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Last Updated : May 7 2021 6:17AM     Screen Reader Access
News Highlights
Prime Minister Narendra Modi reviews COVID-19 situation in the country            Indian army establishes COVID management cell to coordinate assistance to civil authority            Civil Aviation Ministry issues guidelines to ensure timely vaccination of aviation community            Madhya Pradesh govt extends Janta Curfew till 15th May to check rising cases of COVID-19            More than 16.25 crore COVID-19 vaccine doses administered in the country so far           

Text Bulletins Details


Evening News

2030 HRS
19.04.2021

THE HEADLINES:-

  • All above the age of 18 years to get COVID-19 vaccine from 1st of May; Vaccine to be made available in open market.

  • States can directly procure vaccine from Manufacturers;  Government announces liberalized and accelerated phase-three Covid-19 vaccination.

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi interacts with leading doctors and top pharma companies in the country over COVID-19 situation.

  • Strict action to be taken against those indulging in black marketing and hoarding of Remdesivir drug, says Government.

  • India’s cumulative COVID-19 vaccination coverage exceeds 12 crore 38 lakh; Country reports over two lakh 73 thousand new cases today.

  • Six-day lockdown to come into effect in National Capital Delhi from tonight to contain spike in coronavirus cases.

  • Campaigning ends for sixth phase of assembly elections in West Bengal.

  • Polling concludes for second phase of Panchayat elections in 20 districts of Uttar Pradesh.

  • Indian Navy seizes narcotics worth 3,000 crore rupees from fishing vessel in Arabian Sea.

  • DRDO develops a Supplemental Oxygen Delivery System that can prove to be a boon in the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • Sensex falls 883 points amid resurgence of Coronavirus cases in the country.

  • In IPL Cricket, match underway between Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals at Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai.

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As the number of Covid cases is on the rise again, we appeal to our listeners not to lower their guard, take all precautions and all those above 45 years to get vaccinated without any hesitation. Stay safe and protected by following these three simple steps:

  • Wear a face mask.
  • Maintain Do Gaz Ki Doori for social distancing
  • Focus on hand and face hygiene.

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Everyone above the age of 18 years will now be administered COVID-19 vaccine from the 1st of May. The Central government today announced a liberalised and accelerated phase-three strategy of Covid-19 Vaccination. A decision in this regard was taken during a meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.


Vaccination will continue as before in the Government vaccination centres free of cost to the eligible population including Health Care Workers, Front Line Workers and all people above 45 years of age.


In phase three, vaccine manufacturers will supply 50 percent of their monthly released doses to the Central government and they will be free to supply the remaining 50 percent doses to States as well as in the open market.


The manufacturers will transparently make an advance declaration of the price of the Vaccine that will be available to State Governments and in the open market.


Private Hospitals will have to procure their supplies of Covid-19 vaccine exclusively from the 50 percent supply earmarked for other than the Central government channel.


The Prime Minister said the Government has been working hard from over a year to ensure that maximum number of Indians are able to get the vaccine in the shortest time. He added that India is vaccinating people at world record pace and the country will continue this with even greater momentum.


The Central government from its share, will allocate vaccines to States and Union Territories based on the criteria of the extent of infection and the speed of administration. All vaccination will be part of the National Vaccination Programme and mandated to follow all protocol such as being captured on CoWIN platform.

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi today interacted with leading doctors and top pharma companies in the country through video conferencing on the COVID-19 situation and the vaccination progress.


During his interaction with doctors, the Prime Minister called for accelerating efforts to upgrade resources in Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities as COVID-19 pandemic is spreading rapidly in these areas. He urged doctors to connect with their colleagues working in these cities and give them online consultations to ensure that all protocols are followed correctly. The Prime Minister also urged them to educate people against several rumours on COVID treatment and prevention. He added that it is very important that people do not become a victim of panic in these difficult times.


Mr Modi said, for this, along with proper treatment, emphasis must also be on counselling of patients admitted in the hospitals. The Prime Minister also encouraged doctors to use tele-medicine for treatment of other diseases, in case there is no emergency.


Appreciating the doctors and para-medical staff for their invaluable service towards the country during this pandemic, the Prime Minister said, last year, during the same time, it was due to doctors’ hard work and the nation’s strategy that India was able to control the coronavirus wave. Now that the country is facing the second wave, all the doctors and frontline workers are confronting the pandemic with full force, and are saving the lives of millions of people.

