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Coronavirus News November 8 Highlights: Govt to buy 1 crore doses of Zydus Cadila’s Covid vaccine at Rs 265 each; DCGI approval for Covaxin for children may take time – Financial Express

Coronavirus in India Latest News: India has recorded 11,451 new Covid-19 cases and 266 deaths in the last 24 hours, as per the latest data shared by the Health Ministry. The recovery rate is currently at 98.24% which is the highest since March 2020. An active caseload is recorded at a total of 1,42,826 which has been the lowest in 262 days.
With a total of 108.47 cr vaccine doses administered so far, it is safe to say that India’s vaccination drive has maintained its fast pace. Centre’s ‘Har Ghar Dastak’ campaign is also gaining momentum in various parts of the country. Lt. Governor of Puducherry, Dr. Tamilisai Soundararajan, joined the healthcare workers on November 7 to promote vaccination against Covid-19.
Here are the latest Covid-related updates from India and around the globe:
: A total of 161 new COVID-19 cases and one related fatality were recorded in Telangana on Monday, taking the total number of positive cases in the state to 6,72,650 and the death toll to 3,967 respectively. The number of active cases stood at 3,750, a state government bulletin said. The Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation reported the highest number of 50 new cases followed by Medchal Malkajgiri (12) and nine cases each in Rangareddy and Warangal Urban districts. A total of 37,844 samples were tested on Monday. Cumulatively, the number of samples tested was 2,78,35,158. A total of 174 COVID-19 recoveries were reported today, taking the total number of recoveries to 6,64,933. (PTI)
China’s military on Monday gifted health materials, including 300,000 COVID-19 vaccine doses, to the Nepal Army, an official statement said. The People’s Liberation Army (PLA) handed over the Nepal Army with 3 lakh doses of Vero Cell vaccines, 100 units of oxygen concentrators and other health materials, according to a press release issued by Nepal Army headquarters. Chinese ambassador to Nepal Hou Yanqi handed over the health materials to Chief of Army Staff of the Nepalese Army General Prabhu Ram Sharma at the army headquarters. “We received 300,000 doses of Vero Cell vaccine from the Chinese Army,” Brigadier General Santosh Ballave Poudyal, spokesperson for the Nepali Army, was quoted as saying by the Kathmandu Post. “We will use the jabs to the army personnel, who have not been vaccinated yet and provide the second dose to those who have already taken the first dose of Vero Cell. The vaccine will also be administered to the dependents of Army personnel,” Poudyal said. The press release said that the army expressed confidence that such cooperation would further consolidate the relationship between the armies of the two countries. The vaccines arrived on Monday days after Beijing supplied 1.6 million doses of Vero Cell to Nepal under grant assistance, the Post reported. (PTI)
Haryana reported no Covid death even as 14 new infections on Monday pushed the state’s total case count to 7,71,340. According to the Health Department’s daily bulletin, the death toll remained unchanged at 10,050.  Among fresh cases, nine cases were reported from Gurugram. The total active cases in the state were 86 while the overall recoveries were 7,61,181. (PTI)
The owners of Max Corporate Services Sharat Pant and his wife Mallika, who are the main accused in the fake Covid testing scam during Haridwar Kumbh, were arrested from Noida in Uttar Pradesh on Monday. Based on a tip-off, the SIT probing the scam arrested the absconding couple from their residence in Sector 48, Noida when they had come there to collect some of their belongings, Haridwar SSP Yogendra Singh Rawat said. The accused violated the norms to get the contract for conducting Covid tests and entered fake data of tests that were never conducted into their records to get money from the government on the basis of forged bills, the SSP said. They produced false data claiming to have conducted Covid tests on 1,24,031 devotees and produced bills demanding a payment of more than Rs 4 crore from the government at the rate of Rs 354 per test, Rawat said. They even succeeded in extracting a payment of Rs 15,41,670 crore from the government, he said.  The names of five more people have cropped up in the course of the ongoing investigation into the scam, Rawat said, adding appropriate action will be taken as the probe progresses further. Earlier, the SIT had arrested another accused in the scam Ashish Vashisth from Jhajjar in Haryana on July 21.  Vashisth is charged with providing human resource and other material to Nalwa Laboratories, which is also involved in the scam. (PTI)
