'PM unusually silent, govt incompetent manager of economy': P Chidambaram

News Network
December 5,2019

New Delhi, Dec 5: Former Finance Minister P Chidambaram who was released from Tihar Jail after 106 days of confinement in the INX media money laundering case in a press conference on Thursday said, ''My record as a minister and my conscience are absolutely clear. Officers who have worked with me, business persons who have interacted with me and journalists who have observed me know that very well.''

Attacking the current government on the current state of the economy, Chidambaram said, ''Prime Minister (Modi) has been unusually silent on the economy. He has left it to his ministers to indulge in bluff and bluster. The net result, as the Economist put it, is that the government has turned out to be an ‘incompetent manager’ of the economy.''

Chidambaram said the BJP government believed problems faced by the economy were cyclical even after seven months of this financial year.

"The government is clueless on economy, it is stubborn and mulish in defending catastrophic mistakes like demonetisation, flawed GST, tax terrorism,'' he said.

''We will be lucky to end the year if growth touches 5 pc. Please remember Dr Arvind Subramanian’s caution that 5 pc under this government, because of suspect methodology, is not really 5 pc but less by about 1.5 pc,'' he added.

Chidambaram also raised concern about the situation in Kashmir post the revocation of Article 370 and said, "As I stepped out and breathed the air of freedom at 8 pm last night, my first thought & prayers were for the 75 lakh people of the Kashmir Valley who have been denied their basic freedoms since August 4, 2019.'' He further said that given the chance he would visit Kashmir.

Chidambaram sais that he was particularly concerned about the political leaders who have been detained without charges. ''Freedom is indivisible, if we must preserve our freedom, we must fight for their freedom,'' he said.

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With highest single-day spike of 55,079 cases, India's COVID-19 tally breaches 16 lakh mark

Agencies
July 31,2020

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New Delhi, Jul 31: With the highest single-day spike of 55,079 COVID-19 cases in the last 24 hours, India's coronavirus tally breached the 16 lakh mark on Friday, informed the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

With this latest spike, the total cases in the country stand at 16,38,871. Among these cases 5,45,318 are active. A total of 10,57,806 patients have been cured/discharged/migrated.

779 deaths due to COVID-19 have been reported in the country in the last 24 hours, taking the death toll to 35,747.

As per the Union Health Ministry, Maharashtra has a total of 1,48,454 active cases and recorded 14,729 deaths due to COVID-19.
Tamil Nadu has a total of 57,962 active cases and 3,838 deaths in the state.

Delhi has a total of 10,743 active cases and 3,936 deaths.

The Indian Council of Medical Research on Friday informed that a total number of COVID-19 samples tested up to 30th July is 1,88,32,970 including 6,42,588 samples tested yesterday.

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With highest single-day spike of 62,538 cases, India's COVID-19 tally breaches 20 lakh mark

Agencies
August 7,2020

New Delhi, Aug 7: India's COVID-19 cases tally crossed 20 lakh mark with the highest single-day spike of 62,538 cases on Friday, said Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

The COVID-19 tally rises to 20,27,075 including 6,07,384 active cases, 13,78,106 cured/discharged/migrated and 41,585 deaths, according to the Ministry of Health.

Maharashtra with 1,46,268 active cases and 3,05,521 cured and discharged patients continues to be the worst affected. The state has also reported 16,476 deaths due to the infection.

Tamil Nadu has 54,184 active cases while 2,14,815 patients have been discharged after treatment in the state. 4,461 deaths have been reported due to COVID-19 in the state.

Andhra Pradesh with 80,426 active cases is the third on the list. There are 1,04,354 cured and discharged patients and 1,681 deaths reported from the state.

Delhi now has 10,072 active cases and 1,26,116 cured and discharged patients. 4,044 people have lost their lives due to the disease in the Union Territory so far. 

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Covid-19: Government warns against use of N-95 masks with valved respirator

News Network
July 21,2020

New Delhi, Jul 21: The Centre has written to all states and union territories warning against the use of N-95 masks with valved respirator by people, saying these don't prevent the virus from spreading out and are "detrimental" to the measures adopted for its containment.

The Director-General of Health Services in the Ministry of Health, in a letter to the Principal Secretaries of health and medical education of states, said it has been observed that there is "inappropriate use" of N-95 masks, particularly those with valved respirator, by the public other than designated health workers.

The DGHS referred to the advisory on the use of homemade protective cover for face and mouth available on the website of the Ministry of Health.

"It is to bring to your knowledge that the use of valved respirator N-95 masks is detrimental to the measures adopted for preventing the spread of coronavirus as it does not prevent the virus from escaping out of the mask. In view of the above, I request you to instruct all concerned to follow the use of face/mouth cover and prevent inappropriate use of N-95 masks," DGHS Rajiv Garg said in the letter.

The government had in April issued an advisory on the use of homemade protective cover for face and mouth, asking people to wear it, particularly when they step out of their residences.

The advisory stressed such face covers must be washed and cleaned each day, as instructed and states that any used cotton cloth can be used to make this face cover. 

The colour of the fabric does not matter but one must ensure that the fabric is washed well in boiling water for five minutes and dried well before making the face cover. Adding salt to this water is recommended, it said.

It also listed the procedures of making such homemade masks, asking to ensure it fits the face well and there are no gaps on the sides.

It urges people to wash hands thoroughly before wearing the face cover,  switching to another fresh one as the face cover becomes damp or humid, and never reusing it after single use without cleaning it. 

"Never share the face cover with anyone. Every member in a family should have separate face cover," the advisory stated.

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