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Coronavirus India: news summary for Tuesday 4 August

A woman ties a Rakhi, traditional Indian sacred thread, on the wrist of a municipal worker wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) to celebrate the Hindu festival of Raksha Bandha, during which a sister ties one or more of the sacred threads onto her

Coronavirus live India: latest Covid-19 news - Tuesday 4 August

India Covid-19 update: 03:00 IST on Wednesday 5 August (23:30 CEST on Tuesday 4 August)

According to the latest figures published by Johns Hopkins University18,380,616 cases have been detected worldwide, with 696,389 deaths and 10,973,850 people recovered.

In India, there have been 1,855,745 confirmed cases and 38,938 deaths, with 1,230,509 people recovered from the virus.

Scroll through some of the recent coronavirus-related articles:

IPL players and staff to be tested five times before tournament  


IPL players and staff to be tested five times before tournament  

Players and support staff will have to test negative for Covid-19 at least five times before they start training in the UAE to participate in the IPL.

India records highest number of cases and deaths in the world Monday

India recorded the highest count of fresh Covid-19 cases in the world on Monday with 49,134 new cases and 814 fatalities. The US registered 48,622 cases and Brazil 17,988. 



"We are in this for the next two years"

World Bank India Country Director Junaid Ahmad: "My sense is that we are in this for the next two years. It is not about a vaccine coming out by December and things becoming normal by February. It will take some time and growth will come back rationally."

Srinagar curfew lifted 

(Reuters) Indian soldiers patrolled streets and kept watch from the rooftops in Kashmir's main city of Srinagar on the eve of the first anniversary of the Muslim majority region's loss of autonomy.

Authorities had ordered a curfew in Srinagar, citing intelligence about potential violent protests. But late on Tuesday, the city administration said it was lifting the curfew because there had not been any major incidents during the day.

On Aug. 5, 2019, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government took away Jammu & Kashmir state's special privileges, provoking anger in the region and in neighbouring Pakistan.

It also took away Jammu & Kashmir's status as a state by creating two federally controlled territories, splitting off the thinly populated, Buddhist-dominated region of Ladakh.

Jammu & Kashmir had been the only Muslim-majority state in mainly Hindu India.


Indian government forces stop a Kashmiri scooterist as they guard the Old City's commercial hub during a curfew in Srinagar, the summer capital of Indian administered Kashmir. 

Delhi: 674 new cases and 12 deaths

The capital confirmed 674 new coronavirus cases today, taking the total to over 139,000. The death toll climbed by 12 to 4,033. 

Elsewhere, Uttar Pradesh has gone past the 100,000 case mark.

Oil minister Dharmendra Pradhan tests positive

51 year old Dharmendra Pradhan, currently the Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas, has tested positive for Covid-19 and has been admitted to hospital.

Pradhan is the second Union Minister to have tested positive for the virus. He has been admitted to the same hospital, Medanta Hospital, where Union Home Minister Amit Shah is being treated for the novel coronavirus. The two ministers are said to have met last week. 

Pradhan has said he was admitted to hospital on advice of doctors but that he is "healthy".

Economic recovery fragile due to Covid-19

States are free to impose their own restrictions and till 24 July at least 14 of them had announced localised lockdowns to tackle the spread of the virus.

“It is evident that, India is well on the path to a recovery from a trough in April, ably supported by proactive government and central bank policies. However, the increase in the Covid cases and subsequent intermittent lockdowns make the recovery prospects fragile and call for constant and dynamic monitoring,” said the ministry’s Monthly Economic Report, referring to the disease caused in the pandemic.

Sun Pharma latest to sell Covid-19 drug favipiravir in India

India's Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd said on Tuesday it would soon begin selling its version of favipiravir, becoming the latest generic drugmaker to supply the antiviral to treat Covid-19 in the world's third worst-hit nation.