Gujarat on Monday reported 29 new coronavirus cases, raising its infection tally to 8,26,764, while no fresh death due to the disease was registered in the state, the health department said. Also, 41 patients were discharged during the day, pushing the number of recovered cases in the state to 8,16,457, it said. The number of COVID-19 fatalities remained unchanged at 10,090 as no new death was reported, said the department in a release. The state now has 217 active cases, of which 6 patients are in critical condition, it said. District-wise, Surat and Junagadh reported five new cases each, Rajkot and Valsad four each, Ahmedabad and Vadodara three each, Bhavnagar and Sabarkantha two cases each, and Anand one, it said. With 3.92 lakh people vaccinated against COVID-19 on Monday, the number of doses administered so far in the state rose to 7.19 crore, the department said. (PTI)
In view of the rising cases in Srinagar, there shall be strict Corona curfew in 5 areas for 10 days – Lal Bazar, Hyderpora, Chanapora, Bemina (Hamdania Colony), Bemina (Housing Colony, Bilal Colony, SDA Colony); curfew shall be in force w.e.f 12 am of Nov 9, 2021: Srinagar DM
The cumulative COVID-19 vaccine doses administered in the country crossed 109 crore on Monday, the Union health ministry said. More than 54 lakh vaccine doses have been administered till 7 pm. The daily vaccination tally is expected to increase with the compilation of the final reports for the day by late night, the ministry said. The daily vaccination tally is expected to increase with the compilation of the final reports for the day by late night, it said. The vaccination exercise as a tool to protect the most vulnerable population groups in the country from COVID-19 continues to be regularly reviewed and monitored at the highest level, the ministry underlined. The countrywide vaccination drive was rolled out on January 16 with healthcare workers (HCWs) getting inoculated in the first phase. The vaccination of frontline workers (FLWs) started from February 2. (PTI)
The COVID-19 tally in Madhya Pradesh rose to 7,92,910 on Monday with an addition of three fresh cases, while no new death due to the infection was reported in the state, a health department official said. The death toll remained unchanged at 10,524, the official added. The recovery count rose to 7,82,294 after 11 patients were discharged from hospitals, he said. The state is left with 92 active cases. With 38,521 samples examined during the day, the number of tests in MP went up to 2,06,32,267, the official added. An official release said 7,19,75,638 COVID-19 vaccine doses have been administered so far in the state, including 3,88,876 on Monday. (PTI)
Mumbai on Monday reported 210 new coronavirus cases and five fresh fatalities, taking the infection tally to 7,57,910 and the death toll to 16,281, a civic official said. On the second day in a row, the financial capital has reported more than 200 COVID-19 cases. The city had logged 254 new COVID-19 cases and four fatalities on Sunday. The official said the city is left with 2,815 active COVID-19 cases after 317  patients were discharged from hospitals in the last 24 hours, taking the number of recoveries to 7,36,271. He said 25,311 COVID-19 tests were conducted during the day, pushing their  cumulative number to 1,16,84,483. Presently, Mumbai has 13 sealed buildings (where a certain number of residents have tested positive for coronavirus), while the ity is free of containment zones in slums and ‘chawls’ (old row tenements) since mid-August, the official said. According to him, Mumbai’s COVID-19 recovery rate is 97 per cent. (PTI)
Goa’s coronavirus caseload went up by 30 and reached 1,78,342  on Monday, while two more patients succumbed to the infection in the state, a health department official said. The death toll increased to 3,370, he said. The number of recovered cases in the state rose to 1,74,686 after 42 patients were discharged from hospitals in the last 24 hours, the official said. Goa now has 286 active cases, the official said. “With 2,262 new coronavirus tests, the number of tests conducted in the state has gone up to 14,88,234,”  he added. (PTI)
Karnataka logged 283 new COVID-19 cases and six deaths on Monday, taking the total number of infections to 29,90,235 and the toll to 38,118. The day also saw 290 discharges, taking the total number of recoveries in the state so far to 29,44,099, a health department bulletin said. Bengaluru Urban topped in the number of cases (159), as the city saw 104 discharges and one death. The total number of active cases in the state is now 7,989. While the positivity rate for the day stood at 0.26 per cent, the Case Fatality Rate (CFR) was 2.12 per cent. Out of 6 deaths reported on Monday, two were from Mysuru and one each from Bengaluru Urban, Koppal, Tumakuru and Udupi. Behind Bengaluru in number of cases was Hassan 24, Mysuru 15, Kolar 11, Dakshina Kannada 10, followed by others. Bengaluru Urban district topped the list of positive cases, with a total of 12,52,990, followed by Mysuru 1,79,312 and Tumakuru 1,20,897. (PTI)
