Here are some interesting stories from across the country on day 9 of unlockdown 2.0.




Amid a spurt in coronavirus cases, the Health Ministry on Thursday said India has not yet reached the community transmission stage of COVID-19, and asserted that there have been localised outbreaks in some geographical areas. The Centre’s assertion came on a day India registered a single-day surge of 24,879 COVID-19 cases, taking the caseload to 7,67,296. The death toll climbed to 21,129 with 487 new fatalities, the updated data at 8 am showed.

On an average, India is testing more than 2.6 lakh samples per day for COVID-19, an ICMR official said at the briefing, asserting that testing has been ramped up in the country in a big way. Recovered COVID-19 cases are 1.75 times that of active cases, Health Ministry’s Rajesh Bhushan said. People over 60 years account for 53 per cent of India’s COVID-19 deaths, he added.

With a recovery rate of over 72 per cent and doubling rate of nearly 30 days, the COVID-19 situation in the national capital has shown remarkable improvement in recent days because of joint efforts, the Union Home Ministry said Thursday. Addressing a press conference, Home Ministry Joint Secretary Punya Salila Srivastava said the ministry has been holding regular meetings with the state governments in the Delhi-NCR region for improving the pandemic situation.

Here are some interesting stories from across the country on day 9 of unlockdown 2.0

Three girls paint to raise funds for COVID-19 

Three teenaged friends in Maharashtra’s Nagpur district have used their creative skills to raise funds for those at the forefront of the battle against COVID-19, and for mentally challenged children and an orphanage here. Soumya Dalimya (17), a Class 12 student, Presha Bhattad (15), a student of Class 10, and Ditya Thapar, who is in Class 8, utilised the lockdown time to make 44 paintings. They have so far raised Rs 84,000 through the sale of their art works. They intend to donate 50 per cent of the amount to the PM CARES Fund and the remaining to an orphanage for girls and a centre for mentally challenged children.

Soumya, who has been painting since she was in Class 3, told PTI that after seeing people suffering at this time of crisis, she and her two family friends thought of using their creative skills to help the needy. “We made 44 paintings and promoted their sale through social media. I have an art page on Instagram through which the paintings were put up for sale. We also made paintings on order,” she said.

Initially, they faced problems in getting the painting material during the lockdown, but a shop owner helped them by fulfilling all their requirements, considering the cause taken up by them, she said.

They also came to know about an orphanage for girls in the city and another centre for mentally challenged children through ‘Swacch Nagpur’ NGO, and decided to contribute money to them also.

Mumbai Police’s Covid-19 twist to ‘Brooklyn Nine Nine’ earns praise

With novel coronavirus cases crossing the 86,000 mark in Mumbai, which has the highest caseload in Maharashtra, the city police department has yet again caught the attention of netizens with their recent creative to spread awareness on the pandemic.

For their recent witty tweet, the Mumbai police has picked a popular scene from American sitcom ‘Brooklyn Nine-Nine’. The post featured a scene from the show where a lady is trying to identify the killer through his voice as the suspects sing ‘I Want It That Way’ by Backstreet Boys.

However, the social media team did a slight modification to the original scene and added masks on all suspects except suspect number 5 and tweeted, “It was number 5! Number 5 endangered all our lives. You simply cannot forget your mask!”

ixigo reinstates salaries, grants discounted ESOP to employees

India’s leading travel firm ixigo on Thursday said it has reinstated salaries, and granted discounted employee stock ownership plan (ESOP) to all its employees to compensate for the paycuts during the past three months. The ESOPs will result in an additional 2.3 per cent of the company’s overall shareholding being given to all 150 ixigems (ixigo employees), it said in a statement.

In March, with the coronavirus-induced lockdown coming into effect and the subsequent travel ban, the travel sector was one of the hardest hit. During the period, ixigo announced graded paycuts across the team. ixigo co-founders forwent their entire salary and the leadership team took over 60 per cent paycut graded by salary.

The rest of the company mutually agreed to a 20-50 per cent paycut depending upon compensation brackets. As of Wednesday, ixigo has reverted salaries of all its employees and has re-initiated hiring for technology and customer experience roles. ixigo is the only major online travel agent in India that has not laid off any employee during the crisis, it said.

Delhi: First-ever virtual parade for police

Delhi Police inducted 1,320 constables into the force in a first-ever virtual passing out parade for recruit constables at the Police Training College in Jharoda Kalan on Tuesday.

Union Minister of State (Home Affairs) G Kishan Reddy, who was the chief guest, attended the parade from the Police HQ at Jai Singh Road. The event was streamed live on Facebook and YouTube. Of the 1,320 recruits, 407 are women.

Delhi Police Commissioner S N Shrivastava welcomed Union Minister Reddy and they gave an “e-salute” to all the constables.

At Jharoda Kalan, the attendees wore face masks and followed social distancing norms.

Reddy congratulated all the trainees for choosing to join social service.

Delhi Police Additional PRO Anil Mittal said, “It was a special passing out ceremony.”

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