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CHENNAI: World Health Organisation Chief Scientist Sowmya Swaminathan on Saturday said clusters and large gatherings which have the potential of spreading COVID-19 need to be identified and suggested continuous testing of samples by the government.

With a huge population in a country like India, she said,one has to go after the virus in order to control its spread before it becomes a community transmission.

“When we look at countries that have succeeded (in controlling the spread of virus) we have to go after the virus where it is present.

Then it is easier (to prevent the spread of virus) than it becomes a community transmission,” she said.

Swaminathan was speaking at a conference ‘SICCI 360’ organised by trade body Southern Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SICCI).

She said even in Tamil Nadu there was a phase when things were looking ‘bad’ and the government was wondering what needs to be done.

“The test positivity rate is a very important marker and India has done well.

(But) We could do more. The test positivity rate in Tamil Nadu which was 15 per cent has now become less than five per cent”, she said.

Swaminathan said testing of samples should be continued while clusters which could turn into COVID-19 ‘hotspots’ need to be identified.

“In Chennai like the Koyambedu cluster, there are few other clusters as well as religious gatherings.. those are things (that) need to be identified so that we can take more precautions,” she added.

The Times of India is an Indian English-language daily newspaper owned by The Times Group. It is the third-largest newspaper in India by circulation and largest selling English-language daily in the world. according to Audit Bureau of Circulations.

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INDIA

New Covid-19 cases in India dip below 50,000 for first time in nearly three months

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NEW DELHI: The number of new coronavirus infections reported daily in India dropped below 50,000 for the first time in nearly three months, taking the Covid-19 caseload to 75,97,063 on Tuesday, according to the Union Health Ministry.

A total of 46,790 fresh infections were reported in a day, while the death toll climbed to 1,15,197 with 587 fatalities being registered in a span of 24 hours, the data updated at 8 am showed.

The number of new fatalities reported daily across the country was recorded below 600 for the second consecutive day.

The total recoveries crossed 67 lakh while active cases of coronavirus infection remained below 8 lakh for the fourth consecutive day.

The country had reported 47,703 new infections in a day on July 28.

There are 7,48,538 active cases of coronavirus infection in the country which comprises 9.85 per cent of the total caseload, the data stated.

A total 67,33,328 people have recuperated from the disease so far pushing the national recovery rate to 88.63 per cent while the case fatality rate due Covid-19 stands at 1.52 per cent.

India’s Covid-19 tally had crossed the 20-lakh mark on August 7, 30 lakh on August 23 and 40 lakh on September. It went past 50 lakh on September 16, 60 lakh on September 28 and crossed 70 lakh on October 11.

According to the ICMR, a cumulative total of 9,61,16,771 samples have been tested up to October 19 with 10,32,795 samples being tested on Monday.

The 579 new fatalities include 125 from Maharashtra, 64 from Karnataka, 63 from West Bengal, 56 from Chhattisgarh, 49 from Tamil Nadu, and 31 from Delhi.

A total of 1,15,197 deaths have been reported so far in the country including 42,240 from Maharashtra followed by 10,691 from Tamil Nadu, 10,542 from Karnataka, 6,685 from Uttar Pradesh, 6,453 from Andhra Pradesh, 6,119 from West Bengal, 6,040 from Delhi, 4,029 from Punjab and 3,643 from Gujarat.

The health ministry stressed that more than 70 per cent of the deaths occurred due to comorbidities.

“Our figures are being reconciled with the Indian Council of Medical Research,” the ministry said on its website, adding that state-wise distribution of figures is subject to further verification and reconciliation.

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INDIA

Two terrorists killed by security forces in operation in Jammu and Kashmir’s Shopian

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SHOPIAN: Two terrorists were killed by the security forces on Tuesday in an operation in the Melhora area of the Shopian district, the army said.

“One more terrorist killed during the operation in Melhora area of Shopian district. Total two terrorists have been eliminated so far. One AK rifle and one pistol recovered. The operation has concluded,” said Indian Army.

One AK rifle and one pistol was recovered from the spot.

Earlier today, Army’s northern command had reported the killing of one terrorist in the Melhora area.

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INDIA

With 46,791 new Covid-19 cases, India’s tally reaches 75,97,064

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NEW DELHI: India reported 46,791 new Covid-19 cases and 587 deaths in the last 24 hours, taking the total number of cases to 75,97,064, according to the ministry of health and family welfare (MoHFW).

As per the MoHFW, the number of active cases stand at 7,48,538 while the number of cured/discharged/migrated people stands at 67,33,329. The death toll has reached 1,15,197.

With 1,83,456 total active cases, Maharashtra continues to be the worst affected state by Covid-19 in the country. While 13,69,810 patients have recovered from the disease in the state, 42,115 have died so far.

Among other severely affected states, Karnataka has 1,09,283 active cases, while 6,45,825 people have recovered, 10,478 have succumbed to the coronavirus.

Delhi has 23,292 active cases, 3,01,716 recovered and 6,009 deaths reported so far.

Meanwhile, the trend of daily cases in the five most affected states – Maharashtra, Karnataka, Kerala, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu – reveals stages of the decline of active cases. It mirrors a steady decrease in active cases in India with caseload being sustained below 8 lakhs for 3 days in a row, said the health ministry.

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