QBullet: India Corona Cases Cross 1,000; 2 IAS Officers Suspended

1. COVID-19 India Cases Cross 1,000

India’s COVID-19 count crossed the 1,000-mark on Sunday, 29 March, with states reporting 130 new cases, the highest for a single day so far, even as Delhi saw a major spike of 23 new infections and Maharashtra reported two deaths from the disease.
This is the first time Delhi’s single-day COVID-19, the tally has crossed into double digits. It’s a worrying sign indeed, the state authorities said.

Nationally, Sunday was the third consecutive day when the count of new cases was over 100, indicating that the infection was spreading. States have reported 1,122 novel coronavirus cases so far, of which 30 have died. The Union health ministry has confirmed 1024 cases and 27 deaths.

(Source: The Times of India)

Also Read: COVID-19: Over 1,000 Cases in India, Death Toll at 27

2. Two IAS Officers Suspended for Delhi Lockdown Violations, 2 Others Face Action

Image used for representation only.

Two top IAS officers in the Delhi government have been suspended and two more officials face action for charges that failed to enforce the COVID-19 lockdown in national capital Delhi over the last few days.

Renu Sharma, a 1988 batch IAS officer who was posted as Additional Chief Secretary (Transport) and Rajeev Verma, a 1992 batch IAS officer who was Principal Secretary, Finance, in the city government have been suspended.

Their suspension orders, seen by Hindustan Times, said the Union home ministry’s competent authority was satisfied that the two officers had prima facie violated the lockdown orders to contain COVID-19.

The two officers, the home ministry said in identical orders, had failed to maintain absolute integrity and devotion to duty. It added that the government intended to initiate action for imposing major penalties against them.

(Source: Hindustan Times)

Also Read: Lockdown: Centre Suspends 2 Delhi Officers for Dereliction of Duty

3. German State Minister Kills Self Due to ‘Stress Over Coronavirus Pandemic’

File image of German Minister of Finance of Hesse, Thomas Schafer

The body of a man identified as Thomas Schäfer, the finance minister of the German state of Hesse, was found on a high-speed train line in the town of Hochheim between Frankfurt and Mainz, police confirmed Saturday.

The presence of a body on the tracks was first reported by witnesses to paramedics, who were unable to initially identify the remains due to the extent of the injuries.

Investigators said an investigation on the scene confirmed the identity of the man as Schäfer and that the death was likely a suicide. Police did not immediately release further details of the case.

(Source: The Indian Express)

Also Read: German State Minister Kills Himself Over ‘Coronavirus Worries’

4. Govt Forms 11 Groups of Officers to Deal With Lockdown Issue

Policemen try to regulate as migrants try to cross a boundary wall in an attempt to board a bus to their native villages during a nationwide lockdown, imposed in the wake of coronavirus pandemic at Kaushambi, in Ghaziabad, Saturday, March 28, 2020.

With essential supplies, including medicines and equipment, still disrupted and migrant workers stranded in various states, the government has formed 11 empowered groups of officers to deal with problems arising out of the coronavirus lockdown.

The groups will deal with issues concerning medical emergency management plan, availability of hospitals, testing and quarantine facilities, availability of medical equipment such as PPEs, masks and gloves, augmenting human resources and capacity building, facilitating supply chains, coordination with private sector and NGOs, economic and welfare measures, communication and public awareness, technology and data management, public grievances and strategic issues relating to lockdown.

(Source: The Indian Express)

5. Transportation of All Types of Goods Allowed During Lockdown: MHA

Image of migrant daily wage laborers make the journey to their respective villages on foot following a lockdown amid concern over spread of coronavirus in New Delhi. Image used for representational purposes only.

The Home Secretary on Sunday, 29 March, clarified that newspaper delivery chain was allowed to operate during the 21-day lockdown as part of exemption granted to the ‘print media’.

Elaborating on the scope of exemptions granted by the home ministry in its guidelines dated March 24 and subsequent addendum orders dated 25 March and 27 March, Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla on Sunday informed the state chief secretaries that the transportation of all goods, without distinction of essential and in-essential, was permitted during the lockdown.

Sources said this means that non-essential goods can be transported seamlessly through state borders, even though their sale at point of retail and delivery cannot happen during the lockdown.

(Source: The Times of India)

Also Read: Essential, Non-Essential Goods’ Transport Allowed in Lockdown: MHA

6. Peak US Death Rate Likely to Hit in Two Weeks: Donald Trump

Donald Trump declared coronavirus a National Emergency.

President Donald Trump on Sunday, 29 March, said that the peak death rate in the United States from the coronavirus pandemic was likely to hit in two weeks.

Trump, during a briefing at the White House, also said that he was extending the government’s “social distancing” guidelines until 30 April.

“The modelling estimates that the peak in death rate is likely to hit in two weeks,” the president said.

“Therefore, we will be extending our guidelines to April 30th to slow the spread,” he said.

(Source: Hindustan Times)

Also Read: Peak US COVID-19 Death Rate Likely in Two Weeks: US Prez Trump

7. Indian Railways Converts Coach Into COVID-19 Isolation Ward

Once finalised, each railway zone would manufacture a rake with 10 coaches every week.

Days after the government mooted the idea, Indian Railways has converted one of its coaches into an isolation ward for COVID-19 patients. Each coach can contain 10 patients, in separated bays of the non-AC coach, which has undergone a number of modifications.

In the first phase, the 16 workshops of the Indian Railways will be making two rakes each. Each rake will have 10 coaches. So to begin with, there will be 32 such rakes of 10 coaches each in the next two weeks.

(Source: The Indian Express)

Also Read: Railways Builds Prototype of Isolation Wards in Non-AC Coaches

8. IPL 2020 Likely to be Cancelled, No Mega Auctions Next Year

The BCCI had earlier decided to suspend IPL 2020 till 15 April following the COVID-19 outbreak. 

It’s yet to be made official by the Indian cricket board but it’s certain now that Indian Premier League will not happen this year due to the novel coronavirus. The Indian board is waiting for an announcement from the Indian government and sports ministry on visas before it makes the news official. The BCCI will officially address the issue with the IPL franchises after 15 April, when the countrywide lockdown initiated by the central government ends.

The Indian government has suspended all foreign visas until 15 April. The Indian Express understands that if IPL happens next year than there will be no mega auction. Instead, the status quo will be continued and IPL franchises allowed to pick players if they want too. As per the schedule, the mega auction was supposed to take place in 2021 with franchises allowed to retain a few players while the rest were supposed to go under the hammer.

(Source: The Indian Express)

Also Read: Fate of IPL 2020 Can Only be Decided After 15 April: Kiren Rijiju

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