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While interacting with leaders of pharmaceutical industry, Prime Minister urged them to ensure seamless supply chains to keep the supply of medicines and essential medical equipment going smoothly. He also extended government’s support for facilities like Logistics and Transportation. The Prime Minister appreciated the crucial role of the pharma sector in the fight against the pandemic.He appreciated the way the pharma industry is working even in such trying conditions.

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Union Chemicals and Fertilizers Minister Sadananda Gowda has said that cooperative fertiliser company IFFCO's new oxygen plant at Kalol in Gujarat will enhance the daily production capacity of medical grade Oxygen by 33 thousand litres per day. The Minister informed that the company has also agreed to set up three more Oxygen plants each at Aonla and Phulpur in Uttar Pradesh and Paradeep in Odisha.

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Indian Oil has begun the supply of 150 Metric Tonnes of Oxygen at no cost to various hospitals in Delhi, Haryana and Punjab. The first batch of the lifesaver medical grade Oxygen was dispatched today to Maha Durga Charitable Trust Hospital in New Delhi. The National Capital is already facing an oxygen emergency situation.

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The black marketing and hoarding of Remdesivir drug are being strictly monitored in the country. The States have been asked to take strict action against those indulging in such malpractices. 


Union Chemicals and Fertilisers Minister D V Sadananda Gowda today held a meeting with Pharma Secretary in New Delhi to review the availability of Remdesivir. Mr Gowda said the Centre is in regular touch with manufacturers and weekly production plans have been prepared in consultation with them. The Minister said Remdesivir Production will be doubled in the coming weeks.

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The Union Health Ministry has said that Remdesivir is not a life saving drug in COVID19 and it is to be administered only in hospital settings. In a tweet, the Ministry said that its unnecessary and irrational use is unethical. Remdesivir is an experimental investigational drug granted Emergency authorisation use and studies do not demonstrate mortality reduction with this drug. The Ministry said that Remdesivir is to be administered only in hospital settings and it is advised for people who are moderately sick and receiving oxygen.

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The Government has said that Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Package (PMGKP) Insurance Policy claims of COVID Warriors will continue to be settled till the 24th of April this year. It said, thereafter a fresh Insurance Policy for COVID Warriors will become effective. The Union Health Ministry said, PMGKP was announced in March last year and it was extended thrice till the 24th of April.

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India has administered over 12 crore 38 lakh doses of Covid-19 vaccine in the country so far. The Union Health Ministry said, more than 12 lakh 30 thousand beneficiaries were inoculated with doses of Covid-19 Vaccine in the last 24 hours.


A total number of two lakh 73 thousand 810 new cases have been reported in the country in the last 24 hours taking the cumulative positive cases to over one crore 50 lakh. The Health Ministry said, one thousand 619 deaths have also been reported during the last 24 hours taking the toll to over one lakh 78 thousand across the country.

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A six-day long lockdown will come into effect in the national capital to contain the rapid rise of corona virus cases. After a meeting with the Lieutenant Governor today, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal announced that the lockdown will be imposed from 10 PM tonight and will continue till 5 AM on Monday morning next week. He said, people engaged in essential services and facing emergency conditions will be allowed for movement during the lockdown on producing valid documents. Expressing concern over the rising COVD-19 cases in the city, Mr. Kejriwal said, the lockdown period will be utilized for creating health infrastructure in the national capital.

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With an aim to minimize the possibility of spread of COVID-19, All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in New Delhi has decided to temporarily switch over from physical consultations of OPD's patients in morning OPD to teleconsultations with effect from Thursday.


AIIMS also said that in view of the need to optimize the usage of inpatient beds for hospitalization of seriously ill emegency patients, it has been decided to temporarily postpone routine inpatient admissions in general wards and private wards with immediate effect for two weeks.

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The Odisha government has decided to clamp weekend shutdown in the urban areas across the state. The shutdown on Saturdays and Sundays, to be effective from 24th of this month, is already in place in the ten border districts of the state.


