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Last Updated : Jul 6 2020 7:50AM     Screen Reader Access
News Highlights
PM Modi meets Prez Kovind; briefs on national and international issues            Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel Covid Hospital built by DRDO in record time of 12 days becomes operational            Govt conducts locust control ops across nine States; no significant crop loss reported            Traders' body CAIT urges govt to boycot China's Huawei, ZTE from bidding for 5G network in India            CBSE partners with Facebook to launch free training program for teachers, students           

Text Bulletins Details


News at Nine

2030 HRS
29.05.2020

THE HEADLINES:
  • COVID recovery rate improves to around 43 per cent; Over 71 thousand affected people cured so far.
  • More than 52 lakh passengers transported to their home states through Shramik Special trains.
  • Government plans to bring back over One lakh stranded Indians from 60 countries by end of Phase 2 of Vande Bharat Mission .
  • Ministry of Tribal Affairs announces inclusion of 23 additional Minor Forest Produce items in Minimum Support Price list.
  • Defence Minister Rajnath Singh speaks to his US counterpart; Reviews progress on bilateral defence cooperation arrangements.
  • Aviation regulator DGCA issues guidelines for Pilots and Aircraft Engineers to deal with locust swarms.

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The Health and Family Welfare Ministry has said a total 71 thousand 105 people affected with corona virus have been cured and the recovery rate has reached 42.89 per cent in the country.

During the last twenty four hours, three thousand 414 people have recovered and Seven Thousand 466 fresh cases of Covid-19 have been reported. This is the highest spike in fresh cases since the outbreak of Covid-19 pandemic in India. With this, the total number of affected people has risen to one lakh 65 thousand 799. Health Ministry said, 175 deaths have been registered in last 24 hours taking the nationwide Covid death toll to four thousand 706. The number of cases under active medical supervision is reported to be 89 thousand 987.

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Railways has transported more than 52 lakh passengers to their home states through Shramik Special trains. Briefing reporters in New Delhi today, Railway Board Chairman Vinod Kumar Yadav said, a total of three thousand 840 Shramik Special trains have been operationalized from various states across the country. He said, Railway has accommodated almost all requests received from the sending States. Mr Yadav said, Railway is ready to meet all demands of Shramik movement. He said, the requirement of Shramik Special trains has reduced and currently the total demand is only 449 more trains from states.

On delay of trains, Chairman Railway Board said that only four out of 3,840 Shramik Special trains have taken more than 72 hours to reach their destination.

 

Our correspondent reports that 80 per cent of these Shramik trains are headed for various destinations in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar.

"Railways had started running Shramik Special trains from 1st May, to move migrant workers and other persons stranded at different places due to lock down. In the last one week more than 20 lakh passengers were transported through one thousand 524 Shramik Special trains. IRCTC has distributed more than 85 lakh free meals and more than one crore 25 lakh water bottles to travelling migrants. Railways has appealed that persons with co-morbidities, pregnant women, children below 10 years and persons above 65 year of age should avoid travel by trains except when it is essential. In case of any distress or emergency, passengers  can  reach out to the Railways Helpline number - 139 and  138. ANAND CHATURVEDI AIR NEWS DELHI."


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Participating in All India Radio News programme Samvaad, a senior official from Railways said that more than 52 Lakh migrant passengers have reached their destination using Shramik special trains.

The official also clarified that earlier due to congestion, a few trains were running late but railways has resolved the issue and now trains are running on time.

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The Ministry of Railways has made an appeal that persons with comorbidities, pregnant women, children below 10 years and persons above 65 year of age should avoid travel by trains except when it is essential. The appeal was made in view of a few unfortunate cases of deaths related to pre-existing medical conditions while travelling.

The Ministry said the Indian Railways has been running Shramik Special Trains on a daily basis throughout the country to ensure that migrants can travel back to their homes. It has been observed that some people who are availing this service have pre-existing medical conditions which aggravates the risk they face during the COVID-19 pandemic. It said, Indian Railways is working 24X7 to ensure that rail services are provided to all the citizens of the country needing to travel. It said, safety of passengers is the  biggest concern and it seeks the cooperation of all citizens in this matter. It said, in case of any distress or emergency, passengers  can reach out to the Railways Helpline numbers - 139 and 138. 

