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Coronavirus Updates: In view of COVID-19 case surge, tender to be floated to import 50,000 MT of medical oxygen, says Centre

Coronavirus Updates: In view of COVID-19 case surge, tender to be floated to import 50,000 MT of medical oxygen, says Centre

Coronavirus LIVE Updates: The Union Health Ministry has also been directed to finalise the tender for the same and also explore possible sources for import identified by the missions of the Ministry of External Affairs

Coronavirus LATEST Updates: In view of a spike in COVID-19 cases, a tender will be floated to import 50,000 metric tonnes (MT) of medical oxygen, while its sources and production capacity has been mapped to match the requirement of 12-high burden states, the Centre said on Thursday.

Uttarakhand registers a record of 2,220 new cases on Thursday, taking its total count of infections since the beginning of the pandemic in January last year to 1,16,244, PTI reports.

Delhi recorded 16,699 fresh COVID-19 cases with a sharp rise in the positivity rate to over 20 per cent, and 112 fatalities on Thursday, according to data shared by the health department.

As per the latest data, Maharashtra has reported 61,695 new COVID-19 cases, taking the state’s tally to 36,39,855. The state also logged in 53,335 recoveries and 349 deaths in the last 24 hours.

Night curfew will return to all over Odisha and weekend shutdown will be clamped in urban centres in 10 districts bordering Chhattisgarh

The Centre has decided to postpone the NEET PG 2021 exam which was earlier scheduled to be held on 18 April in view of the surging COVID-19 cases across India.

The International Baccalaureate (IB) on Thursday cancelled its examinations across the country following a surge in COVID-19 cases.

Uttar Pradesh on Thursday reported 114 coronavirus deaths and 22,439 fresh cases, its record daily infection numbers since the outbreak of the pandemic, according to an official.

Kerala Agriculture Minister V S Sunil Kumar has tested positive for COVID-19 for the second time in seven months.

India’s drug regulator will make a decision on applications seeking approval for restricted emergency use of foreign-produced vaccines within three working days from the date of submission, the government said on Thursday.

A total of 1,701 people have tested positive for COVID-19 in the Haridwar Kumbh Mela area from April 10 to 14 confirming fears that one of the world’s largest religious gatherings may contribute further to the rapid rise in coronavirus cases.

All schools in Uttar Pradesh will be closed till May 15 while board exams for classes 10 and 12 have been postponed till May 20 in view of rising COVID-19 cases, the state government said on Thursday.

Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray has written a letter to the Centre, urging to consider the COVID-19 pandemic as a natural calamity, so that the government can use the state disaster response fund (SDRF) to provide financial assistance to the affected people.

Meanwhile, the Gujarat CMO tweeted that the state government has decided to postpone the Class 10,12 board exams in view of the COVID-19 pandemic and added that new dates will be announced after reviewing the coronavirus situation on 15 May.

A total of 1,701 people have tested positive for COVID-19 in the Haridwar Kumbh Mela area from 10 to 14 April confirming fears that one of the world’s largest religious gatherings may contribute further to the rapid rise in coronavirus cases.

Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal announces weekend curfew in Delhi to curb COVD-19 spread, essential services to be allowed during curfew.  Kejriwal informed that curfew passes to be issued to those rendering essential services.

The decision by the CBSE was taken after a high-level meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. While CBSE has canceled the class 10 exams, the exams for class 12 have been postponed till further notice.

On Thursday, it was the fifth straight day of India recording over 1.5 lakh new cases and the ninth straight of over one lakh cases.

While the United States took 21 days to reach the daily count of two lakh daily cases from one lakh per day, India reached that grim milestone in just 11 days.

In a record high, India on Thursday registered 2,00,739 fresh COVID-19 infections in the past 24 hours, taking the overall count over 1.40 crore, said the Union health ministry.

With the death of over 1,038 new COVID-19 patients, the total fatalities rose to 1,73,123 on Thursday, said the Union health ministry in its latest data.

