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Pawan Kalyan demands Rs 1 crore compensation, govt job to kin of Covid-19 victims

Actor turned politician Pawan Kalyan on Saturday demanded that the government announce Rs 1 crore compensation and a government job to all the employees who succumbed to Covid-19.

In a statement, the Jana Sena Party president stated that frontline warriors like doctors, nurses, paramedical staff and police personnel are working relentlessly in the combat against the deadly virus that mankind had witnessed in the recent times.

In Andhra Pradesh, 200 medical doctors, medical students, nursing staff and 600 police personnel were tested positive for Covid-19. At least 10 police personnel succumbed to the coronavirus, he pointed out.

“It is the onerous responsibility of the state government to recognize the tireless efforts of the medical doctors, nurses and the police personnel. The Jana Sena Party demands that the government announce Rs 1 crore compensation along with a government to the kin of those who died due to Covid-19,” Pawan Kalyan said.

Further, the Jana Sena Party president demanded that the government grant four weeks leave to all the government employees who were tested positive.

“The employees need at least four week leave for complete recovery from Covid-19. The private organisations should also exhibit empathy towards their employees by announcing four week leave for the staff who were tested positive for coronavirus. This is the minimum that can be expected from the government as well as private companies,” Pawan Kalyan stated.

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1,676 new COVID-19 cases in T’gana, tally touches 41,018

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As many as 1,676 new coronavirus cases were confirmed in Telangana on Thursday, taking the number of affected in the state to 41,018, health officials said.

Ten more deaths were also reported in the state, taking the toll to 396 so far.

The state on Thursday tested 14,027 samples, the highest in a single day since the outbreak of COVID-19. With this the state has conducted 2,22,693 tests.

After ramping up the tests in the last few days, the state health authorities on Thursday changed the format of the daily media bulletin, providing all the vital statistics.

The tests per million population stand at 5,350. According to the bulletin, 18.85 per cent of the samples tested have found to be positive.

The media bulletin also mentioned that the state has 39 testing laboratories – 16 in the government sector and 23 private.

The state has a recovery rate of 67 per cent. On Thursday, 1,296 people recovered from COVID-19, taking the number of people recovered to 27,295. The state now has 13,328 active cases.

Out of 17,081 COVID beds in the government-run hospitals, 15,389 beds are vacant. Gandhi Hospital, which is designated as the centre of excellence for treating critical COVID cases, has 1,890 beds but 635 patients.

Greater Hyderabad remained the worst hit among 33 districts, accounting for 788 cases. Indicating the spread of the virus, the number of infections has increased in other districts. Ranga Reddy stands second with 224 cases and Medchal 160.

Karimnagar district reported 92 new cases, Nalgonda 64, Sangareddy 57 and Wanaparthy 51.

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23 journalists test positive for Corona virus in Hyderabad

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In a shocking development, 23 journalists were tested positive for Corona virus on Sunday.

It is learnt that tests were conducted on 127 journalists and 23 of them were tested positive for COVID-19. Some of the journalists were covering the Telangana secretariat beat. With 23 new cases among the media, the total number of media personnel infected with corona virus has reached around 70, out of these almost 30 are being treated in hospitals, many are home quarantined.

Recently, TV5 crime reporter Manoj succumbed to corona virus at Gandhi Hospital. He was also suffering from Myasthenia Gravis, a long term muscular disease and bilateral pneumonitis.

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Constable at Naidu residence tests COVID +ve

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A police constable who worked at the residence of Chandrababu Naidu in Hyderabad, has tested positive for Coronavirus. This became known after latest tests were conducted on him. The constable is actually working at Bapatla police station in Guntur district but was given duty at Naidu residence in Telangana Capital. He worked there from May 5 to June 7 and then returned to Guntur district.

Coronavirus test was conducted on him following some symptoms. He tested positive and he was found to have got this infection during his duty in Hyderabad. Another constable who worked with him there was already found to be a virus patient. With this, the police officials became alert and initiated additional precautions.

Special attention is being placed on those arriving from Hyderabad. Guntur district continues to report an increasing number of virus cases after the lockdown relaxations. Cases are being reported from Mangalagiri and Tadepalli areas where Government employees are present in large numbers. Moreover, there are some sections of people frequently travelling to Hyderabad.

AP cases went up by 222 cases in just a day on Tuesday. Overall cases till now were put at 5,858. Guntur district has got 631 virus cases till date.

