Coronavirus Updates LIVE: Odisha govt arranges buses to ferry migrants walking home
After a migrant Odia worker died on road in Andhra Pradesh while walking back home, police has lent a helping hand to those going out of Odisha on foot by arranging buses to take them to the border of the state, an official said on Thursday. Six buses carrying more than 250 workers, who were walking home, were dropped on the borders of West Bengal, Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh on Wednesday evening, a senior police officer said. The officer said a large number of migrant workers are found transiting through Odisha on foot to reach their home states. "Odisha Police is using buses from important checkpoints like Sohela, Girisola and Kerada to carry the migrants to the border," the official said.
Coronavirus Updates LIVE: Movement of people in essential services to be allowed amid lockdown: Haryana to Delhi HC
The Haryana government on Thursday gave an undertaking in the Delhi High Court that movement of people engaged in essential services, including government and private doctors, nurses, officials of police, courts and municipal bodies, will be allowed between Delhi and Haryana on production of e-passes during the COVID-19 lockdown. The Haryana government also assured the high court that movement of trucks carrying essential and non-essential goods between Delhi and Haryana as well as transiting through the neighbouring state shall be allowed. A bench of Justices Manmohan and Sanjeev Narula, which conducted the high hearing through video conferencing, noted that in view of the undertaking given by the counsel for the Haryana government, the petitioner does not wish to press the Public Interest litigation (PIL) and the court disposed of the petition.
Coronavirus Updates LIVE: Centre allows states/UTs to hire special buses to ferry passengers arriving from railway stations
The Centre has allowed the hiring of special buses by states/UTs to ferry passengers arriving at railway stations across the country. The move was announced keep in mind the restrictions of public/private transport during the lockdown.
Coronavirus Updates LIVE: Lufthansa plans to resume its services to India
German airlines group Lufthansa on Thursday said it plans to resume its services to India, which are currently suspended due to the lockdown in the wake of coronavirus pandemic, by June, when it is expecting to operate to more than 130 destinations globally. The services in India will be restored to Mumbai from Frankfurt to begin with, subject to regulatory approvals, the airline said in a statement. With over 106 destinations in Germany and Europe and more than 20 inter-continental destinations, the range of flights on offer for all travellers will be greatly expanded by the end of June, it said, adding that the first batch of flights will be available for reservation in the booking systems from May 14.
Coronavirus Updates LIVE: COVID-19 whistleblower tells lawmakers US lacks vaccine plan
Whistleblower Dr Rick Bright warned on Thursday that the US lacks a plan to produce and fairly distribute a coronavirus vaccine when it becomes available. The nation could face "the darkest winter in modern history" unless leaders act decisively, he told a congressional panel. Bright alleges he was ousted from a high-level scientific post after warning the Trump administration to prepare for the pandemic. Testifying on Thursday, Bright said, "We don't have (a vaccine plan) yet, and it is a significant concern." Asked if lawmakers should be worried, right responded, "absolutely". Bright, a vaccine expert who led a biodefense agency in the Department of Health and Human Services, said the country needs a plan to establish a supply chain for producing tens of millions of doses of a vaccine, and then allocating and distributing it fairly. He said experience so far with an antiviral drug that has been found to benefit COVID-19 patients has not given him much distribution confidence. Hospital pharmacies have reported problems getting limited supplies. The White House has launched what it calls "Operation Warp Speed" to quickly produce, distribute and administer a vaccine once it becomes available.
Coronavirus Updates LIVE: Maha logs record 1,602 new cases; deaths top 1,000
Coronavirus cases continued to rise unabated in Maharashtra which added 1,602 new COVID-19 cases - a fresh single-day high - taking the tally to 27,524 on Thursday, while 44 deaths - 25 of them in Mumbai – raised the toll to 1,019, a health department official said. The state on Wednesday had reported the previous highest single-day rise of 1,495 cases. However, the state surpassed that record and reported
1,602 new COVID-19 cases, he said. The fatality count also crossed the 1,000-mark. With 44 fresh deaths, the COVID-19 toll in Maharashtra, the state worst-hit by the infection in the country, is now 1,019, the official said. Also, 512 more patients were discharged in the state following recovery, taking the tally of such people to 6,059, he said. Of the total coronavirus cases and deaths recorded so far in the state, Mumbai alone accounts for 16,738 infections and 621 fatalities, he said. Of the 44 fresh deaths, 25 were reported from Mumbai, 10 from Navi Mumbai, five from Pune, two from Aurangabad, one each from Panvel and Kalyan Dombivli.
Coronavirus Updates LIVE: ICMR issues revised guidance on rapid antibody test kits for COVID-19
The ICMR on Thursday issued revised guidance document on rapid antibody test kits for COVID-19 and listed the firms whose kits have been validated and found satisfactory. The apex health research body had issued on Wednesday night a guidance document in which two Chinese firms -- Guangzhou Wondfo Biotech and Zhuhai Livzon Diagnostics -- whose importer's licenses were cancelled by the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation last month, found a mention among the list of companies, test kits of whose, have been validated at the National Institute of Virology (NIV), Pune so far. The document, however, was taken down from the website in the morning and a revised one was uploaded later. The revised document also mentions the two Chinese firms, but states that "the marketing licenses to the distributors of these two companies have been cancelled by the Central Drugs Standard Control Organization”, PTI reported.
Coronavirus Updates LIVE: Tiger spotted on roadside in Titimati Forest Zone of Karnataka
New agency ANI reported that a tiger was spotted on the roadside in Titimati Forest Zone in Virajpet taluk of Kodagu district of Karnataka in the morning on May 14. Meanwhile, 70 passengers who arrived from Delhi created ruckus at Bengaluru Railway Station and refused to go to quarantine centres. They arrived on a special train on Thursday and refused to go to quarantine centres, prompting the police to demand Railway authorities to send them back tonight, officials said. Around 1,000 passengers arrived here from Delhi on Thursday on board the first train to Karnataka since limited rail services resumed in the country amidst the lockdown.
Coronavirus Updates LIVE: Railways to issue limited waiting list tickets for special trains, no RAC
The Indian Railways will issue limited waiting lists tickets for different classes for special trains being introduced from May 12. The changes will be applicable from May 22 and booking for which will commence from May 15. However, there will be no reservation against cancellation or RAC tickets in these special trains, the Ministry of Railways said in a statement on Thursday. The waiting list tickets will be issued subject to maximum limits. There will be no Tatkal/Premium Tatkal quotas. Senior citizen, ladies and Divyangjans(HP) quota will be defined in accordance with the extant instructions, it said. The refund rules like ticket cancellation before 24 hours of departure with a refund of 50 percent of fare and NIL refund within 24 hours of train departure will be discontinued and refund rule 2015 will be made applicable, the statement added.
Coronavirus Updates LIVE: COVID-19 pandemic to eat up half of dine-in restaurants' revenue in FY21, says Crisil
The COVID-19 pandemic is likely to cut 40-50 per cent revenue of the country's organised dine-in restaurants this financial year, according to a report. Slow recovery should begin from June, Crisil Research said in a report. Given low demand and social distancing norms, restaurants will operate at 25-30 per cent of their monthly service levels in the first 45 days after lifting of the lockdown, it said. Besides, with restrictions on gatherings and public movement likely to be extended again in Mumbai and Delhi-NCR (National Capital Region), curbs on dine-ins will continue, or they may be allowed to operate only at low service levels, it added.
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