10.27 pm: Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik says the second wave still active in certain some coastal districts, reports PTI. He adds that the state cannot relax at this juncture.

10.23 pm: Chhattisgarh registers 317 new 19 cases, eight deaths.

9.54 pm: Here are a few daily Covid-19 figures of a few places

  • Haryana: 102 new cases, 19 deaths and 253 recoveries
  • Chandigarh: 19 new cases and 42 discharges 

9.41 pm: Maharashtra records a grim milestone as Covid-19 cases tally in the state cross 60-lakh mark, reports PTI. The caseload stands at 60,07,431 after the state registers 9,844 new coronavirus cases in the last 24 hours. With 197 deaths, the toll climbs to 1,19,859.

9.06 pm: Gujarat Chief Minister’s Office says that Covid-19 restrictions, including night curfew, will continue in eight municipal corporation areas of the state and 18 cities, including Vapi, Ankleshwar, Mehsana, and Gandhinagar, reports ANI. Night curfew in these 18 cities has been reduced by 1 hour from 10 pm to 8 am.

9.05 pm: Karnataka Deputy Chief Minister CN Ashwathnarayan says that Covid-19 vaccination camps will be arranged on college premises in order to ensure inoculation of students, teaching, and non-teaching staff, reported The Indian Express. He adds that it would help in resuming offline classes in the state.

9.02 pm: Gurugram Health Department says that over 70% of residents of the city have been administered at least the first shot of vaccine against the coronavirus, reports The Indian Express. The department says that the remaining population will be inoculated within the next two months.

8.59 pm: Seven zoos in Karnataka reopen to help tackle the financial crunch due to the coronavirus pandemic, reports The Indian Express. These are located in Hampi, Belagavi, Gadag, Shivamogga, Chitradurga, Kalaburagi and Davangere. However, the zoos in Bengaluru and Mysuru remain closed.

8.56 pm: The Mumbai Police file the sixth and seventh first information reports in the fake vaccine case, reports ANI. The sixth FIR is related to the fake vaccines being administered at unauthorised immunisation centres at the Bangur Nagar branch of the Bank of Baroda. The seventh FIR is related to to the drive at a private organisation in Borivali, where 514 people were vaccinated.

8.55 pm: Punjab registers 382 new cases of the coronavirus, 20 deaths and 715 discharges in the last 24 hours, reports ANI.

8.54 pm: Manipur records 549 new Covid-19 cases, 655 recoveries and 11 deaths, reports ANI.

8.52 pm: Union Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare Ashwini Kumar Choubey and his wife Neeta Choubey receive the second dose of the coronavirus at All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi.

9.48 pm: Delhi reports 109 new Covid-19 cases, pushing the infection tally in the national Capital to 14,33,475. With eight deaths, the toll climbs to 24,948. The positivity rate stands at 0.14%.

6 pm: Maharashtra Secretariat says that Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray has directed the health department to make plans for all districts to tackle the possible third wave of the coronavirus, reports ANI. Thackeray spoke with the collectors of Raigad, Ratnagiri, Sindhudurg, Satara, Sangli, Kolhapur and Hingoli districts. Health Minister Rajesh Tope was also present at the meeting.

5.54 pm: Karnataka Deputy Chief Minister Dr CN Ashwathnarayan says that schools and colleges in the state are closed currently and a decision will be taken on reopening based on the coronavirus vaccination drive for people above 18 years, reports.

5.16 pm: Jharkhand registers 139 new cases, two deaths in the last 24 hours.

5.12 pm: Mumbai Police file the fifth FIR against an unauthorised vaccination drive conducted on May 28 for 207 staffers of Poddar Center in Parel.

5.02 pm: The Supreme Court says the state boards are free to have their own assessment scheme for Class 12 students, reports Live Law. However, the court insists that it be notified within 10 days and results should be announced by July 31.

4.22 pm: The All India Institute of Medical Sciences in Rishikesh is imparting training to its nursing staff and creating a separate 100-bed Covid-19 ward for children in view of the possibility of the third wave of the coronavirus, reports The Times of India.

“With experts warning that the third wave may affect children more than others, we are leaving nothing to chance,” AIIMS Director Ravi Kant says.

4.17 pm: The Union health ministry says that media reports alleging non-transparent allocation of Covid-19 vaccines to states are “without any basis and not fully informed”.

“It is clarified that Government of India continues to allocate Covid-19 vaccines to States/UTs in a transparent manner,” it adds.

4.13 pm: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee writes to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, seeking his intervention in Covaxin getting emergency use listing from the World Health Organization, reports ANI.

4.09 pm: Andhra Pradesh records 4,981 new Covid-19 cases, 38 deaths and 6,464 recoveries in the last 24 hours, reports ANI.

2.19 pm: A single dose of Pfizer or AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine offers around 60% protection against infection from coronavirus in adults aged 65 years and above, PTI reports quoting a study published in medical journal Lancet.

2.17 pm: As many as 2,053 people have been given fake Covid-19 vaccines, Mumbai Police tells Bombay High Court. Four First Information Reports have been registered on the matter, reports The Indian Express.

