11.09 pm: The health ministry issues a set of guidelines for inoculation of pregnant women.

9.25 pm: Congress leader Rahul Gandhi demands that the government use a small portion tax levied on petrol and diesel to compensate Covid-affected families.

9.23 pm: Mumbai reports 608 new coronavirus cases and 18 deaths on Monday.

9.18 pm: Maharashtra has seen an 8.10% increase in cases of mucormycosis or “black fungus” since June 6, NDTV reports. The state had 7,998 cases till June 6 and the number has now gone up to 8,646. Deaths due to infection have risen by 13.58% during the same period.

9.12 pm: Gujarat reports 96 cases and three deaths on Monday, according to PTI. The state’s daily count of cases is below 100 for the first time after 14 months.

9.03 pm: Delhi reports 59 new Covid-19 cases on Monday, taking its total number of infections since the outbreak of the pandemic in January 2020 to 14,33,993. The is the lowest number of cases Delhi has reported this year, according to PTI. The city’s toll rises by two to 24,967. Its positivity rate reduces to 0.10%.

8.38 pm: Tamil Nadu records 4,804 new coronavirus cases, 6,553 recoveries and 98 deaths in the last 24 hours, reports ANI.

8.33 pm: Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla says that the coronavirus pandemic has negatively affected children in areas with armed conflicts, including hampering access to education, health & social services, reports ANI. Speaking at a United Nations Security Council open debate on children and armed conflict, Shringla says that countries should keep child protection concerns at the core of their pandemic response measures.

“Children are the most susceptible to manipulation,” he says. “School closures have provided an even greater opportunity to the terror groups to target children through online avenues, for radicalisation and indoctrination in violent extremist ideologies.”

The health secretary adds that there is a need for a more coordinated approach in implementing child protection and counter-terrorism agendas.

8.30 pm: Karnataka Health Minister K Sudhakar says the state government had made computerised tomography (CT) scan and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan to diagnose black fungus infection free at government hospitals and medical colleges. Sudhakar adds that the price for the scans have been capped at private hospitals and laboratories.

8.27 pm: Bihar Education Minister Vijay Kumar Choudhary says that if the Covid-19 situation continues to improve at the same pace as it was now, his department was mulling opening educational institutions in a phased manner, reports ANI.

“In the first phase we’ll open universities, in the second phase, we’ll open secondary & higher secondary schools, in the third phase, we’ll open primary & middle schools,” Choudhary says. “But final decision will be taken only after assessing the situation at that time.”

8.25 pm: Telangana records 993 new coronavirus cases, 1,417 recoveries and nine deaths in the last 24 hours, reports ANI. The active cases tally stands at 13,869 and the toll is 3,644.

6.28 pm: There are 48 cases of the “Delta plus” variant in 12 states of India, the Centre says. It adds that the strain is very localised.

6.25 pm: Karnataka has two cases of the “Delta plus” variant of Covid-19, the state’s health minister K Sudhakar says, according to ANI.

6.23 pm: Kerala reports 8,063 new coronavirus cases and 110 deaths on Monday, according to ANI.

6.20 pm: More than 51% children in Mumbai have antibodies against Covid-19, shows a serological survey done between April 1 and June 15, NDTV reports.

5.16 pm: Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant says that the Covid-19 positivity rate is declining in the state, reports ANI. “I am sure that by July end, 100% first dose coverage will be done,” he adds. “Those who have taken both the shots of Covid-19 vaccine will be allowed to enter Goa.”

5.13 pm: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee says that salons and beauty parlours have been permitted to open from 11 am till 6 pm with 50% seating capacity provided staff has been vaccinated, reports ANI.

Gyms can also operate at half its capacity. Banerjee adds that Private and corporates offices can remain open from 10am to 4 pm with 50% working capacity.

5.11 pm: Arun Kumar, the medical director of Jay Prabha Medanta Hospital in Patna, says that the medical facility had ordered 600 doses of Sputnik V and the stock ran out in less than three days, reports ANI. “We have ordered another 2,000-3,000 doses,” he adds.

5.09 pm: Andhra Pradesh records 2,224 new coronavirus cases, 4,174 recoveries and 31 deaths in the last 24 hours, reports ANI.

