PM dials 4 Chief Ministers to discuss the COVID-19 situation
Prime Minister Narendra Modi today spoke with four Chief Ministers on separate phone calls to discuss the coronavirus situation in their states, reports say. The PM dialed Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, Tamil Nadu CM MK Stalin, Madhya Pradesh CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan, and Himachal Pradesh CM Jairam Thakur. PM Modi has been interacting with State Chief Ministers for the past couple of days.
Maharashtra battling second wave well, PM reportedly said
Maharashtra, the hardest hit Indian state in the COVID-19 outbreak, is now seeing a plateauing of fresh infections, the Union Health Ministry had said on Friday. During today's call, the PM acknowledged that the state has been battling the second wave well. Maharashtra recorded 54,022 new coronavirus cases and 898 related deaths in the last 24 hours.
PM's guidance being put to good use: Maharashtra CMO
"The PM and Union government have been guiding Maharashtra in the corona war from the very beginning and it is being put to good use by the state government. The CM thanked the PM for accepting some of the state's suggestions," the Maharashtra CMO said.
PM expressed satisfaction with MP government's efforts: CM
Following the phone call, MP CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan said that he updated PM Modi about the state's "continuously decreasing positivity rate and rapidly rising recovery rate." "Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed satisfaction with the efforts of the Madhya Pradesh government (sic)," Chouhan tweeted today. Madhya Pradesh logged 11,708 fresh COVID-19 cases in the past 24 hours.
TN CM announces full lockdown in state
Himachal Pradesh CM Jairam Thakur also tweeted about his phone call with PM Modi. To note, the hill state reported 4,177 fresh COVID-19 infections in the past 24 hours. Meanwhile, Tamil Nadu CM MK Stalin, who took charge on Friday, has announced a complete lockdown there for two weeks starting from Monday. The southern state reported 26,465 new cases as per the latest bulletin.
The COVID-19 crisis in India
On Saturday, India reported over four lakh new cases for the third straight day. More than 4,000 deaths linked to the coronavirus were also registered for the first time during the same period. India's active caseload has now crossed 37 lakh. As many as 24 states have reported a test positivity rate of over 15% over the last week, the government said.
India's vaccination program fails to maintain momentum
India had launched the world's largest inoculation program this January. However, the massive surge in infections and shortage of vaccine doses have derailed the drive. On Friday, India administered nearly 23 lakh doses. A total of 16.7 crore doses have been administered so far. Experts say the country needs to administer around one crore doses every day to be able to curb the spread.
Anti-coronavirus drug developed by DRDO cleared for use
Meanwhile, in a significant development, an anti-coronavirus drug, developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), has been granted emergency use approval by the country's top drug regulator. The medicine comes in powder form in a sachet and can be taken orally with water.