Human trials of an eagerly-awaited vaccine, developed by Oxford University, against the coronavirus began in the UK on Thursday, with scientists giving it an 80 per cent chance of success.
With the total number of coronavirus cases in India rising to 21,700 and death toll rising to 686, the health ministry informed that the growth of the virus is more or less linear and not exponential.
Speaking to the media on Thursday, CK Mishra, Chairman of the Empowered Group-2 and Environment Secretary, informed that the government has been able to cut COVID-19 transmission and minimise its spread because of the 30 days of nationwide lockdown.
Mishra, who is leading the group on availability of hospitals and allied services, said that the government has been able to use the lockdown to prepare for the future, further adding that there are 1,94,026 isolation beds and 24,644 ICU beds in 3773 facilities and 12371 ventilators.
The health ministry in its routine presser also highlighted that the recovery rate from the virus in India has gone up over 19 per cent and that 12 districts have not seen any new cases in the last 28 days.
Meanwhile, Maharashtra deputy CM Ajit Pawar urged Railway Minister Piyush Goyal to help arrange special long-distance trains from Mumbai and Pune after May 3 to send stranded migrants to their native states.