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COVID19: The total number of cases in India is 151; PM Modi to speak to nation Thursday

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The Indian army reported its first case of coronavirus after a 34-year-old soldier from the Ladakh scout regiment tested positive, urging the force to strengthen its control and prevention mechanism and to suspend war games and training activities, the total number of cases rose to 151 in the country on Wednesday.

Furthermore, in a written response to Lok Sabha, Minister of State for External Affairs V Muraleedharan said that the total number of Indians infected with a coronavirus abroad was from 276 to 255 in Iran, 12 in the United Arab Emirates, five in Italy and one in Hong Kong. , Kuwait, Rwanda and Sri Lanka.

Soldier of Ladakh Scout Regiment tested positive for virus after contacting his father, who returned from a pilgrimage to Iran on an Air India flight on February 20 and was tested positive for COVID-19, said military sources.

Resident of Chuhot village in Leh, soldier on leave since February 25 and resumed duty on March 2, sources said, adding that he had been quarantined on March 7 and tested positive on March 16 March. Even the soldier's brother tested positive, sources said. .

While 14 new cases of coronavirus have been reported since Tuesday, the first case in the armed forces prompted the army to further strengthen its control and prevention mechanism by taking additional measures, including checking soldiers to detect flu symptoms after returning from vacation, and canceling trips and non-essential conferences.

The military has also announced the suspension of war games, conferences and training activities.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will speak to the nation Thursday evening on the coronavirus epidemic and how to contain it, said the office of the Prime Minister.

Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan reviewed the readiness of hospitals in terms of the availability of test kits, personal protective equipment, medicines and washrooms Isolation.

Swiss company Roche Diagnostics India has received the license to conduct coronavirus tests after the approval of the drug regulator DCGI, making it the first private company to obtain such authorization after the government has decided to authorize accredited private laboratories to test COVID-19, a senior health ministry said the official.

The coronavirus threat has also continued to impact road and air traffic as senior railway officials informed a parliamentary panel that more than 60% of tickets have been canceled so far in March due to the epidemic, while GoAir said it had terminated the contracts of expatriate pilots in a context of restrictions. operations due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Etihad Airways, based in Abu Dhabi, also announced a reduction in its flights to India, two days after the government said that passengers from the United Arab Emirates from March 18 would be required to quarantine for 14 days.

With the surge in demand for soaps, floor cleaners and thermal scanners, Consumer Minister Ram Vilas Paswan said the center is closely monitoring the prices of these items. Normally, the ministry tracks the prices of 22 essential products, but recently included face masks and hand sanitizers under the Essential Products Act.

"We are monitoring the prices of three other products – soap, floor and hand cleaners like Lizol and Dettol as well as thermal scanners whose demand has increased due to fear of coronaviruses," said Paswan.

The total of 151 people includes 25 foreign nationals and the three who died after contracting the virus, which has killed 7,500 people worldwide and infected nearly 200,000 others.

According to the Union’s Department of Health, more than 5,700 people who have come into contact with these positive cases are under strict surveillance.

Giving statewide breakdown of confirmed COVID-19 cases, officials said Delhi has so far reported ten cases including one alien, while Uttar Pradesh has registered 16 cases, including one alien.

Maharashtra has 42 cases, including three foreigners, while Kerala has recorded 27 cases, including two foreign nationals.

Karnataka has 11 patients with coronavirus. The number of cases in Ladakh increased to eight and in Jammu and Kashmir three. Telangana has reported six cases including two foreigners.

Rajasthan has also reported four cases including that of two foreigners. Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Odisha, Uttarakhand and Punjab each reported one case.

In Telagana, seven Indonesian citizens who came to the country for "religious activity" tested positive on Wednesday.

In Haryana, there are 17 cases, including 14 foreigners. According to ministry data, 14 people have been released so far, including the three Kerala patients who were released last month.

Although there was no change in the data from the Ministry of Health, Rajasthan and Jammu and Kashmir respectively reported three cases and one case late Wednesday evening.

With most schools and colleges closed, the Department of Human Resources Development has announced that it will launch online courses on Swayam Prabha DTH channels for students, while CBSE has postponed exams for classes 10 and 12 and said the review would be postponed. after March 31.

Meanwhile, several have opted for self-quarantine as a precaution, including former Union Minister and BJP MP Suresh Prabhu, who put himself out quarantine at his home for the next 14 days after returning from Saudi Arabia despite negative results for the infection.

Muraleedharan also announced on Tuesday that he had quarantined himself at his home in the national capital as a precaution after a medical institute he had recently visited in southern India has reported a case of COVID-19. However, he had tested negative for the infection.

An army officer attached to the College of Military Engineering in Pune was asked to self-quarantine after showing symptoms of flu, sources said.

Giving details of the Indians in Iran, one of the countries most affected by the coronavirus, Muraleedharan in his written response said that the nationals included about 1,100 pilgrims, mainly from Ladakh, Jammu and Kashmir and Maharashtra.

There are also nearly 300 students mainly from J&K, around 1,000 fishermen, including from Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Gujarat, and others who are staying long term in Iran to pursue their livelihoods and their religious studies, he added.

Asked about the measures taken by the Center to help Indians stranded in Iran due to the coronavirus epidemic, Muraleedharan said that the government had made targeted efforts for the safe return of Indians from that country.

A team of six Indian health officials have been dispatched to Iran to set up testing and sampling facilities there, he said.

Muraleedharan said 1,706 samples had been taken, including from pilgrims, students and other Indians stranded in Iran.

These are being tested in medical facilities, including the National Institute of Virology in Pune, he said.

As of March 16, 389 Indians, including 205 pilgrims and 183 students, had been repatriated in four batches on special flights of the Indian Air Force and Iranian airlines, he said.

In order to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, the National Restaurant Association of India asks all members to close restaurants until March 31 or until no new cases are reported .

Meanwhile, the Supreme Court took cognizance of the unavailability of midday meals and issued notices to states and union territories asking them how children received midday meals during closure .

On Tuesday, the government banned the entry of passengers from Afghanistan, the Philippines and Malaysia into India with immediate effect, according to an additional travel advisory.

This instruction is a temporary measure and will be in effect until March 31 and will be reviewed later.

The government also banned the entry of passengers from European Union countries, Turkey and the United Kingdom from March 18 to 31.

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