India’s COVID-19 caseload rose to 1,03,95,278 with 20,346 new infections being reported in a day, while the number of recoveries surpassed one crore, according to data updated by the Union health ministry on Thursday.
The death toll increased to 1,50,336 as 222 people succumbed to the disease in a span of 24 hours, the data updated at 8 a.m. showed.
Here are live updates:
PIL in Delhi HC to remove Amitabh Bachchan’s voice from caller tune on COVID-19 awareness
A PIL has been filed in the Delhi High Court seeking direction to the Centre to remove megastar Amitabh Bachchan’s voice from the caller tune on precautions against coronavirus on the grounds that he himself, along with some family members, had been infected by the virus.
The plea, which said there were some famous corona warriors who were willing to give their services for free, came up for hearing on January 7 before a Bench of Chief Justice D.N. Patel and Justice Jyoti Singh.
The Bench listed it for January 18 as the petitioner’s counsel expressed inability to appear for physical hearing. — PTI
Be prepared to receive first supply of COVID-19 vaccine: Centre to States, UTs
The Union Health Ministry has informed States and Union Territories that they are likely to receive the first supply of COVID-19 vaccine shortly and asked them to remain prepared to accept these consignments.
In a communique, the ministry said vaccine will be supplied to the identified consignee points of 19 States and Union Territories — Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Delhi, Gujarat, Haryana, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Odisha, Punjab, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal — by the supplier.
The vaccine for remaining 18 states and union territories — Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Arunachal Pradesh, Chandigarh, Daman and Nagar Haveli, Daman and Diu, Goa, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Ladakh, Lakshadweep, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Puducherry, Sikkim, Tripura and Uttarakhand — will be received from their respective government medical store depots. — PTI
Protective immunity against novel coronavirus may last for over eight months: study
The findings, based on analyses of blood samples from 188 COVID-19 patients, suggest that nearly all survivors of the disease have the immune cells necessary to fight re-infection.
“Our data suggest that the immune response is there — and it stays,” Professor Alessandro Sette from La Jolla Institute for Immunology in the U.S. The researchers measured antibodies, memory B cells, helper T cells and killer T cells — all four components of immune memory — at the same time.
The study, published in the journal Science, helps clarify some concerning data from other institutes, which showed a dramatic drop-off of COVID-fighting antibodies in the months following infection. — PTI
SC expresses concern over large gathering of farmers during COVID-19
Chief Justice of India Sharad A. Bobde on Thursday voiced the Supreme Court’s apprehension that mass gatherings of protesting farmers will lead to a “problem similar to the Tablighi Jamaat congregation” in March last year amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Same problem will arise from the farmers’ protest… Don’t know if they are protected from COVID-19… You must tells us what is happening,” Chief Justice Bobde, heading a three-judge Bench, addressed Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, for the Centre.
Kolkata book fair put off due to COVID-19
Every year, for 45 years now, the exit of winter in Kolkata has been marked by an event that’s eagerly awaited by people from across communities, religions and ideologies: the book fair, or boi mela. Attracting well over 2 million visitors — even when online merchants have elbowed out physical shops — during its 10-day span, it’s easily the world’s largest book fair.
But this year, owing to the COVID-19 pandemic, Kolkata will miss its winter date with the printed word. The Publishers and Booksellers Guild, which organises the fair, has decided to defer the event.
T.N. Minister R. Kamaraj tests positive for COVID-19
Tamil Nadu Food and Civil Supplies Minister R. Kamaraj has tested positive for COVID-19. He was admitted to MIOT Hospitals for observation on January 5.
His CT scan was normal and he was asymptomatic. He was comfortable in room air and did not require any supplemental oxygen. He would be discharged shortly, the hospital said in a medical bulletin on January 7. — Special Correspondent
India reports 20,346 COVID-19 cases, 222 fatalities
India’s COVID-19 caseload rose to 1,03,95,278 with 20,346 new infections being reported in a day, while the number of recoveries surpassed one crore, according to data updated by the Union Health Ministry on January 7.
The death toll increased to 1,50,336 as 222 people succumbed to the disease in a span of 24 hours, the data updated at 8 am showed. — PTI
Narendra Modi briefs Angela Merkel on vaccine status
India will deploy its ability to combat the pandemic across the world, Prime Minister Narendra Modi told German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Wednesday. The two leaders interacted via video conference, and Mr. Modi described the discussion as fruitful.
“The Prime Minister briefed Chancellor Merkel on the developments in India with regard to vaccine development and assured her of the commitment to deploy its capacities for the benefit of the world,” the Ministry of External Affairs said.
Kerala Assembly session to begin as per COVID protocol on January 8
The 22nd and final session of the 14th Kerala Legislative Assembly scheduled from January 8 will be held in accordance with the COVID-19 protocol.
Governor Arif Mohammed Khan will make the customary policy address of the government on the opening day of the session. Finance Minister T.M. Thomas Isaac will present his 12th Budget and the final Budget of the Pinarayi Vijayan-led Left Democratic Front (LDF) government on January 15. Detailed guidelines have been issued by Legislature Secretary S.V. Unnikrishnan Nair to ensure that all who step into the Legislative Assembly premises follow the COVID-19 protocol and guidelines.
(With inputs from Agencies)