India reports 86,432 cases in last 24 hours, total infections cross 40 lakh mark

The total number of coronavirus cases crossed the 40 lakh mark on Saturday to reach 40,23,179 as the country recorded 86,432 infections in the last 24 hours. With 1,089 fresh deaths, the toll reached 69,561. At present, India has 8,46,395 active cases and as many as 31,07,223 people have recovered. India has been reporting more than 80,000 cases per day for the last three days now.

Antibodies against SARSCoV-2 were found among 8 per cent of the the state’s population in a seroprevalence survey conducted in Haryana last month, with people in urban areas and districts in the National Capital Region found affected more.

This week, attributing the shortfall in GST collections to disruptions due to Covid-19, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said the economy is facing an Act-of-God-like situation. Now legal experts and those who have worked with the government say that by invoking the “Act of God” in shrugging away its Constitutional responsibility of assured payments to states under the Goods and Services Tax (GST) regime, the Centre has set a precedent that could have wider ramifications.

Meanwhile, at least 6.5 lakh households have already completed 100 days of employment under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Act (MGNREGA) in five months of the current financial year

Globally, the novel coronavirus has infected 26,521,304 people and claimed the lives of 873,131 people so far. As many as 17,638,249 have recovered. On the vaccine front, Moncef Slaoui, chief advisor for White House’s vaccine programme, has said it was “extremely unlikely” though “not impossible” for a vaccine to be made available by the end of next month. Also, the much-criticised Russian vaccine for novel coronavirus was found to be safe and also triggered a “strong” immune response, according to results of phase-1 and phase-2 clinical trials published in The Lancet.

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