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New Delhi, Apr 2 :  Prime Minister Narendra Modi greeted people on the occasion of Ram Navami on Thursday.

The festival is celebrated to mark the birth of Lord Ram.

"Heartfelt greetings to all the people of the country on the auspicious occasion of Ram Navami. Jai Shri Ram," Modi tweeted.


Jammu, Apr 01 :  Principal Secretary Planning, Information and Government Spokesperson, Rohit Kansal today informed that as of today there are 62 positive cases of COVID 19 in J&K.

Giving breakup of the figures at a press briefing, Kansal said 58 are active cases of which 48 are in Kashmir and 10 in Jammu division. “A total of 17041 cases are under surveillance so far. This is a dynamic process and while some cases who complete their period are being released for home quarantine, newer cases keep getting added as per contact tracing results,” he said.

Kansal said that government is conscious that there has been concern among the public at large about the cases being tested positive. “However we would like to emphasize we have a robust tracing process. Many of the positive cases could be traced as a result of a vigorous contact tracing exercise undertaken by the administration. As a result we were able to trace many cases including some that were asymptomatic. This is important because if not traced these cases could have continued in the general population and could even have infected more cases,” he said while adding that the government will actively pursue this strategy.

The government spokesperson said that nearly 2000 contacts of positive cases have been identified. “We have issued instructions that no known contact be left untraced. I had mentioned last time that this is bound to lead to some inconvenience. Hot spots would need to be isolated and sealed and movements fully restricted,” he said while appealing people for their cooperation in this exercise. “Believe me, it is worth the trouble and effort. Every single case detected and traced means so many more have been prevented from being infected.”

Kansal revealed that Jammu and Kashmir has also been testing cases aggressively and it was among the first to start testing locally through 4 testing centres. “Our testing rate has been nearly 77.5 per million, one of the highest in the country and next only to Kerala. We have decided to further increase it. To begin with, we plan to test every single one of the 2000 contacts that we have identified,” he said.

The government spokesperson said that the strategy of aggressive tracing and increased testing will continue. He said that in order to achieve the concerned authorities have well defined protocols for quarantine, isolation and restrictions on movement. “In defining protocols we have often gone beyond what is being followed in some other states; however this has been carefully planned. Wherever we have been deliberately stricter, it is because we firmly believe that it is better to be strict and firm initially than dealing with a large pool of infections at a later stage,” he said.

Kansal repeated that there are 11 exclusive COVID 19 hospitals, an administrative quarantine facility of over 35000 beds and 2400 earmarked treatment beds in Jammu and Kashmir to deal with any kind of situation. He said that the health department has also started upgrading its manpower and equipment. “It has started reengagement of retired professionals, consultants and will use every possible mechanism to ensure that there is no shortage of manpower. Similarly, it is procuring all essential material including masks, PPEs and ventilators,” he said.

The Government spokesperson said that the government is aware that there are a large number of citizens and residents who need support and assistance of various kinds. These include patients, students, migrant labour and other citizens. He assured that adequate arrangements have been made for each group of people and the Resident Commission in Delhi has established a dedicated 24X7 helpline centre to assist students, patients or any other residents of J&K facing difficulties due to the lockdown. He said that over 2800 calls have so been received so far on these numbers. “ Similarly help lines have been set up for labour and migrants both interstate Migrant labourers in J&K and migrant labourers of J&K stranded in various parts of the country (nearly 11000). Over 300 calls have been received so far,” he said. “An amount of Rs. 1000 per registered construction worker was approved by the Govt on 25-03-2020. An amount of Rs. 11.915 crore has been disbursed till date among 119150 active registered workers,” he said.

Kansal said that an advisory has been issued to all the employers of Public/Private Shops Establishments, Industrial Establishments, Factories, Mines, Projects and Contractors etc. in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir to not terminate, particularly casual or contractual workers from job or reduce their wages due to the ongoing situation.

He said that the process of distribution of advance ration for April and May has begun and nearly 1.31 lakh qtl of foodgrains have been distributed so far. To help the destitute, slum dwellers and migrant labour, he said that ration packets containing essential edibles are being prepared and supplied through the DCs and urban local bodies.

Kansal said that the position of supplies as on date is normal. “In order to maintain the supply line of all essential commodities, medicines, baby foods and other items, special arrangements have been made across the UT of J&K and especially at Lakhanpur. Since the beginning of the lockdown upto 8 Am today morning 3483 trucks carrying essential goods containing fruit &vegetables(1114), Ration/food grains(1003), Milk(141), Eggs (138), Medicines (108), LPG (307), POL (94) etc. have entered J&K from Lakhanpur. In order to ensure uninterrupted farming and agricultural activities, Cattle feed/fodders (234 trucks), Fertilisers (19 trucks) and Polutry/sheep have also been allowed. On an average, 800 trucks of essential supplies are entering J&K through Lakhanpur (Kathua) in 24 hours,” he said while giving details.

Kansal said that a facilitation centre at Lakhanpur entry point, manned by a senior interdepartmental team and a 24x7 Control Room have been set up at Lakhanpur for facilitating movement of trucks carrying essential supplies to UT of J&K.

Regarding distribution of Masks and Sanitizers to public servants on duty Kansal said that Lieutenant Governor has directed the department of FCS&CA to create stocks of Masks and Sanitizers for distribution among various public servants on duty and all residents of areas identified as hot spots or red spots. “We have accordingly placed orders for nearly 4 lakh masks and 1.60 lakh sanitizers. We have already distributed 90000 masks and 6000 sanitisers to various essential service departments such as power, PHE, police etc,” he said.

