Coronavirus LIVE Updates: TMC MLA Samaresh Das dies after testing COVID-19 positive; third politician to succumb to virus in Bengal

13:37 (IST)

Coronavirus in Odisha LATEST Updates

Odisha reports 2,244 new COVID-19 cases, 10 deaths in past 24 hrs

Odisha on Monday reported 2,244 fresh COVID-19 cases, taking the state’s tally to 62,294, while 10 more fatalities pushed the toll to 353, a health department official said, reports PTI.

Of the new patients, 1,390 were reported from among the people lodged in different quarantine centres, while 854 were detected during contact tracing, he said. The new cases were found in 29 of the state’s 30 districts.

13:26 (IST)

Coronavirus in Himachal Pradesh LATEST Updates

Himachal register over 4,000 COVID-19 cases

Two new COVID-19 cases have been reported in Himachal Pradesh  today. The total confirmed cases in the state stand at 4,158, including 2,729 recoveries and 17 deaths.

13:16 (IST)

Coronavirus in India LATEST Updates

SC dismisses petition seeking postponement of NEET exams

The Supreme Court on Monday has dismissed a petition to postpone the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test and Joint Entrance Examination amid the coronavirus outbreak, reports ANI. The court rules that the two examinations would be held in September as per the schedule.

13:01 (IST)

Coronavirus in Maharashtra LATEST Updates

93 new COVID-19 cases, 1 death reported in past 24 hours in Maharashtra Police

93 new COVID19 positive cases and one death were recorded in Maharashtra Police force, in the last 24 hours. The total positive cases stand at 12,383 including 9,929 recoveries, 2,328 active cases and 126 deaths.

12:19 (IST)

Coronavirus in Telangana LATEST Updates

Telangana reports 894 new COVID-19 cases, takes total to 92,255

Telangana reported 894 new COVID-19 cases, taking the overall tally of positive cases in the state to 92,255 even as the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation, a hotbed of the virus, continued to witness a fall in fresh infections.

The toll rose to 703 with 10 more fatalities, a state government bulletin said on Monday, providing data as of 8 pm on 16 August.

12:07 (IST)

Coronavirus in Arunachal Pradesh LATEST Updates

43 new COVID-19 cases reported in Arunachal Pradesh today

Forty-three more people, including 14 security personnel, have tested positive for COVID-19 in Arunachal Pradesh, raising the state’s total caseload to 2,701, a senior Health Department official said on Monday.

A total of 1,219 people, including 548 security personnel, have tested positive for the infection in the state since 1 August, the official said.

The recovery rate in the northeastern state increased significantly with 66.93 percent, as 1,027 people have recovered from COVID-19 since the beginning of this month, he said.

11:51 (IST)

Coronavirus in Maharashtra LATEST Updates

4 persons at Sharad Pawar’s Mumbai residence test COVID-19 positive

Four persons at NCP chief Sharad Pawar’s residence in south Mumbai have tested positive for coronavirus, Maharashtra Health Minister Rajesh Tope said on Monday. Pawar’s test results have come out negative, but he will be asked not to go on any state tour for next some days, Tope told reporters.

“Two people, including a cook, and two security guards at Pawar’s ‘Silver Oak’ residence here have tested positive for coronavirus,” the minister said.

He said Pawar was taken to Breach Candy Hospital here on Sunday for test and the results came out negative. “He is safe and sound…but will ask him not to go on state tour for next some days,” Tope said.

11:40 (IST)

Coronavirus in West Bengal LATEST Updates

TMC MLA succumbs to COVID-19 in Bengal

 Trinamool Congress MLA Samaresh Das, who had tested positive for the coronavirus, has died at a hospital in West Bengal’s East Midnapore district, reports PTI. Das was 76.

11:39 (IST)

Coronavirus in Kerala LATEST Updates

Sabarimala temple opens today for prayers

The Sabarimala Ayyappa temple in Kerala has opened today for prayers, but devotees will not be allowed due to the coronavirus outbreak, reports PTI. The temple will remain open till 21 August and only the usual rituals will be conducted, says the Travancore Devaswom Board, which manages the hill shrine.

10:22 (IST)

Coronavirus in India LATEST Updates

India’s case fatality rate falls to 1.92%, recovery at 72.5%

The toll due to coronavirus infection climbed to 50,921 with 941 people succumbing to the disease in a span of 24 hours. The case fatality rate has declined to 1.92 percent. There are 6,76,900 active cases of coronavirus infection in the country.

India’s COVID-19 recovery rate now stands at 72.5 percent.

09:36 (IST)

Coronavirus in India LATEST Updates

India’s COVID-19 toll crosses 50,000-mark

The number of deaths in India crossed the 50,000-mark on Monday after 941 people died in 24 hours. The toll is now 50,921. India also reported 57,981 cases in 24 hours, taking the total count to 26,47,663. There are now 6,76,900 active cases, while as many as 19,19,842 people have recovered.

09:23 (IST)

Coronavirus in Japan LATEST Updates

Japan’s economy shrinks at record rate, slammed by pandemic

Japan’s economy shrank at an annual rate of 27.8 percent in April-June, the worst contraction on record, as the coronavirus pandemic slammed consumption and trade, according to government data released Monday, reports AP.

The Cabinet Office reported that Japan’s preliminary seasonally adjusted real gross domestic product, or GDP, the sum of a nation’s goods and services, fell 7.8% quarter on quarter. The annual rate shows what the number would have been if continued for a year.