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Kerala continues to report hike in Covid-19 cases with 62 new cases being confirmed today. Out of newly confirmed cases, 33 are those from other countries and 23 from other states. Total active cases rose to 577.

Meanwhile, under Vande Bharat mission eleven flights carried over 1500 expatriates from Middle east and Armenia to Kerala today.

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In Tamil Nadu, infection cases from Covid-19 have crossed twenty thousand mark today with 874 people tested positive today. They include 135 returnees from Maharashtra and six from other states. In Chennai, the number of affected people has surged past the 13-thousand mark as 618 of the new cases are reported from the city. Nine people died of the disease today leading to a total mortality of 154. From hospitals, 765 patients were discharged today after cure, leaving the active caseload at 8,776. Meanwhile, the Tamil Nadu Government has announced a special Covid-19 package. More from our correspondent:

"To accelerate new job generation in rural Tamil Nadu, the state government has announced a 300-crore rupees special financial package. It will be rolled out in nearly 4000 rural panchayats. Under the scheme nearly 32-thousand rural entrepreneurs will be given about 160-crore rupees investment credit. 75 producers organisations with more than 500-members will be given ten lakh rupees each as capital grant. The grant for about 1600 producer organisations with 20-members and 240 other rural industrial clusters will be 1.5 lakh rupees each. Over 5000 returnees from other states due to the pandemic will be given a long term loan of about one lakh rupees each to start new micro ventures. These are aimed at reinvigorating the rural economy that is under distress due to the pandemic-driven lockdown. Jayasingh, AIR News, Chennai."


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In Jammu and Kashmir, the Health Department has been tirelessly reaching out to the people of the Union Territory to mitigate their sufferings due to the COVID 19 lockdown situation.

Dr Owais Ahmad, OSD, Health Department Kashmir reviewed the ongoing sampling and testing undertaken in Kashmir Division. Various issues with regard to functioning of all three Covid-19 labs of Kashmir were discussed.

It was emphasized that a close coordination between the field agencies and the labs needs to be maintained so as to expedite the testing process. More from our Srinagar Correspondent:

"Emphasising the need for further increasing the testing capacity in Kashmir Division, it was appreciated that the laboratories  functioning in Kashmir Division have been able to increase their testing capacity by twenty times since March this year. The technical staff trained for sampling is taking samples both at block levels and village level through testing kiosks and mobile sampling teams. Due to the concerted efforts of the Health Department, Jammu and Kashmir has been able to conduct highest number of  Corona tests per million in the country." This is Sunil Koul for AIR News from Srinagar.

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Ladakh Lieutenant Governor R. K. Mathur had two consecutive meetings with the Union Home Minister Amit Shah in New Delhi. Mr Mathur shared the Ladakh experience of COVID-19 management in containing coronavirus spread. He explained about the various measures taken in effective management and other precautionary guidelines of COVID-19 in the region. Our Leh Correspondent reports the Lieutenant Governor also discussed augmentation of administrative strength and Leh airport security with the Union Home Minister. Here is a report

"After becoming free of COVID -19 active cases for a week, new positive cases are on rise in Ladakh with the infected evacuees. RK Mathur informed Home Minister  Amit Shah that about 16000 people returned to Ladakh recently from  various parts of the country. In the meeting, various developmental and administrative issues relating to Ladakh are also discussed. Mr. Mathur requested for additional senior-level officers to augment the administrative strength in Ladakh and early implementation of recommendations put by the Advisory Committee and to fast track the domicile rules for Ladakh in order to enable recruitments. Mr. Mathur also requested for deployment of CISF forces for the security of Leh Airport and NHPC Power Projects at Nimo-Basgo and Chutuk. LG also brought the issue of removal of reservations for Ladakhi students in professional colleges in J&K to the Home Minister’s notice. RAMESH CHANDRA, AIR NEWS, LEH."