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TRS MLA Muthireddy’s wife, 3 others tested positive for coronavirus

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After TRS Jangaon MLA Muthireddy Yadagiri Reddy who was tested positive for coronavirus on Friday, his wife Padmalata Reddy too has contracted the virus. Further, Muthireddy’s driver, gunman and cook too were tested positive for Covid-19. All the four are in quarantine.

Even as Padmalata Reddy was tested positive for coronavirus, she said she is healthy and doing well. Muthireddy is the first big political figure in the TRS to have contracted the virus in the Telangana state although legislators in other states were tested positive for Covid-19.

The TRS leader was admitted in Yashoda Hospital. It is learnt that Muthireddy Yadagiri Reddy had attended a high-level meeting on regulated cropping pattern at Pragati Bhavan addressed by Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao. Ministers, District Collectors, District Agriculture Officials and district representatives of Rythu Bandhu Samithi were invited to attend the meeting. This is giving jitters to the TRS leaders.

On Friday, Telangana reported 253new cases of corona, taking the state tally to 4,737. What is more worrisome is that the state has been reporting around 10 to 5 deaths each day. On Friday, the state reported eight deaths taking the total number of fatalities to 182.
Earlier in the day, GHMC Mayor Bonthu Rammohan underwent was tested negative for corona for the second time. The tests were conducted after an attender in Mayor Bonthu Rammohan’s peshi was tested positive. Following this, the municipal administration has decided to shut down the peshi. All the employees were asked to go home. The Mayor’s office on the seventh floor has been sanitised. Further, all the employees in the GHMC office were asked to undergo corona tests. Staff members have been asked to remain in home quarantine and work from home. Samples of those who came in direct contact with the staff member are being collected and results are awaited.

Earlier, a CMO staffer working in the Metro Rail Bhavan was tested positive for the infection. Recently, the employee’s son who visited Maharashtra was tested positive for coronavirus. It is learnt that the employee has contracted the virus from his son. The CMO went into a tizzy after the employee contracted the virus. Following this, the CMO employees were asked not to report to work. The government has sanitised the CMO. Dr Rajiv Sharma, Chief Advisor to Government of Telangana as well as the Chairman of Telangana State Pollution Control Board, has been directed to oversee the sanitisation efforts.

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Coronavirus: India crosses China, tops in doubling rate

Despite some improvement during lockdown period, India has surpassed China in COVID-19 cases. India now has 85,761 cases as against 82,033 in Dragon country. India’s doubling time is just 13 days as against 7,966.2 days in China, 43.4 days in US, 14 days in Russia, 13.3 days in Brazil. Alarmingly, going by these figures, India tops in lowest doubling time in 15 major countries with most virus cases. India says domestic manufacturers have reached production capacity of nearly 3 lakh PPEs per day and about 3 lakh N-95 masks per day. This is sufficient to meet the country’s requirement in the immediate future.

Comparatively higher doubling rate raises concerns that if India further relaxes restrictions after Lockdown 3.0, it may lead to new virus cases once again. However, at least partial recovery of economy is considered the need of the hour. At the same time, the Centre is preparing to face any situation if virus transmissions once again report a spurt.

Manufacture of ventilators by domestic manufacturers has also started. Union Health Ministry reports say that a total of 27,920 people were cured of virus in India till now. In the last 24 hours, 1,685 patients were cured. Total recovery rate now is 34.06 per cent. The lockdown has good impact on doubling rate which improved from 3.4 days in pre-lockdown week to 12.9 days last week.

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Shocking guidelines for Filmshoots post Lockdown

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The Centre is slowly relaxing all the fields which are left shut from the past couple of months. The film industry is badly impacted and several producers are eagerly waiting to start the shoots soon after the lockdown once the government grants the permissions. The Centre is in plans to issue strict guidelines for the film shoots. The movie unit should come up with a certificate that the entire movie unit (cast and crew members) are not infected with coronavirus.

If anyone from the cast or crew passes away due to the coronavirus, the makers of the film should pay a compensation of Rs 50 lakhs for the family of the deceased. This will be a huge burden for the producers if any unfortunate incident happens on the sets of the films. The same guidelines would be applicable to small films and television shoots. If the government comes up with such guidelines, most of the filmmakers would wait for the coronavirus scare to be reduced instead of heading for shoots.

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Corona tally in AP crosses 2,000 mark

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With as many as 38 people testing coronavirus positive in Andhra Pradesh in the last 24 hours, the number of Covid-19 patients in the state climbed to 2,000 mark.

