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Last Updated : May 29 2020 4:24PM     Screen Reader Access
News Highlights
HM Amit Shah speaks to all Chief Ministers; Seeks their views on future strategy in fight against Covid 19            COVID recovery rate improves to 42.88 %, Over 71 thousand patients cured so far            449 domestic flights operated on day-3 of resumption of Air Lines services: Civil Aviaiton Minister HS Puri            Railways Ministry appeals persons in COVID-19 risk category to avoid travel by trains            Over 2 lakh metric tonnes of food grains lifted by states for May & June: FCI           

Text Bulletins Details

Midday News

1400 HRS

  • Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman stresses the need to make the country self reliant.

  • Doubling rate of corona virus cases in the country slows down  to over 13 days says Health Ministry.

  • Government revises advisory to use Hydroxychloroquine for asymptomatic health care and front line workers.

  • Air India gears up for domestic flights from monday; over 8000 flights per week scheduled for operation.

  • Sikkim government to reopen schools from 15th june.

  • Jammu and Kashmir government to notify over 11000 posts for domiciles.

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Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has stressed the need to make the country self-reliant. In an exclusive interview to Doordarshan News, Ms  Sitharaman said, the country still has to import goods which help produce both for the country itself and also for exports.

The FInance MInister said, the way the goverment has designed the package, it would give immediate help to all those who need additional capital in order to kickstart the economy. She said, it will benefit both the demand and the supply side.

On the call of restarting the economy during the epidemic, Ms Sitharaman said that she has kept open all options with the reassurance that the government is ready to help.

The Finance Minister reiterated that economic package announced by the govt will enhance the ease of doing buiness:

Talking about the RBI's recent decisions, Ms Sitharaman said, they have been very timely and made a lot of difference to the sentiments which prevails and also immediately make available affordable liquidity.

Ms Sitharaman also thanked Prime Minister Narendra Modi  for taking bold decisions to free farmers off historical shackles. She said, farmers can now choose to whom they want to sell their produce.

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Government has said that the decision of nationwide lockdown has helped contain the spread of COVID-19 in the country. In a press briefing by Health Ministry, Dr. V K Paul, Chairman of one of the empowered groups formed for handling COVID related matters, said, doubling rate of Covid-19 cases was 3.4 days when lockdown was started and it is now at 13.3 days.

He said, the lockdown proved gainful in terms of preparedness. He said that 80 per cent of the novel corona virus cases are concentrated in primarily five states of Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, Delhi and Madhya Pradesh.

Mr. Paul informed that Covid-19 specific health infrastructure was created, testing capacity was increased, healthcare workers gained experience and confidence to fight with the virus due to the nationwide lockdown. Mr. Paul said, 10 crore people are using Arogya Setu app and telemedicine is increasing day by day. He said, one crore treatments have been done under the Ayushman Bharat, Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana which is a great achievement. Dr. Paul infomred that 14 thousand Health and Wellness centres have been commissioned so far.

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Indian Council of Medical Research, ICMR said that a total one lakh 15 thousand 364 samples of corona virus infection were tested in the last 24 hours. With this, the figure of total number of tests reached to 28 lakh 34 thousand 798 in the country.

Meanwhile, ICMR is continuously scaling up its testing facilities for Covid-19 by giving approval to government and private laboratories. As of now, total 587 laboratories across india have been given approval to conduct the test for Covid-19 including 407 government laboratories and 180 private laboratory' chains.

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Indian Council of Medical Research, ICMR has said that consuming the anti malarial drug- Hydroxychloroquine reduces the chances of getting infected with corona virus. ICMR has issued the revised advisory on the use of Hydroxychloroquine. The Joint Monitoring Group including experts from top research bodies and hospitals reviewed the prophylactic use of Hydroxychloroquine in the context of expanding it to healthcare and other front line workers deployed in non-Covid and Covid areas, respectively. The National Task force constituted by ICMR for Covid-19, also reviewed the use of Hydroxychloroquine for prophylaxis of corona virus infection for high risk population based on the emerging evidence on its safety and efficacy. More from our correspondent:

"Investigation done by three central government hospitals in New Delhi indicates that those healthcare workers who have taken Hydroxychloroquine were less likely to develop corona infection compared to those who were not taking it. A study of 334 healthcare workers at AIIMS, New Delhi also showed that those taking Hydroxychloroquine had lower incidence of covid-19 infection. Based on the available evidence, it has been suggested that Hydroxychloroquine is relatively safe and has some beneficial effect. ICMR recommended that the drug has to be given under strict medical supervision with an informed consent. It has also been advised to consult with a physician for any adverse effect of this drug. Bhupendra Singh, AIR News, Delhi."

