Coronavirus News Highlights: India’s COVID-19 vaccination coverage crosses 89.67-crore-mark; Kerala logs 13,834 new cases

Covid-19 Cases in India Today, Coronavirus India Statistics Highlights, Covid-19 Vaccine Registration Highlights: New debate on Covid origins after Xi Jinping’s warning to Chinese labs handling pathogens

Coronavirus News Highlights: India’s COVID-19 vaccination coverage crosses 89.67-crore-mark; Kerala logs 13,834 new cases
Latest CoWin data shows that around 69 per cent of eligible population has got at least first dose of the Covid vaccine in India.

Coronavirus Cases in India Today, Coronavirus Statistics India Highlights: October began with a new surge as India reported over a 10 per cent increase in the daily cases on Friday. At 26,727, India has registered more than 20,000 cases for the second day in a row. However, there was a decline in the number of Covid deaths. The fatalities number fell below 300-mark to 277 today. Another key indicator – active cases – also witness a new decline in the last 24 hours. The updated health bulletin shows that nearly there was a decline of around 2,000 in terms of active cases in India. The government records state that there are 2,75,224 active cases in the country as of today. This is the lowest in 196 days, the data shows.

A conversation between two prominent lawyers have sparked a new thread of conversations among people about the need for booster doses and the grim status of vaccine inequity. Senior Advocates Harish Salve and Mukul Rohtagi’s conversation has gone viral. Rohtagi reportedly spoke about his third dose, which he took in Dubai. He also said that the doctors are saying that there will be a need for ‘4th and 5th dose too’. Many people say that while there is a growing trend of the same set of the population getting vaccinated, the world is still looking at the vast majority of nations that don’t have enough stock for even the first dose.

Now, some updates on CoWin. Dr RS Sharma, National Health Authority  CEO, has said that now CoWin will allow international travellers to download the global version of their CoWin certificate. This would mean that the international version will show the date of birth of the beneficiary. Many say that this should resolve the India-UL issue of Cowin certification.

Here are the latest Covid news from India and around the globe: 

Live Blog

00:01 (IST)02 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: Assam reports 303 new COVID cases, 356 recoveries and three deaths today

Assam reports 303 new COVID cases, 356 recoveries and three deaths today

Active cases: 3,001
Total recoveries: 5,92,242
Death toll: 5,876 (ANI) 

22:35 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: Vaccinate 15 lakh people per day statewide, Maharashtra minister tells officials

Maharashtra was receiving 1.75 crore vials of COVID-19 vaccines per month and officials have been asked to increase the daily inoculation target to 15 lakh, health minister Rajesh Tope said on Friday.

He said if a high number of people are covered over the next few weeks, then a third wave can be avoided, and even if people contract the infection, they wouldn’t fall severely ill.

“I spoke with the state immunisation official today and asked him to ensure the daily vaccination figure is around 15 lakh. The state is receiving increased supply. It is now as high as 1.75 crore vials per month,” Tope told reporters.

“The state on an average carries out 6,000 vaccination sessions per day and each session can inoculate around 200 persons. If we plan better, we can vaccinate 15 lakh people on a daily basis,” he added.

Queried on allowing ‘garba’ during Navratri functions, Tope said there would be an attendance limit of 50 per cent of venue capacity and all participants will have to adhere to COVID-19 norms. (PTI) 

22:14 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: Goa sees 84 COVID-19 cases, 3 deaths; 99 discharged

Goa’s COVID-19 tally reached 1,76,515 after 84 cases were detected on Friday, while the day also saw three deaths and 99 people getting discharged, an official said.

The toll in the state stands at 3,317 and the recovery count is 1,72,360, leaving it with 838 active cases, he said.

With 4,479 samples being examined in the last 24 hours, the number of tests in Goa reached 13,57,968, he added.

Goa’s COVID-19 figures: Positive cases 1,76,515, new cases 84, death toll 3317, discharged 172360, active cases 838, samples tested till date 13,57,968. (PTI) 

21:56 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: 89.67 crore Covid vaccine doses administered in country, says Health Ministry

The cumulative COVID-19 vaccine doses administered in the country crossed 89.67 crore on Friday, the Union Health Ministry said.