Of the 7,409 samples tested, 38 positive cases were detected in the 24 hours, according to the latest bulletin released by the health ministry. With the 38 fresh Covid-19 cases, the state tally rose to 2,018. The death toll remained at 45 .In the last 24 hours, 73 persons were discharged from hospitals after they were declared totally cured of corona virus. With this, the number of cured in the state stands at 998people. Consequently, there are 975 active cases in Andhra Pradesh.

The highest numbers cases in the last 24 hours were reported in Chittoor and Kurnool. Kurnool detected 12 new cases while Chitoor reported nine new cases, all migrant workers from Koyambedu wholesale market which is now the epicenter of the largest cluser of Covid-19 in Tamil Nadu. Of the 38 new cases in Andhra Pradesh, eight were reported in Anatapur, five in Guntur, 3 in Visakhapatnam, one in Nellore. Kurnool district’s cumulative tally tops the state list at 565, followed by Guntur and Krishna districts with 381 and 341 cases respectively.

Andhra Pradesh has been consistently reporting doube digit growth in corona cases in the last two weeks while there seems to be flattening curve in other states of the country. A six-member Inter-Ministerial Central Team (IMCT) is currently assessing the situation in Andhra Pradesh as the number of positive cases are steadily growing. The six-member team, including a senior public health specialist and a senior officer of National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA), held a meeting with special principal secretary (health) Jawahar Reddy last Friday and enquired about the situation in the state, especially about Kurnool, Guntur and Krishna districts where high number of positive cases were reported. On his part, Jawahar Reddy attributed the high corona incidence in the three districts to increased testing.

The team has visited monitor hotspots in Andhra Pradesh, mainly Kurnool, Guntur and Krishna districts. The team assessed thhe health infrastructure, disaster management, reviewed the hospitalisation facilities in the state, preparation of the state in terms of available beds, ramping up the number of hospitals and care centres dedicated to Covid-19 management.

The central team has reviewed the medical facilities at various hospitals and facilities in the state, assess the level of testing, availability of PPE and masks for health professionals, availability of oxygen beds, ICUs, number of surveillance teams. The team will now submit a detailed report on the situation in the state following which a central plan of action will be suggested to further contain the virus and issue necessary directions to the Andhra Pradesh government for redressal

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No fish ‘prasadam’ this year in Hyderabad due to Covid-19

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The annual event to distribute fish ‘prasadam’ among asthma patients will not be held this year in view of the Covid-19 pandemic and ongoing lockdown.

The Bathini Goud family of Hyderabad on Sunday announced that the event, held in the first week of June every year, will not be organised this time.

Harinath Goud, the head of the family, said they decided not to distribute fish ‘prasadam’ this year, keeping in view the public scare due to coronavirus and the lockdown restrictions.

This is the first time in many decades that family will not be distributing the fish ‘prasadam’.

The Telangana government has already extended the lockdown till May 29. “Even if the lockdown is lifted, it will not be possible to follow the physical distancing norm and hence we decided not to organise the event this year,” Harinath Goud said.

He cautioned people against some fake messages being circulated in the name of Bathini family about fish ‘prasadam’ distribution.

Every year, the family distributes fish ‘prasadam’ to asthma patients on Mrigasira Karthi, which heralds the onset of monsoon and normally falls on June 7-8.

People suffering from asthma and other respiratory problems reach here every year from various states to received fish ‘prasadam’ from the family which claims to be distributing it free of cost for 175 years.

Last week, a NGO working for child rights had urged the Telangana government not to allow the annual event in view of the coronavirus pandemic.

Balala Hakkula Sangham had said the state government should not facilitate the event.

Reiterating that that the ‘fish medicine’ is unscientific, its BHS Honorary President Achyuta Rao said the state government should not facilitate the Bathini brothers in administering it.

Thousands of asthma patients from various parts of the country gather in Hyderabad to receive fish ‘prasadam’ (offering), as the medicine began to be called by Bathini Goud family a decade ago after rationalists challenged its efficacy.

Despite the controversies which hit its popularity in recent years, people continue to throng the venue in the hope of finding some relief to their nagging respiratory problems. However, the numbers have dwindled over the years.

The asthmatics gulp down a live ‘murrel’ fish with a yellow herbal paste in its mouth, which is believed to provide the much-needed relief, if taken for three consecutive years. For vegetarians, the family gives the medicine with jaggery.

The Goud family claims that the secret formula for the herbal medicine was given to their ancestors in 1845 by a saint after taking an oath from him that it would be administered free of cost.

Every year, various government departments make elaborate arrangements for the annual event held in Exhibition Grounds in the heart of the city.

