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Posted On: 18 APR 2020 6:48PM by PIB Delhi

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(Contains Press releases concerning Covid-19, issued in last 24 hours, inputs from field offices, and Fact checks undertaken by PIB)


Updates on COVID-19 from the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare

A total of 14,378 confirmed cases are reported for COVID-19 in the country. As many as 1992 persons i.e. is 13.82% of total cases have been cured/discharged after recovery.The implementation of the Action Plan is yielding good results in 23 States/UTs across 47 districts. Kodaggu (Karnataka) is a new district that has been added to this list along with Mahe (Puducherry) that has not reported any fresh cases during the last 28 days. 22 new districts in 12 States have not reported any fresh cases during the last 14 days

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Dr. Harsh Vardhan holds VC with LG Delhi, Health Minister of Delhi, Medical Superintendents of various hospitals in Delhi and health officials of Union and Delhi Government

Union Health Minister has urged hospitals to attend to critical non-COVID-19 patients with equal compassion in a resolute fight against sickness. He said keep sufficient blood stock for transfusion by promoting voluntary blood donors and utilising various services like mobile blood collection vans with the help of Indian Red Cross Society. He said that action would be taken against erring health care personnel if any patient needing immediate attention is turned away from hospitals without treatment.
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All existing Visas granted to Foreigners and all Incoming Passenger Traffic into India through Immigration Check Posts, except certain categories, to remain suspended till 3rd May, 2020

In the wake of continuing COVID-19 outbreak in the country, MHA has decided to extend the suspension of all existing visas granted to foreigners, except to those belonging to diplomatic, official, UN/international organizations, employment and project categories, till 3rd May, 2020.MHA has further directed that all incoming passenger traffic into India through any of the 107 Immigration Check Posts shall remain suspended till 3rd May, 2020. However, no such restriction would apply to vehicles, planes, ships, conveyance, trains etc. carrying any goods and supplies whether essential or non-essential.

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Grant of Consular Services to Foreign Nationals, presently residing in India due to travel restrictions in the context of COVID-19 outbreak, till 3rd May, 2020

MHA, on 28.03.2020, had granted consular services on gratis basis to foreign nationals, presently residing in India due to travel restrictions in the context of COVID-19 outbreak, till 30th April, 2020.After considering the matter, it has been decided to extend the period of providing the following consular services by the Office of Foreigners Regional Registration Officers/ Foreigners Registration Officers to foreign nationals, presently stranded in India.

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Compensation of Rs.10 lakhs to all Postal employees

In the context of COVID -19 situation, it has been decided to extend payment of compensation of Rs.10 lakhs to all Postal employees including GraminDakSevaks(GDS) succumbing to the disease while being on duty. The guidelines will come into effect immediately and continue for the entire period till the crises of COVID-19 is over.

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Committed to help GST taxpayers in COVID-19 situations: CBIC

Since 30th March 2020, CBIC has processed 12,923 refund applications involving claims worth Rs 5,575 Crore, while in the last week itself, CBIC has processed 7,873 claims worth Rs 3854 Crore.CBIC has said that a trade and business friendly measure taken by CBIC vide its Circular No. 133 dated 31.03.2020 to help GST returns filers to facilitate early ITC refunds and to ensure that the wrong ITC claims are not processed in the absence of relevant information, is misconstrued in certain section of social media and other media as troubling the taxpayers in COVID -19 like situation.

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As a relief to MSMEs, I-T refunds worth Rs 5,204 Crore issued in last 10 days

The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) today said that Income tax refunds to nearly 8.2 lakh small businesses (proprietors, firms, corporate and trusts) worth Rs 5,204 Crore have been issued since 8th April 2020. These income tax refunds would help MSMEs to carry on their business activities without pay cuts and layoffs in Covid-19 pandemic situations.

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Government amends the extant FDI policy for curbing opportunistic takeovers/acquisitions of Indian companies due to the current COVID-19 pandemic

Government has reviewed the extant Foreign Direct Investment policy for curbing opportunistic takeovers/acquisitions of Indian companies due to the current COVID-19 pandemic and amended extant FDI policy as contained in Consolidated FDI Policy, 2017.Now, an entity of a country, which shares land border with India or where the beneficial owner of an investment into India is situated in or is a citizen of any such country, can invest only under the Government route.

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Telephone Conversation between PM and President of Republic of South Africa

Prime Minister ShriNarendraModi had a telephone conversation with H.E. Cyril Ramaphosa, President of the Republic of South Africa.The two leaders exchanged views about the domestic, regional and global challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. Prime Minister assured that India would provide all possible support to South Africa for ensuring supplies of essential medicines during this challenging time.

