Coronavirus outbreak: Without steps, cases would've hit 8.2 lakh by April 15, says government

Updated: Apr 12, 2020, 07:38 IST | Agencies | New Delhi

PM Narendra Modi said the next 3-4 weeks are critical to determine impact of steps taken to curb the virus; urged states to ensure strict adherence to the lockdown

Prime Minister Narendra Modi covered his face while chairing a meeting with chief ministers via video conference on Saturday morning. Pic/PTI
Prime Minister Narendra Modi covered his face while chairing a meeting with chief ministers via video conference on Saturday morning. Pic/PTI

Stressing the role of lockdown and other containment steps in limiting the spread of Coronavirus, the Union Health Ministry said on Saturday, without these steps, cases could have spiralled to 8.2 lakh by April 15.

The cases could have registered a 41 per cent cumulative increase by April 15, said Lav Agarwal, Joint Secretary, Health Ministry, citing a statistical model to capture the projected cases.

According to the Health Ministry, one lakh isolation beds and 11,500 ICU beds have been reserved for COVID-19 patients across the country. Also, 587 dedicated hospitals have been earmarked at the central and the state levels. On Saturday, the total number of cases in India rose to 7,529 with 242 deaths across the country.

'Consensus among states'
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday said the next 3-4 weeks are critical for determining the impact of steps taken till now to curb the virus. He urged state governments to ensure strict adherence to the lockdown.

Interacting with chief ministers via video conference, the PM also said there seems to be a consensus amongst states on extending by another two weeks the ongoing nationwide lockdown, which began on March 25 and was to end on April 14.

'R50 lakh insurance'
Rajasthan Chief minister Ashok Gehlot has announced financial assistance worth R50 lakh to the family of any government employee who died after being diagnosed with Coronavirus in the state.

The central government had earlier announced a medical insurance cover of R50 lakh to the Corona warriors, including medical staff, but, now, the Rajasthan government has extended it to employees who are part of the anti-COVID-19 operation.

Magistrate injured
A Meerut magistrate was injured on Saturday when a team of district officials went to seal the Jali Kothi area in the city that was declared a Coronavirus hotspot as per official guidelines.

Four persons have since been booked under the National Security Act after four positive cases came to light in the area. A team comprising civil, health and police officials had gone to the area around 10 am when a mob pelted it with stones, injuring City Magistrate Sataendra Kumar Singh.

65 untraceable in J&K
As many as 65 people, including the Tablighi Jamaat members from Jammu & Kashmir, who attended the religious congregation at the Islamic missionary's headquarters in New Delhi during the outbreak, are untraceable.

Top official sources said the police had been given a list of 2,054 after a tower analysis of the 1,501 participants from J&K and the people they got in touch with. "We have traced all except 65," a senior official said.

Village sees 32 patients
In a village in Punjab's Mohali district, 32 positive cases were reported in less than a week. All of them belong to close-knit families of the prime patient, who is the panch in the village. Mohali Deputy Commissioner Girish Dayalan said all patients were relatives and there was no case of community transmission.

Seven booked for sailing
Mangaluru police booked a family of seven members for illegally sailing over from Kerala to Karnataka amid the lockdown, police said on Saturday. "Yakoob, 48, crossed over to Thalapady along with his family from Kerala," said a Mangaluru Police Commissionerate statement. Thalapady is 350 km west of Bengaluru.

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