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In Madhya Pradesh, 189 new Corona patients have been found in the last 24 hours while 246 patients have returned home after recovering. There has been a decrease of 59 cases in the overall active cases of corona infections in the state. More from our correspondent:-

Principal Secretary of Health Department Mohammad Suleman has informed that So far, 3 thousand 89 persons have recovered from the infection in the state while there are 2 thousand 809 active cases. No corona positive case has come in Katni and Narsinghpur districts of the state so far, while seven districts including Agar-Malwa, Alirajpur, Anuppur, Chhindwara, Seoni, Mandla and Harda have become infection free. As per the state health bulletin, a total of 1 lakh 29 thousand 40 people have been tested so far in Madhya Pradesh and no new coronavirus case was found in 29 districts since Thursday. Meanwhile, the number of corona infected cases increased to 6 thousand 170 in the state. Sanjeev Sharma, AIR News, Bhopal."

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In Himachal Pradesh, fresh cases of COVID19 have been increasing continuously in the state. 21 fresh cases have been reported in the state during the last 24 hours. All of them have returned from Mumbai and were kept in institutional quarantines. At present, one hundred and ten corona positive patients are undergoing treatment at various hospitals in the state. A report:-

"The number of corona infected people has increased to one hundred 73 in the state. During the last 24 hours, 21 fresh cases have been reported from three districts Hamirpur, Mandi and Kangra. Four corona positive cases have been confirmed from Mandi district today itself. All of them have returned from Mumbai and were kept in institutional quarantines. At present, one hundred 10 corona positives are undergoing treatment at various hospitals in the state. The recovery rate of corona infection patients after treatment in the state is also increasing and so far 56 people have been recovered after treatment. Sanjeev Sundriyal, AIR News Shimla.

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In Chandigarh, today 3 more positive cases were reported from Bapudham colony, a corona hotspot in the Union Territory. An official spokesperson said, a sampling centre has been set up in the colony, after positive cases started surfacing again in the area.  The spokesperson said, With this the number of persons tested positive till now in Chandigarh has risen to 222. Out of them178 positive patients have been cured and three deaths reported so far.  

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In Assam, the number of active cases have gone up to 258 in the state. In a tweet, Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said that seven people have been found positive today and all of them are already in quarantine. 54 persons have been recovered so far.  Meanwhile, Panchayat and Rural Development department has taken a slew of measures in the state to help people. A report.

"Over 18 lakh men days are generated in the state under MG NREGA following the relaxation of the lock down norms. Panchayat and Rural Development minister Naba Kumar Doley said that 40 crore rupees payment have been made to them during this period. The Minister also said that the first installment of the PM Garib Kalyan Yojna have also been deposited to over 8 lakh 51 thousand beneficiaries. Mr. Doley said that nearly 62 lakh masks are prepared by women SHGs members in the state so far under Assam State  Rural Livelihoods Mission. MANAS PRATIM SARMA, AIR News, Guwahati."

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In yet another lockdown relaxation in Tamil Nadu, beauty parlors have been permitted to function from tomorrow in areas other than Chennai and containment areas. They were earlier allowed to operate only in rural areas. It may be noted that autos have also been permitted outside Chennai with a single passenger. A report:

"The pandemic-led lockdown for a few weeks temporarily dashed the hopes of many including the sculptors. The artisans leave a trail of contemporary culture besides adorning buildings and public places with their creativity, but the pandemic cast a spell of gloom. However, with the Union Government’s recent relaxations, the chisels of the sculptors have come back into action, carving plain marbles and granite into mesmerizing sculptures. Furthermore, the economic package as announced by the Central Government to help cottage, micro, small and medium industries has come as a double blessing. An artisan named Thiru Murugan at Thirumangalam in Madurai says they can now avail credit on easier terms to infuse the initial investment which is of utmost importance to restart the industry again. With inputs from Madurai Raghuraja, Jayasingh, AIR News, Chennai."

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Rajasthan State Road Transport Corporation has started operation of buses today on 55 important routs of state, providing great relief to the people. Thermal screening of the passengers is being done before boarding on the bus. It is mandatory for all travelers to wear masks during onboard. Necessary equipment have been provided to the drivers and the Conductors of the buses.