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Home Minister Amit Shah spoke to all the Chief Ministers yesterday regarding the COVID-19 situation in states and union territories. He invited their suggestions on the future strategy to deal with the pandemic and the lockdown which is scheduled to end on 31st May.

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The Maharashtra government today hiked the salaries of medical officers, both contractual and those who have signed bond with the government by fifteen thousand rupees. The decision will benefit doctors who are working in tribal areas of the state. Meanwhile, chief minister Uddhav Thackeray today said if the lockdown is extended beyond May 31, then it will adversely impact the state's economy. Interacting with  editors of the electronic media, Mr. Thackeray, also said that Maharashtra is close to reaching a peak in cases of COVID-19. Our Mumbai correspondent has filed this report - 

 

The Maharashtra government's decision to hike salaries of medical officers working in tribal belts of the state will act as a morale booster to the doctors who are at the frontline of the COVID-19 pandemic. As per the decision taken today, the doctors who have signed bond and are working in tribal areas will get 75 thousand rupees as against 60 thousand rupees which they currently draw. The specialist doctors will get 85 thousand rupees as against the present 70 thousand rupees. Whereas, the MBBS doctors in other areas of the state will get 70 thousand rupees as against 55 thousand which is being disbursed to them, at present. The specialist doctors in other regions of the state will however, get 80 thousand rupees as against 65 thousand rupees to their present pay scale. In another development, Chief Minister Thackeray today said that the state government will not act hastily to lift the lockdown anticipating that the COVID-19 pandemic will remain for a longer time. Meanwhile, state Education Minister Varsha Gaikwad has written to Information & Broadcasting minister Prakash Javadekar requesting 12 hours air time on any two channels of Doordarshan and two hours daily on All India Radio  to broadcast education content through virtual classroom studios.  KUNAL SHINDE, AIR NEWS, MUMBAI

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The Vande Bharat Mission is in full swing and phase two of the Mission is underway till the 13th of June. Government has planned to bring back over one lakh stranded Indians from 60 countries by the end of Phase 2 . Preparations for the third phase likely to commence after mid-June is also underway. Government has informed that nearly 47 thousand Indians have returned to the country till now. About 5000 Indians have returned through land border immigration checkpoints from Nepal and Bangladesh. External Affairs Ministry  spokesperson Anurag Srivastava has informed that, a total number of 3 lakh eight thousand and 200 people have registered their request with Missions abroad for repatriation to India on compelling grounds. More from our correspondent:

"During Phase Two of Vande Bharat Mission, 429 Air India flights from 60 countries are scheduled to land in India. Government is also assisting return of stranded Indians from remote locations in Latin America and Caribbean countries,  Africa and parts of Europe. This is being done by taking advantage of foreign carriers flying to India primarily for evacuation of their nationals. Recently, about 300 stranded Indians from Peru, Mexico, Belize, Guatemala, Honduras, Portugal and Netherlands were brought in. External Affairs Ministry  said private airlines have now been included as part of Phase II of Vande Bharat Mission. Chartered flights have also begun to operate and return of Indian nationals through land borders has started. The numbers are expected to go up in the coming days with the permission for chartered flights and more efficient use of quarantine capacity. WITH ANAND CHATURVEDI DIWAKER AIR NEWS DELHI.

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The Ministry of Tribal Affairs has announced an inclusion of 23 additional Minor Forest Produce (MFP) items in Minimum Support Price (MSP) list. They include Van Tulsi seeds, Van Jeera, Mushroom, Black Rice and Johar Rice among others. The decision enhancing the coverage from 50 to 73 items comes in the view of the COVID-19 pandemic so that much needed support could be provided to the tribal MFP gatherers.

The ministry said, 14 of the newly added items, otherwise agricultural produce, are not commercially grown in the North Eastern part of India but are found to grow in the wild in forests. Hence, the Ministry has favourably considered to include these specific items as MFP items for the North-East. 