As per the Daily Bulletin on Novel Corona Virus 07 new positive cases of novel Coronavirus (COVID-19), all from Kashmir division, have been reported today thus taking the total number of positive cases in Jammu and Kashmir to 62.

Till date 17041 travellers and persons in contact with suspected cases have been put under surveillance which include 10355 persons in home quarantine including in facilities operated by government, 516 in Hospital Quarantine, 52 in hospital isolation and 3961 under home surveillance. Besides, 2157 persons have completed their 28 days surveillance period.

Further the Bulletin said that till date 977 samples have been sent for testing of which 911 have tested as negative, 62 positive and 04 reports are awaited till April 01, 2020.


Jammu, Apr 01 :  Chief Secretary, BVR Subhramanyam today directed all Deputy Commissioners to carryout aggressive contact tracing campaign and putting all such persons under quarantine after taking their samples as per health protocol. He also asked to further minimize movement on roads in order to contain spread of coronavirus.

Financial Commissioner, Health, Principal Secretary, Planning & Information, Divisional Commissioner, Jammu, IGP Traffic, Secretary FCS&CA, MD NHM, DC Jammu and SSP Jammu participated in the meeting. Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir and all Deputy Commissioners attended the meeting through video conference.

Chief Secretary complimented the Deputy Commissioners for their serious efforts in battling with coronavirus and said that it is because of our aggressive contact tracing campaign that we have controlled the spread of virus to some extent. He said that we are far ahead of many states in testing process and 100% testing of contacts is being done which actually have resulted not letting the situation out of control.

The details of people who have attended religious function in Delhi have been shared with the Deputy Commissioners, Chief Secretary said adding that both the Divisional Commissioners should coordinate with IGP’s and further DCs, with the help of District police, need to ensure that the entire list is checked and action as per health protocol is taken accordingly.

With regard to red zones, as identified by the district administrations, the Chief Secretary applauded the efforts of everyone deployed on duty there. He asked to implement lockdown restrictions in red zones in even more serious manner.

Emphasizing on following proper quarantine protocol, the Chief Secretary asked DCs to ensure that while dealing with such cases, they need to be handled as per the defined protocol so that people do not get intermingled with each other.

Chief Secretary lauds the role of police in implementation of lockdown restrictions and controlling movement of people on roads. He said that police is doing tough job on roads restricting people not to come out unnecessary on roads. There is need to have strict imposition of lockdown orders but ask them not to be harsh while dealing with public in this time of humanitarian crisis.

In order to help the old age people during this lockdown period, Chief Secretary asked police to work out with district administrations to start a helpline for old age people in distress. As the district administrations are busy in lot many works in tackling coronavirus threat, this helpline should run and managed by police for the help of such people like taking care of their daily/medical needs. Chief Secretary also asked for publicizing the helpline properly so that old age people are benefitted by this move.

He asked the DCs to ensure that banking operations are functional in their respective districts so that disbursement of relief package announced by the Government under Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana (PMGKY) for the poor to help them fight the battle against coronavirus can be done in a smooth manner. He asked DCs to convene District Level Review Committee (DLRC) meetings to finalize action plan in this regard.

Chief Secretary asked all DCs to reach out to people and make them calm, assures full support of administration in taking care of them especially poor class by providing ration and other essential goods.


Mumbai, Apr 1 :  Equity benchmark Sensex slumped over 700 points in early trade on Wednesday tracking losses in index heavyweights Reliance Industries, Kotak Bank, HDFC Bank and Infosys amid weak cues from global markets.

Starting the new financial year on a negative note, the 30-share BSE barometer was trading 714.74 points or 2.43 per cent lower at 28,753.75.

Similarly, the NSE Nifty fell 199 points, or 2.31 per cent, to 8,398.75.

Kotak Bank was the top loser in the Sensex pack, cracking up to 8 per cent, followed by SBI, Infosys, HDFC Bank, Tech Mahindra and UltraTech Cement.

On the other hand, IndusInd Bank and PowerGrid were the gainers.

In the previous session, the Sensex closed the financial year 2019-20 higher by 1,028.17 points or 3.62 per cent at 29,468.49. The Nifty rose 316.65 points, or 3.82 per cent, to close at 8,597.75.

However, during the fiscal, the Sensex plunged 9,204.42 points or 23.80 per cent, while the Nifty sank 3,026.15 points or 26.03 per cent.

Foreign institutional investors (FIIs) turned net sellers in the capital market, as they offloaded equity shares worth Rs 3,044.94 crore on Tuesday, according to provisional exchange data.

According to S Hariharan, Head - Sales Trading, Emkay Global Financial Services: For the month of April, macro risk appetite driven by news flow around potential peaking of fresh COVID-19 cases would be the key driving force for foreign flows, while domestic funds continue to use the correction to increase equities allocation in dynamic asset allocation funds.

On the global front, bourses in Hong Kong, Tokyo and Seoul were in the red, while those in Shanghai were trading on a positive note. Benchmark exchanges on Wall Street too ended with losses in overnight trade.

Brent crude futures, the global oil benchmark, fell 0.76 per cent to USD 26.15 per barrel.

The number of COVID-19 cases in India has stood at around 1,400, according to health ministry log. While there are more than 1,200 active cases, over 100 have been cured.

Deaths around the world linked to the pandemic crossed have 40,000.