Even as childbirths at home see a rise, IVF treatment has come to a halt, and at other places milk is going to waste
Attacks on frontline coronavirus (Covid-19) workers are increasing by the day. The Union Cabinet approved an ordinance imposing stringent penalties, including a maximum jail term of seven years and a fine up to Rs 5 lakh, on those found guilty of attacking or harassing health workers treating persons infected with the coronavirus disease (Covid-19). It makes violent offences cognisable and non-bailable. The government also said that negligent employers will be charged for Covid-19 cases.
Business Standard takes a look at regional editions of Hindi newspapers to provide you with a picture of the Covid-19 situation in the hinterland.
Covid-19 halt in vitro fertilisation; dismay for couples
Considering in vitro fertilisation as non-emergency treatment, the government has put a halt on them, reports Dainik Bhaskar. For those couples who were expecting to become parents via this procedure, coronavirus has spoilt their plans. It is important to note that since IVF is a time-sensitive treatment, every month and every week is crucial for the couples who have their hopes pinned on it. As age increases, the success of the treatment decreases. The fertility rate is coming down as well. 10-15 per cent of couples face fertility issues. 40-50 per cent of the fertility issues are related to women.
Childbirths at home see an unprecedented rise
Pregnant women are having problems with deliveries during the lockdown. There is a dearth of ambulances and reaching the hospitals on time has become a task, reports Dainik Jagran from Dhanbad. The biggest hospital of the district, PMCH, has seen a drop of about 50 per cent in deliveries. Many women are opting for private hospitals, while the number of women going for home deliveries has doubled. PMCH used to deliver 500 babies on an average in a month. Now that count has come down to 260. Due to lack of transportation facilities, only 5-9 deliveries take place in a day in PMCH. For now, the hospital is not able to test pregnant women for coronavirus. The doctors and support staff expressed their anguish over the same. On a usual day, 90 per cent of the deliveries on Dhanbad are done in recognised hospitals.
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Despite availability, milk producers facing losses
Sale of milk has gone down amid the lockdown. Not only this, but lack of availability of fodder is also another problem, reported Dainik Jagran from Meerut. Companies like Amul and Parag have reported at least 40-45 per cent drop in sales. One of the biggest reason for this drop is the fact that all sweet shops are shut. A huge part of dairy sales comes from sweet shops. Private dairies used to sell over 150,000 litres of milk, however, due to lockdown, it has dropped to 25,000 litres. The drop in demand is hurting both the producers and retailers.
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Tobacco, tea, snacks sale on the rise, but in the black market
Where there is a will, there is a way to break the lockdown. Dainik Bhaskar reports from Raipur that despite the shops selling tobacco, tea and snacks not operating, everything is being sold in black. A Rs 5 cup of tea is being sold for Rs 15. Tobacco is being sold at thrice the MRP. And what’s more, all this is getting delivered to home. Even barbers are offering hair cuts at home. But of course, the charges are higher than usual. Barbers are taking requests on their phones and there is a waiting of 2-3 days. Those hooked to tobacco products are buying them despite steep prices. Meanwhile carrom boards and other board games like ludo are being sold as well.
Banks still using biometrics; 2.5 mn farmers at risk
The banks have been asked to disburse Kharif crop loans to farmers. In order to do so, bankers in Jaipur are taking biometrics of the farmers for verification, Rajasthan Patrika reported. The verification process requires 2-3 biometric impression of the thumb. The emergency crop loan disbursement started from April 16. The government claims that it has given loans to 2.5 million farmers. This means all these farmes and their families are at risk as coronavirus may get transmitted.
First Published: Thu, April 23 2020. 12:25 IST