4.59 pm: West Bengal government announces extension of coronavirus-induced restrictions in the state till July 15 with some relaxations, reports PTI. The government has allowed public buses to operate with 50% capacity.

3.42 pm: Finance ministry announces financial support for registered tourist guides and other stakeholders involved in the travel and tourism sector.

Under the new scheme, travel and tourism stakeholders, or TTS, recognised by the tourism ministry will be eligible to take loans of up to Rs 10 lakh. Meanwhile, tourist guides can avail loans of up to Rs 1 lakh.

3.32 pm: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announces fresh disbursal of Rs 1.5 lakh crore under the Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme through banks. This is the third tranche of disbursal under the scheme, which was first announced as part of the Atmanirbhar Bharat initiative.

3.28 pm: Centre announces a new credit guarantee scheme to 25 lakh persons through micro-finance institutions. Interest rates for these loans will be capped at 2% plus Marginal Cost Lending Rate, or MCLR, of banks.

The maximum tenure of the loans will be three years, announces Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman.

3.18 pm: The finance ministry announces Rs 1.1 lakh crore loan guarantee scheme for sectors affected by pandemic. Of the total allocation, Rs 50,000 crore will be earmarked for health sector guarantee coverage for medical infrastructure in non-metro cities.

3.11 pm: Supreme Court refuses to entertain a plea seeking directions for proper disposal of bodies of those who died of Covid-19, Live Law reports. The court, however, takes note of incidents of bodies floating in the Ganga river and says it is a “serious problem”. The court also grants liberty to the petitioner to approach the National Human Rights Commission on the matter.

2.10 pm: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin writes to Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan to increase allocation of vaccines.

1.23 pm: Prime Minister Narendra Modi says that India’s vaccination drive keeps gaining momentum, after the country overtakes the United States in terms of vaccine doses administered. “Congrats to all those who are driving this effort,” he tweets. “Our commitment remains vaccines for all, free for all.”

1.22 pm: Dr Reddy’s Laboratories announces the commercial launch of anti-Covid drug 2DG, developed by Defence Research and Development Organisation, reports the Hindustan Times.

1.19 pm: Odisha Health Minister Naba Kisore Das writes to Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan to provide 6 lakh additional Covid-19 vaccine doses immediately for the state, saying that “an average of 3 lakh people have been vaccinated per day since June 21,” reports ANI.

1.17 pm: Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan says that India has overtaken the United States in terms of Covid-19 vaccine doses administered, reported ANI. India has so far given 32,36,63,297 vaccine shots, he adds.

1.12 pm: Guleria says that India’s public health policy has been designed to provide a standard of care as a package to the population up to the primary health level, reports ANI. “The basic aim is to have equitable access to healthcare even in rural/remote areas of the country for everyone who needs it,” .he says.

The AIIMS chief calls for changing the public health system with changing times. “One of the steps was Ayushman Bharat-PMJAY [Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana] which has made a huge difference as far as health care is concerned,” he adds.

1.10 pm: All India Institute Of Medical Sciences chief Dr Randeep Guleria says it is important to strengthen the public health system in view of the possibility of the third wave and new variants of Covid-19 such as Delta Plus, reports ANI.

“This is important not because of the current pandemic situation but because of what last 15 years have shown us that for the future, we will have to be prepared for ongoing outbreaks and pandemics,” Guleria adds.

12.12 pm: Mizoram’s tally rises to 19,455 with 131 fresh infections in the last 24 hours.

12.09 pm: The Supreme Court pays tribute to 77 advocates of the court lawyers’ body who lost their lives due to coronavirus.

12.08 pm: Arunachal reports 165 new cases, taking the state’s tally to 34,932.

12.07 pm: Maharashtra implements tighter restrictions in cities like Nagpur, Thane and Pune amid fears of a third wave, reports PTI. Under “level-3” restrictions, all essential shops will be allowed to remain open only till 4 pm on all days. Non-essential shops and establishments can remain open till 4 pm only on weekdays.

11.57 am: The Uttarakhand government extends the coronavirus curfew by one week with some relaxations, reports ANI. Gyms will be allowed to operate at 50% capacity while markets will remain open for six days.