The family had been distributing the fish medicine at their ancestral house in Doodhbowli till 1997 when the communal riots in the old city had forced it to shift the venue to Nizam College grounds. Subsequently, the government persuaded them to permanently shift the venue to Exhibition Grounds.

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AP corona tally at 1980, 2 more districts cross 100 mark

Andhra Pradesh’s see-saw battle with COVID-19 saw the weekend close with 50 new cases on Sunday. The death toll further increased with one more death reported from the Kurnool district. Andhra Pradesh’s nodal officer reported that the cumulative tally of COVID-19 cases in the state touched 1,980 by Sunday morning.

Of the 8,666 samples tested, 50 positive cases were detected in the 24 hours ending 10 a.m., Sunday. Chittoor district reported 16 cases — the highest numbers in AP, followed by Kurnool with 13 new cases. Six cases were detected in the Guntur district and five cases each were reported from Anantapur and Nellore districts respectively. The Prakasam district had only two cases in the past 24 hours while Kadapa, Krishna, and Visakhapatnam districts registered one case each. No new cases were reported from four of the state’s 13 districts.

Meanwhile, the death toll increased to 45, following the death of one person in the Kurnool district. The preceding 24 hours also saw 38 persons discharged from hospitals after they were declared totally cured of COVID-19. With this, the number of cured in the state stands at 925 people. Consequently, there are 1,010 active cases in Andhra Pradesh as of Sunday.

On Saturday, the state’s active cases tally had dipped below the 1,000-mark and with only 43 cases detected, Andhra Pradesh had reported it’s lowest daily tally of COVID-19 cases in weeks.

Kurnool district’s cumulative tally tops the state list at 553, followed by Guntur and Krishna districts with 376 and 338 cases respectively. Seven of the state’s 13 districts did not report any new cases in the last 24 hours.

The state’s top COVID-19 hotspots of the Kurnool district continued to top the cumulative tally charts, with 566 cases detected here till date.

Guntur’s tally stands at 382, Krishna district has 339 cases and Anantapur has 107 case. Chittoor with 112 cases and Nellore with 101 cases are the latest to cross the 100-mark in terms of cumulative numbers. With the latest updates, six of the 13 districts have crossed the 100-mark.

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Inter-Ministerial Central Team in AP to review corona situation, meets Jawahar Reddy

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A six-member Inter-Ministerial Central Team (IMCT) arrived in Andhra Pradesh to take stock of the corona virus situation as the number of positive cases climbed to 1,800 in the state.

The six-member team, including a senior public health specialist and a senior officer of National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA), held a meeting with special principal secretary (health) Jawahar Reddy on Friday and enquired about the situation in the state, especially about Kurnool, Guntur and Krishna districts where high number of positive cases were reported. On his part, Jawahar Reddy reportedly told the Inter-Ministerial Central Team that the high number of cases in the three districts was because of the increased testing.

The team will monitor hotspots in the state, mainly Kurnool, Guntur and Krishna districts which reported 7, 10 and 16 fresh cases in the last 24 hours taking their respective count to 540, 373 and 316. The team will first visit Guntur on Friday and review the situation there.

Other districts that reported high instances of infections include Nellore (96), Kadapa (96), Chittoor (82), Anantapur (83), Prakasam (61), West Godavari (59), East Godavari (46), Visakhapatnam (36) and Srikakulam (5). Vizianagaram lost its corona-free status on Thursday after the district reported three positive cases of Covid-19. The district reported the three cases after almost two months (56 days) since the first positive case was reported in the State.

The team will assess health infrastructure, disaster management, review the hospitalisation facilities in the state, preparation of the state in terms of available beds, ramping up the number of hospitals and care centres dedicated to Covid-19 management.

The central team will review the medical facilities at various hospitals and facilities in the state, assess the level of testing, availability of PPE and masks for health professionals, availability of oxygen beds, ICUs, number of surveillance teams. The team will submit a detailed report on the situation in the state following which a central plan of action will be suggested to further contain the virus and issue necessary directions to the Andhra Pradesh government for redressal. The central government has already sent inter-ministerial teams to monitor certain hotspot districts in several states including, Telangana, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and West Bengal among others.

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Lockdown violation: Heavy queues outside liquor stores in AP

Drinking alcohol will weaken the immunity system and can make the Corona virus worse, the WHO warned. Who cares? As the YSRCP ruling in a hurry to fill its coffers allowed alcohol to flow in the state, queues snaked several liquor stores in Andhra Pradesh as thirsty tipplers thronged the outlets in the green and orange zones on Monday after the government permitted restricted liquor sales.

