India has reported 18,177 new infections in the last 24 hours – 4.7 per cent lower than yesterday – taking the total Coronavirus cases to 1,03,23,965 on Sunday, the government data this morning showed. With 217 deaths related to the highly contagious disease in the same period, the total number of fatalities in the country has risen to 1,49435. The COVID-19 case fatality rate stood at 1.45 per cent. The number of active cases in the country stood at 2,47,220 while the number of recoveries is at 99,27, 310 with 20,923 people recuperating from the disease in the last 24 hours.
Here are the top 10 updates on Coronavirus:
An expert panel of India’s central drug authority on Saturday recommended granting permission for restricted use of Bharat Biotech-developed indigenous COVID-19 vaccine Covaxin in emergency situation.
The recommendation for Bharat Biotech’s vaccine came a day after the panel cleared the Serum Institute of India’s emergency use athorisation application for the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine Covishield.
A third vaccine – developed by American pharma giant Pfizer – had also applied for emergency fuse authorisation and is currently being reviewed by the panel.
A dry run for COVID-19 vaccination was conducted on Saturday to test the preparedness of authorities before commencement of the actual vaccination process.
Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan appealed to people on Saturday not to be misguided by “rumours” regarding the safety and efficacy of the coronavirus vaccine, and said, “We will not compromise on any protocol before approving a vaccine.”
The government will give priority to 1 crore healthcare workers and 2 crore frontline workers when India begins the rollout of Covid vaccine, said the Health Minister.
In Delhi, the vaccine will be provided “free of cost”. ” The vaccine will be provided free of cost in Delhi. 1000 centers will be set up for this task. 1 lakh people from phase-1 will be vaccinated on a daily basis. Delhi Govt is completely ready for the rollout,” Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain tweeted on Saturday.
Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri said on Saturday flights from India to UK will resume from January 6, while services from UK to India would resume from January 8 onwards.
India had suspended all passenger flights connecting the two countries from December 23 to January 7 as a new variant of coronavirus emerged in the UK.
A new strain of mutant virus – first detected in the United Kingdom in September – has led to fresh restrictions in India, and across the world. The government has said there’s no evidence that current vaccines won’t be effective against the new strain.