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Delhi records 805 fresh coronavirus cases, Kejriwal government bans use of hookahs in public places

According to the bulletin, 10,133 tests -- 3,904 RTCPR and 6,229 Rapid Antigen -- were conducted in the last 24 hours.

Published: 04th August 2020 01:29 AM  |   Last Updated: 04th August 2020 01:29 AM   |  A+A-

Health workers wearing personnel protection kit PPE collect swab samples at RML hospital in New Delhi on Friday. (Photo | Shekhar Yadav/EPS)

By PTI

NEW DELHI: The national capital recorded 805 fresh coronavirus cases on Monday, its lowest in the last eight days, taking the infection tally to over 1.38 lakh, authorities said.

With 17 fatalities, the death toll mounted to 4,021, according to a health bulletin.

According to the bulletin, 10,133 tests -- 3,904 RTCPR and 6,229 Rapid Antigen -- were conducted in the last 24 hours.

On an average, 18,000-19,000 tests were being conducted daily since testing was ramped up significantly in mid-June.

On Sunday, 961 fresh cases were reported and only 12,730 tests conducted due to Eid al-Adha.

So far, 10,73,802 tests have been conducted in Delhi, the bulletin said.

On July 27, 613 fresh cases were recorded in Delhi while 11,506 tests were conducted in the city.

With the 805 fresh cases on Monday, the infection tally climbed to 1,38,482 in the national capital.

There are 10,207 active cases, the health bulletin said.

The recovery rate and the positivity rate stand at 89.72 per cent and 7.94 per cent respectively.

The bulletin said 5,577 people are recovering in home isolation.

Delhi has recorded a steady decline in active cases.

Meanwhile, the R-value, or reproduction number, for COVID-19 has fallen below one in Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai, indicating a slowdown in the spread of the disease in three of India's biggest cities, according to a recent study.

A modelling study published in the journal Statistics & Applications found the current R-value for Delhi is 0.66 while it is 0.81 for Mumbai and 0.86 for Chennai, lower than the national average of 1.16.

R-value is the number of people getting infected by an already infected person on an average.

Andhra Pradesh has the highest R-value of 1.48 in the entire country right now.

Explaining the Delhi figure of 0.66 to illustrate the concept, Sitabhra Sinha, professor of physics at the Institute of Mathematical Sciences (IMSc) in Chennai who led the study, said this means every group of 100 infected persons in the city can currently pass on the infection to another 60 people on an average.

"Continuation of such a low value of R in a community implies that the current wave of the pandemic is on the decline and could be brought under control in the near future with continued containment measures,” said Dibyendu Nandi, professor of physics at Kolkata's Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER).

"Typically an effective reproduction number, i.e, R-value lower than one implies that an infected person, on average, is spreading the infection to at most one person," he explained.

After the Delhi government revised the containment zone policy last week, their number stands at 496 now.

In a related development, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal handed over a cheque of Rs 1 crore to the family of Joginder Chaudhary, the 27-year-old deceased junior resident doctor of Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Hospital.

Chaudhary died due to COVID-19 last month.

"Our Corona Warrior Dr. Joginder Chaudhary, posted in Delhi Government Hospital, served the patients by putting his life at stake. Dr. Chaudhary had passed away recently due to corona infection, today I met his family and handed over a cheque of Rs. 1 crore as financial assistance. Will help the family in every possible way," the chief minister tweeted.

The Delhi government on Monday banned the use of hookahs, with or without tobacco, in all public places, including hotels, restaurants and bars, with immediate effect to control the spread of COVID-19.

Smokers are likely to be more vulnerable to COVID-19 as smoking means the fingers are in contact with the lips which increases the possibility of transmission of the virus, the health department said in an order.

"Smokers may also already have lung diseases or reduced lung capacity which would greatly increase the risk of serious illness," it said.

Smoking products such as water pipes often involve the sharing of mouthpieces and hoses, which could facilitate the transmission of COVID-19 in communal and social settings, the health department said.

Therefore, the use and sharing of hookah, with or without tobacco (herbal hookah), "which might further increase the spread of SARS-CoV2, is strictly prohibited in all public places, including hotels, restaurants, bars, pubs, eateries, discotheques, etc. in Delhi with immediate effect to prevent and control the outbreak of COVID-19", it said.


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