Daily new covid cases and the active numbers in Tamil Nadu continued to be on the decline on Monday, with the state reporting 841 fresh infections. With recoveries (937) outnumbering new infections, active cases subsequently dropped to 10,372, as against the 10,474 on Sunday, according to a government bulletin. The overall positives mounted to 27,09,921 while recoveries touched 26,63,323. With six deaths on Monday, the toll went up to 36,226. (PTI)
Mass gatherings at seafronts in Mumbai will not be allowed for the forthcoming Chhath Puja festival in a bid to prevent the anticipated third wave of COVID-19 pandemic, the city civic body said on Monday. As per the revised guidelines, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) will instead create artificial ponds in various regions of the city and bear the expenses for this work. The BMC said only citizens who have completed two doses of the COVID-19 vaccine can participate in the mass Puja. The Shiv Sena-controlled civic body, which is going to polls early next year, has asked the police department to ensure that there won’t be mass gatherings at seafronts for Chhath Puja, performed mainly by the people from Bihar to propitiate the Sun god, which will be celebrated on November 10 and 11. The BMC said regional officers concerned will be responsible for creating the artificial ponds and filling them over once the festival is over. Highlighting the reason for celebrating the Chhath festival in a restricted manner, the BMC said a total of 1,753 COVID-19 cases were recorded in Mumbai from October 1 to November 6. Since there is a possibility of a third wave of COVID-19 and hence it is necessary to celebrate the festival in a restricted manner, as per the guidelines. (PTI)
Singapore’s COVID-19 patients who remain unvaccinated by choice will have to pay for their hospitalisation bills from December 8, the government said on Monday, as it got tough on people who are still holding off from getting their jabs. The government currently foots the complete COVID-19 medical bills of all Singaporeans, permanent residents (PRs) and long-term pass holders, other than for those who have tested positive soon after returning from overseas travel. On Monday, Health Minister Ong Ye Kung described the decision not to pay for unvaccinated people infected by COVID-19 an “important signal” to those who are still holding off on getting their jabs. Speaking at a press conference held by the multi-ministry task force tackling COVID-19, which he co-chairs, Ong said hospitals would much prefer not having to bill these patients, as he urged all those eligible to get vaccinated. “Currently, unvaccinated persons make up a sizeable majority of those who require intensive inpatient care, and disproportionately contribute to the strain on our healthcare resources,” the Ministry of Health said. The new billing measure applies only to those who choose not to be vaccinated despite being medically eligible, and who are hospitalised and are on COVID-19 treatment facilities on or after December 8, The Straits Times reported, citing the minister. “Billing will still be based on our current subsidy framework, subject to MediSave use and MediShield Life claims, so it will still be highly supported and highly subsidised,” Ong said. (PTI)
Russians went back to work on Monday after a nine-day hiatus ordered by the authorities to tame a record-breaking surge of coronavirus infections and deaths. Despite the drastic move, the daily tallies of new cases and COVID-19 deaths remained high throughout the non-working period. Officials in the Kremlin argued Monday that it was too early to tell whether the measure had the desired effect. “Too early to draw a conclusion. It will be clear in about a week,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters. Russia’s coronavirus task force reported 39,400 new infections and 1,190 deaths on Monday, numbers only slightly lower than the record 41,335 new cases registered on Saturday and the record 1,195 deaths reported on Thursday. Russia has the worst death toll in Europe by far, and is one of the top five hardest-hit nations in the world. The task force has been reporting around 40,000 new cases and over 1,100 new deaths each day since late October. Last month, Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered many Russians to stay off work between Oct. 30 and Nov. 7. He authorized regional governments to extend the number of non-working days, if necessary, but only five Russian regions have done so. (AP)
Jammu and Kashmir recorded 111 fresh Covid cases on Monday, taking the infected number of persons to 3,33,187, while three deaths due to the virus were reported in the Union Territory in the past 24 hours, officials said. Out of the fresh cases, 19 were from the Jammu division and 92 from the Kashmir division, the officials said. Srinagar district recorded the highest of 44 cases followed by 15 cases in Budgam district. There are 1,165 active cases in the Union Territory, while the number of recovered patients was 3,27,579, the officials said. The death toll in the Union Territory due to the pandemic was 4,443 as three new fatalities were reported in the past 24 hours. (PTI)
Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc said on Monday a single dose of its antibody cocktail reduced the risk of contracting COVID-19 by 81.6% in the two to eight months period following the drug’s administration in a late-stage trial. The results showed that antibody therapy, REGEN-COV, has the potential to provide long-lasting immunity from COVID-19 infection, said Myron Cohen, who leads monoclonal antibody efforts for the U.S. National Institutes of Health-sponsored COVID Prevention Network. Such immunity is particularly important for immunocompromised people and those not responding to vaccines, the company said. The therapy had previously shown an 81.4% risk reduction during the first month after administration.During the 8-month assessment period, there were no hospitalizations for COVID-19 in the REGEN-COV group, but in the placebo group 6 such incidents were recorded, Regeneron said. (Reuters)
Most Russians went back to work on Monday for the first time in more than a week as a nationwide workplace shutdown was lifted across most regions, even though the numbers of new COVID-19 cases and deaths are hovering near record daily highs. President Vladimir Putin announced last month that Oct. 30 to Nov. 7 would be paid “non-working days” – an attempt to slow the surge in cases by imposing the strictest nationwide restrictions since the early months of the pandemic last year. But officials on Monday reported 1,190 nationwide coronavirus-related deaths in the last 24 hours, higher than in the days before the enforced work break and just five short of the record reported last Thursday. (Reuters)
COVID-19 | Kerala has reported 5404 cases and 80 deaths today; active cases 71,316 and total deaths 33,978 (ANI)
The Supreme Court Monday said it would hear on November 29 a plea seeking directions for disclosure of data on clinical trials of COVID-19 vaccines as also on post-jab cases. The apex court had earlier in August asked the Centre, Bharat Biotech, SII, and others to respond to the plea which sought directions to also disclose post-vaccination data regarding adverse events. As the bench of Justices L Nageswara Rao and A S Oka, which was scheduled to hear the matter, was about to rise for the day, advocate Prashant Bhushan, appearing for the petitioner, mentioned the plea and urged the court to give some date for hearing. He claimed people are losing jobs due to the coercive vaccine mandates being issued by the government if someone is not vaccinated. Solicitor General Tushar Mehta strongly opposed the submission and said the petitioner wants a mandate that vaccines should not be administered. However, Bhushan said this is not so and he was not saying this at all. (PTI)
People who receive the Pfizer or AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine have antibody levels significantly higher than those infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus, according to a study published in Scientific Reports journal on Monday. A team led by researchers at the University of Montreal in Canada found that these antibodies were also effective against the Delta variant. In the study, 32 non-hospitalised COVID-19 positive Canadian adults were recruited 14 to 21 days after being diagnosed through PCR testing in 2020, before the Beta, Delta and Gamma variants emerged. “Everyone who had been infected produced antibodies, but older people produced more than adults under 50 years of age,” said Jean-Francois Masson, a professor at the University of Montreal. “In addition, antibodies were still present in their bloodstream 16 weeks after their diagnosis,” Masson said. Antibodies produced after an infection by the original viral strain also reacted to SARS-CoV-2 variants that emerged in subsequent waves, namely Beta, Delta and Gamma, with a reduction of 30 to 50 per cent in reactivity. “But the result that surprised us the most was that antibodies produced by naturally infected individuals 50 and older provided a greater degree of protection than adults below 50,” said Joelle Pelletier, a professor at the University of Montreal. “This was determined by measuring the antibodies’ capacity to inhibit the interaction of the Delta variant’s spike protein with the ACE-2 receptor in human cells, which is how we become infected,” he added. (PTI)
Slovakia on Monday expanded strict coronavirus restrictions including hotel, bar and restaurant closures to almost a half of the country amid a record surge of infections. The government is expected to discuss additional measures as the country’s health minister joined medical personnel who treat COVID-19 patients in urging Slovaks to get vaccinated. “Only vaccination can take us through the pandemic,” Health Minister Vladimir Lengvarsky said. The measures will affect 36 of the country’s 79 counties.  Indicative of how fast infections are spreading, only five counties had imposed the measures three weeks ago, and another five a week later. On top of the hotel, bar and restaurant closures, people will be allowed to only buy takeout meals. Fitness, wellness and aquatic centres also have been shuttered. The maximum number allowed at public gatherings has been reduced to 100 fully vaccinated people. Face masks are compulsory indoors and outdoors. Slovakia, which has a population of nearly 5.5 million people, is one of the countries in the European Union that have been hardest hit by the pandemic. It has registered around 457,431 cases and 12,917 deaths. Daily infections have set three new records within last week, with the most recent of 6,805 cases being set on Thursday. (AP)
