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Maharashtra notches 53 Covid-19 deaths for 2nd time in 48 hrs

On the positive side, 399 more fully cured patients returned home, taking the number of those discharged to 4,199 till date.

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Mumbai, May 12 : For the second time in 48 hours, Maharashtra on Tuesday recorded 53 new Covid-19 deaths, after touching the same figures on Sunday, with the number of positive cases zooming past the 24,000 mark, health officials said here.

With 53 fatalities, the state’s death toll shot up from Monday’s 868 to 921 on Tuesday while the total number of coronavirus cases increased to 24,427, a jump of 1,026 new cases.

Of the total deaths, 28 — the highest till date — were recorded in Mumbai, taking the city’s toll from Monday’s 528 to 556 while the number of Covid-19 cases in the city shot up by 426 to 14,947 on Tuesday.

Dharavi slum alone continued to be a major hotspot in Mumbai, notching 46 new cases, taking the total number of patients to 962, besides recording 31 deaths till now.

Besides Mumbai, 7 deaths were reported from Raigad, 6 from Pune, 5 from Jalgaon, 3 from Solapur, 2 from Thane, and one each from Aurangabad and Akola.

The deceased comprised 29 men and 24 women, and nearly 66 per cent of them suffered from other serious ailments such as diabetes, hypertension, heart problems and asthma.

With the unabated spike in Covid-19 cases and deaths in Mumbai, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation Commissioner Iqbal Singh Chahal carried out a major organisational revamp with at least 9 IAS officers given charge of different responsibilities to combat the pandemic.

All experienced and in the rank of Additional Municipal Commissioners, the IAS officers are: Manisha Patankar-Mhaiskar, Ashwini Bhide, Sanjeev Jaiswal, Prajakta Lawangare-Varma, P. Velrasu, Suresh Kakani, N. Ramaswami and Ashutosh Salil.

All civic hospital deans will report to Patankar-Mhaiskar who will handle augmentation of Covid-19 beds in the BMC hospitals, while Jaiswal will look after food grain procurement, cooked food packets distribution, supply chains in containment zones and liaison with the state government.

Bhide will handle the Covid-19 overall strategy, war-room monitoring and dashboard updation, contact-tracing, institutional quarantining and containment strategies.

Lawangare-Varma will coordinate with the Covid Yoddha volunteers to appoint doctors-nurses, Kakani will handle major city and peripheral hospitals and primary health facility management.

Salil will look into creation of jumbo facilities and coordinate with various government agencies, Ramaswami will oversee operations of Seven Hills Hospital and training, while Velrasu will oversee pre-monsoon works, coordinate international arrivals, screening and quarantining them.

The Mumbai Metropolitan Region (Thane Division) continued to cause huge concerns with 603 Covid-19 deaths and 18,337 patients.

Pune Division trails a distant second with 185 fatalities and 3,377 patients.

The next area of concern is Nashik Division with 69 deaths and 1,082 positive cases, followed by Akola Division with 26 deaths and 383 cases, and Aurangabad with 16 fatalities and 732 patients.

There’s also the Kolhapur Division with 4 deaths and 118 patients, Latur Division with 5 fatalities and 82 cases, and Nagpur Division with 3 deaths and 275 patients.

On the positive side, 39 more fully cured patients returned home on Tuesday, taking the number of those discharged to 5,125 till date, which is a very encouraging sign, said Health Minister Rajesh Tope.

Meanwhile, the number of people shunted in home quarantine increased from 248,301 to 281,655, the highest increase of 33,628 in a day, and those in institutional quarantine went up to 15,627, while the state’s containment zones increased from 1,256 to 1,289 on Tuesday.

As many as 12,923 teams have carried out a survey of a population of around 54.9 lakh in the state till date.

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Lightning kills 15 more in Bihar

The meteorological department has issued an alert for thunderstorms in more than a dozen districts, including Patna, Bhojpur, Vaishali and Nalanda in the state.

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Patna, July 4 : Fifteen more people lost their lives due to lightning amid heavy rain and thunderstorms in seven districts of Bihar in the last 24 hours.