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Telephone Conversation between PM and President of Egypt

Prime Minister ShriNarendraModi spoke on phone with H.E. Mr. Abdel Fattah El-Sisi, President of Egypt. The leaders discussed the evolving global situation in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic and exchanged information about the steps being taken by their respective governments to protect their populations. Prime Minister assured the Egyptian President that India would provide all possible support to ensure availability of pharmaceutical supplies during these difficult times. 

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Agriculture Minister discusses various business continuity measures to facilitate farming activities during the lockdown

Government defers testing of samples and updating approvals for tractors, tillers, harvesters and 51 agricultural machinery till year-end; license validity of Seed dealers and import permissions extended till September 2020, besides validity of pack-houses, processing units and treatment facilities expiring on 30th June extended by a year

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Procurement operations of Pulses and Oilseeds directly from Farmers at MSP

Government of India through Central Nodal Agencies like NAFED and FCI has been striving to assure better returns for the farmers. Procurement of notified commodities at Minimum Support Price (MSP) from the farmers in several States in the Rabi 2020-21 season has started. Farmers are being given timely marketing support in the time of lockdown. Maximum numbers of farmers are being catered to by observing the guidelines issued to manage the COVID-19 pandemic.

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ShriSantoshGangwar writes to States/UTs to designate Nodal Officers for coordinated efforts for resolving Grievances of Workers in the country

Union Minister of State (I/C) for Labour and Employment has requested various State/UT Governments to designate a nodal officer from Labour Department to coordinate with 20 Control Rooms set up by Union Government for addressing issues of the labour/workers in the country in view of the lockdown announced to combat COVID-19 pandemic.

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Webinar on manufacturing PPEs and other products for Combating COVID-19

Domestic industry needs to gear up their manufacturing capabilities to meet the rising demand of COVID-19 combat products for both Government and non-Government sectors. In this regard a webinar was organised by Society of Indian Defence Manufacturers (SIDM) in collaboration with the DRDO.

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ShriGadkari Calls Upon Industry to Work Upon Import Substitution and Adopting Innovative Technology to Remain Competitive

Minister Interacted with Industry Associations to Discuss Revival of Economic Activity As Lockdown Eases from 20th April in Some Areas. Regarding revival of MSME sector, Minister mentioned that industry should lay special focus towards export enhancement and necessary practices be adopted to reduce Power cost, Logistics cost and Production cost to become competitive in the global market.

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274 flights operated under Lifeline Udan to transport essential medical supplies across the country

‘Lifeline Udan’ flights are being operated by MoCA to transport essential medical cargo to remote parts of the country to support India’s war against COVID-19. 274 flights have been operated under Lifeline Udan by Air India, Alliance Air, IAF and private carriers.175 of these flights have been operated by Air India and Alliance Air. Cargo transported till date is around 463.15 tons. Aerial distance covered by Lifeline Udan flights till date is over 2,73,275km.

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Indian Railways introduces innovative ideas and registers record landmarks freight movement during COVID-19 lockdown

Annapoorna Trains from North and Jai Kisan Special from South mark the beginning of long distance super heavy fast special Freight trains.Almost 5000 tons and more than 80 rakes long long haul loaded foodgrain trains run fast to connect the nation. More than 3.2 Million Tonnes of food grains have been loaded between 1st April - 16th Aprilthis year, as compared to 1.29 Million Tonnes in the same corresponding period last year.

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To ensure enough availability of foodgrains for Public Distribution system ( PDS), Railways loads food grains double the amount what was done last year
More than 1500 rakes and more than 4.2 Million Tonnes of foodgrains loadedduring the lockdown period from 25th March to 17th April 2020 compared to 2.31 million tonnes last year in same period. Indian Railways making all efforts to ensure that farm products like foodgrains are picked up on time and also to ensure uninterrupted supply chain.

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Sh. Ravi Shankar Prasad instructs postal department to focus on those in urgent need of food items

The Postal Department during this time of Covid-19 crisis, has risen to the occasion in helping people of the country through its vast network of post offices across the country. Sh. Ravi Shankar Prasad has issued instructions to specially focus on helping the downtrodden and needy people in urgent need of food items. The employees of DoP have pooled their savings to distribute food, dry rations and even masks to the needy in slums, migrant labourers and daily wage earners. In last few days, around 1 lakh food / dry ration packets have been distributed.

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50,000 Reusable Face Masks supplied by RCD, Delhi
Masks made by Work from Home during Lockdown Period

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Defence PSUs, OFB ramp up their resources to fight COVID-19 pandemic

Defence Public Sector Undertakings (DPSUs) and Ordnance Factory Board (OFB) have played their part in assisting civilian administration in fight against COVID-19 pandemic. These vital institutions have channelised all their resources, technical knowhow and manpower to help the nation mitigate the deadly virus.