After being closed for over two months of lockdown, a surge of tipplers raided the shelves at liquor stores and wine shops across the green and orange zones with the government allowing standalone shops to sell liquor between 11 am to 7 pm from today.

Following the guidelines of the Centre, physical distance should be maintained at liquor outlets, Chief Minister Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy instructed officials on Sunday at a review meeting. Persons visiting the shops will have to maintain social distance of at least six feet, but this norm was violated across the state even as the police tried to regulate the queues. Each person is allowed to buy only two bottles.

In some places in the districts, people had reportedly began queuing up in the night itself. As per the central government guidelines, the state government gave a directive to the liquor stores that at any given time no more than five persons will be allowed at such shops, to avoid chances of contracting the deadly disease. There were no markings outside the liquor stores where people will need to stand before they can purchase. Many of the tipplers were seen without masks, a norm for purchase of alchohol. As per the norm, no more than five persons at any given time should not be allowed. Even this mandate was violated at several places. Staff at some liquor stores were also seen without masks and gloves.

At most liquor stores, people queued up as early as 8 am to buy liquor even as alcohol got expensive by at least 25 per cent. On Saturday, the government hiked the cost of liquor by 25 percent. IMFL quarter bottles above Rs 150 will be dearer by Rs 60, Rs 40 hike on quarter bottles priced between Rs 120-Rs 150, Rs 120 and Rs 240 hike on half and full bottles respectively, while quarter bottles priced below Rs 120 have been hiked by Rs 20. The government is likely to shore up an additional Rs 4,500 crore to its coffer by hiking liqour prices by 25 per cent. A decision to this effect was taken by the Chief Minister on Sunday at a review meeting held at his camp office in Tadepalli.

On Saturday, the Andhra Pradesh government has lifted restrictions on production of alcohol in distilleries and breweries subject to the protocol and guidelines that are to be followed to fight the coronavirus pandemic. The Jagan government had issued an order in this regard giving permission to 20 distilleries to resume operations in their districts with immediate effect.

The Opposition was quick to react saying rather than solving the problems of the farmers and migrant workers, the state government was more worried about those into liquor trade. The Opposition leaders asked if the government was working for welfare of the people of Andhra Pradesh or are they working for profiteering of liquor distillery owners

TDP leader Kala Venkatrao said while the entire world was working hard to find vaccine to Covid-19, the YSRCP ruling was brewing alcohol in Andhra Pradesh at a time when the state was witnessing surging Corona positive numbers, .

He said the Jagan government had failed to show seriousness in providing medical gear to the frontline warriors, but exhibiting its overzealous approach in allowing distillers to brew alcohol. “Is the Jagan government opening more medical and pharmacy stores? The seriousness with which the government was working to profit from liquor sales by permitting distillers must be exhibited in containing corona virus. The government had failed to provide PPEs, N95 masks and gloves but looks too eager to allow liquor stores only to get commissions and kick-backs from liquor lobby,” the senior TDP leader said.

The liquor shops were opened at a time there were fewer shops are selling essentials. “Shops selling groceries and essentials are being closed but this government is permitting liquor stores. It clearly exposes this government’s dubious policy,” he said.

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Get ready to buy booze: AP allows restricted sale of liquor

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Alcohol consumption compromises the body’s immune system and increases the risk of adverse health outcomes, warned the World Health Organisation. Alcohol consumption is associated with several communicable and non-communicable diseases that can make a person more vulnerable to covid-19, the WHO cautioned. However, the YSRCP ruling seems to be in a hurry to get alcohol flowing in the state. A day after, lifting restrictions on production of alcohol in distilleries and breweries, the Jagan led government has decided to allow restricted sale of alcohol by opening retail liquor stores.

On Sunday, the Jagan-led government in Andhra Pradesh has allowed sale of liquor in all green and orange zones, excluding containment zones, in order to deal with major drop in revenues. While standalone shops will be allowed to sell liquor in green zones, persons visiting the shops will have to maintain social distance of at least six feet. The Andhra Pradesh government’s decision to open liquor stores is in line with the central government’s directive allowing liquor shops in designated green and orange zones in the country with effect from May 4, apart from allowing resumption of liquor sales in rural areas.

As per the central government guidelines, the state government gave a directive to the liquor stores that at any given time no more than five persons will be allowed at such shops, to avoid chances of contracting the deadly disease. Staff in liquor stores has to wear masks and gloves, and stores have to be regularly sanitized. Further, there will be sanitisers, gloves and a tray will will be used to collect payment and handover the bottles. Also, there will be markings outside where people outside where people will need to stand before they can purchase. .

