By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi |

Updated: June 6, 2020 10:22:18 pm

A band of Indo-Tibtian Border Police Force perform to express gratitude towrads Corona warriors at Civil Hospital in Ludhiana. (Express Photo by Gurmeet Singh)

As India entered the 74th day of nationwide lockdown, which is now being relaxed phase-wise, shopping malls, restaurants and religious places made their last minute preparations to resume their operations from Monday, June 8 onward. According to the latest SOPs released by the Health Ministry keeping in mind the concerns over the spread of coronavirus, the malls, restaurants and places of worship would be allowed to open with certain Covid safety measures in place such as ensuring social distancing, utilisation of 50 per cent seating capacity among others.

On Saturday, India surpassed Spain’s tally to become the fifth worst-hit nation by Covid-19, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. As of now, the total number of confirmed cases in India stands at 243,733 as opposed to Spain’s figures of 240,978. According to the latest data released by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare as many as 6,642 fatalities have been reported, so far while there are 1,15,942 active Covid-19 cases and 1,14,072 people have recovered.

Here’s a curated list of some interesting stories from across the country on Day 74 of lockdown

Covid-19: ITBP opens its countrywide health centres for veterans

The Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP), that guards the LAC with China, has made its countrywide health centres and hospitals accessible for its veterans suffering from coronavirus, the chief of the paramilitary force said on Saturday. ITBP Director General (DG) S S Deswal has issued an official message to all his troops saying the decision has been taken after the force came across news reports about many facing problems in getting admission or treatment at COVID-19 designated hospitals. “We have come across news items that citizens are facing problems in hospital admissions and treatment or they are charged exorbitantly,” DG Deswal said in his message.

“Our Himveers (mountain warriors) have sweated throughout their life. We do not want that they suffer and hence all our veterans are being offered health services in case anyone of you are affected by COVID-19,” he said. He added that all hospitals of the force across the country will admit veterans who have contracted the disease and treat them.

The ITBP has about 20,000 retired and dependent personnel. The ITBP runs a super-specialty Referral hospital for the Central Armed Police Forces (CAPFs) or paramilitary forces in Greater Noida, AND has two base hospitals at Tigri in Delhi and Kimin in Arunachal Pradesh. it also has composite hospitals at Dehradun and Chandigarh apart from health centres at its every base in the country.

Elante Mall in Chandigarh being sanitised before its scheduled re-opening on Monday.
Govt will bear higher education expenses of salon owner’s daughter: Tamil Nadu CM

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K Palaniswami Saturday announced that the state government would bear expenses of the higher education of a salon owner’s daughter in Madurai who was lauded by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his Mann Ki Baat for his Covid-19 relief work. The salon owner, Mohan of Madurai district, spent all he had saved for his daughter Nethra’s higher education to buy and distribute groceries and vegetables for the poor during the lockdown period, Palaniswami said while appreciating his gesture.

“The Tamil Nadu government will bear the higher education expenditure of Nethra,” the Chief Minister said, adding, it was to honour Mohan’s help for the destitute with dedication, sans selfishness during the pandemic. He greeted the 13-year-old girl who reportedly convinced her father to spend his savings for the needy.

First-ever online music concert by Kashmiri artists on Sunday

In a first, renowned Kashmiri music artists are coming together for a virtual concert in the Valley to connect people across the globe during the Covid-19 pandemic and keep the art and culture alive. Through the three-hour (6-9 pm) concert, named ‘Qarar’ (Solace), on Facebook, the Kashmiri vocalists and instrumentalists on Sunday will try to cheer people up, famed singer and chairman of The Kashmir Music Club, which is organising the event, Waheed Jeelani told PTI.

Apart from Jeelani, singers like Rashid Jehangir, from Doda in Jammu, Archana Jalali, from Ottawa in Canada, and others at the studio will entertain the online audience.

Jeelani said the step is to connect people during such trying times. “The idea came because of the lockdown. We wanted to connect with people, provide some solace to their hearts in these times when art and entertainment got affected,” he said.

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