10.45 pm: Maharashtra records 9,798 new coronavirus cases, 14,347 recoveries and 198 deaths, reports ANI.

10.41 pm: Chandigarh reports 39 new cases, two deaths and 47 recoveries, reports ANI. The total number of active cases in the Union Territory is 431.

10.38 pm: Karnataka reports 5,783 new Covid-19 cases and 168 fatalities, pushing the overall number of infections to 27.96 lakh and the toll to 33,602, reports PTI.

10.30 pm: The Assam government has cancelled this year’s class 10 and 12 state board exams due to the prevailing Covid-19 situation, Education Minister Ranoj Pegu says, according to PTI.

9.12 pm: The World Health Organization accepts Bharat Biotech’s Expression of Interest for its Covid-19 vaccine, Covaxin, and schedules a pre-submission meeting on June 23. The meeting will not be a detailed review on the vaccine but the manufacturer will be able to put forth a summary on the overall quality of the dose, reports The Indian Express.

6.41 pm: Delhi reports 165 new coronavirus cases, pushing the infection tally in the national Capital to 14,32,033 since the pandemic broke out in January. With 14 deaths, the toll climbs to 24,900. The positivity rate stands at 0.22%.

6.39 pm: Goa registers 315 new coronavirus infections, six deaths and 534 recoveries, reports ANI.

6.36 pm: Union health ministry says that the Union government has provided 27,90,66,230 Covid-19 vaccine doses to states and Union Territories so far, through its free of cost channel and direct state procurement category. It says that states and Union Territories have 2,58,00,405 doses with them.

The ministry adds that the total vaccine wastage as of 8 am in the day was 25,32,65,825 shots.

6.33 pm: The Chandigarh administration lifts Sunday lockdown, reports News18. “Night curfew will be from 10:30 pm to 5:00 am,” the administration says. “Sukhna Lake will remain closed except from 5:00 am to 9:00 am and 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm on Sunday.”

6.32 pm: Andhra Pradesh records 6,341 new Covid-19 cases, 57 deaths and 8,486 recoveries, reports ANI. There are 67,629 and the overall infection counts stands at 18,39,243.

6.30 pm: The Uttarakhand government constitutes a seven-member special investigation team to investigate the alleged fake Covid-19 testing during the Kumbh Mela in Haridwar, reports ANI.

6.27 pm: Uttarakhand registers 222 new coronavirus cases, four deaths and 451 recoveries, reports ANI.

4.44 pm: A WHO-AIIMS survey shows seropositivity in those below and above 18 is almost equal. “In persons above 18, the seropositivity rate is 67% and 59% in persons below 18,” Paul adds, according to ANI. “In urban areas, it is 78% in persons below 18 and 79% in above 18.”

4.33 pm: “Studies show that chances of hospitalisation are 75 to 80% less among vaccinated individuals,” says NITI Aayog (Health) member VK Paul, ANI reports.

“The possibility of such individuals needing oxygen support is around 8% and the risk of ICU [intensive care unit] admission is only 6% in vaccinated persons.”

4.24 pm: India has seen a consistent increase in recovery rate observed since May 3 when it was 81.8% to 96% as on date, says the Union health ministry.

4.19 pm: Union Health Ministry Joint Secretary Luv Aggarwal says that India has been witnessing an increase in the Covid-19 recovery rate since May 3, reports ANI.

“We are seeing a downward trend in active cases,” he says. “Between June 11 to June 17, the overall positivity case was less than 5% in 513 districts.”

4.18 pm: The central government is holding a briefing on India’s coronavirus situation.

3.57 pm: Sprint icon Milkha Singh’s health deteriorates, barely two days after he was moved out of the Covid intensive care unit at Chandigarh’s Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, say reports.

3.53 pm: The third wave of the coronavirus pandemic is likely to hit India by October, but it will be better controlled than the second wave, according to Reuters’ poll of medical experts.

3.49 pm: People have started taking Covid-appropriate behaviour lightly after the rollout of vaccines, Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan says, according to ANI. “We have started the unlocking process but we still need to remain cautious and follow all Covid protocols properly,” he adds.

3.48 pm: Tripura extends Covid-19 curfew in 12 areas falling under the Agartala civic body till June 25, The Indian Express reports.

3.45 pm: Bharat Biotech’s pre-submission meeting with the World Health Organization for the emergency-use listing of Covaxin is scheduled on June 23, PTI reports.