On Saturday, the Andhra Pradesh government has lifted restrictions on production of alcohol in distilleries and breweries subject to the protocol and guidelines that are to be followed to fight the coronavirus pandemic. The Jagan government had issued an order in this regard giving permission to 20 distilleries to resume operations in their districts with immediate effect.

The owners of the distilleries were asked to ensure that their employees strictly maintain social distancing norm and that the staff cannot use lifts in their respective liquor making companies. The government order triggered hopes among tipplers that liquor would soon be available in the retail liquor stores. Allowing the production in distilleries and breweries is essential to shore up huge revenue from this sector.

The Opposition was quick to react saying rather than solving the problems of the farmers and migrant workers, the state government was more worried about those into liquor trade. The Opposition leaders asked if the government was working for welfare of the people of Andhra Pradesh or are they working for profiteering of liquor distillery owners

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Telangana’s 40% Covid patients in 21-40 age group

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Official data on novel coronavirus cases in Telengana has indicated that as many as 40 per cent of patients are in the age group of 21-40.

Gender-wise, more men have been affected than women. Officials said 66.5 per cent patients (705) are male and 33.5 per cent (356) female.

More than two months after reporting the first case, Telangana has come out with data relating to age- and gender-wise infection cases.

According to the Health Department, 21 per cent of the 1,061 Covid-19 cases in the state are aged between 21 and 30 and another 19 per cent between 31 and 40.

The data also shows that 29 per cent patients are from 41-60 age group. Only seven per cent are aged between 61 and 70.

Thirteen per cent patients are aged between 11 and 20 while four per cent are aged between 6-10. Officials said five per cent of the infected were below five years of age.

The state on Saturday reported one death and 17 new cases. The tally of positive cases mounted to 1,061.

The death toll rose to 29. At 2.7 per cent, the mortality rate in the state is almost similar to the national average.

Saturday also recorded the discharge of 35 more patients, taking the total recoveries to 499. Officials said the active cases in Telengana are 533.

The state has a recovery rate of 47 per cent. Health Minister Eatala Rajender claimed that it is the highest among all states in the country.

The Minister said the state had been on alert ever since it reported the first case on March 2. The Health Department in coordination with others traced the contacts of the positive cases, conducted tests and treated them.

“We traced and tracked contacts in each positive case and that’s how we were able to control the spread,” he said.

The authorities succeeded in arresting the spike in the number of cases since last one week, officials said. The daily number of infections slumped to single digit on most days during the week.

The government claimed that steps like strict implementation of lockdown and increased surveillance and door-to-door survey in containment zones was helping in checking the spread.

It is now focusing on six red zone districts, especially Greater Hyderabad which account for more than 50 per cent of the cases.

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Three deaths, 22 new cases in Telangana

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After a drop in Covid-19 cases for the last few days, Telangana on Thursday saw a spurt in infections with 22 new cases and three deaths.

Officials said three persons died of Covid-19 and co-morbidities. They include a 44-year-old female and two males, aged 48 and 76. All the three belonged to Greater Hyderabad.

With this, the number of fatalities in the state rose to 28.

With the 22 new cases, the total number rose to 1,038. For last three days the state was reporting cases in single digit but there was sudden spurt on Thursday.

According to officials, the virus from two infected persons spread to three shops owners in Malakpet Gunj Market in Hyderabad and they, in turn, infected their family members. The family members of the shop owners were isolated in hospitals.

Health Minister E. Rajender said Pahadi Shared from where the two infected men hail and Gunj were declared containment zones.

He announced that 33 Covid-19 patients were recovered and discharged on Thursday. They included a 50-year-old doctor.

With this the number of people who recovered and discharged rose to 442. Currently, 568 people are undergoing treatment in hospitals.

Due to sudden jump in number of positive cases on Thursday, Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao alerted the Health Department. At a high level meeting, he directed the officials to contain the spread of virus in Greater Hyderabad.

Following this, Rajender called a meeting of senior officials and decided to take strict measures in containment zones.

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Petition in HC against YSRCP leaders for lockdown violations

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Accusing the YSRCP leades of violating lockdown regulations, a lawyer filed a petition in the Andhra Pradesh High Court seeking the directions of the court to ensure strict compliance of lockdown directives and Covid-19 related guidelines.

The petitioner, Kishore, contended that the High Court should direct the YSRCP leaders who violated the lockdown regulations to undergo the corona virus tests. In the petition, he named Srikalahasti YSRCP MLA Madhusudhan Reddy, Nagari MLA Roja, Sullurpet MLA Kiliveti Sanjeeviah, Palamaner MLA Venkat Reddy, Chilkaluripeta MLA Rajni as respondents.