Northern Ireland’s health minister is suing Van Morrison after the singer called him “very dangerous” for his handling of coronavirus restrictions. The Belfast-born singer opposes restrictions to curb the spread of the virus, and has released several songs criticizing lockdowns. He denounced Northern Ireland Health Minister Robin Swann during a gathering at Belfast’s Europa Hotel in June after a Morrison concert was canceled at the last minute because of virus restrictions. The defamation suit relates to three incidents in which Morrison criticized Swann, calling him “a fraud” and “very dangerous.” Swann responded in an article for Rolling Stone magazine, calling the “Moondance” singer’s claims “bizarre and irresponsible.” (AP)
Drug firm Zydus Cadila on Monday said it has received an order to supply one crore doses of its COVID-19 vaccine, ZyCoV-D, to the Indian government at Rs 265 per dose. “Zydus Cadila has received an order to supply one crore doses of ZyCoV-D, the world’s first Plasmid DNA Vaccine, to the Government of India at Rs 265 per dose and the needle-free applicator being offered at Rs 93 per dose, excluding GST,” the pharma firm said in a regulatory filing The pricing has been decided in consultation with the central government, it added. The vaccine will be administered using a needle-free applicator as opposed to traditional syringes. The applicator, called “PharmaJet”. The PharmaJet is a needle free applicator to ensure painless intradermal vaccine delivery which also leads to a significant reduction in any kind of major side effects. “We are happy to support the government’s vaccination programme with ZyCoV-D. The needle-free application of the vaccination, we hope, will motivate many more to vaccinate and safeguard themselves from COVID-19, especially children and young adults in the age group of 12 to 18 years,” Zydus Cadila MD Sharvil Patel said. ZyCoV-D is the first DNA plasmid vaccine in the world for human use, developed indigenously by the company against the COVID-19 virus, Zydus Cadila said. (PTI)
The Biden administration is encouraging local school districts to host clinics to provide COVID-19 vaccinations to kids, and information to parents on the benefits of the shots, as the White House looks to speedily provide vaccines to those ages 5 to 11. First lady Jill Biden and Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy are set to visit the Franklin Sherman Elementary School in McLean, Virginia, on Monday to launch a nationwide campaign to promote child vaccinations.  The school was the first to administer the polio vaccine in 1954. The visit comes just days after federal regulators recommended the COVID-19 vaccine for the age group.  The White House says Biden will visit pediatric vaccination clinics across the country over the coming weeks to encourage the shots. At the same time, Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra and Education Secretary Miguel Cardona are sending a letter to school districts across the country calling on them to organise vaccine clinics for their newly eligible students. The officials are reminding school districts that they can tap into billions of dollars in federal coronavirus relief money to support pediatric vaccination efforts. The Biden administration is providing local school districts with tools to help schools partner with pharmacies to administer shots. And it’s asking schools to share information on the benefits of vaccines and details about the vaccination process with parents, in an effort to combat disinformation surrounding the shots. (AP)
COVID19 | Delhi reports 25 new cases and 48 recoveries in the last 24 hours; Active caseload stands at 342
Germany’s coronavirus infection rate climbed to its highest recorded level yet on Monday as what officials have called a “pandemic of the unvaccinated” gathers pace. The national disease control centre, the Robert Koch Institute, said the country has seen 201.1 new cases per 100,000 residents over the past seven days. That was above the previous record of 197.6 from Dec. 22 last year. While it’s still a lower rate than in several other European countries, it has set alarm bells ringing. The seven-day infection rate has long ceased to be the only yardstick for COVID-19 policy in Germany, but officials say hospitals are filling up in badly affected areas. The disease control centre said Monday that 15,513 new cases were reported over the past 24 hours, down from a record 37,120 on Friday, but figures are typically lower after the weekend. Germany has struggled to find ways to pep up its much-slowed vaccination campaign. (AP)