3.31 pm: The Andhra Pradesh government extends the partial Covid-19 lockdown till June 30, but allows certain relaxations, the Hindustan Times reports.

From Monday, curfew in the state will be eased from 6am to 6pm every day. At present, the relaxation in curfew is from 6am to 1pm, with an hour-long grace period of for people to return home.

1.55 pm: Odisha reports 3,806 new coronavirus cases, taking its tally since the pandemic broke out in January 2020 to 8,70,498. The toll rises by 37 to 3,508.

1.45 pm: The Supreme Court refuses to direct the medical universities to cancel or postpone the final year Post Graduate exams as many doctors are engaged in coronavirus duty, reports PTI.

A vacation bench of Justices Indira Banerjee and MR Shah say the court cannot pass any general order in the case.

1.09 pm: The prime minister adds: “In the second wave of coronavirus, we saw what kind of challenges the ever-changing nature of this virus can bring before us. This virus is still among us and there is a possibility of it mutating.”

1.07 pm: Prime Minister Narendra Modi launches a customised crash course programme to upskill more than 1 lakh frontline workers.

12 pm: The Delhi High Court directs the Centre and Arvind Kejriwal-led government to take strict measures to enforce Covid-19 protocols and hold meetings with shopkeepers.

“We have paid a huge price in the second wave,” a vacation bench of Justices Navin Chawla and Asha Menon says. “We don’t know if there is any household which has not suffered in the second wave, closely or remotely.”

11.53 am: The Delhi High Court takes note of the violation of Covid-19 protocols in Delhi’s markets after the easing of restrictions and notes that such breaches will only speed up the third wave of the pandemic, PTI reports.

10.38 am: India says the discussions about “vaccine passports’” for international travel need to consider the matter of vaccine equity, since many developing countries haven’t been able to immunise a large chunk of their population, PTI reports.

10.37 am: The United Kingdom records more than 10,000 coronavirus cases on Thursday for the first time since February 19, the AP reports. The country is dealing with a surge in cases of the Delta variant.

10.34 am: The United States delivers 1 million or 10 lakh Covid-19 vaccine doses to Canada, Reuters reports.

9.25 am: Around 3.5 lakh doctors of the Indian Medical Association will take part in a demonstration on Friday to demand a central law to end violence against health workers, PTI reports.

9.16 am: Former United States President Donald Trump demands that China pay $10 trillion to the US for allegedly being responsible for the spread of Covid-19, PTI reports.

“Our country was hit so hard,” he says. “But other countries were hit much harder. Look at what’s going on in India now. You know, they used to say, look how well India was doing, because they were always looking for an excuse – look how well India is doing. The fact that India has just been devastated now, and virtually, every country has been devastated.”

9.12 am: India reports 62,480 new coronavirus cases on Friday, taking its overall count of infections since the pandemic broke out in January 2020 to 2,97,62,793.

The country’s deaths rise by 1,587 to 3,83,490. The number of deaths is the lowest in two months, according to PTI. Active cases fall below 8 lakh.

Source: Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

9.10 am: The Serum Institute of India is likely to start clinical trials of its Covid-19 vaccine candidate, Novavax, on children in July, The Indian Express reports.

9.07 am: Children are unlikely to be affected disproportionately should a third wave of the coronavirus pandemic hit India, interim findings of an ongoing sero survey has shown. The study is yet to be peer reviewed but was shared on medRxiv, an online portal for unpublished reports on medical sciences.

Read more here:

Third Covid wave unlikely to affect children more than adults, shows ongoing AIIMS-WHO study

9.05 am: Here are the top updates from Thursday:

  1. The Russian Direct Investment Fund said that it will offer a booster or second dose of Sputnik V to other vaccine manufacturers. The shot has been adjusted to work against the Delta variant of the coronavirus disease.
  2. India recorded 67,208 new coronavirus cases, taking its overall tally to 2,97,00,313 since the pandemic broke out in January 2020. The new cases are 8% higher than Wednesday’s count. The toll rose by 2,330 to 3,81,903. The number of active cases stood at 8,26,740.
  3. The Central Board of Secondary Education informed the Supreme Court about its assessment criteria for Class 12 students and said it would declare the results by July 31. The board exams were cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic.
  4. The police in Chhattisgarh’s Raipur filed a first information report against yoga guru Ramdev for allegedly spreading false information about the medicines being used to treat Covid-19
  5. The Uttarakhand government directed the Haridwar district authorities to register cases against private laboratories that allegedly conducted fake coronavirus tests during the Kumbh Mela in April.