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Madhya Pradesh CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan tests positive for Coronavirus, admitted to hospital

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Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan has tested positive for novel Coronavirus, becoming the first head of a state to be infected with the virus. He has been admitted to the Chirayu Hospital in state capital Bhopal.

Informing about the same on his Twitter handle, Chouhan wrote in Hindi: “My dear countrymen, I was having COVID-19 symptoms and, after a test, my report came back positive. I am following all the guidelines and will quarantine myself according to the doctor’s advice”.

The chief minister further said that he will continue to participate in the daily Coronavirus review meetings via video conferencing.

The Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister also appealed to his party workers to get tested if they had come in contact with him in recent days and urged those who have been in close contact with him to go into quarantine.

Shivraj Singh Chouhan, in a tweet, also appealed to the people of Madhya Pradesh to remain vigilant. “I appeal to the people of my state to be careful, just a little carelessness invites coronavirus. I made every effort to avoid it, but people used to come and meet me for various reasons,” he said.

Stating that, in his absence, Ministers Narottam Mishra, Bhupendra Singh and Vishwas Sarang will hold meetings, Chouhan added “I myself will continue to make every effort to control COVID-19 during treatment.”

Meanwhile, all close contacts of the Chief Minister, who was to hold a meeting at 11.30 am, have been quarantined.

The Chief Minister further reassured his supporters that there was no need to panic and that despite his medical condition he would continue to lead efforts to contain the virus in his state.

“No need to panic, If coronavirus is treated in time, it is curable,” he said. adding, “I have been reviewing the status of coronavirus infections every evening since March 25. I will try to review this via video conferencing as much as possible now”.

Earlier, State Cooperative Minister Arvind Bhadoria was also found to be Coronavirus positive. He continues to be under treatment.

Madhya Pradesh has recorded over 26,000 COVID-19 cases so far, including 791 deaths linked to the virus. The number of active cases in the state is more than 7,500.

Earlier, Delhi health minister Satyendar Jain had tested positive for Coronavirus on June 17. He was first admitted in the Delhi government-run Rajiv Gandhi Super Specialty Hospital but then was shifted to the Max Hospital after his condition worsened and was kept on oxygen support in the ICU.

He was administered plasma therapy after which his condition improved and was discharged nine days later on June 26.

After recovering from the infection, Jain resumed work from July 20.

Even as India races to develop a cure for the COVID-19 virus, and despite all safety protocols in place for the last four months to contain the pandemic outbreak, the number of infected are increasing drastically each day. A total of 48,916 fresh cases were reported on Saturday after 49,310 on Friday taking the total to 98,226 — touching almost a lakh in less than two days.

In the last 24 hours, 787 people succumbed to the deadly virus, as there is a huge surge in cases in the hinterlands.

According to the latest data available on the website of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, total number of cases in India reached 13,36,861 of which 31,388 people have lost their lives while 8,49,432 have recovered. The total number of active cases are 4,56,071 cases. The ministry stated that the recovery rate is 63.53 per cent.

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‘Lessons from Swachhta Mission important in fighting Covid’: PM Modi at launch of Rashtriya Swachhata Kendra

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday inaugurates the Rashtriya Swachhata Kendra – an interactive experience centre on the Swachh Bharat Mission in the national capital.

The centre was inaugurated at the Gandhi Smriti and Darshan Samiti at Rajghat.

During his address to the nation at the launch event, PM lauded the people of India for making swachhata a ‘jan andolan’ and urged them to continue to do so in the future.

He reiterated the importance of swachhata in our daily lives, especially during our fight against the coronavirus.

Prime Minister also launched ‘Gandagi Mukt Bharat’, a special week-long campaign for swachhata in the run-up to Independence Day, during which each day till 15th August will have special swachhata initiatives in urban and rural India to re-enforce the jan andolan for swachhata.

PM Modi briefly visited the RSK souvenir centre. He then interacted with 36 school students from Delhi, representing all States and Union Territories of India at the amphitheatre of the RSK, adhering to social distancing protocols.

The children shared with the Prime Minister their experiences with swachhata activities at home and at school, and their impressions of the RSK. One of them also asked the Prime Minister what his favourite part of the RSK was, to which the Prime Minister replied that he most enjoyed the portion dedicated to the inspiration of the SBM, Mahatma Gandhi.

