Curious case of corona: Modi talks to Oppn leaders

Chennai/New Delhi: On a day when the death toll due to the novel coronavirus rose to 149 and the number of cases to 5,194 in the country, Prime Minister Narendra Modi interacted with floor leaders of various parties, including opposition, in Parliament to discuss the situation arising out of the spread of the pandemic.

The interaction was held through video conferencing and those participated, included Ghulam Nabi Azad, Leader of the Opposition in Rajya Sabha, Nationalist Congress Party head Sharad Pawar, AIADMK’s Navaneethakrishnan and DMK’s T R Baalu. Modi interacted with leaders of those parties whose combined strength of Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha adds up to five.

This is Prime Minister’s first interaction with floor leaders, including those from the Opposition, after the imposition of the nationwide lockdown though he had held interactions with chief ministers of all states including those ruled by non-NDA parties.

Modi has been interacting with various stakeholders, including doctors, journalists and heads of Indian missions to get a feedback on ways to check the spread of coronavirus.

Meanwhile, the Union Health Ministry said that while the number of active Covid-19 cases is 4,643, as many as 401 people were cured and discharged and one had migrated, it said. The total number of cases include 70 foreign nationals.

According to the Ministry’s data, 25 new deaths have been reported since Tuesday. Sixteen deaths were reported from Maharashtra, two each from Delhi, West Bengal, Haryana and Tamil Nadu and one from Andhra Pradesh.
Maharashtra has reported the most coronavirus deaths at 64, followed by Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh at 13 each and Delhi at 9.

Telengana, Punjab and Tamilnadu have reported seven fatalities each. West Bengal has registered five deaths, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh have reported four each, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and Rajasthan have recorded three deaths each. Two deaths each have been reported from Jammu and Kashmir and Kerala.

Bihar, Himachal Pradesh and Odisha reported one fatality each, according to the Health Ministry data.
However, a PTI tally of figures reported by various states as on Tuesday 9.45 pm showed 5,192 testing positive across the country and at least 162 deaths.

There has been a lag in the Union Health Ministry figures, compared to the numbers announced by different states, which officials attribute to procedural delays in assigning the cases to individual States. The highest number of confirmed cases in the country are from Maharashtra at 1018, followed by Tamilnadu at 690 and Delhi with 576 cases. Telengana has reported 364 COVID-19 cases followed by Kerala at 336. Rajasthan has 328 cases, Uttar Pradesh has 326 and Andhra Pradesh reported 305 coronavirus cases.

Novel coronavirus cases have risen to 229 in Madhya Pradesh, 175 in Karnataka and 165 in Gujarat.Haryana has 147 cases, Jammu and Kashmir has 116, West Bengal has 99 and Punjab has 91 positive patients so far. Odisha has reported 42 coronavirus cases. Thirty- eight people were infected with the virus in Bihar while Uttarakhand has 31 patients and Assam 27.

Chandigarh and Himachal Pradesh have 18 cases each while Ladakh has 14 positive patients so far. Ten cases each have been reported from the Andaman and Nicobar Islands and Chhattisgarh. Goa has reported seven COVID-19 infections, followed by Puducherry at five cases. Jharkhand has reported four cases and Manipur two. Tripura, Mizoram and Arunachal Pradesh have reported one case each.”State-wise distribution is subject to further verification and reconciliation,” the Ministry said on its website.

(Inputs from PTI)

NT Bureau