducherry records 56 new coronavirus cases on Wednesday, taking the tally of infections in the Union Territory to 36,465, ANI reports.
2.18 pm: ANI visuals of the Gautam Buddh Nagar administration officials conducting random coronavirus tests on people coming from Delhi.
1.24 pm: The Delhi High Court refuses to grant permission to carry out Chhath puja celebrations near water bodies such as ponds and riverbanks, PTI reports.
1.20 pm: The Centre also constitutes 10 multi-disciplinary teams to visit more than 100 private hospitals in Delhi for assessing bed utilisation and testing capacity, and to identify extra ICU beds, the home ministry adds. Besides, a total of 45 doctors, 160 para-medics from paramilitary forces have reached Delhi for Cocid-19 duty, it says.
1.18 pm: The Ministry of Home Affairs says the the Defence Research and Development Organisation will add 250 intensive care unit beds and create 35 BIPAP beds to its Covid hospital near the Delhi airport in the next three to four days, ANI reports. The decision was taken following a meeting between Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and Home Minister Amit Shah.
1.13 pm: South Australia announces a six-day “circuit-breaker” lockdown on Wednesday to contain a sudden surge in Covid-19 infections in the state, ending a months-long streak of no new cases, AFP reports. Schools, shops, pubs, factories and even takeaway restaurants were told to close at midnight and stay-at-home orders were issued for residents across the state. The state is the first in Australia to issue a blanket ban on outdoor exercise.
1.11 pm: No new coronavirus-related deaths were reported in Puducherry for the fifth consecutive day on Wednesday, reports PTI.
1.09 pm: Meghalaya Education Minister Lahkmen Rymbui announces that the state school board has decided not to hold selection tests for students scheduled to write Class 10 and Class 12 examinations next year, due to the coronavirus pandemic, PTI reports.
1.07 pm: Odisha’s tally of coronavirus cases rises to 3,10,920 on Wednesday, as 868 more people tested positive for the infection, PTI reports.
1.05 pm: The Delhi government has no intentions of imposing another lockdown, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia tells ANI. “We believe that a lockdown is not the solution in the fight against Covid-19,” he adds. “The solution is better hospital management and better medical systems.”
12.52 pm: The Delhi government brings down the upper limit of guests allowed at weddings from 200 to 50, amid a surge in coronavirus cases, NDTV reports.
12.30 pm: Haryana Health Minister Anil Vij offers to be the first volunteer of the phase three trial of Bharat Biotech’s vaccine candidate. The trial in Haryana is set to begin on Friday.
11.13 am: Arunachal Pradesh registers more recoveries than new cases for the fourth consecutive day on Wednesday, PTI reports. The state’s new cases stood at 36, while the recoveries were 56. Its tally rose to 15,904.
11.11 am: Karnataka Health Minister Sudhakar K claims Bengaluru’s Covid-19 death rate (1.1%) is the lowest among all major cities in India, PTI reports.
11.08 am: The preliminary trial results of Chinese firm Sinovac Biotech’s experimental vaccine show that it triggered a quick immune response in participants, Reuters reports. The level of antibodies, however, was lower in people who had recovered from the infection.
11.04 am: The United States Food and Drug Administration approves the first COVID-19 self-testing kit for home use, Reuters reports. The test kit gives results within 30 minutes.
9.34 am: India records 38,617 new coronavirus cases taking the country’s total to 89,12,907 on Wednesday, data from the health ministry showed. The toll rises to 1,30,993 with 474 more deaths. The number of active cases stood at 4,46,805. As many as 83,35,109 people have recovered from the disease so far.
8.42 am: New cases reported in states on Tuesday, according to PTI:
West Bengal: 3,654 new cases, tally rises to 4,38,217; toll at 7,766.
Odisha: 644 new cases, tally rises to 3,10,052; toll at 1,560.
Sikkim: 27 new cases, tally rises to 4,548; toll at to 92.
8.41 am: Russian President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday suggested that the Sputnik V vaccine against the coronavirus could be produced in China and India, according to PTI.
8.38 am: The Centre says it is examining the possibility of obtaining the Pfizer coronavirus vaccine despite the challenges of making arrangements to store it at a temperature of minus 70 degrees Celsius, PTI reports.
8.29 am: People coming from Delhi to Noida will be randomly tested for Covid-19 from Wednesday, PTI reports. The decision came amid a surge in coronavirus cases in the Capital.
“The teams will randomly select commuters coming in from Delhi and test them through rapid antigen method,” Gautam Budh Nagar District Magistrate Suhas LY is quoted as saying by the Hindustan Times. “The traffic between Delhi and Noida would continue to be normal and it is reiterated that only a few randomly selected commuters shall be tested and not all of those entering the city.”
8.25 am: Here are the top updates from Tuesday
- India recorded 29,163 new coronavirus cases – the lowest in over four months – taking the country’s total to 88,45,127 on Tuesday data from the health ministry showed. The toll rose to 1,30,519 with 449 more deaths. The number of active cases stood at 4,53,401. As many as 82,90,370 people have recovered from the disease so far.
- The union health ministry on Tuesday listed the actions taken by the Centre to tackle the coronavirus situation in Delhi. These include increasing the number of all beds and doubling the tests conducted daily to 1-1.2 lakh.
- Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Tuesday said his government has sent a proposal to Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal to consider allowing only 50 people to attend wedding functions against the earlier limit of 200. A proposal has also been sent to the Centre, to allow the Delhi government to impose lockdown in market areas which may emerge as hotspots, he said.
- United States President-Elect Joe Biden on Monday warned that more Americans would die if incumbent President Donald Trump does not coordinate with his team to tackle the coronavirus. “A vaccine is important,” Biden said in Wilmington, Delaware. “It’s of little use until you’re vaccinated. So, how do we get the vaccine, how do we get over 300 million Americans vaccinated? What’s the game plan?”
- The Supreme Court on Tuesday said it was “dissatisfied and disappointed” by the affidavit filed by the central government in a case related to the media reportage of members of the Tablighi Jamaat who were blamed for a surge in coronavirus cases, triggering a wave of violence and hate speech toward Muslims.
- The Supreme Court on Tuesday dismissed a petition asking the Central Board of Secondary Education and the Delhi government to waive off examination fees for class 10 and 12 students, in view of the coronavirus crisis.
- Globally, the coronavirus has infected more than 5.49 crore people and killed more than 13 lakh, according to the Johns Hopkins University.