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CSIR-NAL develop Personal Protective Coverall Suit to Combat COVID-19

CSIR constituent Lab in Bengaluru, CSIR-National Aerospace Laboratories (CSIR-NAL), has developed and certified the overall protective coverall suit. The polyproplylene spun laminated multi-layered non-woven fabric based coverall can be used to ensure the safety of Doctors, Nurses, Paramedical staff and Health Care workers working round the clock on COVID-19 mitigation.

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National Fertilizers ltd taking active part in distributing essential items like food and medicines to support government's efforts to fight COVID-19

A leading Fertilizer company, National Fertilizers Ltd.(NFL) under the Union Department of Fertilizers , is taking active part in distributing essential items like food, medicines and masks to support Government in its effort to combat COVID-19.NFL Bathinda unit has provided 3,000 Masks to District Administration, Bathinda to fight Corona Pandemic.

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Tourism Ministry observes World Heritage Day today through a webinar series on ‘DekhoApnaDesh’

Ministry of Tourism celebrated the World Heritage Day 2020 today through a webinar series. Speaking on the occasion Minister of Tourism and Culture (I/C) ShriPrahlad Singh Patel highlighted how our tradition and culture is not only ancient but also invaluable. He further said that in the present crisis where the world and our country also is dealing with COVID-19, it is the values of humanity and warm hospitality of our heritage which define us and makes us what we are.

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  • Maharashtra: The number of Covid-19 cases has reached 3,323 in Maharashtra, the most affected state both in terms of infections and deaths. At least 20 Indian Navy personnel in Mumbai have tested positive for the viral infection. The personnel are part of the INS Angre, a logistics and support facility of the Western Naval Command.
  • Gujarat: The number of coronavirus positive cases in Gujarat rose to 1,272 after 176 new cases were reported on Saturday, according to the State Health Department. Ahmedabad reported 142 new COVID-19 cases, taking the total number of cases in the city to 765. In all, 48 people have died of the infection.
  • Rajasthan: 98 new coronavirus cases were reported in Rajasthan taking the state tally of affected people to 1229. Among the total people infected as on date, 183 have recovered and 11 have passed away.
  • Kerala:  State Health Minister K.K.Shylaja has stated that the death of a Malappuram native who was under observation was not of Covid-19; he tested negative on last 3 tests. Yesterday, the state reported only one COVID-19 positive case and 10 patients recovered from the disease.
  • Tamil Nadu: 36,000 rapid test kits distributed across TN for use in hotspots. Hyundai ties up with Air Liquide Medical Systems to produce of ICU ventilators in Tamil Nadu & other states. Centre gives nod for plasma therapy in the state. Total +ve cases till now 1323; deaths 15; discharged 283.
  • Karnataka: CM conducted review meeting with senior ministers to review Covid-19 situation in the state, and steps to be taken after April 20. Total confirmed cases 371. Today 12 new cases added. Total deaths 13 and 92 people discharged.
  • Andhra Pradesh: 31 new cases reported in the last 24 hours; One more death reported from Krishna district taking the toll to 15. Total +ve cases till now 603; discharged 42.  Door to door survey and tests being done in Red Zones. Districts leading in +ve cases: Kurnool (129), Guntur (126), Krishna (70), Nellore (67).
  • Telangana: One more cop in Hyderabad and an infant without any contact history tests positive in Narayanpet. ‘Hotspot’ Telangana may not go for lockdown relaxations; State to take a final call on Sunday. Total +ve cases till yesterday 766; deaths 18.Arunachal Pradesh CM visits the Banderdewa check gate at the Assam-Arunachal border near Itanagar and reviews measures taken to screen those entering the state.
  • Assam: Health Minister HimantaBiswaSarmatweeted that 1 more COVID-19 patient discharged from Silchar Medical College & Hospital; total 12 cured in the state.
  • Meghalaya: NIC Meghalaya in collaboration with Artificial Intelligence Resource Division, NIC has developed 'VANI-COVID19', a multilingual Chatbot to address COVID19 related queries for the people of Meghalaya, in English, Khasi&Garo languages.
  • Manipur: Education deptt launches electronic format of comic textbooks that can be downloaded from the website - manipureducation.gov.in to help children study at home.
  • Mizoram: Chief Minister thanks Karnataka Deputy Chief Minister ShriGovind M Kajrol for providing relief aid to Mizos stranded in Bengaluru.
  • Chandigarh:  68,525 cooked food packets have been distributed among the destitutes and needy persons in various parts of the city. 17,000 workers out of 20,000 workers have received their wages for March, 2020 by the respective industries.
  • Punjab: PradhanMantriGaribKalyan Ann Yojana was launched in the state by Punjab Food, Civil Supplies & Consumer Affairs Minister. Under this scheme, wheat and pulses would be provided to all beneficiaries of the smart card scheme totally free of cost. The Cabinet Minister has also assured the farmers that every single food grain would be procured.


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