The petitioner argued that the lockdown regulations apply to every individual and none is above the law. However, the YSRCP leaders blatantly violated the regulations by taking out rallies and organising large gatherings, the petitioner contended.

The country is under a lockdown to combat the Covid-19 lockdown and while public gatherings are banned, in blatant disregard of physical distancing, YSRCP MLA Madhusudhan Reddy took out massive tractor rally to distribute rice to the people in Srikalahasti. The rally saw a large turnout of the YSRCP MLA’s supporters, a posse of police personnel on bandobast duties, revenue and ward secretariat staff in full attendance. Post the rally, Srikalahasti reported 36 cases, at least 13 of them are government employees, police officers who were part of the rally bandobast. Till that time not a single corona case was reported in Srikalahasti. As per the Government Order dated March 23, gatherings of more than four people are not to be allowed at any public place. However, the meeting held in Vemulavalasa, Anandapuram mandal, Visakhapatnam district, was attended by several people.

Similarly, Sullurupeta legislator Kiliveti Sanjeevaiah led a rally with more than two dozen tractors to distribute the essentials among people in 59 villages.
Palamaner MLA Venkat Reddy inaugurated a bridge with about 150 people in his constituency in Chittoor district where the highest number of coronavirus cases have been reported. He did not maintain social distancing. Later, he abused the media when they questioned about his actions.

Nagari YSRCP MLA Roja participated in a borewell inauguration programme with her followers. A video surfaced where the villagers were showering flower petals on her feet while she was walking down the road. Reportedly, even though she was seen wearing a mask and gloves, several people had lined up on either side of the road.

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For 4th day, AP reports double digit rise in corona cases. Lifting lockdown good idea?

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For the fourth straight day, Andhra Pradesh reported double digit rise in coronavirus infections in the last 24 hours as the state prepares for a gradual easing of its lockdown from next week.

The state government confirmed 71 new coronavirus infections on Wednesday, taking the total in the state to 1,403, according to the latest health bulletin. The state seems to be in the spotlight as it struggles to deal with a wave of infections at a time the country is witnessing a downward trend in the number of Covid-19 cases.

There were more than 82 infections in the previous 72 hours, compared with 74 new infections a day earlier and 73 the day before that.

While no new deaths due to Covid-19 were reported, 321 patients were discharged from hospitals in different districts of the state, a government bulletin said. Around 1,051 patients are currently undergoing treatment in various hospitals. Fourty three fresh cases were registered in Kurnool, four each in Guntur and Krishna districts, three in Chitoor.

Numbers show a sharp upward trend with at least 250 new cases reported in the last week. While Telangana showed a steady decline in the number of coronavirus cases in single digits in the last one week, AP’s corona figures seem to be in acceleration phase. The health principal secretary Jawahar Reddy attributed the higher number of corona cases to the increased number of testing. “We have stepped up testing. We have also stepped up community surveillance in the corona virus affected clusters and hence more cases are getting detected,” Jawahar Reddy said on Wednesday. This implies that the Opposition was correct when it said the government was not testing enough

Kurnool continues to have highest number of cases at 386, followed by Guntur and Krishna with 287 and 240 cases respectively, according to a health bulletin released by the government on Thursday.

The surge in number of cases was because of the lopsided policies of Chief Minister Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy who consistently downplayed the public health risk of the burgeoning pandemic while the state administration has been slow to respond to the crisis. Chandrababu Naidu squarely blamed the state government’s lack of foresight in tackling the virus. The government had spent much of its time in vendetta politics, was more focussed on elections to civic bodies than containing corona virus apart from being caught in a vortex of legal battles and personal attacks against political detractors

Meanwhile, the state government on Wednesday announced that there will be considerable lockdown relaxations in many districts in the state from May 3. Experts fear that if the complete lockdown is lifted there could be a second wave of infections in the state. They fear community transmission will take place as people move around and it will be difficult to contain the virus. ICMR and Health Ministry research shows that community transmission has occurred in 36 districts in 15 States. This confirmation must lead to an expansion and change in testing strategy especially in high focus areas for the lockdown to be more meaningful.

“If you lift the lockdown, you must make sure you have a strategy that will minimise the risk of a secondary pandemic wave that could cause more deaths,” senior TDP leader and former MLA Anuradha opined.

Telugu360 is always open for the best and bright journalists. If you are interested in full-time or freelance, email us at Krishna@telugu360.com.

