PM Modi to meet leading doctors and pharma companies today evening. (PTI)
PM Modi to meet leading doctors and pharma companies today evening. (PTI)

PM Modi to interact with leading doctors at 4.30pm over Covid-19; video conference with top pharma firms scheduled at 6

PM Modi will also hold a meeting with top pharmaceutical companies via video conference at 6pm.
By | Edited by Amit Chaturvedi, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
UPDATED ON APR 19, 2021 02:42 PM IST

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will on Monday interact with leading doctors from across the country via video conferencing on the prevailing Covid-19 situation in the country. The interaction is scheduled to take place at 4.30pm.

PM Modi will also discuss the situation with top pharmaceutical companies via video conferencing at 6pm.

Also Read: UK PM Boris Johnson cancels India visit due to current Covid-19 situation

The meeting comes on a day when India reported 273,810 new Covid-19 infections, its highest daily rise since the start of the pandemic and now has reported more than 15 million infections, a total second only to the United States.

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The Union health ministry also reported 1,619 deaths from Covid-19 in the past 24 hours, pushing the toll over 178,769.

India has the fourth highest number of deaths after the US, Brazil and Mexico - though, with nearly 1.4 billion people, it has a much larger population than any of those countries.

Many state government, including worst-hit Maharashtra, have already announced a series of curbs to check the spread of the infection. The closure of most industries, businesses and public places on Wednesday night will last for 15 days.

National capital Delhi too has been put under a week-long lockdown starting Monday night due to an explosive surge in Covid-19 cases. Delhi reported 25,462 cases and 161 deaths in the past 24 hours, according to chief minister Arvind Kejriwal.

He said at a press conference that Delhi is facing shortages of oxygen and some medicine.

“I do not say that the system has collapsed, but it has reached its limits,” Kejriwal said, adding that harsh measures were necessary to “prevent a collapse of the health system”.

Also Read: Covid-19 lockdown in Delhi from tonight. Here's what remains exempt

Maharashtra and Delhi are among the 10 states that account for 78.58 per cent of the new Covid-19 cases reported in a day, the Union health ministry said on Monday. The other states in the list are Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Gujarat, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh.

India's total active caseload has reached 19,29,329 and now comprises 12.81 per cent of the country's total infections, the health ministry's data showed.

Earlier in the day, PM Modi chaired an important meeting on the Covid-19 situation at 11.30am. The meeting was called after several chief ministers complained of a shortage of essentials like oxygen supply and medicines and sought the Centre's intervention.

On Sunday, PM Modi reviewed the Covid-19 situation in Varanasi. During the discussion, the Prime Minister emphasised that everybody should follow the "distance of two yards and mask is essential".

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