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25 Indian MPs test positive for Covid-19 as parliament meets for first time since March – reports

25 Indian MPs test positive for Covid-19 as parliament meets for first time since March – reports
India’s parliament met on Monday for the first time in six months, as local media report seventeen members of the lower house and eight from the upper house have tested positive for coronavirus, having taken mandatory tests.

Members of parliament, including PM Narendra Modi, wore masks and their seats were separated by poly-carbon sheets designed to prevent the spread of the virus. The lower house will sit in the morning and the upper house in the afternoon.

“There can be no laxity when there is no medicine. We hope that a vaccine is available soon, whichever part of the world it comes from,” Modi said, before the session began.

The mandatory tests were carried out before the monsoon session of parliament started on Monday morning. Among the infected MPs in the lower house, Lok Sabha, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has the highest number of infected – 12 members, NDTV reports.

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The parliamentary session is being held amid huge safety measures, and a mobile app has been introduced to register the MPs’ attendance. They all were provided with special kits, prepared by defense research organization DRDO. The kits contain disposable masks, sanitizers, face shields, gloves, herbal sanitation wipes and tea bags to enhance immunity.

Infections in India have been rising faster than in any other country, Reuters said. The country lags only the United States in total infections.

As of Monday, the Health Ministry had recorded 92,071 new cases of the new coronavirus in the previous 24 hours, taking the total number of cases to 4.85 million. More than 1,100 people had died of Covid-19 in the previous 24 hours, taking India’s total number of deaths to 79,722.

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