Coronavirus updates for April 22
As the number of coronavirus cases cross 20,000 in India, the Union cabinet approved a Rs 15,000 crore package for special COVID-19 response. The package aims to slow down the spread of COVID-19 in India, build resilient national and state health infrastructures, procure essential medical equipment, and set up laboratories and surveillance systems. This comes as the COVID-19 death toll crossed 650, according to Worldometer.
With cases of attacks on healthcare personnel being reported, Union Minister Prakash Javadekar announced the approval of an ordinance making criminal acts against healthcare workers punishable by up to seven years in prison and/or fine of up to Rs 5 lakh. This comes as a doctor in Chennai, who died combating coronavirus, was denied permission to be buried in a cemetery.
Meanwhile, former Microsoft chairperson Bill Gates commended Prime Minister Narendra Modi's leadership in dealing with COVID-19 by taking measures such as imposing a national lockdown, expanding focussed testing, identifying hotspots, and increasing health expenditure. PM Modi will hold a meeting with chief ministers of all states in a video conference on April 27 to take stock of steps being taken to fight coronavirus and the way forward.
The UN warned of a 'biblical' famine as many countries are under lockdown and COVID-19 related deaths crossed 180,000 across the world. Doctors Without Borders also warned that it will run out of masks within three to four weeks, raising prospects of halting operations. In Turkey, 24 health workers, including 14 doctors have died of coronavirus this month alone.
Here's a roundup of YourStory's coverage today of how India and the world are dealing with the coronavirus pandemic.
Rohit Kapoor, India CEO, in a virtual internal town hall announced that a certain number of employees in India will be opting for voluntary leave with limited benefits, effective May 4, 2020. He also announced a 25 percent pay cut in the April-July 2020 payroll for employees.
Delhi-based agritech startup AgriBazaar brings farmers and food processing companies together on an e-mandi as coronavirus forces physical markets to stay shut.
Zomato has mandated the use of Aarogya Setu app for its delivery partners while Urban Company mandated its use for its frontline staff and employees.
The percentage of citizens expecting reduction in earnings in the next one year has risen from 28 per cent to 87 per cent in just 45 days, according to a survey by social media firm LocalCircles.
The initiative by Wow! Momo is aimed at helping citizens with the supply of essentials as the lockdown to curb coronavirus continues in India.
Genisup has developed Covicide Cabinet, a UV-C Germicidal Lamp-based sterilisation cabinet, which helps in disinfecting belongings at home or in the office to prevent community spread of coronavirus.
Notwithstanding the overall economic slowdown, the scare of layoffs, and the possibility of businesses shutting down, startups in Tier II and III cities are innovating to tackle the many challenges that the coronavirus pandemic has thrown up.
As the country has completely shut down, kirana stores have emerged as the lifeline of neighbourhoods, and GoFrugal provides solutions to streamline their services.
The Akshaya Patra Foundation is preparing and distributing freshly cooked meals and relief kits to underprivileged families hit by the coronavirus spread in India.
At present, the Earth is momentarily devoid of man-made problems and has seen a major improvement in the quality of its resources.
In this interview, bestselling author Giles Lury shares advice on how brands need to transform their messaging, alliances, and social responsibility in the time of coronavirus.
iMap 9 is a disinfecting robot that can sanitise floors whereas Humanoid ELF enables doctors to monitor and interact with patients without the need for face-to-face communication.
Shaadi.com, one of India’s leading matchmaking conglomerates, has launched end-to-end services for your very own virtual wedding.
Looking to binge-watch new shows? Here is a list of Netflix dramas that spotlight women leads and are well worth a watch during the coronavirus lockdown.
BharatSim is an agent-based model to efficiently check the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.
COVID-19 has turned the world upside down for India’s 69 million MSMEs. Experts from SEWA, Deshpande Foundation, deAsra Foundation and others deep dive into the micro and macro challenges, and how microentrepreneurs and collectives are tapping into the opportunities that have taken roots in the crisis.
Cracking a deal during times of crisis is difficult and one has to be very tactical in one’s approach to land a good deal.
Perhaps the COVID-19 crisis is a wakeup call as it has enabled businesses to align to the next normal, without compromising on overall business objectives and customer experience.
Citizens will be called from the number '1921' for feedback on coronavirus distribution, the Health Ministry said, warning pranksters against calling people from other numbers under the guise of taking a similar survey.
Food ordering and delivery platform Swiggy is planning to downsize operations of its private brand kitchens due to COVID-19 pandemic, which could impact around 900 employees, according to sources.
Homeline, an initiative for doorstep delivery of essentials across Bengaluru city limits during the lockdown and claimed to be India's first integrated voice and messaging platform to provide citizens services, was launched by Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa.
OLX India will match contributions, and the funds will be used to provide ration kits to workers who lost their jobs or are struggling due to coronavirus.
Niti Aayog unveiled policy guidelines for sharing biospecimen and data for coronavirus-related research to ensure the samples are appropriately managed.
In India, the social media giant is also running a coronavirus information centre on Facebook and a WhatsApp Coronavirus Information Hub.
IAMAI noted that SMEs are one of the largest employers in India, each employing anywhere between 50-1,000 employees, and drive the service sector.
FieldFresh Foods Pvt Ltd has tied up with Zomato and Swiggy along with Dunzo for home deliveries of its premium food brand Del Monte.
According to the department, the coronavirus helpline will work from 8 am to 8 pm, with helpline centres at six locations — Bengaluru (four centres), Mysuru, and Mangaluru (Bantwal).
Relaxation of norms will be for activities that are linked to essential services such as health, infrastructure, and agriculture.
Gates said he was glad that Indian government is fully utilising its exceptional digital capabilities and launched 'Aarogya Setu' app to track COVID-19.
This will be the third video conference of the prime minister with the chief ministers after the spread of COVID-19 pandemic in the country.