Favipiravir, along with another antiviral, remdesivir, has emerged as one of the most sought-after drugs at hospitals fighting Covid-19 in India, which saw a surge of 50,000-plus infections for the sixth straight day on Tuesday. Sun's version of favipiravir, to be called FluGuard, will cost 35 rupees (47 cents) per 200 mg tablet, making it the cheapest version available. Stocks will be available from this week.

Shares in Sun Pharma, one of the world's largest generic drug manufacturers, climbed after the news and were last up 1.7% in an upbeat Mumbai market. Favipiravir was originally developed by Japan's Fujifilm Holdings Corp as Avigan. Once hyped as a potential Covid-19 treatment by Japan's prime minister, Avigan faces uncertain prospects in the country, dampened by disappointing clinical studies. Still, Indian regulators gave emergency approval to favipiravir in June in an effort to tackle the 'urgent and unmet' need for Covid-19 treatments in the country.

Separately, another Indian drugmaker, Jubilant Life Sciences Ltd, on Monday announced the launch of its version of remdesivir, priced at 4,700 rupees per 100 mg vial. Jubilant is among the companies producing the drug under licence from U.S.-based Gilead Sciences Inc.

India "flying blind" on coronavirus data, say top experts

"The problem is a mix of poor data culture and a bloated, corrupt bureaucracy," said Steve H. Hanke, professor of Applied Economics and the founder and co-director of the Johns Hopkins Institute for Applied Economics, Global Health, and the Study of Business Enterprise at the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, pointing to a report by the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.

"Missing or low-quality data are always a major problem when attempting to form public policy in the health -- or any other -- field," he said. "It's equivalent to the pilot of an aircraft flying blind."

Heavy rain batters India's Mumbai disrupting rail and road traffic

Authorities in the Indian city of Mumbai issued a red alert on Tuesday and warned people not to venture out after heavy overnight rain in the financial hub brought flooding and travel chaos. Some suburbs have seen more than 300 mm of rain in the 24 hours to Tuesday morning and more heavy rain is expected over the next two days, said India Meteorological Department (IMD) official K.S. Hosalikar.

The department issued a red alert for the city for the next two days and civic authorities advised people not to venture out unless absolutely necessary. Trains, already running skeleton services due to the novel coronavirus lockdown, were suspended in several places because of flooding and traffic was disrupted on some of the city's main roads. A landslide swept down a slope onto a main road in a northern suburb, media reported.

There was no impact on operations at Mumbai's airport apart from reduced visibility, a representative said. The city struggles with the monsoon rains every year as widespread construction and rubbish-clogged drains and waterways make it increasingly vulnerable to flooding. Mumbai is also struggling with a surging coronavirus outbreak with an average of 1,000 new cases being reported every day.

Trump deflects, saying India has a tremendous Covid-19 problem 

President Donald Trump has said that as compared to big countries, America is doing "very well" in the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic, while India is having a "tremendous problem" battling the disease and China is witnessing a "massive flare up" in infections.

“I think we're doing very well. I think that we have done as well as any nation. If you really look, if you take a look at what's going on, especially now with all these flare ups and nations that they were talking about,” Trump told reporters at a news conference here on Monday.

Full story

Madhya Pradesh: markets re-open in Bhopal

Following a 10-day complete lockdown to slow down the spread of the coronavirus, there is some easing of the measures in Bhopal.

Karnataka Congress lays out their defence

Following the earlier news that Karnataka has overtaken Delhi's case count, the state has issued a statement about where it believes the blame lies.

India Covid-19 case tracking

Prof Shamika Ravi provides a thread showing a number of trends related to India's coronavirus aituation, both nationally and by state.

Karnataka overtakes Delhi with 1.4 lakh cases

Karnataka now has nearly 1.4 lakh coronavirus cases and has become the third worst-affected state in India overtaking Delhi’s count. India now has a total of 18.55 lakh coronavirus cases.

With 1,39,571 coronavirus cases, Karnataka is now ranked below Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu, two states that have the highest number of coronavirus cases in India.

