COVID-19 updates (Updated daily): PM to address nation at 10 am tomorrow | Rapid testing kits from China delayed


March 26, 2020 | Number of cases: 649 | Number of deaths: 13

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced a COVID-19 financial relief package worth Rs 1,70,000 crores to help the citizens tide over financial difficulties during the pandemic. The package, dubbed Pradhan Mantri Gareeb Kalyan Yojna, is aimed to provide relief to the poorest of poor. The key takeaways from the announcements cover migrant workers, daily wage labourers, farmers and women.

Close to 8.6 crore farmers will see Rs 2000 credited to them in the first week of April. A health insurance cover of Rs 50 lakhs each  was announced for frontline workers such as medical professionals. Wages will rise to Rs 2000 under the MGNREGA scheme. Rs 500 per month for three months will be credited to 20 crore Jan Dhan account holding women. Around 8.3 crore BPL families will get three free LPG cylinders for the next three months.

Meanwhile the number of infections across the country continue to soar, and Telangana has extended its lockdown to April 16th. In view of the curve, the central government has decided to allow the doorstep delivery of medicines and drugs to people. These medicines fall under Schedule H, that is they cannot be purchased without a doctor’s prescription. A notification to this effect is expected to be soon published in the Gazette of India.

Around 900 persons had to be quarantined in Delhi after a doctor at a Mohalla clinic tested positive for COVID-19. A woman who had returned from Saudi Arabia visited the mohalla clinic with symptoms of COVID-19 and is suspected to have transmitted to the infection to the doctor. The doctor’s wife and child have also tested positive for COVID-19. The government swung into action after the infection to the doctor came to light. Visitors to the mohalla clinic have been traced and placed under quarantine and are being monitored for symptoms of COVID-19.

Last updated, March 26th, 6:30 pm

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