11.21 am: Serum Institute of India chief Adar Poonawalla says he has taken up the matter of “vaccine passport” for Covishield beneficiaries travelling to Europe at the “highest level”.

His comment came after reports suggested that those who took the Covishield jab may not be eligible for the European Union’s “Green Pass”, which is an immunity document, that is meant to ease travel within and to the bloc.

10.21 am: Saudi Arabia will start vaccinating young people between 12 and 18 years with the Pfizer-BioNtech Covid-19 vaccine, reports Reuters.

10.19 am: India has administered 17,21,268 Covid-19 vaccine doses on Sunday alone.

10.18 am: The Centre has informed the Supreme Court that the government is making efforts at the highest political and diplomatic levels to procure foreign Covid-19 vaccines, reports IANS.

10.16 am: The Bhutan government has sought help from India amid a ban on export of Covid-19 vaccine, reports The Hindu.

10.13 am: Indian drug firm Bharat Biotech is yet to begin supply for a batch of Covid-19 vaccines for its May order, according to an affidavit filed in the Supreme Court, reports The Hindu.

10.12 am: Australia’s Covid-19 response panel is due to hold an emergency meeting today as outbreaks of the Delta variant have been reported across the country, reports Reuters.

10.08 am: Out of the 2.9 lakh Covid-19 patients in Mumbai surveyed by the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation from January 1 to June 17, only 26 have contracted the virus after receiving the second vaccine dose and 10,500 after the first dose, reports The Indian Express. The survey was done to ascertain figures of infection after vaccination.

10.05 am: Health experts have cautioned authorities to ensure strong surveillance on four emerging variants of Covid-19 apart from the Delta plus strain, reports The Times of India.

10.01 am: The primary accused that set up Kolkata’s unauthorised Covid-19 vaccination camps in which beneficiaries were given fake vaccines has said that he had written to a pharmaceutical company for shots, reports The Indian Express. The police are now verifying his claim.

9.54 am: India has surpassed the United States in the Covid-19 vaccine doses administered so far. India has administered 32,36,63,297 shots till Monday morning and the US has given 32,33,27,328 shots.

9.25 am: India’s active cases constitute 1.89% of it’s total cases, according to the Union health ministry.

9.20 am: India reports 46,148 new Covid-19 cases in the last 24 hours, pushing the overall tally to 3.02 crore. This is 7.7% lower than Sunday’s figures, when the country recorded 50,040 new infections. Meanwhile, the toll rises by 919 to 3,96,730.

9.15 am: Mizoram reports 233 new Covid-19 cases, pushing the total cases to 19,324, reports ANI. The active cases stand at 4,370.

Here are the top updates from Sunday:

  • India recorded 50,040 new coronavirus cases, pushing the infection tally in the country to 3,02,33,183 since the pandemic broke out in January last year. The toll climbed to 3,95,751 after 1,258 citizens died of the infection in the last 24 hours.
  • Kerala reported 10,905 new coronavirus infections over the past 24 hours, taking the tally in the state to 28,88,894. Kerala was the only state to have added more than 10,000 cases to the country’s tally on Sunday. The toll rose by 62 to 12,879. The positivity rate, which is the percentage of people who test positive for the virus of those overall who have been tested, jumped to 10.49%.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi urged Indians to overcome vaccine hesitancy and get inoculated against the coronavirus. He was addressing the country in his monthly “Mann ki Baat” radio programme. Meanwhile, Congress MP Rahul Gandhi criticised the Centre for the slow pace of vaccination in the country, while taking a swipe at Modi’s programme.
  • A study conducted by the Indian Council of Medical Research has shown that if a third wave of the coronavirus hits India, it is likely to come late, the head of a government working group said. “We have a window period of six to eight months [before third wave] to immunise everybody in the country,” said NK Arora, chairperson of India’s Covid-19 Working Group of the National Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation.
  • AstraZeneca and the University of Oxford began new trials to test a modified vaccine against the Beta variant of the virus, which was first detected in South Africa. “Testing booster doses of existing vaccines and new variant vaccines is important to ensure we are best prepared to stay ahead of the pandemic coronavirus, should their use be needed,” said Andrew Pollard, chief investigator and director of the Oxford Vaccine Group at the University of Oxford.