Coronavirus Updates: 'Do namaste, instead of handshake', advises Israeli PM
In India, the number of coronavirus cases rose to 28 on Wednesday, up from six a day earlier. Suspecting the emergence of cluster cases of the virus, the government has stepped up the level of preparedness against COVID-19.
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The number of new cases of coronavirus infections in India on Wednesday rose to 28, said Union health minister Harsh Vardhan. With the numbers rising, India will now screen passengers from all countries as a precautionary measure against COVID-19. New Delhi had earlier put passengers from 12 countries under the scanner.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday announced that he will not participate in any Holi milan events in the wake of coronavirus scare. He cited experts’ advice against mass gatherings to contain the spread of disease.
Meanwhile, China has seen a slight drop in new cases of the virus that has affected tens of thousands of people. Authorities in China reported 119 new cases, a drop from 125 the day before. Another 38 deaths from COVID-19 were announced, bringing mainland China's total in the outbreak to 2,981.
Till date, more than 3,000 people have died from coronavirus and over 90,000 have been infected worldwide.
Here are the latest updates:
Latest Bond movie ' No time to die' delayed over coronavirus fears
The makers of the new James Bond movie due for global release next month said on Wednesday it would be delayed until November amid fears over the coronavirus outbreak, reports AFP.
"MGM, Universal and Bond producers, Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli, announced today that after careful consideration and thorough evaluation of the global theatrical marketplace, the release of NO TIME TO DIE will be postponed until November 2020," said a tweet from the official 007 Twitter account.
Italy coronavirus death toll passes 100: Official
Italy's death toll from the new coronavirus passed 100 on Wednesday and the number of cases went over 3,000, the government said, reports AFP.
Twenty-eight more people died in the past 24 hours, bringing the toll to 107 -- the highest number of fatalities outside China -- while the number of cases reached 3,089, official figures showed.
'Do namaste instead of handshake', PM Benjamin Netanyahu urges Israelis to change greeting habits amid virus scare
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday encouraged his countrymen to adopt 'Namaste' - the Indian way of greeting - instead of the normal handshake as one of the measures to prevent the spread of the deadly coronavirus, reports PTI.
Saudi Arabia extends pilgrimage ban to its own citizens and residents
Saudi Arabia, which has already suspended pilgrimages to the two holy cities of Mecca and Medina for foreigners due to coronavirus concerns, extended the ban on Wednesday to Saudi citizens and residents, state news agency SPA reported.
US business leaders caution against overreacting to virus
The US Chamber of Commerce and travel industry leaders urged businesses and consumers not to overreact to the spread of coronavirus and to take precautions while going about business as usual. Leaders of retail, airline, and hotel industries projected confidence in business activity, saying they expect minimal impact as the virus spreads.
'Design policy to cover coronavirus treatment': Irdai to insurance cos
The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority on Wednesday asked insurance companies to come out with policies to cover treatment costs for coronavirus infection, reports PTI.
"For the purpose of meeting health insurance requirements of various sections, insurers are advised to design products covering the costs of treatment for coronavirus," the regulator said in a circular.
5 people admitted in Bengaluru hospital test negative for COVID-19
Five people admitted at the Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Chest Diseases in Bengaluru have tested negative for coronavirus, the hospital's director Dr. Nagaraj said on Wednesday evening. "We will start the process of discharging them as per protocol," he was quoted by ANI as saying.
The samples of the five were sent for testing earlier in the day.
Lufthansa to ground 150 planes over coronavirus
German airline giant Lufthansa said Wednesday it would ground 150 of its more than 750 planes worldwide, days after announcing a slimmed-down timetable over the effects of the novel coronavirus.
"25 long-haul aircraft and 125 short- and medium-haul aircraft" will no longer fly, a spokesman for the group also including carriers Eurowings, Austrian and Swiss told AFP.
Paytm offices shut after employee tested positive for coronavirus
India's leading digital payment platform Paytm on Wednesday announced shutting down its offices in Gurugram and Noida for at least two days after one of its employees who had recently travelled to Italy tested positive for COVID-19.
In an official statement, the company said that it has suggested team members of the COVID-19 patient to get their health tests done immediately, while all their offices will remain shut for sanitising purposes.
Third person tests positive for new coronavirus in New York state
New York's Yeshiva University said on Wednesday one of their students had tested positive for COVID-19, marking the third case in the US state, reports Reuters. The school said it was cancelling all classes on Wednesday at one of its four New York City campuses as a "precautionary step" while it worked with authorities on how to best prepare and keep its students safe.
CBSE to allow students to carry masks, hand sanitiser during boards exams
Students appearing for class 10 and 12 board examination will be allowed to carry masks and hand sanitiser in the exam centre in view of coronavirus scare, the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) announced on Wednesday, reports PTI.
"Face masks and sanitisers may be carried by students in the examination centre," CBSE Secretary Anurag Tripathi said. Class 10 and 12 board examinations began on February 15.
2 symptomatic cases from Agra hospitalised at Delhi's Safdarjung Hospital
The directorate of health services, Uttar Pradesh on Wednesday said two symptomatic contacts from Agra are hospitalised at Safdarjung Hospital, Delhi, reports ANI. It added that15 asymptomatic contacts are also hospitalised- 4 from Agra at Safdarjung Hospital, Delhi; 6 from Noida at GB Nagar, 5 at district hospital,Bulandshahar.
24 people brought to ITBP's Chhawla camp leave
All 24 members comprising 21 Italians and 3 Indians brought to ITBP's quarantine facility in Chhawla, Delhi yesterday, left this evening, reports ANI. Positive cases to be treated at designated hospitals and others to be kept under preventive isolation at a different location.
ITBP: All 24 members comprising 21 Italians & 3 Indians brought to the quarantine facility in Chhawla, Delhi yesterday, left this evening. Positive cases to be treated at designated hospitals and others to be kept under preventive isolation at a different location. pic.twitter.com/7VoePuhlFU— ANI (@ANI) March 4, 2020
IMF members pledge all available resources against epidemic
The International Monetary Fund pledged on Wednesday to bring all available resources to bear to help countries combat the impact of the new coronavirus epidemic.
Following an unusual conference call of the IMF's governing body, the 189 members said they were united in addressing the challenges posed by COVID-19.
"We have called upon the IMF to use all its available financing instruments to help member countries in need," the statement said.
"We are determined to provide the necessary support to mitigate the impact, especially on the most vulnerable people and countries."
First published: Mar 04, 2020 14:30 IST