From China allowing Indians to return to another Uttar Pradesh minister reportedly testing positive - here are the top news updates on the Covid-19 pandemic. Around 150 Indians including diplomats' kin, bank staff, etc will return to China on August 6. Beijing hadn't allowed Indians into China on a June 29 flight following which hectic talks took place. China will allow those who get tested within five days of journey and get health form endorsed. Bill Gates said that the US must have global approach on vaccine and not just 'take care of ourselves'. Meanwhile, China, which claims Taiwan as a part of its territory, has said that US must end Taiwan ties to avoid damage to Washington-Beijing ties. As per Reuters calculations, one person is dying every 15 seconds due to Covid. As per the past two weeks' data, nearly 5,900 Covid-related deaths happening every 24 hours. In UP, minister Brajesh Pathak has reportedly found infected on August 5, while another state minister Kamal Rani Varun had recently died due to Covid infection.
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Over 2 lakh stranded Indians have been repatriated under government's Vande Bharat Mission by Air India, informed the Chairman and Managing Director of Air India, Rajiv Bansal. "As on July 13, Air India and Air India Express operated 1103 flights, bringing back 2,08,000 Indians under Vande Bharat Mission. On many of these flights, we ferried back 85,289 passengers to various countries across the world," said Rajiv Bansal in a joint press conference in New Delhi.
Special flight carrying Indian passengers from Kuwait arrived at Indore airport on July 04. Proper arrangements were done at the airport keeping COVID spread in mind. Due to coronavirus pandemic, several people have been stranded abroad.
INS Jalashwa entered the Tuticorin Harbour in Tamil Nadu on July 01. Naval ship brought back 687 Indians from Iran's Bandar Abbas. Indian Navy had launched 'Operation Samudra Setu' to repatriate Indian citizens from foreign nations via sea.
India's amphibious warship Indian Navy Ship (INS) Jalashwa, which has been deployed to bring back the stranded citizens from Iran under Operation Samudra Setu, has departed from Bandar Abbas port on June 25 with 687 Indians aboard for Tuticorin in Tamil Nadu. INS Jalashwa reached the port of Bandar Abbas in Iran on June 24. On June 11, INS Shardul had brought back 233 Indians from Iran. Operation Samudra Setu is a part of Vande Bharat Mission to bring back stranded citizens overseas amid the coronavirus pandemic. The Indian Navy had launched Operation Samudra Setu on May 08 to repatriate Indian citizens. INS Jalashwa and Magar have already evacuated 2,874 personnel from Maldives and Sri Lanka to ports of Kochi and Tuticorin. On June 23, INS Airavat brought back 198 Indians from Maldives.
Informing about the weather conditions, Ahmedabad's Meteorological Department Director, Jayanta Sarkar, on July 07 said that extremely heavy rainfall is expected in Jamnagar, Dwarka and Kutch districts of Gujarat. "Extremely heavy rainfall is expected in Jamnagar, Dwarka and Kutch. Very heavy rainfall will lash Gir Somnath, Junagarh, Porbandar and Rajkot. Almost all the districts in Saurashtra will receive heavy rainfall today," he said. Meanwhile, a team of National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) rescued two people stuck in the Und river catchment area in Jamnagar district due to continuous rainfall.
Due to heavy rainfall in Junagadh, water level has been increased in Shetrunji River on July 05. The highway road from Somnath to Una has also been closed. Porbandar recorded 10 inches, Dwarka 12, Junagadh and Gir Somnath districts recoded 5 to 3 inches rainfall. Indian Meteorological Centre in Ahmedabad has forecasted heavy rainfall in the area for next 24 hours.
India launched a stinging attack on the Pakistan government over its new political map. Ministry of External Affairs SPokesperson Anurag Srivastava said that the claims made by Pakistan are absurd and have no credibility whatsoever. He added that the map proves that Pakistan wants to capture more and more territory by using cross border terrorism. He also lashed out at the Pakistan government's handling of the Kulbhushan Jadhav case saying that Islamabad has not yet reached out to India over the high court decision to inform India to appoint a lawyer for Kulbhushan Jadhav. He added that Pakistan must address basic issues of effective review and adherence to the International Court of Justice verdict on the matter and provide unimpeded, unhindered and unconditional access to Jadhav. Pakistan claims that Jadhav was arrested from Balochistan in 2016 on charges of espionage. India has rejected Pakistan's allegations and said he was kidnapped from the Iranian port of Chabahar. Jadhav had been sentenced to death by a Pakistani military court in early 2017.Watch the full video for all the details.
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From Covid patients dying in Ahmedabad to AAP government sending a proposal to L-G, here are the top updates on coronavirus pandemic. In Gujarat’s Ahmedabad, eight Covid-19 patients were killed in a fire an ICU ward of a hospital. Ambulances and fire engines were rushed to the spot, a probe in the incident was ordered. CPI (M) leader Shyamlal Chakraborty, who was being treated after he tested positive for Covid-19, died on Thursday. The leader had served three terms as transport minister in Bengal. Chongqing Zhifei Biological Products Co. shares surged 80% after China’s drug controller approved clinical trials for Covid vaccine. Zhifei chairman Jiang Rensheng became the fastest growing fortune among the world’s 500 wealthiest people. US top health expert Anthony Fauci expects tens of millions of vaccines for Covid-19 by early 2021. Fauci said there could be a billion vaccine doses by the end of 2021. India’s Covid-19 cases tally nears 2 million cases with recovery rate improving to 67.62%. Watch the full video for more details.
