New Delhi: The Narendra Modi government Saturday took a U-turn on granting ex-gratia relief of Rs 4 lakh each to families of those who die of the novel coronavirus, hours after it made the announcement.
Earlier in the day, the home ministry said it will treat COVID-19 as a notified disaster to provide assistance under the State Disaster Response Fund (SDRF).
The government announced an ex-gratia of Rs 4 lakh for all coronavirus deaths and those involved in relief operations in the containment of COVID-19.
The notification also announced monetary assistance on hospitalisation costs for managing COVID-19 cases “at rates fixed by the state government”.
But, within hours, a revised notification was released which said monetary help will now be extended for quarantine measures, sample collection and screening. Procurement of essential equipment and labs to contain the disease will also be covered under the SDRF.
The clause on ex-gratia and cost of hospitalisation of all coronavirus positive patients was deleted.
— Spokesperson, Ministry of Home Affairs (@PIBHomeAffairs) March 14, 2020
10 have recovered so far
The number of coronavirus positive cases in the country has risen to 84, including two deaths in Delhi and Karnataka.
“Contact tracing of these cases has led to identification of more than 4,000 suspects who have been put under surveillance. Efforts are on to identify further contacts of these cases,” the health ministry said in a statement Saturday.
Of those affected, 10 have been discharged after recovery.
Delhi has so far reported six positive cases and Uttar Pradesh 11. Karnataka has six, Maharashtra 14 and Ladakh three. Jammu and Kashmir has reported two cases.
Rajasthan, Telangana, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Punjab have also reported one case each.
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