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Covid-19 cases in Pakistan reach 5,374, death toll at 93

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Men sit on the ground with lines drawn with chalk to maintain social distancing during a partial Covid-19 lockdown in Pakistan. Photo | ANI
Men sit on the ground with lines drawn with chalk to maintain social distancing during a partial Covid-19 lockdown in Pakistan. Photo | ANI


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Islamabad: Pakistan’s coronavirus cases have reached 5,374 with 334 new infections reported, while seven more people have died due to the disease, taking the death toll in the country to 93, health officials said on Monday.

The Ministry of National Health Services reported that 1,095 people had recovered fully, but 44 are still in critical condition.

The number of coronavirus cases on Monday reached 5,374 with 334 new patients added during the last 24 hours, it said.

Seven more people died during this period, taking the total toll in Pakistan to 93, it added.

According to the ministry data, Punjab has 2,594 cases, Sindh 1,411, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa 744, Balochistan 230, Gilgit-Baltistan 224, Islamabad 131 and Pakistan-occupied Kashmir 40 patients.

So far, 65,114 tests have been carried out, including 3,233 during the last 24 hours, the data showed.

A steady rise in the new cases has been registered despite more than three-week lockdown in the country which is going to end on Tuesday.

Prime Minister Imran Khan is chairing a high-level meeting to decide if the nationwide lockdown should be extended.

There is high possibility that it would be extended. Advisor on Health Zafar Mirza said on Sunday that the low number of cases could spike if lockdown was lifted completely.

The US on Sunday overtook Italy as the country with the highest number of deaths due to COVID-19 pandemic with the fatalities crossing 20,000.

The novel coronavirus which originated from China in December has killed 114,185 people and infected over 1.8 million people globally. The US has the highest number of infections (556,044) and deaths (over 20,000), according to Johns Hopkins University data.


Also read: Pakistan opens factories despite lockdown to prevent exports from crashing


 

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Andhra doctor, suspended for alleging PPE shortage, now beaten by cops for ‘creating nuisance’

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doctor with a stethoscope
A doctor with a stethoscope (Representative image) | Pixabay


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Bengaluru: A doctor with a government hospital in Andhra Pradesh, who was suspended for questioning the shortage of PPE kits, was admitted to a mental health facility Sunday, a day after he was allegedly manhandled by the police and arrested for creating nuisance in Visakhapatnam.

Dr Sudhakar Rao, a government civil surgeon, was beaten, his hands tied behind his back and dragged by police officers Sunday. During the incident, Sudhakar allegedly verbally abused the Jagan Mohan Reddy government in an inebriated state. Videos of the incident have since been widely shared online.

“The police control room received a call about a person creating nuisance on Beach Road Hospital in Visakhapatnam. The Fourth Town police was rushed there and found that the person was the suspended doctor, Sudhakar.

“When the police tried to control him, he snatched the mobile phone of an officer and threw it away. He is suffering from mental disorder and he was drunk. He was sent for a medical examination,” Vishakapatnam Police Commissioner R.K. Meena told the media Sunday.

Sudhakar was admitted to a mental hospital Sunday after doctors at the King George Hospital in Vishakapatnam said he suffered from anxiety.

“Since the doctor is in anxiety and talking irrelevant things, I have referred him to a mental care hospital in Visakhapatnam,” said Dr Radha Rani, medical superintendent, King George Hospital.

A statement released by the hospital said: “Dr Sudhakar was brought to the KGH casualty ward at 6.30 pm. From the smell, it was found that he was in a drunk condition. Under the influence of alcohol, he did not cooperate with anybody there and kept abusing all. Still, his pulse, BP were checked. Pulse was 98, BP 140/100. Blood samples were sent to forensic lab to ascertain alcohol content in his blood.”


Also read: 6 toilets for 20 houses, inadequate testing: Why Mumbai’s Worli chawls are a Covid hotspot


‘Treatment towards Sudhakar was inhuman’

Sudhakar, who spent more than 10 years at the Narsipatnam Government Hospital in Andhra Pradesh, was suspended from his duties in March after he openly criticised the Reddy government for failing to provide PPE kits and N95 masks to doctors treating Covid-19 patients.

He had alleged that the state government was giving N95 masks and PPE kits meant for doctors to politicians and the police.

A video of Sudhakar criticising the government was also shared widely. In the clip, he can be heard saying: “We are putting our lives at risk here. We are asked to use the same mask for 15 days and a fresh mask will be provided only twice a month.”

Speaking to ThePrint, Dr P. Gangadhar Rao, member of the National COVID Committee of the Indian Medical Association, said the manner in which Sudhakar was manhandled by the police was “inhuman” and “violated” human rights.

“We strongly condemn the way he was taken into custody. He was not carrying a weapon, he was alone, the number of policemen outnumbered him. Why treat him like that? We also saw a video where a policeman beats him with a lathi,” said Dr Gangadhar.

He added that Rao was one of the most experienced anaesthetists the Andhra Pradesh government had.

“Our next step of action is to get Sudhakar to write an unconditional apology for having used filthy language, abusing the chief minister and the government. We will then take our appeal to the CM seeking that he be reinstated,” Gangadhar said.


Also read: Face shields, gowns, masks — the new attire for cabin crew post lockdown


 

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