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Consumer Affairs Minister Ram Vilas Paswan has said a total of over 751 Lakh tonnes of foodgrains stock is available with the Food Corporation of India, FCI. He said, currently, FCI has over 272 lakh tonnes of rice and over 479 lakh tonnes of wheat, which is sufficient to meet the nation's foodgrains requirement during the lockdown. Briefing media through Video conference, Mr Paswan said, at the time of COVID-19 pandemic the main focus of his Ministry is to provide food grains and pulses to all PDS and Non-PDS card holders, migrant labourers and those who are not covered under any food grain scheme of the Central or the State Governments. He said that sufficient quantity of food grains is available in buffer stock. 

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Hari Ram Bansal, a farmer from Chhatarpur district of Madhya Pradesh has received benefits under the PM-KISAN scheme. He thanked the government for the initiative saying it provided relief during the lockdown.

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The Centre has approved 445 crore rupees for the implementation of Jal Jeevan Mission in Chhattisgarh during 2020-21. The aim of the mission is to provide adequate potable drinking water of prescribed quality on regular and long-term basis to every rural household of the country by 2024. The Jal Shakti Ministry said, a budget of three lakh 60 thousand Crore rupees has been allocated for this scheme. The Ministry said, Chhattisgarh has planned to have 100 Per cent Functional Tap Water Connection by 2023-24. Out of 45 lakh households in the State, it has planned to provide tap connections to 20 lakh households. Chhattisgarh has been battling with the issue of rapid ground water depletion and chemical contamination of Arsenic, Fluoride and Iron in water for many years.

The Ministry said, with summers in full swing and country grappling with COVID-19 pandemic, it has become more imperative to provide livelihood to the migrant workers who have returned to their native villages. These migrant labourers are basically skilled and semi-skilled ones, whose services could be effectively utilized in villages by providing jobs related to water supply especially plumbing, fitting and water conservation works.

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The Human Resource Development Ministry has postponed the IND-SAT Examination, 2020 due to the novel Corona virus pandemic. HRD Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank in a tweet said, the Ministry has decided to postpone the IND-SAT exam that was initially scheduled for tomorrow to July this year.

Mr Nishank said, the fresh date of the examination will be announced soon. He said, the decision in this regard was taken in view of the current COVID-19 crisis in the world and the requests received from many international students.

IND- SAT is a standardized online test for international students seeking scholarships with Study in India programme.

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Defence Minister Rajnath Singh had a conversation with US Secretary of Defence Mark Esper over bilateral cooperation to address the COVID-19 pandemic. Both the ministers vowed to continue the coordinated efforts in this regard and telephonically shared experiences of both the countries.

They reviewed progress on various bilateral defence cooperation arrangements and expressed their commitment to further promote the Indo-US defence partnership. Mr. Esper also accepted Mr Singh's invitation to visit India. US Defence Secretary expressed condolences over lives lost in West Bengal and Odisha due to Cyclone Amphan. The two Ministers also exchanged views on regional developments of shared security interest.

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Nepal has reported the sixth death due to COVID-19. According to the Ministry of Health and Population, a 35-year-old man from Arghakhanchi district died of novel corona virus. The ministry spokesperson said, 170 people have tested positive for COVID-19 in the last 24 hours taking the total number to 1,212.

There are now 1,000 active cases, while 206 people have recovered so far.

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Chhattisgarh's first Chief Minister Ajit Jogi passed away this afternoon at the age of 74 years. He breathed his last at a private hospital in state capital Raipur, where he was admitted after a cardiac arrest and subsequent swelling in the brain on May 9th. More from our Raipur correspondent-


The IAS officer-turned politician, Ajit Jogi became the first Chief Minister of Chhattisgarh in November, 2000, when the new state was carved out of Madhya Pradesh. He remained as Chief Minister till December, 2003 when the congress lost power to BJP in state's maiden Assembly Elections. About 4 years ago, he parted ways with the Congress in 2016 and floated a new regional party Janta Congress Chhattisgarh. He played a crucial role in state politics and his party won 5 assembly seats in the 2018 Assembly Elections. At present, Shri  Ajit Jogi was MLA from tribal Marwahi constituency. Ajit Jogi also elected twice to the  Lok Sabha and he also served two terms as a member of the Rajya Sabha. Vikalp Shukla, AIR News, Raipur