More than 62 lakh vaccine doses were administered till 7 pm on Friday. The daily vaccination tally is expected to increase with the compilation of the final reports for the day by late night, the ministry said. | Read More

21:45 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: Mumbai records 418 COVID-19 cases, six fatalities

Mumbai reported 418 new coronavirus infections and six fatalities on Friday, a civic official said.

It took the tally of cases in the country’s financial capital to 7,43,414 and death toll to 16,116.

The city witnessed a marginal drop in daily cases and  fatalities. On Thursday,  458 new COVID-19 cases and seven fatalities had been reported.

In September, Mumbai reported a total of 12,975 new COVID-19 cases and 135 fatalities, compared to 9,147 infections and 157 fatalities in August.

According to the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) official, with 39,406  COVID-19 tests conducted in the last 24 hours, the cumulative number of tests climbed to 1,03,92,389.

The city now has 4,810 active COVID-19 cases as 360 recovered patients were discharged from hospitals on Friday.

It took the total of recovered patients to 7,19,992.

Mumbai has 46 sealed buildings at present but no containment zones. The civic body seals buildings or declares containment zones if five or more patients are detected in a building or area.

The city’s average recovery rate is 97 per cent, while the average doubling rate — period during which caseload doubles — has dipped to 1,159 days.

The average growth rate of cases was 0.06 per cent for the period between September 24 to 30.  (PTI) 

21:33 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: Nagaland logs 21 new COVID-19 cases, 1 fresh fatality

Nagaland’s COVID-19 tally rose to 31,265 on Friday as 21 more people tested positive for the infection, while one fresh fatality pushed the northeastern state’s coronavirus death toll to 666, a health bulletin said.

Dimapur district recorded the highest number of new cases at nine, followed by Kohima (four) and Mokokchung (three), it said, adding that the fresh fatality was reported in Mokokchung.

Nagaland now has 347 active cases, while 29,254 people were cured of the disease so far, including 27 in the last 24 hours, and 998 patients have migrated to other states to date, the bulletin said, adding that the recovery rate stood at 93.56 per cent.

The state has thus far tested over 3.73 lakh samples for COVID-19, and inoculated over 6.88 lakh people, of whom 3.68 lakh have been fully vaccinated. (PTI) 

21:21 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: Maharashtra records 3,105 COVID-19 cases, 50 deaths

Maharashtra reported 3,105 new coronavirus infections and 50 fatalities on Friday, the state health department said.

The caseload in the state rose to 65,53,961 and death toll reached 1,39,117.

With 3,164 patients discharged from hospitals, the number of recovered cases rose to 63,74,892.

Maharashtra now has 36,371 active cases.

There are 2,42,110 people in home quarantine and 1,355 in institutional quarantine.

Maharashtra’s COVID-19 recovery rate is 97.27 per cent, while the fatality rate is 2.12 per cent. 

The cumulative number of tests conducted in the state rose to 5,89,10,564 with 1,70,590 swab samples examined since Thursday evening.

Rural parts of Ahmednagar district reported the highest 586 new infections in the state.

Among the eight regions of Maharashtra, the Mumbai region reported 904 new COVID-19 cases, Nashik region 718, Pune region 1,100, Kolhapur 233, Aurangabad 30, Latur 103, Akola 13 and Nagpur 14.  

Mumbai and Nashik regions reported nine deaths each, Pune 19, Kolhapur eight, Latur three and Aurangabad and Nagpur regions one death each. 

Mumbai witnessed 425 new COVID-19 cases and six deaths, while Pune city reported 161 infections and two deaths, as per the state government’s data.

Coronavirus figures of Maharashtra are as follows: Total cases  65,53,961; new cases 3,105; death toll 1,39,117; recoveries 63,74,892; active cases 36,371; total tests 5,89,10,564. (PTI) 

21:10 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: India may soon be flooded with COVID-19 pill

A pill to combat COVID-19 and soon the Indian market may be flooded by these. Called Molnupiravir and developed by Merck Sharpe Dohme (or MSD in quickspeak) and Ridgeback Biotherapeutics, there are several Indian companies in the race to launch it – some have a licensing arrangement with MSD and others do not.

