An additional 336 cases of novel coronavirus were reported across the country since Thursday, said the Union health ministry on Friday (April 3). The total countrywide count now stands at 2,301 cases and 56 deaths, said the ministry.
Of these, 647 cases found in the last two days are linked to the Tablighi Jamaat congregation, said health ministry joint secretary Lav Agarwal in the ministry’s daily briefing. The congregation, which was held last month, has emerged as a major hotspot of the virus.
Agarwal said the cases related to the Jamaat have been reported from 14 states, including Delhi, Assam, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Uttar Pradesh, Telangana and Tamil Nadu. Of the 12 deaths reported in the last 24 hours, some are related to the Jamaat gathering, he said.
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A home ministry official said blacklisting proceedings have been started against 360 foreigners who participated in the Jamaat and had left India thereafter. The MHA has asked states to take strict action in cases of attack on healthcare and frontline workers, said MHA joint secretary Punya Salila Srivastava.
Agarwal said Health Minister Harsh Vardhan has also appealed to patients and their families not to create any obstacle in the path of doctors while they are discharging their duties. “He expressed concerns over reports of misbehaviour with doctors and medical staff,” said the official.
The Indian Council of Medical Reseach (ICMR) said 182 laboratories in the country are carrying out COVID-19 diagnosis, of which 130 are government laboratories. An ICMR official said 8,000 samples have been tested in the last 24 hours.
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