The Union Health Ministry on Saturday (April 18) revealed that of the 14,378 coronavirus infections reported in the country, 4,291 cases in 23 states and Union Territories are linked to the Markaz event held in Delhi’s Nizamuddin area in March.
According to the data on health ministry website, to date, the death toll due to coronavirus infection rose to 488, while the number of cases climbed to 14,792.
Joint Secretary in the Health Ministry Lav Agarwal said most of the Markaz event-related cases have been found in states with high burden of the disease, such as Tamil Nadu (84 per cent), Telangana (79 per cent), Delhi (63 per cent), Uttar Pradesh (59 per cent) and Andhra Pradesh (61 per cent).
The mortality rate in COVID-19 cases in India has been around 3.3 per cent and 14.4 per cent of the deaths are between 0-45 years, 10.3 per cent between 45- 60 years, 33.1 per cent between 60-75 years and 42.2 per cent fatalities among people aged 75 and above.
Randomised control trial
ICMR official Dr Raman R Gangakhedkar said it is an observational study, not trial to assess the efficacy of hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) in COVID-19 treatment. He said the ICMR has launched a study on the side-effects of HCQ using data from some health care workers who used the drug.
In a bid to curb “opportunistic takeovers/acquisitions” of Indian companies due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, the government has reviewed the Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) Policy which is likely to impact foreign investments from neighbouring countries like China.
More test kits
Three lakh more Rapid Antibody Test kits being used for quick detection of the COVID-19 were airlifted to Rajasthan and Tamil Nadu from the Chinese city of Guangzhou, Indian Ambassador to China Vikram Misri said.
Outbreak in armed forces
Ringing alarm bells for the military brass, 26 Indian Navy personnel were tested positive for coronavirus at the strategically-located Western Naval Command in Mumbai, in the first case of a major outbreak in the armed forces. All the infected sailors were staying at a bachelors’ residential block at the INS Angre.
Death of a cop
A senior officer from the Punjab Police force died on Saturday while undergoing treatment at a private hospital in Ludhiana after being infected with COVID-19. Assistant commissioner of police, Anil Kohli, served his national duty for over 30 years.
Team Mask Force
To promote wearing masks in public places and help the country battle the COVID-19 pandemic, the BCCI virtually brought together India’s most revered cricketers such as Virat Kohli and Sachin Tendulkar and urged people to join the team by making masks at home and following other norms.
Switzerland’s solidarity to India
Humanity will surely overcome the coronavirus pandemic, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said while retweeting the picture of the Indian Tricolour of more than 1000 meters which was projected on Matterhorn Mountain, Zermatt, Switzerland to express solidarity to all Indians in the fight against COVID-19.
Responding to an NGO’s plea of rising domestic violence cases, the Aam Aadmi Party government and the Delhi Commission for Women told the Delhi High Court that there are sufficient measures in place to safeguard victims of domestic violence and child abuse amid the lockdown in the country.
(With inputs from agencies)