Molnupiravir is an experimental drug consumed in the form of a pill and last June several Indian companies – Cipla, Dr. Reddy’s, Emcure, Sun Pharma and Torrent announced that they were collaborating for clinical trial of investigational anti-viral drug Molnupiravir for COVID-19. The five companies are collaborating for the clinical trial of the investigational oral anti-viral drug Molnupiravir for the treatment of mild COVID-19 in an outpatient setting in India. | Read More

20:53 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: Andhra Pradesh registers 809 new Covid-19 cases

Andhra Pradesh recorded 809 fresh cases of coronavirus, 1,160 recoveries and 10 deaths in the 24 hours ending 9 am on Friday.

The total positive coronavirus cases now climbed to 20,51,133 and recoveries to 20,25,805, according to the latest bulletin.

The overall toll so far is 14,186.

The state now has 11,142 active cases, the bulletin added.

East Godavari reported 161, Chittoor 153 and SPS Nellore 115 new cases in 24 hours. Six districts logged fresh cases in double digits and four more in single digit, with Vizianagaram adding just one.

Guntur reported three, Chittoor, Krishna and SPS Nellore two each and Srikakulam one fatality in a day. (PTI) 

20:42 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: 133 fresh COVID-19 cases in Jammu and Kashmir 

Jammu and Kashmir on Friday recorded 133 fresh COVID-19 cases, which took the tally to 3,29,563, while one more death pushed the toll to 4,423, officials said. 

Out of the fresh cases, 36 were from the Jammu division and 97 from the Kashmir division of the union territory, they said.     

The officials said Srinagar district recorded the highest number of 57 cases followed by 14 cases in Budgam district. 

There are 1,339 active cases in the union territory, while the total number of recovered patients is 3,23,801, they said. 

The death toll in the union territory due to the pandemic is 4,423 as one fresh death was reported in the past 24 hours. 

Meanwhile, the officials said, there were 46 confirmed cases of mucormycosis (black fungus) in the union territory as no fresh case was reported since last evening. (PTI) 

20:32 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: Supreme Court seeks Centre’s reply on PIL claiming Aadhaar card being insisted for COVID vaccination

The Supreme Court Friday sought response from the Centre on a PIL which claimed that Aadhaar card was being mandatorily insisted upon for administering COVID-19 vaccination on the CoWIN portal.
A bench of Justices D Y Chandrachud and B V Nagarathna issued notice to the Centre after petitioner Siddharthshankar Sharma insisted that apart from seven identity documents mentioned in the CoWIN portal, Aadhaar is still being insisted upon. 

At the outset, advocates Mayank Kshirsagar and Dhruv Chawla, appearing for Sharma, said that there are several newspaper reports highlighting the insistence of Aadhaar card for vaccination and recently the Meghalaya High Court had to step in on the issue. 
“Don’t go by newspaper articles. Have you yourself seen that CoWIN app recently, it has been updated. Now, you don’t require Aadhaar mandatorily, there are a list of other documents also. Go to the Frequently Asked Questions section of CoWIN and you will now see there are varieties of ID proofs with which you can register,” the bench said. 

Kshirsagar said this policy is there but it’s only on paper, but when one visits the vaccination Centre, they always insist on Aadhaar card.  

“Aadhaar card is not the only ID which they are accepting. You can also register with a Driving Licence, PAN card, Voter’s Card, Ration card and Passport. You can verify yourselves, we may keep this matter pending,” the bench said.

The counsel insisted that the same order be passed as was passed by Meghalaya High Court in July, asking the state government not to insist on Aadhaar card as the only proof of identification for administering COVID-19 vaccination.

The plea has sought effective and non-discriminative enforcement of the already notified rules/ policies in the entire country in a uniform manner, for the protection of right to vaccination granted to citizen of India which is dangerously endangered on account of denial of vaccination due to non-submission of Aadhaar details to the concerned authority.

