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India coronavirus dispatch: Do you need to disinfect your mobile phone?

From special trains carrying migrants, to special drones purchased from Amsterdam for Kerala, to a healthcare worker traumatised by rumours, and Ruskin Bond coming to a radio station near you


Yuvraj Malik & Sarah Farooqui  |  New Delhi 

Migrant workers wait to board a special train for Ranchi, in Kozhikode. Photo: PTI
Migrant workers wait to board a special train for Ranchi, in Kozhikode. Photo: PTI

Here is a selection of important Covid-19 articles from across Indian publications. From trains for migrant workers to Ruskin Bond’s radio show on AIR and how to FAQs about Lockdown 3.0— read these and more in today’s India dispatch.

Citizens Under Lockdown

1,200 capacity-train ferries migrant workers from Hyderabad to Jharkhand: This train is a "one-off special train" to transport the workers on the request of the Telangana state government, Rakesh Ch, the chief public relations officer of South-Central Railways, told the BBC. Adequate social distancing precautions had been taken and food was being served to the passengers. The middle berth is not being used in the sleeper coaches and only two people are sitting in the general coaches. Read more here

Healthcare worker traumatised after rumours spread that she infected others: A nurse working at Niloufer Hospital in Hyderabad, who has put her life on the line, is depressed and traumatised due to the rumours that she attended a funeral, potentially infecting scores of them. This rumour has stigmatised the family. Along with it, a leading Telugu daily on Friday reported that the nurse had succumbed to the disease causing mental trauma. Read more here


After pandemic passes, MP will emerge as logistics and warehousing hub: MP Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan makes a case for MP as a key logistics hub given its central location, growing infrastructure and policies to support the labour force. After covid-19 land-routes and infrastructure network will be re-organised and MP stands to gain from this. Read more here

Managing Covid-19

Ruskin Bond to narrate stories on All India Radio: The renowned novelist will host 'Bonding over the Radio', a series that will initially run for 15 days and will feature stories exclusively handpicked for AIR by the multiple award winning essayist and novelist. The radio show will air on FM Gold, Indraprastha and AIR Live News 24x7 at 7.10 am and 10.10 pm daily, and will be available on Prasar Bharati’s mobile app. Read more here

All Delhi districts categorised red zones:

Permitted activities-

  • In these zones, outside the containment zones, certain activities are prohibited in addition to those prohibited throughout the country. These are plying of cycle rickshaws and auto rickshaws, running of taxis and cab aggregators, intra-district and inter-district plying of buses and barber shops, spas and salons.
  • Movement of individuals and vehicles is allowed only for permitted activities, with a maximum of 2 persons (besides the driver) in four-wheeler vehicles and with no pillion rider in the case of two-wheelers.
  • All standalone (single) shops, neighbourhood (colony) shops and shops in residential complexes are permitted to remain open in urban areas, without any distinction of essential and non-essential.
  • Mall to remain shut. Private offices can operate with up to 33 per cent strength

Read all the guidelines here

Entire Kashmir Valley to be treated as Red Zone: Even as the Union Health Ministry classified only four districts as red zones in Kashmir division, authorities said the entire Valley will be treated as red zone and no relaxation except those permissible in such cases will be allowed. P.K. Pole, Kashmir divisional commissioner said that there is very little difference between the red and the orange zones given the type of restrictions to be imposed and the level of caution to be exercised. Read more here

Also, read: Quiet and desolate Ramadan in Kashmir

Shashi Tharoor helps procure thermal imaging drone to test fever symptoms, says it’s the first in Kerala: “I am delighted to announce that the first Thermal and Optical Imaging camera with Artificial Intelligence powered face detection technology in Kerala, for the purpose of fever screening has been procured through my MPLADS fund.” He said the drone system was procured in Amsterdam and came to Bengaluru via Germany through DHL. Read more here

Understanding Covid-19

The right way to disinfect your phone during the coronavirus: As per studies, mobile phones are “Trojan horses” for viruses. These studies predate the pandemic and found a cocktail of live germs including Golden staph and E. Coli microbes on phones. However, experts believe that SARS-Cov-2 is probably present on mobiles and other touch-screen devices of sufferers. Follow this guide here

‘Can I visit a friend? Are housemaids allowed?’: Lockdown 3.0 FAQs answered: Limited activities and businesses will be allowed in metro cities such as Delhi, Mumbai and Kolkata, which fall in red zones (in simple terms, areas with a high number of Covid-19 cases). Here’s how life will be in these cities till at least May 17.


Rising encounters at the borders during the pandemic

A new report says militant activity has risen in the Kashmir region. Hindustan Times reported that terror group Jaish-e-Mohammed was planning an attack in J&K on May 11. This comes after the armed forces killed 28 militants in a counter attack last month. This video break down the story for you.

Twitter: @elnovw and @sarahfarooqui20

First Published: Sun, May 03 2020. 07:35 IST