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COVID-19: Total cases rise to 13,835 in India

Maharashtra has the highest number of over 3200 cases followed by Delhi with 1640, Madhya Pradesh 1308 and Tamil Nadu 1267.  Highest number of 194 people have lost lives in Maharashtra. Madhya Pradesh has reported 57 deaths, Gujarat and Delhi both have reported 38 deaths each.  

Home Ministry Official said, collection, harvesting and processing of Minor Forest Produce or non-timber Forest Produce by Scheduled Tribes and other forest dwellers in forest areas have been exempted from lockdown restrictions. She informed that Department of Post has transported more than 100 tons of medicines and medical equipment to hospitals and other institutions. The official said, domestic and international post during lockdown has been delivered by adopting special measures. She said, India Post is ensuring that people receive pension payments and other essential welfare payments from the government. Benefits are being provided at door-step of beneficiaries, through India Post Payment banks.

Official of ICMR said, 3 lakh 19 thousand 400 COVID-19 tests conducted so far and 28 thousand 340 tests were conducted on Thursday. He said, out of the COVID-19 tests done on Thursday, 23 thousand 932 conducted at 183 labs under ICMR network and the rest were done at 80 private labs. He informed that ICMR is going to conduct a study in order to find out the potential effect of BCG vaccine in the fight against COVID-19.

He said, till the results of the study are out and evidence is obtained, ICMR will not recommend the vaccine even to health workers. The representative said, ICMR had recommended Pooled Testing for the purpose of surveillance, which can be used where positivity rate is low. He said, ICMR has not recommended it for individual diagnosis since it may work out to be costlier for individual patients.

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