“Such actions are in blatant violation of right to life under Article 21 read with right to equality under Article 14 of the Constitution and hence, the petitioner urges sympathetic indulgence of this court by way of issuing appropriate directions to direct the concerned authority to set aside the mandatory pre-condition of production of Aadhaar details from enabling administration of vaccination..,” the plea said.
The top court also dismissed another PIL which sought direction to authorities to release seized oxygen cylinders and tankers, Remdesivir injection and other medicines and equipment used for treatment of COVID-19.

 “We cannot issue blanket directions for all of India. It will create serious chaos in the country. We don’t know for what purpose these things were seized. There may be FIRs filed. It has to be dealt on a case to case basis. We are dismissing it,” the bench said.  

The PIL was filed by Shrikant Prasad and others. Prasad appeared in-person in the matter. (PTI) 

20:21 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: India’s COVID-19 vaccination coverage has crossed 89.67 crores today 

India’s COVID-19 vaccination coverage has crossed 89.67 crores today. More than 62 lakh vaccine doses have been administered till 7 pm today: Union Health Ministry (ANI)

20:16 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: Nearly 30 lakh vaccine jabs given in Mumbai in September

As many as  29,51,157 COVID-19 vaccine doses, highest since the inoculation drive began, were administered in Mumbai in September, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) said on Friday.

A total of 1,23,11,541  vaccine doses have been given in the country’s financial capital since January 16 this year when the nationwide campaign began, it added. | Read More

20:02 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: Nearly 30 lakh vaccine jabs given in Mumbai in September

As many as  29,51,157 COVID-19 vaccine doses, highest since the inoculation drive began, were administered in Mumbai in September, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) said on Friday. 
A total of 1,23,11,541  vaccine doses have been given in the country’s financial capital since January 16 this year when the nationwide campaign began, it added.

The pace of vaccination in Mumbai is the highest among cities with population of more than ten lakh, it claimed.

The city presently has 464 vaccination centers — 325 run by the state or the civic body and 139 private ones — it said. In the beginning there were only 12 centres, it noted.

During the initial weeks it had to suspend vaccination on some days because of lack of doses, it said, adding that the “ability to speed up vaccination has been achieved by careful planning of both the storage capacity and the ability to administer the vaccine.”  

The civic body also started drive-in vaccination facility for senior citizens and door-to-door inoculation for  bed-ridden people apart from organizing special camps for women, teachers and students, it said. (PTI) 

19:50 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: Tamil Nadu reports 1,597 new COVID-19 cases, 25 deaths in last 24 hours 

Tamil Nadu reports 1,597 new COVID-19 cases, 1,623 recoveries and 25 deaths in the last 24 hours.

Total cases: 26,65,386
Total recoveries: 26,12,684
Death toll: 35,603

Active cases: 17,099 (ANI) 

19:37 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: Kerala logs 13,834 new COVID-19 cases

Kerala on Friday reported 13,834 new COVID-19 cases and 95 deaths, taking the infection count to 46,94,719 and the death toll to 25,182.

State Health Minister Veena George said there are 1,42,499 active COVID-19 cases of which only 11.5 per cent patients are admitted to hospitals. | Read More

19:21 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: Karnataka reports 589 new COVID cases, 887 recoveries, and 13 deaths today 

Karnataka reports 589 new COVID cases, 887 recoveries, and 13 deaths today 

Active cases: 12,469
Total recoveries: 29,26,284
Death toll: 37,807 (ANI)

18:50 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: UK to open 40 new diagnostic centres at places like shopping centres, football stadiums to clear COVID-19 backlog

The UK’s health service said on Friday that 40 new Community Diagnostic Centres are set to open across England in a range of settings, from local shopping centres to football stadiums, to help address the backlog created by the COVID-19 pandemic. The new one-stop-shops for checks, scans and tests will be backed by a 350 million pounds (USD 473 million) investment from the government to provide around 2.8 million scans in the first full year of operation. (PTI)

18:45 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: Delhi records 32 new cases, zero deaths; positivity rate 0.05 pc