"The number of Covid-19 infected persons in the state has gone up to 6 thousand 542 including around 13 hundred migrants. At the same time, more than 200 prisoners and Jail staff have also tested positive for COVID-19 so far. After this, Health Department has issued Standard Operating Procedure- SOP for the accused arrested by police. According to this process, it has now been made mandatory to conduct COVID 19 test of all the accused before being sent to police custody and judicial custody. Meanwhile, production has resumed in more than 350 cloth mills at Bhilwara. Jitendra Dwivedi, AIR News, Jaipur."

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Air India has started booking for domestic flights. The airline will operate more than 8 thousand domestic flights each week for the next three months starting 25th May. Civil Aviation Ministry has said that a minimum and maximum fare for three months has been set for the domestic flight services. More from our correspondent.

"After a two-month gap air travel in the country will reopen on Monday. Air India will operate a total of 8 thousand 4 hundred 28 flights each week for the next three months from 25th May to 25th August. The government has allowed one-third of the operations beginning Monday and has set limits on fares which will be applicable for three months. The fares are capped according to seven sector classes, which have been divided according to approximate flight times. Under the new air fare regulations, the cheapest domestic flight ticket will be for 2 thousand rupees while the most expensive will be for 18 thousand 600 rupees. Anupam Mishra, AIR News, Delhi.

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Sikkim government has decided to reopen schools for classes IX to XIIth and colleges from 15th June. All junior classes will remain suspended till further orders. A report:

"Sikkim education department has listed guidelines to be followed while educational institutions are reopened from mid-June. These include mandatory wearing of masks by teachers and students, social distancing, restrictions on all gatherings, and conducting classes in shifts. All holidays have been curtailed and educational institutions will remain open on Saturdays to compensate for lost time. Sikkim’s additional chief secretary of education Gyan Prakash Upadhyaya speaks about reopening of educational institutions.

For students from outside Sikkim studying in the state, the education department has requested parents to make arrangements for their wards’ stay within the state after completing quarantine as prescribed by the health department. Meanwhile, classes through digital mediums and AIR will continue. Saikat Sarkar from Gangtok for AIR."

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Days after notifying the New Domicile Rules, the J&K Government has decided to advertise over 11,000 vacancies in different government departments. The Lieutenant Governor GC Murmu has directed for accelerated and transparent recruitment for domiciles at levels.

"The announcement comes two weeks after a Special Accelerated Recruitment Committee submitted its proposal to recruitment for over 11, 000 posts. The government has said that a fair representation would be given to widows, destitute, divorced women, single mothers and candidates of those families from where there is no member in government service in class IV vacancies. A candidate would be required to submit a self-attested affidavit and Domicile certificates would be required only after a candidate gets selected. In first phase, 7000 posts across 19 departments would be advertised in June.  The government has said that it is seized of the unemployment situation and is determined to address it. Naseer Rather, AIR News, Jammu."

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In our series 'Expert Speak' on All India Radio, we bring you the views of the leading medical experts on COVID-19.

President, Public Health Foundation of India, Dr.K.Srinath Reddy has said it will take some time to develop a vaccine against the COVID-19 infection.

Dr Reddy also appealed to people to take necessary precautions to ensure that there is no community spread.

Dr. Neeraj Nischal from AIIMS said that there should be no stigma associated with COVID-19.

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Government has dismissed the claim by Gujarat Samachar showing figure of eight thousand people per one lakh population being corona affected in India. In a tweet, Press Information Bureau termed it as factually incorrect. It clarified that around 8.3 persons per one lakh population are corona affected in the country as on yesterday evening.

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The News Services Division of All India Radio in its bilingual live phone-in programme today will bring you a Special discussion Programme on  Covid-19. Listeners can ask questions to the experts on Toll Free Telephone No: 1800-115767 (Repeat 1800-115767). You can also ask questions on telephone number: 011: 2331-4444 (Repeat 011: 2331-4444) and post queries on our Twitter handle @airnews s by #tag Askair. This can be heard tonight on FM Gold Channel and additional frequencies from 9.25 PM onwards. This programme will also be available on our website NEWS ON AIR DOT COM and on our YouTube Channel NEWSONAIROFFICIAL. You can also follow us on the NEWSONAIR app for s.

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National capital, Delhi will witness minimum temperature of 26 degrees Celsius and maximum of 44 degrees Celsius today. The capital city will experience another bout of heat wave.