08:56 (IST)

Coronavirus in India LATEST Updates

Parliament gears up for Monsoon Session with several measures due to COVID-19

Hectic preparations are underway for the Monsoon Session of Parliament with several first-time measures in view of the COVID-19 pandemic such as staggered sitting of Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha and use of both chambers and galleries to accommodate members while following physical distancing norms, officials said.

The Monsoon Session is likely to begin in the last week of August or early September.

According to the Rajya Sabha Secretariat, members of the Upper House will be seated in both chambers and galleries during the session.

Chauhan, who was was serving as the Minister of Sainik Welfare, Home Guards, and Civil Security in the Uttar Pradesh cabinet, had developed a multi-organ failure on Saturday and was put on a life support system. The 73-year-old had tested positive for COVID-19 on 12 July and was admitted to Sanjay Gandhi PGI Hospital in Lucknow. Due to kidney-related ailments, he was shifted to Medanta hospital in Gurugram.

Precautionary measures planned for Monsoon Session

The Monsoon Session is likely to begin in the last week of August or early September.

According to the Rajya Sabha Secretariat, members of the Upper House will be seated in both chambers and galleries during the session.

This is the first time in the history of Indian Parliament since 1952 that such an arrangement will be in place, where 60 members will be seated in the chamber and 51 in the galleries of Rajya Sabha and the remaining 132 in the chamber of Lok Sabha.

Similar seating arrangements are being worked out by the Lok Sabha Secretariat as well.

For the first time, large display screens and consoles for participation from galleries, ultraviolet germicidal irradiation, special cables between the two Houses and polycarbonate separators will be in place.

Rajya Sabha Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu and Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla at a meeting on 17 July, after detailed examination of various options for holding the session, decided on using the chambers and galleries of both the Houses.

Naidu has directed officials to complete preparations for the session by the third week of August when testing, rehearsal and final inspection would be carried out. The Rajya Sabha Secretariat has been working overtime for the last two weeks to ensure full preparedness, officials said.

While both Houses usually function simultaneously, this time due to extraordinary circumstances, one House will sit during morning hours and the other in the evening, sources told PTI.

Ganesh pandals, Moharram processions not to be allowed in Delhi

In an order issued on 14 August to all district magistrates, DCPs and other authorities concerned, the Delhi Disaster Management Authority said that people will be encouraged to celebrate festivals at their homes in the city.

Chief Secretary Vijay Dev said all DMs and district commissioners of police will hold meetings with religious leaders before any festival that has the possibility of a large gathering to get their cooperation to maintain law and order, harmony and also to sensitise people to comply with guidelines.

Dev, who is also the chairman of DDMA’s state executive committee, said it should be ensured that the crowd does not gather in any religious or social places.

“During Ganesh Chaturthi Festival, no idol of Lord Ganesha shall be set up in the tent/pandal/ public place, nor any kind of permission shall be granted for procession… similarly, no permission shall be granted for procession/tajiya during Moharram,” the order stated.

Sufficient police force will be deployed in all communally sensitive areas and containment zones across the city, it said.

The chief secretary directed officials to make all necessary arrangements for checking at all public places, bus stands, railway stations, sensitive and religious places before any festival.

Due arrangements should be made for deployment of dog squads, anti-terrorist squads and bomb disposal teams for intensive search and checking at religious and public places as per requirement, it stated.

USFDA clears simple saliva test for faster detection of COVID-19

Stephen Hahn, the US Food and Drugs Administration Commissioner, said that a new saliva test that has recently been cleared for emergency use would increase efficiency and avoid shortage of crucial test components like reagents.

Providing this type of flexibility for processing saliva samples to test for COVID-19 infection is groundbreaking in terms of efficiency and avoiding shortages of crucial test components like reagents, he said in a statement.

The agency has previously authorised four other tests that use saliva for sampling, but these yielded varying results.

The US has been plagued by an inconsistent strategy for detecting the virus, thanks in part to persistent shortages and the use of a variety of different tests that have sometimes yielded unreliable results.

The new method called SalivaDirect is being further validated as a test for asymptomatic individuals through a programme that tests players and staff from the National Basketball Association (NBA).

SalivaDirect is simpler, less expensive and less invasive than the traditional method for such testing known as nasopharyngeal (NP) swabbing.

Results so far have found that SalivaDirect is highly sensitive and yields similar outcomes as NP swabbing.

State-wise figures

In Maharashtra, 11,111 new COVID-19 cases, 8,837 discharges, and 288 deaths were reported on Sunday, according to the Public Health Department of the state. The total number of cases now stands at 5,95,865, including 1,58,395 active cases, 4,17,123 discharges and 20,037 deaths.

Tamil Nadu recorded 5,950 new positive cases, 6,019 discharges and 125 deaths reported on Sunday, according to the State Health Department. The total number of cases rise to 3,38,055 including 54,019 active cases, 2,78,270 discharges and 5,766 deaths.

In Andhra Pradesh, 8,012 new cases, 10,117 recoveries, and 88 deaths were reported in the last 24 hours. The total number of cases in the state now stands at 2,89,829, including 85,945 active cases, 2,01,234 recovered cases, and 2,650 deaths, according to the State Health Department.

Delhi reported 652 new positive cases, 1310 discharges/recoveries, and eight deaths on Sunday. The total number of cases in the national capital now stands at 1,52,580 including 1,37,561 recovered and migrated patients, 10,823 active cases, and 4,196 deaths.

The COVID-19 count in Bihar reached 1,04,093, including 537 deaths. According to the state health department, the number of active cases in the state stands at 30,989 while 72,566 patients have been cured discharged to date.

With inputs from agencies

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