Delhi recorded zero deaths due to COVID-19 on Friday and 32 fresh cases, while the positivity rate stood at 0.05 per cent, according to data shared by the city health department. Only five fatalities due to coronavirus were reported last month, one each on September 7, September 16 and September 17, and two on September 28, official figures stated. The death toll due to the coronavirus infection in Delhi stands at 25,087. On Friday, 32 cases were recorded with a positivity rate of 0.05 per cent, according to the latest health bulletin. (PTI)

18:16 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: 10-day quarantine mandatory for UK citizens arriving in India

India has decided to impose reciprocity on UK nationals arriving in India from the UK. New regulations will come into effect from October 4. UK nationals arriving in India from the UK will have to undergo mandatory quarantine at home or in the destination address for 10 days after the arrival. From October 4, all UK nationals arriving in India from the UK, irrespective of their vaccination status, will have to undertake – pre-departure Covid-19 RT-PCR test within 72 hours before travel, RT-PCR test on arrival at airport, RT-PCR test on Day 8 after arrival: Sources

18:06 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: Russia’s virus deaths hit record for 4th day

Coronavirus deaths in Russia hit a record on Friday for the fourth straight day, and confirmed cases continued to surge as well. Russia’s state coronavirus task force reported 887 deaths, the country’s highest daily number in the pandemic. The previous record, from a day earlier, stood at 867. The task force also reported 24,522 new confirmed cases from Thursday — the highest daily tally since late July. (AP)

17:55 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: UK closes furlough scheme set up to protect COVID-hit jobs

The UK government’s furlough scheme, allowing employers to keep employees on the payroll with taxpayer-backed support, comes to a close from Friday. UK Chancellor Rishi Sunak said while the scheme winds down, the government’s ‘Plan for Jobs’ enters its next stage with measures such as the so-called ‘super-deduction’ tax break for businesses, Kickstart Scheme for job-seekers and traineeship offers. (PTI)

17:36 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: Only five deaths due to Covid recorded in Sep in Delhi: Data

Only five fatalities due to the coronavirus infection were reported in September in Delhi amid reduction in number of COVID-19 cases recorded in the national capital, according to official figures. On September 30, the city recorded zero death due to COVID-19 and 47 cases with a positivity rate of 0.06 per cent, according to data shared by the city health department. (PTI)

17:26 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: 31 new COVID-19 cases push Sikkim’s tally to 31,482

Sikkim reported 31 new COVID-19 cases in the last 24 hours pushing the tally to 31,482, a Health department bulletin said on Friday. East Sikkim district registered 27 positive cases followed by 3 in West Sikkim and 1 in South Sikkim, it said. The Himalayan state now has 618 active COVID-19 cases while 30,161 people have recovered from the disease. (PTI)

17:12 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: Central team to visit Mizoram soon amid rising COVID-19 cases: Official

A central team of health experts will soon visit Mizoram, which has been witnessing a spurt in COVID-19 cases, an official said on Friday. During a meeting with a state delegation led by Lok Sabha member C Lalrosanga on Thursday, Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan assured that a group of experts will be sent by the Centre to assess the COVID situation, he said. At least 21,074 cases were reported in August, while September witnessed 34,263 new infections, according to the state health department. (PTI)

16:53 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: 8 new cases in Ladakh

Ladakh recorded eight fresh COVID-19 cases on Friday that took the infection tally to 20,803, officials said. The total number of active cases stands at 68 — 64 in Leh and four in Kargil district, they said. Ladakh has registered 207 Covid-related deaths — 149 in Leh and 58 in Kargil — since the outbreak of the pandemic last year. Thirteen patients were cured and discharged from hospitals, taking the overall recoveries to 20,528, they said.