Mandatory COVID-19 testing of children below 10 years of age entering Assam with double vaccinated guardians has been done away with by the state government, an official notification said on Monday. Fully vaccinated adults coming into the state were already exempted from compulsory testing for the infection through an earlier order.  The latest notification issued by Anurag Goel, principal secretary, Health and Family Welfare department, said, “Children below 10 years of age along with double vaccinated parent(s)/ guardian(s) coming to Assam are hereby exempted from the mandatory COVID-19 testing.” “However, voluntary paid testing for such children shall be facilitated if the parents/ guardians so desire,” it added. All incoming passengers who had been vaccinated with both doses of vaccine were exempted from mandatory testing on arrival by a previous notification. However, passengers who are vaccinated with a single dose or are not vaccinated at all, or are symptomatic even after receiving both the doses have to undergo mandatory RT-PCR testing at their own cost on arrival. (PTI)
Japan reported no daily deaths from COVID-19 on Sunday for the first time in 15 months, as infections decline rapidly in the country. Health officials on Monday said there were no deaths the previous day, giving Japan a total of 18,310 fatalities since the pandemic began. Japan on Monday also eased entry restrictions for foreign students, workers and short-term business travelers who are fully vaccinated, have their activity plans guaranteed by sponsors and observe 10 days of self-isolation. Self-quarantine for Japanese citizens and foreign residents was also shortened to three days from the previous 10 days. The last time Japan reported no new coronavirus deaths was on Aug. 2, 2020, according to the ministry. Japan was then hit by several waves of infections, including one led by the delta variant last summer, when daily cases peaked at around 25,000. Health care systems came close to collapse and tens of thousands of patients who were unable to find hospital beds had to recover at home. In Tokyo, new daily cases rose to nearly 6,000. (AP)
Andhra Pradesh reported 246 fresh COVID-19 cases, 334 recoveries and four deaths in 24 hours ending 9 am on Monday. The total COVID-19 positives has now climbed to 20,68,487, a health department bulletin said. The state now has 3,366 active cases after 20,50,720 total recoveries and 14,401 deaths, it said. East Godavari district reported 80, Chittoor 41, Guntur 31, Visakhapatnam 29 fresh cases in 24 hours. Eight districts added less than 15 new cases each while Anantapuramu registered zero in a day. Guntur, Krishna, Kurnool and Visakhapatnam reported one COVID-19 death each. (PTI)
The data for Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin for children is under evaluation, the process will take some more time for final approval from DCGI: Sources (ANI)
Odisha on Monday reported 276 new COVID-19 cases, 42 less than the previous day, pushing the tally to 10,43,745, the Health department said. One hundred and thirty eight new cases were reported from Khurda district, of which the state capital Bhubaneswar is a part, while 12 out of the state’s 30 districts reported no new infections in the last 24 hours, a health bulletin stated. The COVID-19 toll climbed to 8,361 with four more fatalities – two in Khurda, and one each in Ganjam and Puri districts. Fifty-three more COVID-19 patients have died due to comorbidities so far, according to the Health department. The number of active COVID-19 cases declined to 3,134 on Monday from 3,209 the previous day. The bulletin stated that 2.63-crore first doses of the coronavirus vaccine had been administered in the state, while 1.25-crore people had been inoculated with both doses of the vaccine. PTI
Ladakh has recorded 14 fresh COVID-19 cases, taking the virus tally to 21,047 while the active cases have climbed to 122, officials said on Monday. The Union Territory has registered 209 Covid-related deaths — 151 in Leh and 58 in Kargil — since the outbreak of the pandemic last year. Six patients were cured and discharged from hospital from Leh. The total number of cured patients is 20,716, they said. A total of 165 sample reports in Ladakh were found negative, they said. There was no death reported due to Covid in Ladakh on Sunday. PTI
Andaman and Nicobar Islands reported four new COVID-19 cases, three more than the previous day, with the tally in the Union Territory rising to 7,664, a health department official said on Monday. The fresh cases were detected during contact tracing, he said. The death toll remained at 129 as no new fatality due to the infection was recorded in the last 24 hours, the official said. Three persons were cured of the disease during the period, taking the total number of recoveries in the archipelago to 7,523. The Union Territory now has 12 active cases. The Andaman and Nicobar administration has conducted over 6.07 lakh sample tests for COVID-19 so far, and the positivity rate stands at 1.26 per cent, the official added. PTI
