With 45 cases, it’s a ‘state vs virus’ war in M’rashtra
With the number of coronavirus (Covid-19) cases touching 45 in the state, Maharashtra’s anti-coronavirus battle became even fiercer on Wednesday with more testing and quarantine facilities coming up, besides the all-out efforts implemented to avoid the challenge of keeping the crowd at bay in public areas and at workplaces.
The number of cases shot up from 41 to 45 on Monday with new cases testing positive from Mumbai, Pune and Ratnagiri. The Commissioner of the Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai (MCGM), Pravin Pardeshi, has ordered shutting of all shops, business establishments etc. on alternate days to reduce crowd on the roads. The order will be implemented after the concerned ward heads submit details to the MCGM.
Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray reviewed the situation on Wednesday with all the concerned departments and said that a limit of 50 per cent staff will be implemented in all government departments.
He said the number of suburban trains and buses will be reduced, standees won’t be permitted and those seating would be kept at a safe distance as precautionary measures.
Thackeray urged the restive people of Mumbai, with 17 million people and the state with a population of nearly 12 crore, not to panic or stock up essentials as there is sufficient availability of everything, including medical items.
However, Thackeray said the government plans to implement shift hours for retail shops/markets in different urban localities.
After making repeated appeals for ‘work from home’, the Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai has now warned of punitive action against those private companies which fail to implement 50 per cent staff norms or disallow work from home.
State Health Minister Rajesh Tope announced that from Thursday, additional coronavirus testing labs will start operating at KEM Hospital and Kasturba Hospital in Mumbai and BJ Medical College in Pune. In the next few days, a total of eight more laboratories shall be opened, including at Haffkine Institute in Mumbai. They will test around 250 samples daily.
Kerala continues on high alert, no fresh cases
For the second day in succession, no fresh case of coronavirus has been reported in Kerala, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said on Wednesday night.
The total number of positive cases remains at 24.
Vijayan, however, said even though no fresh cases has been reported, one has to be extremely cautious to continue the good work that all have been doing to prevent the spread.
“Today there was a positive development when various religious leaders have also warmed up to the caution that in today”s circumstances it”s better that there should be no crowding at places of worship. So all such things have to be regulated and let the religious practice go forward, but there should be very little public participation,” he told media persons here.
The Chief Minister also said that even though no fresh cases were registered, the total number of people under observation went up to 25,603, which includes 237 people in hospitals.
“Experts have all said that so far we have been able to do our best to contain the spread and this has to continue in this manner… if not, it will be dangerous. So all should continue to practice to see that we do nothing to create which will aggravate things. As of now we have the required medical professionals, but as a matter of caution, we have decided to seek the help of retired professionals to join us, if a need arises,” said Vijayan.
7 more Indonesians test positive for Covid-19 in Telangana
Telangana on Wednesday reported eight Covid-19 positive cases, including seven Indonesians, taking the total number of cases in the state so far to 13 and prompting Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar to call an emergency meeting on Thursday.
An Indonesian had tested positive on Tuesday.
The eight Indonesians were part of a 10-member group which had come to Telangana”s Karimanagar town earlier this week for a religious meeting.
Telangana”s health department released a special media bulletin on Wednesday night to announce that seven more have tested positive.
Earlier in the day, it was announced that a man who returned from the UK recently has tested positive for coronavirus (Covid-19).
All the patients have been admitted to the isolation ward of the government-run Gandhi Hospital here. Their condition is stated to be stable.
The state has been reporting a positive case every day since last Saturday. However, Wednesday turned out to be the worst so far with eight people testing positive.