16:42 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: Australia to lift 18-month COVID-19 travel ban next month

Australia has outlined plans to lift a pandemic ban on its vaccinated citizens travelling overseas from November. But no date has yet been set for welcoming international tourists back. Travel restrictions that have trapped most Australians and permanent residents at home over the past 18 months would be removed when 80 per cent of the population aged 16 and older were fully vaccinated, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Friday. (PTI)

16:32 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: Merck says experimental pill cuts worst effects of COVID-19

Merck & Co said Friday that its experimental COVID-19 pill reduced hospitalisations and deaths by half in people recently infected with the coronavirus and that it would soon ask health officials in the US and around the world to authorize its use. If cleared, Merck’s drug would be the first pill shown to treat COVID-19, a potentially major advance in efforts to fight the pandemic. All COVID-19 therapies now authorised in the US require an IV or injection. (AP)

16:25 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: Greater efforts needed to expand Covid vaccination coverage among older population: WHO

On International Day of Older Persons, the World Health Organisation on Friday called for greater efforts in the South-East Asian region to expand COVID-19 vaccination coverage among the older population, saying they remain vulnerable to the virus and at highest risk of severe diseases. “The older population continues to be highly vulnerable in the ongoing pandemic. Protecting them against the deadly COVID-19 virus should be our priority.  (PTI)

15:22 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: Those who’ve taken both the doses aren’t following COVID protocol, says Maharashtra Dy CM

  • We conducted a survey and found that around 0.19% of people who have taken first dose are found infected with COVID19 & around 0.25% people were found infected after taking both doses of vaccine: Maharashtra Deputy CM Ajit Pawar in Pune
  • On consulting experts, we were informed that those who’ve taken both the doses aren’t following COVID protocol & exposing themselves to the virus. Experts say even when we are easing restrictions, citizens must take precautions & follow protocol: Maharashtra Deputy CM Ajit Pawar –ANI

14:41 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: Single-day recoveries surpass fresh COVID-19 cases in Arunachal Pradesh

Single-day recoveries outnumbered fresh COVID-19 cases in Arunachal Pradesh as 75 more people recuperated from the disease while 54 new infections pushed the tally to 54,626, a senior health department official said on Friday. The state currently has 419 active COVID-19 cases while 53,931 people have recovered from the disease so far, State Surveillance Officer (SSO) Dr Lobsang Jampa said. The COVID-19 recovery rate in the state now is 98.73 per cent and the active percentage is 0.77, he said. The COVID-19 death toll in the frontier state remained at 276 as no new fatality was reported in the last 24 hours, the SSO said. – PTI

14:21 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: Sri Lanka lifts 6-week virus lockdown amid economic worries

Sri Lanka lifted a six-week lockdown Friday as COVID-19 cases and deaths decline but will restrict people’s movement for work and obtaining essentials only –  which are running short in the island country amid economic worries. The lockdown was imposed August 20 and extended three times as Sri Lanka grappled with a COVID-19 surge caused by the delta variant. The government has ramped up vaccination in recent months, with more than 50% of the 22 million people fully inoculated. New daily infections have since fallen to below 1,000 and deaths to under 100, from a peak of over 3,000 cases and more than 200 deaths early September. The country has reported more than 516,000 infections and 12,847 deaths. Despite the end of the lockdown and a curfew, strict restrictions remain. People are only allowed out for work or to buy essentials. Public gatherings are banned while cinemas, schools and restaurants will still be closed, according to the health ministry. Strict rules are also imposed on public transport, weddings and funerals. – AP

13:51 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: New drug combination found effective against coronavirus infection: Study

A new drug combination can suppress infection by the SARS-CoV-2 virus, which causes COVID-19, according to a study conducted in animals and cell cultures. Early test results, published in the journal Viruses, found that the combined use of the antiviral drugs nafamostat and Pegasys meets all availability and efficacy requirements. “This combination effectively suppresses the infection,” said Denis Kainov, a professor at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology’s (NTNU). The experiments were performed in cell cultures and hamsters, the researchers said. They noted that this does not necessarily mean that the combination works in humans, but could be a hot tip for researchers who are already testing nafamostat in the fight against COVID-19. – PTI

13:23 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: Xi Jinping’s warning to labs in China

Chinese president Xi Jinping has reportedly warned the labs in the country handling pathogens. The Chinese president reportedly said this while addressing at the first-ever Politburo study session, which was focussed on bio-security. The South China Morning Post says that the Chinese President has said that there will greater scrutiny of such research facilities. On Twitter, it triggered a new debate on Covid origins. A Twitter user who goes by the name ‘The Seeker’ on the social media platform said that ‘Even Xi Jinping doesn’t doubt the risk.’ 

