Kerala village records 200 Covid-19cases

A major coronavirus hotspot has emerged in a remote village Kerala’s Wayanad district with a total of 199 people testing positive so far after eight members of two families contracted it first.

As many as 169 people tested positive in Valad ward of Thavinhal panchayath on July 30th and 30 more on July 31st, taking the infection count to 199 as authorities undertook extensive screening of primary and secondary contacts since
early this week.

The panchayat has been made a containment zone and officials are hopeful of containing further spread of the virus.

Wayanad district has a total of 310 positive cases so far and 2,753 people are under observation.

The outbreak began with seven members belonging to two families, related to each other, turned positive for the deadly virus last week after attending a funeral of a relative who died of COVID-19 at the Kozhikode Medical College Hospital.

The health authorities conducted rapid antigen tests in the area after tracing the primary and secondary contacts of the eight and detected 83 positive cases.

Rigorous testing by three different groups of medical teams, comprising five doctors and paramedical staff each, made it possible to test over 250 people on July 29.

Congress ‘apologises’ to Rahul Gandhi for differing stand

Congress National Spokesperson Khushbu Sundar setting off a Twitter storm after she welcomed the Centre’s new National Education Policy 2020 and apologised to party leader Rahul Gandhi for her differing stand from that of the party.

This statement comes at a time when reports of the actor quitting Congress
and join its arch rival BJP have emerged. However, Khusbhu clarified that she not moving to BJP.

The Centre’s NEP 2020 made sweeping reforms like teaching in the mother tongue or regional language up to class 5, lowering the stakes of board exams,allowing foreign universities to set up campuses in India and a single regulator for higher education institutions, except for law and medical colleges.

Senior Congress leader Shashi Tharoor also welcomed NEP, but feared it may make education unaffordable for the poor as it showcases a tendency towards “centralisation, high aspiration and low feasibility” with an assumption that the challenge will be met by the private sector.

Suspension of international flights extended till Aug 31

Indian Aviation regulator DGCA said the suspension of scheduled international flights to and from the country has been extended till August 31.

Earlier, overseas flights were suspended till July 31. The government has decided to extend the suspension on the scheduled international commercial passenger services to/ from India up to 31st August.

This restriction will not apply to international all-cargo operations and flights specifically approved by the DGCA.

China’s BeiDou navigation satellite system to challenge American GPS

In what is being seen as move to rival American GPS and gain reliance in the sector of navigation, China launched global services of BeiDou-3 Navigation Satellite System (BDS).

Russia’s GLONASS and the European Union’s Galileo are the other global navigation systems. Indian scientists are working on navigational system called the Indian Regional Navigation Satellite system (IRNSS), with an operational name of NAVIC.

While China aims to use this system for transportation, agriculture, fishing, and disaster relief, Chief Designer Yang Changfeng, reveals BeiDou offers accurate positioning, navigation, timing, and short messaging communication.

BeiDou is a Chinese word for the Big Dipper or Plough constellation & this navigation project was launched in the early 1990s, became operational within China in 2000 and in the Asia-Pacific region in 2012 and now with the upgrade of its third-generation satellites, the constellation consisting of 35 satellites is ready to provide global coverage.

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