He took a tour of the three distinct sections of the Rashtriya Swachhata Kendra. He first experienced a unique 360° audio visual immersive show in Hall 1 which provides an overview of the Swachh Bharat journey. He then moved to Hall 2 which contains a series of interactive LED panels, hologram boxes, interactive games and much more on the SBM.

PM Modi also saw the installations in the lawn adjacent to RSK which showcase three exhibits which are synonymous with the SBM – Mahatma Gandhi leading people to the Swachhata pledge, Rani Mistris of rural Jharkhand and children swachhagrahis who call themselves Vaanar Sena.

The Rashtriya Swachhata Kendra will be open to the public from 9th August from 8 AM to 5 PM, in accordance with the prescribed guidelines for social distancing and hygiene. As the number of people who may visit the RSK at a given point in time will have to be limited, no tours will be organized for students in the short term. However, virtual tours of the RSK will also be organized till such time as physical tours are possible. The first such virtual tour will be organized on 13th August with Minister for Jal Shakti, Shri Gajendra Singh Shekhawat. For ticket bookings and more information on the RSK, one may log on to rsk.ddws.gov.in

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Beirut explosions: French President Macron announces fundraising conference for Lebanon

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French President Emmanuel Macron on Thursday said an international fundraising conference for Lebanon will be held in the next few days after the deadly explosion that devastated Beirut.

On a visit to the gutted city, Macron said that France will organize a conference with European, American and Middle Eastern and other donors to raise money for food, medicine, housing and other urgent aid.

Macron also promised a “clear and transparent governance” so that the aid goes directly to the populations and aid groups.

On Tuesday, two enormous explosions devastated Beirut’s port that left at least 137 people dead and over 5,000 injured across wide parts of the country’s biggest city, shaking distant buildings and spreading panic and chaos across the Lebanese capital.

Prime Minister Hassan Diab said that 2,750 tonnes of the agricultural fertiliser ammonium nitrate that had been stored for years in a portside warehouse had blown up, sparking “a disaster in every sense of the word”.

The blasts were so massive they shook the entire city and could be heard throughout the small country, and as far away as Nicosia on the eastern Mediterranean island of Cyprus, 240 kilometres (150 miles) away.

The explosions also come as Lebanon awaits a UN tribunal’s verdict Friday on the 2005 murder of former Lebanese premier Rafic Hariri, killed in a huge truck bomb attack.

Meanwhile, leaders across the world expressed their grief and condolences to the victims.

In a tweet, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said, “Shocked and saddened by the large explosion in Beirut city leading to loss of life and property. Our thoughts and prayers are with the bereaved families and the injured.”

United States President Donald Trump said his military generals told him they “seem to feel” that the massive explosion was in fact a bomb attack.

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Biggest 1-day spike of over 62k cases, India’s Coronavirus tally crosses 20 lakh-mark; deaths reach 41,585

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India’s Coronavirus tally crossed the 20 lakh-mark on Friday after recording the highest single-day spike of 62,538 cases in 24 hours. As many as 886 patients succumbed to the infection in the same period.

The total number of Coronavirus cases in the country has risen to 20,27,075 including 6,07,384 active and 13,78,106 cured cases. The death toll has climbed to 41,585, said the data shared by the Union Health Ministry.

The recovery rate has been on a steady rise and stood at 67.98 per cent this morning.

India’s Coronavirus tally had crossed 10 lakh cases on July 17.

India has crossed 20 lakh coronavirus cases in 190 days after Kerala reported the first patient on January 30.

Meanwhile, five states reported the highest number of patients in the last 24 hours – Maharashtra (11,514), Andhra Pradesh (10,328), Karnataka (6,805), Tamil Nadu (5,684) and Uttar Pradesh (4,586).

With 4.79 lakh cases, Maharashtra remains the worst hit state. The state reported its biggest single-day jump in infections on Thursday. More than 16,000 patients have died so far.

Meanwhile, India is the third worst-hit country in terms of cases behind Brazil, which has more than 29 lakh cases and the US with close to 50 lakh cases.

At the global front, the total number of Coronavirus cases rose to 18,908,111, with deaths reaching 710,318, according to the Center for Systems Science and Engineering (CSSE) at Johns Hopkins University.

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