Corona cases in AP unabated. 73 new cases, tally at 1,332

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Covid-19 may not be what Chief Minister Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy thought – common cold and fever. The spurt in coronavirus cases in Andhra Pradesh continued unabated as 73 more cases were added in the last 24 hours, taking the overall tally to 1,332. While no new deaths due to Covid-19 were reported, 281 patients were discharged from hospitals in different districts of the state, a government bulletin said. Twenty three fresh cases were registered in Kurnool, 13 cases were reported in Krishna district.

Kurnool continues to have highest number of cases at 343, followed by Guntur and Krishna with 283 and 236 cases respectively, according to a health bulletin released by the government on Wedensday. Can Andhra Pradesh contain its growing caseload of coronavirus infections before its health system is overwhelmed? Numbers show a sharp upward trend with at least 200-250 new cases reported in the last week. While Telangana showed a steady decline in the number of coronavirus cases in single digits in the last one week, AP’s corona figures seem to be in acceleration phase. The health principal secretary Jawahar Reddy attributed the higher number of corona cases to the increased number of testing. This implies that the Opposition was correct when it said the government was not testing enough.

One of the primary factors for the growing numbers is the way the government mishandled the situation from day one. Jagan dealt with it way too casually right from the beginning despite early warnings from Chandrababu Naidu. The casual approach reflected in Jagan’s personal beliefs and views on corona. Even once it became clear that the coronavirus pandemic was a real threat, Jagan downplayed the outbreak. He compared the coronavirus to the seasonal flu, when the Covid-19 is in fact much deadlier and more contagious than the flu. He called concerns raised by the Opposition about the virus a hoax.

The surge in number of cases was because of the lopsided policies of the Chief Minister Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy who consistently downplayed the public health risk of the burgeoning pandemic while the state administration has been slow to respond to the crisis. Chandrababu Naidu squarely blamed the state government’s lack of foresight in tackling the virus. The government had spent much of its time in vendetta politics, was more focussed on elections to civic bodies than containing corona virus apart from being caught in a vortex of legal battles and personal attacks against political detractors.

Telugu360 is always open for the best and bright journalists. If you are interested in full-time or freelance, email us at Krishna@telugu360.com.

Coronavirus Row: Tollywood actors on a Firm Stand

The coronavirus wave brought life to a halt. The film industry is badly impacted and it takes months to get back things to normal. Several producers already came to the conclusion that it is quite tough to start the shoots even if the lockdown gets lifted. There should be huge preventive measures and steps to be followed if the shoots get reinstated. Right from thermal screening to the use of sanitizers, face masks, gloves and others, everything should be taken special care of. The budget gets heaped up and there would be no outdoor permissions given for the shoots for a few months. The life of around 200 unit members (per film shoot) would be at risk on a regular basis.

It is heard that most of the Tollywood actors are not ready to join the sets until the vaccination for coronavirus is found. Some of the actors even discussed this with their producers asking them not to hurry and take the risk during this critical time. As there would be no terrifying situations once the vaccine is out, film shoots can happen in a smooth manner suggests most of the actors. Even the actresses, character artists and technicians may not take a risk and participate in the shoot till the fear of coronavirus vanishes away.

Some of the producers are keen to convince the actors as they are losing big amounts due to the delay. Going with the facts, it is quite risky and also a strain for the makers to start the shoots in this tough time.

Telugu360 is always open for the best and bright journalists. If you are interested in full-time or freelance, email us at Krishna@telugu360.com.

4 staff at AP Raj Bhavan test Corona +ve, alarming rise in Krishna

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Krishna district has reported 52 Coronavirus cases in a single day. This has triggered widespread fears and official machinery stepped up lockdown restrictions further. The top officials were shaken after four staffers at AP Raj Bhavan located in the heart of Vijayawada city tested positive for the virus. The staffers were identified as Chief Security Officer, a medical staff nurse, a butler and one house keeping person. None of them has any travel history, forcing the district administration to enquire whether community transmission has picked up in the district. However, one of the staff recently visited Hyderabad. Based on this, the district officials took up contact tracing now.

Following this, the authorities have proposed to do virus tests on the Governor as well. Also, nearly 14 staff in the health team at Raj Bhavan were placed under strict quarantine. Tests are being carried out on all of them.

While Krishna reported 52 new cases in last 24 hours, overall AP reported 81 cases. The total cases reached 1,097 cases in AP. The district officials are further tightening the lockdown restrictions in all areas following latest reports.

Telugu360 is always open for the best and bright journalists. If you are interested in full-time or freelance, email us at Krishna@telugu360.com.

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