2.14 pm: Top Maoist commander Haribhushan dies of Covid-19, ANI reports, quoting Chhatisgarh Police.

1.26 pm: Congress leader Sonia Gandhi asks the party’s general secretaries to raise awareness amid hesitancy to get vaccinated against Covid-19, reports PTI.

“At the same time, we [the Congress] have to ensure that registration takes place, that vaccine hesitancy wherever evident is overcome and vaccine wastage is minimised,” Gandhi says in an address to party leaders.

1.23 pm: The Mumbai Police tell the Bombay High Court that over 2,000 people received fake vaccinations at different camps in the city’s Kandivali, Borivali, Khar, Versova and Parel areas, reports The Indian Express. Four first information reports have been registered till now and 400 witness statements have been recorded.

12.28 pm: Madhya Pradesh reports first death of a patient identified with the Delta plus variant of Covid-19, reports The Indian Express.

12.26 pm: Supreme Court directs all state examination boards to notify the scheme for assessment for Class 12 exams within 10 days and declare the board results by July 31, reports ANI.

12.07 pm: Supreme Court criticises Andhra Pradesh government’s decision to hold in-session Class 12 exams next month, despite the centre and other states cancelling them because of the coronavirus pandemic, reports NDTV.

“If there is even one fatality we may order compensation amounting to Rs 1 crore,” says court.

10.05 am An official from Brazil’s health ministry says he informed President Jair Bolsonaro about being pressurised to buy Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin, Reuters reports.

Federal prosecutors have begun an investigation into alleged irregularities in the government’s contract with Bharat Biotech to buy 20 million or 2 crore doses of the vaccine.

10 am: Flights from Indonesia will not be allowed to enter Hong Kong from Friday, Reuters reports. The number of imported cases from Indonesia has went past the limit set by Hong Kong.

9.55 am: After an inspection, the World Health Organization flags concerns related to data integrity, quality control and testing at a facility manufacturing Sputnik V vaccine in Ufa in Russia, AFP reports.

9.49 am: Bharatiya Janata Party MPs walked out of a parliamentary panel meeting on vaccination on Wednesday as opposition leaders raised questions about the Centre’s inoculation policy, say reports.

9.46 am: The Assam government asks its departments to find out if frontline employees are vaccinated before paying them salaries from June, NDTV reports.

9.30 am: India reports 54,069 new coronavirus cases, taking the total number of infections since the outbreak of the pandemic to 3,00,82,778. The country’s toll rises by 1,321 to 3,91,981.

India’s tally of active cases stands at 6,27,057, while the number of recoveries reach 2,90,63,740.

Source: Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

9.20 am: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee says her government would prioritise vaccinating women who have children younger than 12 years old, PTI reports. There have been concerns that children might be affected more in the possible third wave of the pandemic, even though some studies have said that might not be the case.

9.10 am: Health Ministry Joint Secretary Lav Agarwal says if containment strategies and Covid-appropriate behaviour are followed, the impact of the possible third wave of infections will be less and there won’t be a strain on the health infrastructure, PTI reports.

9 am: India tested more than 18.59 lakh samples for Covid-19 on Wednesday.

8.50 am: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee urged the Union government on Wednesday to immediately take steps to ensure that people vaccinated with Covaxin are not restricted from travelling to foreign countries, reports PTI.

8.40 am: Dr Anurag Agarwal, Director of the Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology, said that there was no evidence to suggest that the Delta variant will cause the possible third coronavirus wave, reports NDTV. He, however, cautioned against lowering guard on the pandemic.

Around 40 cases of the Delta plus variant of the coronavirus have been found in Maharashtra, Kerala and Madhya Pradesh, the Union health ministry has said. Besides these states, Karnataka also recorded its first case of the variant on Wednesday.

8.30 am: Globally, the coronavirus disease has infected over 17.95 crore people and killed more than 38.90 lakh since the pandemic broke out in December 2019, according to Johns Hopkins University.

Here are the top updates from Wednesday:

  1. The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control said that the Delta variant could account for 90% of new Covid-19 cases in the European Union by August-end.
  2. India reached a grim milestone on Wednesday as the total number of coronavirus cases in the country crossed the three-crore mark. Since the pandemic began in January 2020, India has recorded 3,00,28,709 infections..
  3. Kerala has reported about 14,372 excess deaths between January 1 and May 31 when compared to the same period between 2015 and 2019. A review of the monthly break-up showed that the excess deaths in Kerala were mostly reported in May.
  4. Vaccines made by pharmaceutical companies AstraZeneca and Pfizer are effective against Delta and Kappa variants, first discovered in India, a study by Oxford University showed.
  5. Yoga guru Ramdev approached the Supreme Court for a stay on the proceedings related to the first information reports filed against him in multiple states for his comments on modern medicine.
  6. Maharashtra reported over 10,000 new cases for the first time since June 16. State Health Minister Rajesh Tope expressed concern over statewide daily cases not remaining below 8,000 on a consistent basis.