Coronavirus India lockdown Day 184 updates | RTI query reveals Centre has no data on infected health workers

Coronavirus India lockdown Day 184 updates | RTI query reveals Centre has no data on infected health workers

Evidence has revealed that the States that were testing the highest numbers were also reporting a gradual decline in the positivity rate.

India has recorded a high of nearly 15 lakh COVID-19 tests in a day, according to a release issued by the Union Health Ministry on Friday. “With 14,92,409 tests conducted in the last 24 hours, the cumulative tests have touched nearly 7 crore (6,89,28,440),” the Ministry said.

The last one crore tests were conducted in merely 9 days.

You can track coronavirus cases, deaths and testing rates at the national and State levels here. A list of State Helpline numbers is available as well.

Here are the latest updates:

9.30 am | Maharashtra

Maharashtra records more recoveries than new cases

With as many as 19,592 COVID-19 patients being discharged on Friday, the number of recoveries outweighed the surge in cases in Maharashtra. The State reported 17,794 new cases, taking its total case tally beyond the 13 lakh mark to touch 13,00,757, of which 2,72,775 are active. The cumulative recoveries have risen to 9,73,214. With 416 deaths, the death toll has climbed to 34,761.

“The State’s recovery rate has risen to 76.33%, while its case fatality rate is 2.67%,” said State Surveillance Officer Dr. Pradeep Awate.

9.15 am | Maharashtra

Plea seeks benefits under health scheme for all COVID-19 patients

The Aurangabad Bench of the Bombay High Court recently issued a notice to the State government after a plea sought benefits under the Mahatma Jyotiba Phule Jan Arogya Yojana for all COVID-19 patients and not just for those on ventilators.

A Division Bench headed by Chief Justice Dipankar Datta was hearing a public interest litigation filed by Om Prakash Shete, the former head of the Chief Minister’s Medical Assistance Cell, on September 7.

It stated that the government through a GR on August 4, 2016, introduced the Mahatma Jyotiba Phule Jan Arogya Yojana, which provided free medical treatment to people below poverty the line, beneficiaries under the Annapurna scheme, orange and yellow ration card holders, farmers from 14 suicide-prone districts, students from government residential schools, senior citizens and women from shelter homes and orphanages, and journalists and their families.

The PIL sought a direction to the State to provide free medical aid to COVID-19 patients at private hospitals under the scheme.

The court has posted the matter for further hearing on September 30.

9.00 am | Japan

Tokyo is determined to host Olympics next year, Suga tells U.N.

Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga told the United Nations General Assembly on Friday Japan is determined to host the Tokyo Olympics in 2021 after the games were postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The Games were originally scheduled for this summer, but were put off for a year in March by the International Olympic Committee and the Japanese government.

“In the summer of next year, Japan is determined to host the Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games as proof that humanity has defeated the pandemic,” Mr. Suga said in a recorded message.

“I will continue to spare no effort in order to welcome you to Games that are safe and secure,” Suga said in his debut speech to the United Nations as Japan’s new leader.

8.45 am | Assam

Pandemic takes ‘golden’ sheen off Guwahati tea auction centre

The Guwahati Tea Auction Centre (GTAC), one of the world’s largest by volume traded, completed 50 years on Friday amid restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic that robbed it of its golden sheen.

Buyers and sellers, adhering to social distancing norms, marked the day digitally with a low-key programme. Pithily, it encapsulated GTAC’s journey from the “outcry” system to e-auctioning that helped Assam’s tea industry absorb the initial blows of the pandemic.

8.30 am | Kerala

Offices told to follow COVID-19 protocol

District medical authorities have instructed heads of institutions to make sure that COVID-19 protocol is strictly followed in offices.

The instruction comes on the heels of a September 22 government order pertaining to the functioning of the Secretariat and other government offices at full strength.

Employees should take care to sanitise their hands while entering and leaving offices. Masks should cover the nose and mouth and should not be lowered when speaking, District Medical Officer (DMO) K.S. Shinu said here on Friday. Gathering in groups to have food should be avoided, he said. People who experience fever, exhaustion, headache, body ache, respiratory difficulties, diarrhoea, and loss of smell and taste should go into room quarantine.

8.15 am | Odisha

Odisha’s COVID-19 count crosses 2 lakh mark

The number of COVID-19 cases in Odisha soared past the 2 lakh mark on Friday even as the spread of the infection showing no signs of slowing down.

The State’s COVID-19 count reached 2,01,096 cases after 4,208 persons tested positive during the past 24 hours. The number of fatalities also jumped to 767 following the death of 15 persons.

While Odisha took 169 days to breach the one lakh mark on August 30, the next one lakh cases came in just 27 days on September 25.

Odisha’s COVID-19 graph has been rising sharply as the daily spike has been consistently surpassing the 4000-mark for the past 10 days. Only six other States — Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Uttar Pradesh — have registered higher daily infections.

8.00 am | New Delhi

RTI query reveals Centre has no data on infected health workers

The National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) in response to a Right to Information (RTI) query said it had no countrywide data on the number of health workers who have contracted COVID-19, recovered from it or died of it.

The query was filed by Neemuch-based RTI activist Chandrashekhar Gaur with the Directorate General of Health Services, which forwarded it to the Department of Health and Family Welfare, before it landed with the NCDC.

Disposing of the case on August 17, the NCDC said: “With reference to your RTI request received on transfer from Department of Health and Family Welfare u/s 6 (3) of the RTI Act, 2005. The desired information is not available with this office.”

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