President Ram Nath Kovind, Vice-President M Venkaiah Naidu, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Congress leader Rahul Gandhi have expressed condolence over the demise of Ajit Jogi. Paying tributes to the departed leader, the President said, Mr. Jogi was an able administrator known for promoting development of the State and its people. The Prime Minister in his tweet said, Ajit Jogi was passionate about public service. Mr Modi in his message said this passion made him work hard as a bureaucrat and as a political leader. The Prime minister said, he strived to bring a positive change in the lives of the poor, especially tribal communities.

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In our series 'Expert Speak' on All India Radio, we bring you the views of leading experts on COVID-19.

Talking to AIR News, Member (Health) in NITI Aayog, Dr V K Paul urged everyone to follow social distancing in order to break the chain of transmission.

   

Dr. Rakesh Misra, Director of the Centre of Cellular and Molecular Biology, highlighted the importance of growing cultures of the virus in labs for developing vaccines and conducting serological tests.

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In Gujarat, dry ginger therapy is being used to prevent Corona virus infection while the whole world is looking for ways to fight COVID-19. Renowned Ayurvedacharya and propagator of Lok Ayurved concept Dr. Hitesh Jani is popularizing the use of this simple home remedy to prevent the spread of the virus. Talking to AIR News, Dr Jani said, the therapy has shown better results in the containment as well as non-containment zones. 

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Noted Actor Salman Khan has appealed to people not to believe or spread rumours during the COVID-19 pandemic. He said the government is taking steps for the benefit of all and appealed to people to follow all government guidelines and directions.

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Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) today issued guidelines for stakeholders like pilots and engineers  to deal with locust swarms. In its circular, the aviation regulator said, locusts pose a threat to the aircraft in the critical landing and takeoff phase of a flight. It said, almost all air intake ports of the aircraft will be prone to the ingestion in large numbers, if the aircraft flies through a swarm. Pilot and static sources can also get partially or fully blocked while flying through locust swarms. The DGCA said that large swarms could also obstruct visual ground contact over a large area, therefore flights under Visual Flight Rules also need to be aware of their presence. It added that air traffic controllers, when aware of the locust presence in the vicinity of their aerodrome, are advised to share the information with all arriving and departing flights.  

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In Rajasthan, as many as 20 districts are affected by locust attacks.  Our correspondent reports that about 90 thousand hectares area has been affected due to locust attacks so far.

"The movement of the locust is not confined to Rajasthan this time. It has reached in some districts of the neighbouring states Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh too. Capital Jaipur has also witnessed a locust attack after a long time. The locusts have so far affected about 90 thousand hectares area. Agriculture Commissioner Dr. Om Prakash told AIR that locust warning organization and local administration are engaged in locust control activities. And these activities have been carried out in about 70 thousand hectare area so far. The use of drones has also been started for this work first time. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations has said that the impact of locust attack this time may be just double than last year. Jitendra Dwivedi, AIR News, Jaipur."

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Now, Let us take a look at the weather forecast for tomorrow.

The National capital Delhi will witness a minimum temperature of 22 degrees  and maximum of 36 degrees Celsius.  The Metro is also likely to witness thunderstorm with squall tomorrow. In Jammu and Kashmir, the minimum temperature will be 25 degrees Celsius in Jammu while maximum will be around 37 degrees. The city will witness a partly cloudy sky with possibility of rain or Thunderstorm or Duststorm.

In Srinagar, the minimum temperature will be 14 degrees Celsius while maximum will be around 24 degrees. The  city is likely to experience thunderstorm with rain.

In Gilgit, the temperature will hover between 15 and 32 degrees Celsius.

In Muzzafarabad, there will be a partly cloudy sky with possibility of rain or Thunderstorm or Duststorm.

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