Global COVID-19 cases surpassed 250 million on Monday as some countries in eastern Europe experience record outbreaks, even as the Delta variant surge eases and many countries resume trade and tourism.The daily average number of cases has fallen by 36% over the past three months, according to a Reuters analysis, but the virus is still infecting 50 million people every 90 days due to the highly transmissible Delta variant. By contrast, it took nearly a year to record the first 50 million COVID-19 cases. Health experts are optimistic that many nations have put the worst of the pandemic behind them thanks to vaccines and natural exposure, although they caution that colder weather and upcoming holiday gatherings could increase cases. – Reuters
The lockdown of New Zealand’s largest city is likely to end later this month, with some coronavirus restrictions eased from Tuesday, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. Auckland has been in lockdown for almost three months after an outbreak of the delta variant. The outbreak has grown to more than 4,500 cases with about 150 new infections reported each day over the past week. Ardern said Monday the city’s improving vaccination rate among people age 12 and older meant it could continue cutting back on restrictions. ‘Auckland hit 90% first dose and 80% second dose over the weekend, and it’s now a matter of weeks away from 90% double-dose,’ Ardern said. “And so while we’re getting those rates higher still, we are easing into our reopening.” From tomorrow, retail stores and malls in Auckland can reopen, along with libraries, museums and zoos. Outdoor gatherings will be increased from a maximum of 10 people to 25. – AP
Arunachal Pradesh did not report any fresh COVID-19 case in the last 24 hours, while 11 more persons recuperated from the disease, pushing the total number of recoveries to 54,851, a senior health official said here on Monday. The COVID-19 tally in the frontier state remained at 55,180, he said. The state now has 49 active COVID-19 cases, the official said. The COVID-19 recovery rate in the state marginally improved to 99.40 per cent from 99.38 the previous day, State Surveillance Officer (SSO) Dr Lobsang Jampa said. The coronavirus death toll remained at 280 as no fresh fatality was reported in the last 24 hours, the SSO said. Tawang district has the highest number of active cases at 10, followed by West Kameng and Lower Dibang Valley at eight cases each and East Siang at 6 cases. – PTI
Yoga studio owner David Gross felt relieved after Los Angeles passed a vaccine mandate that is among the strictest in the country, a measure that took effect Monday that requires proof of shots for everyone entering a wide variety of businesses from restaurants to shopping malls and theatres to nail and hair salons. For Gross, the relief came from knowing he and his co-owner don’t have to unilaterally decide whether to verify their customers are vaccinated. In another part of town, the manager of a struggling nail salon feels trepidation and expects to lose customers. ‘This is going to be hard for us,’ Lucila Vazquez said. Los Angeles is among a growing number of cities across the US, including San Francisco and New York City, requiring people show proof of vaccination to enter various types of businesses and venues. But rules in the nation’s second-most-populous city, called SafePassLA, apply to more types of businesses and other indoor locations including museums and convention centres. –  AP
The U.S. lifted restrictions Monday on travel from a long list of countries including Mexico, Canada and most of Europe, allowing tourists to make long-delayed trips and family members to reconnect with loved ones after more than a year and a half apart because of the pandemic. Starting Monday, the U.S. is accepting fully vaccinated travellers at airports and land borders, doing away with a COVID-19 restriction that dates back to the Trump administration. The new rules allow air travel from previously restricted countries as long as the traveller has proof of vaccination and a negative COVID-19 test. Land travel from Mexico and Canada will require proof of vaccination but no test. Airlines are expecting more travellers from Europe and elsewhere. Data from travel and analytics firm Cirium showed airlines are increasing flights between the United Kingdom and the U.S. by 21% this month over last month. The change will have a profound effect on the borders with Mexico and Canada, where travelling back and forth was a way of life until the pandemic hit and the U.S. shut down nonessential travel. AP
After PM Narendra Modi’s meeting with 40 District Magistrates on November 3rd, local authorities across India have begun the door to door campaign in a bid to boost the second dose coverage.


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