Mumbai will witness partly cloudy sky. The minimum temperature in the city will be 26 degrees Celsius while maximum will remain around 34 degrees Celsius.

In the south, Chennai will see a partly cloudy sky. The temperature will hover between 29 and 41 degrees Celsius.

Kolkata will witness generally cloudy sky with light rain. The minimum temperature in the metropolis will witness 24 degrees Celsius while maximum will be around 28 degrees. 

On to North, in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir, Jammu will witness minimum temperature of 27 degrees Celsius while maximum will be around 41 degrees Celsius. The city will observe partly cloudy sky. In Srinagar, the minimum temperature will be 11 degrees Celsius while maximum will be around 29 degrees celsius. The city will observe partly cloudy sky with one or two spells of rain or thundershowers. In Gilgit, the temperature will hover between 17 and 32 degrees Celsius. There will be generally cloudy sky in the city.

In Muzzafarabad, the sky will be generally cloudy. It will witnesses minimum temperature of 17 degrees Celsius while maximum temperature will be around 35 degrees Celsius.

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Air India has started booking of tickets for domestic flights from yesterday. In a tweet, the airline informed about it. Many private carriers like IndiGo, Vistara and SpiceJet have also resumed bookings for domestic flights. They have started accepting bookings on their websites.

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Under Vande Bharat  Mission, four special flights from United Arab Emirates and three flights from Oman have been scheduled to bring back more than a thousand Indians back to India today.

"Vande Bharat flights continue to bring back distressed and stranded citizens from abroad. As the phase II of the Vande Bharat Mission is getting to a close, seven flights from UAE and Oman will bring back more than 1000 Indians back to the country. From Abu Dhabi, there is a flight to Kannur. Dubai has three flights, one to Kozhikode, one to Bengaluru and one to Thiruvananthapuram. From Muscat , three flights will repatriate Indians back to Kochi, Thiruvanathapuram and Bodhgaya. Muscat Bodhgaya is the first flight from the Gulf to the state of Bihar. It is expected to take back around 150 passengers. Priority on all the flights are being given to distressed blue collared workers , medical emergency cases, pregnant women, stranded tourists and elderly people. On Friday nearly 1200 people from the Gulf countries were repatriated to India under the Vande Bharat flights. Kanchan Prasad Mandlaus, AIR News, Dubai."

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As part of Vande Bharat Mission, an Air India flight will fly to Delhi today. The first Air India flight from Maldives capital of Male reached Bengaluru with 147 Indian nationals last evening. The flight was carrying people domiciled in Karnataka and some from Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh while Delhi flight will carry people from Delhi, Haryana and Chandigarh.

Indian High Commission in Male said that priority would be given to those facing deportation by Maldives Government, medical emergency, pregnant women, elderly, stranded tourists and people affected by family emergencies like deaths.

Talking exclusively to AIR News, India's High Commissioner to Maldives Sunjay Sudhir spoke of the arrangements being provided to the passengers. He said, elaborate arrangements have been made by the airlines for the stranded passengers and for their safety.

Mr Sudhir said that evacuation will continue with more such flights and indian navy ships. Earlier, around 1,500 Indian nationals were evacuated from the neighboring country by three Indian navy ships as part of Samudra Setu Mission.

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Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan yesterday took over as the chairman of the World Health Organisation (WHO) Executive Board. Dr. Harsh Vardhan has been elected as Chair of the Executive Board of WHO for the year 2020-21. He has replaced Dr Hiroki Nakatani of Japan. Addressing the board through tele conference, Dr. Harshvardhan called for a shared response from the member countries to tackle the COVID 19 pandemic.

Highlighting India's efforts in tackling COVID-19, he said that the country faced COVID19 in a proactive and pre-emptive way, with unmatched scale and determination.

The Executive Board of WHO is composed of 34 technically qualified members elected for three-year term. The main functions of the Board are to implement the decisions and policies of the Health Assembly and advice and facilitate its work.

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In Nepal, 32 more persons tested positive taking total number to 548. According to the Ministry of Health and Population, 13 people in Sarlahi district, eight persons each in Kapilvastu and Rupandehi districts and one person each in Bara, Kathmandu and Chitwan districts diagnosed with COVID-19 today.

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Renowned Actor Anil Kapoor has appealed people to stay at home and follow all guidelines regarding lockdown to save themselves and their family from Corona virus.

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