According to the latest health ministry data, Karnataka now has 74,477 active coronavirus cases while 62,500 have recovered from the disease so far.

World facing 'generational catastrophe' on education - UN chief

Reuters reporting that the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has warned today that the world is facing a "generational catastrophe" because of school closures amid the coronavirus pandemic. He said that getting students safely back to the classroom must be "a top priority."

Guterres said that as of mid-July schools were closed in some 160 countries, affecting more than 1 billion students, while at least 40 million children have missed out on pre-school.

"Now we face a generational catastrophe that could waste untold human potential, undermine decades of progress, and exacerbate entrenched inequalities," said Guterres as he launched a UN "Save our Future" campaign.

"Once local transmission of COVID-19 is under control, getting students back into schools and learning institutions as safely as possible must be a top priority," he said. "Consultation with parents, carers, teachers and young people is fundamental."

India has to be involved in vaccine distribution

Head of the Indian Council of Medical Research, Director General Balram Bhargava, says no matter who actually develops a Covid-19, India will be fundamental in its distribution.

Surge in new cases in Andaman and Nicobar Islands

The islands have seen a sudden surges of new cases, with almost half of all cases being recorded in in the last five days. In total 734 people have been confirmed to have the virus, with eight people having died of the disease.

Former Karnataka CM Siddaramaiah admitted to hospital

Siddaramaiah (71 years old) was Chief Minister of Karnataka from 2013 to 2018. He is currently the leader of the opposition in the Karnataka Legislative Assembly.

India records over 50,000 new cases for six days in a row

The total confirmed number of Covid-19 cases in India now stands at over 1.8 million. Over 38,000 people have lost their lives to the novel coronavirus. 

The five most affected states are: Maharashtra (450,196), Tamil Nadu (251,738), Andhra Pradesh (166,586), Karnataka (139,571) and Delhi (137,667).


There may never be "silver bullet" for Covid-19, WHO warns

The World Health Organization warned on Monday that, despite strong hopes for a vaccine, there might never be a "silver bullet" for Covid-19, and the road to normality would be long.

Nearly 18.2 million people around the world have been infected with the disease and over 691,300​ have died, according to Johns Hopkins University.

WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus and WHO emergencies head Mike Ryan exhorted all nations to rigorously enforce health measures such as mask-wearing, social distancing, hand-washing and testing.

"The message to people and governments is clear: 'Do it all'," Tedros told a virtual news briefing from the U.N. body's headquarters in Geneva. He said face masks should become a symbol of solidarity round the world.

"A number of vaccines are now in phase three clinical trials and we all hope to have a number of effective vaccines that can help prevent people from infection. However, there’s no silver bullet at the moment - and there might never be."

Ryan said countries with high transmission rates, including Brazil and India, needed to brace for a big battle: "The way out is long and requires a sustained commitment."

(Text: Reuters; photo: REUTERS/Denis Balibouse/File Photo)

India festival

Medical workers mark Hindu festival as they fight the virus

A health worker ties a 'rakhi' (sacred thread) on the wrist of her coworker before collecting swab samples amid the coronavirus pandemic, during the Hindu festival of Raksha Bandhan, in Kolkata on Monday.

The Raksha Bandhan festival is marked by a ceremony in which sisters tie 'rakhis' on their brothers' wrists as a prayer for their prosperity and happiness.

(Photo: Dibyangshu SARKAR / AFP)

Coronavirus: the complete guide to the Covid-19 pandemic


Coronavirus: the complete guide to the Covid-19 pandemic

Coronavirus: the complete guide to the Covid-19 pandemic

All the information you need to understand the coronavirus and ways to stay safe during the Covid-19 pandemic:

Coronavirus live India updates: welcome

Hello and welcome to our live, India-focused coverage of the coronavirus pandemic, which as of 06:00 IST had registered nearly 18.2 million cases and just over 691,300 deaths worldwide, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. In India, there have been over 1.8 million cases, leading to more than 38,000 deaths


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