According to the information received from the districts, 15 persons were killed by lightning during the past 24 hours in the state. Of these, six persons died in Vaishali, two in Lakhisarai, three in Samastipur and one each in Gaya, Banka, Nalanda and Jamui districts.

The meteorological department has issued an alert for thunderstorms in more than a dozen districts, including Patna, Bhojpur, Vaishali and Nalanda in the state.

Chief minister Nitish Kumar has appealed to the people to be vigilant and follow the guidelines issued by the disaster management department for protection against lightning in the inclement weather. He suggested that people stay at home and be safe.

On Thursday, 26 persons died due to lightning striking different districts. These included six in Patna, four in east Champaran, seven in Samastipur, three in Katihar, two each in Shivhar and Madhepura and one each in Purnia and west Champaran districts.

Last Tuesday, 11 persons died as lightning fell in various districts of Bihar while on June 26, 96 persons perished as lightning struck different parts of the state.

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UP authorities begin demolition of Vikas Dubey’s village house

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Vikas Dubey

Kanpur, July 4 : A day after eight police personnel were shot dead by history-sheeter Vikas Dubey and his gang in Bikru village under Chaubeypur police circle in Kanpur, authorities on Saturday reached the village along with a team and started to demolish the well-fortified house of the gangster.

It was learnt that police had got Vikas Dubey”s father and his family along with servants to vacate the premises and cordoned off an area of 50 metre around the house before launching the demolition drive. Even the structures used to park vehicles within the compound have been demolished.

Even the media has been barred from the area during the demolition drive at the house, which has not only 30- to 40-feet-high thick walls on the perimeter, but is also secured by concertina wire and 50 CCTVs.

Sources said that Vikas Dubey had illegally occupied land worth crores of rupees in Kanpur and other places. He also owned a number of luxury vehicles, apart from expensive furniture and electronic gadgets.

After the encounter, police had sealed the house and conducted a thorough search at the house, where a bunker was also discovered in an old house within the premises.

Villagers said that the new residential building within the compound had come up only seven-eight years ago and that the ancestral house within the compound was now used to lodge servants.

Three of the four gates on the perimeter walls were wide enough for four-wheelers to enter and exit and were secured by CCTVs, both inside and outside.

It is pertinent to mention here that a police team comprising about 50 police personnel had gone to the village around 3.30 am on Friday after a tip-off about the presence of Vikas Dubey at his village house.

Dubey and his men had parked a JCB in a village bylane to block their way. As soon as the police team reached there, the gangsters started firing from the terrace of an adjacent house.

The criminals, numbering about a dozen, had also pelted the police team with stones. The deceased police personnel had received multiple bullet wounds in the incident.

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COVID-19: Fresh surge in corona cases causes alarm in Agra

Increased mobility and opening of markets in Unlock-2, plus the monsoon rains, can further increase the number of cases, health officials indicated.

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Coronavirus Spray

Agra, July 4 : With 14 new COVID-19 cases and three deaths in the last 24 hours, alarm bells have begun to ring in the Taj city. The district authorities have reviewed the grim situation and scaled up testing in the hotspots.

In view of the spike in cases, the authorities have again raised the number of containment and buffer zones to 68. Earlier, the number had dropped to 54.

The new cases have taken the tally to 1,267. Six patients were discharged after recovery. The death toll now stands at 90, while the total number of discharged patients is 1,040. Health officials said the number of active cases now was 137.

The recovery rate is 82.09 per cent.

Indian Medical Association (IMA) secretary doctor Sanjay Chaturvedi said the picture would be clear in eight to ten days. The number of positive cases had gone below ten, but now it has gone up again. As private labs begin testing samples, the cases could go up, he feared.

Increased mobility and opening of markets in Unlock-2, plus the monsoon rains, can further increase the number of cases, health officials indicated.

But the district administration and the screening teams now organising health camps in hotspots were fully prepared to cope with the challenges, they said.

A total of 41 teams surveyed 2,541 homes on Friday, contacting more than 10,000 people who were provided free medicines and consultations.

Three private laboratories are now offering testing facilities. One problem the survey teams faced was wrong addresses and mobile phone numbers recorded by the patients. Rescue teams had now been asked to cross check and verify the details to be able to trace positive cases.

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