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New Delhi
Wednesday 8 July 2020

Health ministry: 320 test +ve out of 16K, no ‘community transmission’

In the usage by the Ministry of Health or any agency that speaks of a population, 'community' may or may not refer to a religion or a caste

To allay fears among the people over the increasing cases of the novel coronavirus disease (COVID) reported non-stop, the Ministry of Health today assured the nation that the sample of the entire tested population does not show signs of what is known as “community transmission”.

Assurance of health ministry

Joint secretary at the health ministry Lav Agarwal said on Friday that there was no community transmission in the country yet. “There is no need to panic, but beware and alert,” he said.

Agarwal said that the challenge was not local or community transmission. “We are taking all precautionary and preventive measures,” he assured.

Speaking on the issue of misbehaviour of patients with health workers in some places, Agarwal said that health workers were in the frontline in the fight against coronavirus and subjecting them to any kind of abuse was harmful to society. “The incidents of misbehaviour with them negatively affect their morale,” the joint secretary said.

‘Community’ defined

In the term, “community” strictly refers to a group of people staying together, which may or may not mean a religion or a caste. For example, a ghetto can be a community, where it refers to a group, all members of which profess one religion. A caste-based village can be a community. At the same time, an apartment behind closed gates where hundreds of families live inside one compound could be referred to as a community too — although they do not belong to any given caste or religion.

678 new cases of coronavirus in last 24 hours
16,000 tests of coronavirus were done on Thursday

Agarwal said that the country has so far conducted 16,000 coronavirus tests on Thursday. Just 2% of them have been found to be infected, he informed the press. In absolute numbers, that comes to 320 who have tested positive. “Based on the sample collected, the infection rate is not high,” the bureaucrat said.

The health ministry said that a package of Rs 15,000 crore had been announced to fight COVID. This is the union government’s package for the states.

In the past 24 hours, 678 new cases of COVID have been reported, which includes the sample of people Agarwal spoke about. Thirty-three people have died.

We have a domestic requirement of 10 million hydroxychloroquine tablets, while we have 3.28 million hydroxychloroquine tablets available.

MHA cautions

In view of the upcoming festivals this month, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has directed all states and union territories to ensure strict compliance of lockdown measures to fight the spread of the infection.

Punya Salila Srivastava, a joint secretary at the MHA, said that the Home Minister held a review meeting with border security officials on security along the India-Pakistan and India-Bangladesh borders. He ordered to tighten security especially in those areas where there is no fencing.

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