India’s coronavirus count crosses 8 lakh

India recorded 27,114 new coronavirus cases in the last 24 hours, taking the confirmed cases tally in the country to 8,20,916 today. The number includes 2,83,407 active cases and 5,15,386 cured/discharged cases.

The death toll has now mounted to 22,123, as per the latest figures released by the Union health ministry today morning.

Meanwhile, a coronavirus vaccine candidate developed by a unit of China’s Chongqing Zhifei Biological Products has moved into Phase II human trials, the company said on Friday, less than three weeks after it launched clinical trials.

The firm did not provide details of the trial design or results of the Phase I test of the experimental vaccine, being co-developed by Anhui Zhifei Longcom Biopharmaceutical and the Institute of Microbiology of the Chinese Academy of Sciences.

Also, lockdown restrictions have been announced in Uttar Pradesh, Kerala and Pune, amid a surge in the number of cases. Maharashtra continues to remain the worst-affected state with 2,30,599 cases including 9,667 deaths, followed by Tamil Nadu with 1,26,581 cases and Delhi at 1,07,051 cases.

Meanwhile, notwithstanding the ICMR’s ambitious timeline to produce a Covid vaccine, officials and scientists from CSIR, the Department of Science and Technology and Department of Biotechnology on Friday told a Parliament panel that no vaccine appears possible before early next year, it was learnt.

Notwithstanding the ICMR’s ambitious timeline to produce a Covid vaccine, officials and scientists from CSIR, the Department of Science and Technology and Department of Biotechnology on Friday told a Parliament panel that no vaccine appears possible before early next year, reports said.

Officials from these government science and technology departments and K VijayRaghavan, Principal Scientific Adviser to the Government of India, briefed the members of the Parliament Standing Committee on Science and Technology and gave presentations on the government’s preparedness for Covid-19 including on topics like vaccines, drugs and pharmaceuticals and health equipment.