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Ministry of External Affairs Spokesperson Anurag Srivastava on August 06 cleared India's stand on Pakistan's 'new map' that claims Jammu and Kashmir, Ladakh and parts of western Gujarat. He said, "This type of absurd claims shows that Pakistan wants to take control of more areas by using cross border terrorism."
A massive fire broke out at a COVID care hospital in Gujarat's Ahmedabad on August 06. Around eight people lost their lives, including five men and three women in the fire incident at Shrey Hospital. One paramedic also received burn injuries. Reportedly, the fire occurred due to a short circuit in ICU of the fourth floor of hospital. An inquiry into the matter is underway. Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced ex-gratia of Rs 2 Lakhs each from Prime Minister's National Relief Fund (PMNRF) to the kin of the deceased. Rs 50,000 to be given to those injured due to the fire. Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani has announced an ex gratia amount of Rs 4 lakhs each to the families of the eight victims who died in the fire at Shrey Hospital in Ahmedabad. The CMO added that Rs 50,000 would be given to those injured in the incident. Earlier today as per Gujarat Chief Minister's Office, Gujarat Chief Minister has ordered a probe in the incident. "CM Vijay Rupani has ordered a probe in the incident of fire at Shrey Hospital in Ahmedabad. Sangeeta Singh, Additional Chief Secretary (Home Department) will be leading the probe. The CM has ordered for a report within 3 days."
Chief of Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal RKS Bhadauria was personally present at the Ambala air base to welcome the first batch of Rafale fighter aircraft from France. After the planes touched down, they were given a ceremonial water cannon salute. Then ACM Bhadauria shook hands with all the pilots. They were similarly greeted by Air Marshal B. Suresh, the Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief of Western Air Command. The state-of-the-art fighter jets will be formally inducted into the Indian Air Force in the latter half of August 2020. These 5 jets are the first consignment of the 36 aircraft ordered by India from France's Dassault Aviation. The deal was announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and then-French President Francois Hollande during the former's visit to France in 2015. This marks the first induction of foreign fighter aircraft into the Indian Air Force in over 20 years. When the Rafales first entered Indian airspace after a journey of around 8,500 km, they were greeted and subsequently escorted by IAF's two Sukhoi Su-30MKIs. Indian Navy's warship INS Kolkata also beamed a welcome message to the new jets.
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US Secretary of Defence Dr. Mark T. Esper on July 21 put a light on their vision towards the security in Indo- pacific region. He highlighted rapid increase in defence cooperation with India and even mentioned about focus of US over the situation between India and China. "I want to highlight our increased defence cooperation with India, one the all important defence relationships of 21th century. We conducted our first-ever joint military exercise last November," said US Defence Secretary. He added, "As we speak today, USS Nimitz is conducting combined exercise with Indian Navy in the Indian Ocean, demonstrating our shared commitment to stronger naval cooperation and support to a free and open Indo-Pacific." "We are obviously monitoring the situation between India and China very closely, what's happening along the Line of Actual Control and we are very pleased to see both sides are trying to de-escalate the situation," he said further.
With an aim to improve the cooperation between US and Indian maritime forces, Indian naval ships on July 20 conducted a passage exercise (PASSEX) with the United States Navy's USS Nimitz carrier strike group near the Andaman and Nicobar islands as it is transiting the Indian Ocean. Indian Navy had conducted similar PASSEXs with Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force and French Navy in recent past.
Indian Navy Ship (INS) Airavat carrying 198 Indian citizens, who were stranded in Maldives, arrived in Tamil Nadu's Thoothukudi on June 23. All the passengers were screened and their luggage was disinfected, upon arrival. The third phase of Operation 'Samudra Setu' initiative was started by the Centre and Indian Navy to bring back citizens stranded overseas amid COVID-19 pandemic.
Indian Navy Ship (INS) Airavat left Port of Male in Maldives for Tuticorin, Tamil Nadu) after embarkation of 198 Indian citizens. 5th round of operation Samudra Setu for evacuation of Indians from Maldives is underway. Operation was launched in May to repatriate stranded citizens amid coronavirus situation.
Ahead of the mega foundation laying ceremony of Ram temple in Ayodhya, two brothers have collected water from more than 150 rivers. Since 1968, both the brothers collected water from 151 rivers across the nation. While speaking to ANI, Radhe Syam Pandey narrated the entire journey. "We've collected water from 151 rivers, 8 big rivers, 3 seas and soil from 16 places of Sri Lanka," he said. Prime Minister Narendra Modi is scheduled to lay the foundation stone of the Ram temple in Ayodhya on August 05.
India is now third on the Johns Hopkins University tally of countries struggling with the novel coronavirus COVID-19, following the US and Brazil. Far from flattening the curve, CNN reports India's number of cases are reaching for the stars. First observed in 1857 by Florence Nightingale, India has struggled to provide basic public health services for its people. On the Health Care Access and Quality Index, India trails its neighbors Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Bhutan, and Bangladesh.