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Coronavirus: India's parliament meets for first time in six months

India's parliament held a meeting for the first time in six months, as Covid-19 cases in the country continue to surge towards the 5 million mark.

Passengers wearing protective masks wait to board a metro train on the first day of the restart of the metro operations, amidst the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Kolkata, India, September 14, 2020. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri

For the first time in six months, India's parliament has met in an extremely cautious environment as the members including Prime Minister Narendra Modi adhered to wearing face masks and sat in glass-surrounded seats designed to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

Over 90,000 new coronavirus cases again on Monday

As has been the case for the past several weeks, India reported over 90,000 fresh Covid-19 cases over the span of 24 hours on Monday, raising the case tally in the country to more than 4.85 million infections.

Modi said in his statements to the media that there can be no leniency until a vaccine is developed: “There can be no laxity when there is no medicine. We hope that a vaccine is available soon, whichever part of the world it comes from."

Shah absent from meeting as he recovers from Covid-19

Monday's session was not attended by Federal Home Minister Amit Shah, Modi’s close aide, as he had contracted the infection earlier and spent most of last month hospitalized. He also returned to the hospital over the weekend for what authorities said was a check-up.

India coronavirus case count second only to US

India is now the second worst-hit nation in the pandemic after the US, with the country registering the highest number of new infections globally on a daily basis over the past weeks. The health ministry announced 92,071 new infections on Monday, while 1,100 new deaths were also confirmed, taking the death toll in the country up to 79,722.


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