India’s tally of more than 1.4 crore COVID-19 cases is the second-highest globally, behind the United States and ahead of Brazil’s.

Asserting that the government is committed to ensuring adequate availability of COVID-19 vaccines, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday called for harnessing the combined power of community groups, political parties and NGOs in the battle against the COVID-19 pandemic.

Interacting with governors and lieutenant governors of all states and union territories through video conference, Modi urged them to actively engage in ensuring that social institutions collaborate seamlessly with state governments.

Modi said the feeling of “Janbhagidari” (people’s participation) that was seen in curbing the virus last year needed to encouraged now as well and added the role of governors becomes all the more critical to achieving this.

Vice President Venkaiah Naidu, Home Minister Amit Shah and Health Minister Harsh Vardhan also participated in the virtual interaction on the issue of the COVID-19 situation and ongoing vaccination drive in the country.

It took place amid an astronomical rise in the COVID infections across the country in the last few weeks that has seen India gallop past its last year peak with a number of states reporting new highs daily.

In his comments, Modi asserted that the government is committed to ensuring adequate availability of vaccines and highlighted that India has become the fastest nation to reach the landmark of 10 crore vaccinations.

Noting the positive impact of “tika utsav” (vaccination festival) in the last four days, he said that in this period, the vaccination drive was expanded and new vaccination centres also came up.

“Narendra Modi suggested that governors can actively engage to ensure that social institutions collaborate seamlessly with the state governments towards micro containment. He said their social network can help ensure an increase in the capacity of ambulances, ventilators and oxygen in hospitals. Along with spreading the message about vaccination and treatment, governors can also spread awareness about AYUSH-related remedies,” an official statement said.

The prime minister noted that youths being our workforce are an important part of the economy, and said it is important to ensure that they follow all protocols and precautions.

Governors’ role is also critical in ensuring the greater engagement of our students in university campuses towards this “Janbhagidari”.

There is a need to focus on better utilization of facilities at university and college campuses, he said, adding that like the last year NCC and NSS have a key role to play this year as well.

“Governors are an important pillar of Janbhagidari in this battle and their coordination with state governments and guidance to the institutions of state will further strengthen the nation’s resolve,” he said.

Discussing the rise in the cases, Modi said the country stands to gain from the last year’s experience and improved healthcare capacity.

The country has become “aatmanirbhar” (self-reliant) in kits and other material related to testing, he asserted, adding that this has led to a reduction in the cost of RTPCR tests also.

Most of the products related to testing are also available on the GeM (Government e-Marketplace) portal.

“The prime minister emphasized the significance of increasing tracking, tracing and testing, and said that RTPCR testing needs to be increased from 60 percent to 70 percent. He said that it is pertinent to ensure that more and more people get tested,” the statement said.

During the interaction, Naidu appreciated the prime minister for leading the fight against COVID-19 and his proactive steps to develop the infrastructure required to tackle the pandemic.

He also highlighted the scientific community’s contribution in giving a vaccine to India and the whole world.

The Vice President called upon the governors to bring up a coordinated front by leading all-party meetings in their respective states and engaging with civil society organisations to spread awareness about Covid-appropriate behaviour.

He said that a ‘Team India spirit’ cutting across policy lines should be adopted, and in this regard, governors as the ‘Guardians of the State’ could guide the state governments.

Union home minister stressed the importance of saving each and every life.

Union Health Secretary gave a presentation on COVID-19 cases and vaccination drive, providing an overview of how India has followed a proactive and preemptive approach in this endeavour.

The governors shared details of how their respective states are tackling the spread of the virus and coordinating activities towards ensuring a smooth implementation of the vaccination drive, while also mentioning the deficiencies of healthcare facilities in the states.

They gave suggestions for further improvement in the efforts and shared plans of how ‘Janbhagidari’ can be increased through the active social engagement of various groups.

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Updated: April 20, 2021 — 7:04 pm

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