13:10 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker:Puducherry adds 64 new COVID-19 cases, overall tally rises to 1,26,431

Puducherry logged 64 fresh Covid- 19 cases during the last 24 hours pushing the overall tally to 1,26,431, a senior official of the Health Department said on Friday. The number of active cases in the union territory fell below 800 as the count stood at 791. The 64 new coronavirus cases were identified at the end of the examination of 5,365 samples, Director of Health Department G Sriramulu said in a release. The fresh infections were spread over Puducherry (38), Karaikal (16), Mahe (9) and Yanam (one), he added. – PTI

12:06 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker:Romania introduces restrictions to stem COVID-19 case rise, boost vaccine intakes

Romania’s centrist minority government introduced new progressive restrictions late on Thursday to stem a rise in new coronavirus infections, including making mask wearing mandatory outside, but opted to keep schools open.The number of new COVID-19 infections in Romania reached 12,032 on Thursday, a new record high, and intensive care units across the country were running out of space as the country has the second-lowest vaccination rate in the European Union.The government made masks mandatory both in indoor and outdoor public spaces in places where the case incidence exceeds 6 per 1,000 people.Access to restaurants, gyms, theatres, cinemas and other indoor spaces would be enabled at half of capacity and only for people who were fully vaccinated or have already been infected.Weekend curfews will be introduced for those who are not vaccinated.Schools have been uncoupled from the case incidence rate to enable them to remain open unless COVID-19 cases are reported in specific classrooms. School staff and students will undergo regular, non-invasive testing. Reuters 

11:26 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: India vaccinated around 65 lakh people on September 30

India’s mega inoculation campaign saw a muted trend on the month ending on Thursday. Round 65 lakh people were administered the Covid jab, shows CoWin data.

11:04 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: S.Korea extends social distancing curbs as COVID-19 cases rise in Seoul

South Korea extended social distancing curbs to combat the coronavirus pandemic on Friday for two weeks, offering more incentives to people to get vaccinated as it battles thousands of new cases each day, particularly in the capital.The rapid resurgence in the greater Seoul area prompted authorities to extend distancing restrictions until Oct. 17, including a ban in the region on dining out after 10 p.m. and gatherings of more than two people after 6 p.m.The country recorded 2,486 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday, according to the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA), with the daily tally having topped 3,000 for the first time last week.The daily average exceeded 2,635 over the past week – the highest-ever level and easily more than twice the level a month before, the KDCA said.The capital Seoul and neighbouring regions remain the hotspot, reporting almost 2,000 cases every day for the last week, up about 42% within just one week. – Reuters

10:40 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: Australia to consider Covishield as one of the ‘recognised vaccines’ for global travellers

TGA published its initial assessment of data on protection offered by Coronavac (Sinovac) & Covishield (AstraZeneca/SII)&has advised that these should be considered as ‘recognised vaccines’ for determining incoming int’l travellers as being appropriately vaccinated: Australian PM – ANI

10:11 (IST)01 Oct 2021
Coronavirus Live Tracker: New Zealand’s Auckland logs more Delta cases ahead of key decision on restrictions

New Zealand logged 19 more cases of the highly infectious Delta coronavirus variant on Friday – all in Auckland, making it highly likely that the country’s biggest city will continue to be sealed off even if some restrictions are eased next week.Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern enforced what was meant to be a “short and sharp” nationwide lockdown nationwide in mid-August after the Delta outbreak. But while the rest of the country has largely returned to normal life, Auckland’s population of 1.7 million has now been in lockdown for about seven weeks.Ardern will decide on Monday whether she will ease the restrictions in Auckland but has warned that border rules preventing travel to and from the city are likely to remain in place.Recent daily case numbers have ranged between 8 and 45 and Deputy Prime Minister Grant Robertson described the relatively stable numbers as encouraging. – Reuters

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