"The fresh restrictions come in the wake of the covid-19 spiking continuously in the state. While night curfew is effective in 10 border districts of the state, the rest twenty districts are also under night curfew from last Saturday. The weekend shutdown and night curfew will however allow certain exceptions that include essential services, movement of goods, industrial establishments, factories, construction and agricultural activities. Meanwhile, Covid 19 active caseload of the state has further mounted to 24568, with the discovery of 4445 new positive cases during the last 24 hours. Girish Chandra Dash, AIR News, Bhubaneswar."

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In Meghalaya, amid the rise in COVID 19 cases, the State Government has decided to close down schools starting from tomorrow in Shillong and its adjoining areas.


Meghalaya Chief Minister, Conrad K Sangma after a review meeting with officials of the Health Department and Cabinet Ministers told the media that all schools will remain closed for the next 14 days. Classes from Nursery to Class XII will remain shut but the board examination for class X and XII will go on as per schedule.

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The Manipur government has also decided to suspend physical classes from class 9th to 12th while the class X and class XII examinations to be conducted by the State Board have been postponed considering the rising number of COVID-19 positive cases in the State.

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In Mumbai, a marginal drop in Coronavirus cases was egistered today. According to the public health department of the BMC, Seven thousand three hundred and 81 cases were registered during last 24 hours pushing the cumulative total of the financial capital above 5 lakh 86 thousand. Yesterday, 8 thousand 4 hundred and 79 fresh cases were reported in Mumbai. The BMC said, 57 patients lost their lives to the infectious disease. It said, 36 thousand 5 hundred and 56 tests were done today.

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In Maharashtra, amid surge in Covid-19 cases, the state government has been stressing on a “six minute walk test” for people to check the condition of their lung. In a review meeting of the state’s health machinery, Maharashtra Principal Health Secretary, Dr. Pradeep Vyas said that people should be made aware about doing this six minute walk test at their home.


"Dr. Vyas said that the test will help people to check the hidden deficiency of oxygen in their blood, which will help in speedy hospitalisation of a needy patient. He said people who are suffering from fever, cold, cough, other related symptoms of corona and those who are in home isolation should get themselves tested. The senior official said that before conducting the six minute walk test, oxygen level should be checked in the oximeter and after that the person should walk in the house for a stipulated time. He said that one should walk on a flat surface at home and should not climb up the stairs. Also, the person should not walk too fast or too slow while undergoing this particular test. The oxygen level should be checked after the test which will determine the health condition of the person. If there is a marginal drop of one or two per cent then without hesitation the person should repeat the test twice a day to check his oxygen level. If there is a drop of three per cent after the test, and if the person gasps for breath, then it should be understood that there lack of oxygen and hence hospitalisation should be done. KUNAL SHINDE, AIR NEWS, MUMBAI."

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Telangana High Court today directed the State Government to take a final call on swift decisions to contain spread of COVID-19 infection in 48 hours. Over a petition relating to prevention of spread of COVID, the bench headed by Chief Justice, Justice Hima Kohli ordered the state Government to take final decision on imposing night curfew or weekend lockdown or any other strict measure. The High Court further said it will pass orders, if the government does not act on this.

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In Tamil Nadu, the single day tally of fresh Covid cases logged over ten thousand and nine hundred today. 44 people lost their lives in battle against the viral disease in the last twenty four hours. The state capital Chennai continues to record more than thirty per cent of the everyday count across the state.


"The statewide night curfew comes into effect from tomorrow in Tamil Nadu. Therefore the state run transport corporations have rescheduled the operation of their fleets in such a way that they begin their journeys after 4 am and reach their destinations before 10 pm. The number of vaccination doses administered in the state is said to witness an impressive growth with nearly 47 lakh 11 thousand doses given so far. Several offices and residential complexes have organized vaccination camps for their inmates. Jayasingh, AIR News, Chennai."

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In Kerala, as covid-19 cases continue to surge, the State government decided to impose night curfew for two weeks from tomorrow. Our Thiruvananthapuram correspondent reports that the curfew will be imposed from 9 pm to 6 am.


"There will not be any restriction on public transport. Private tuition centres are not allowed to open. Only online classes can be continued. Strict restrictions will be imposed in malls. Theatres can remain open only till 7 pm. The government decides to resume work from home facility wherever possible. The decision in this regard was taken in a high level meeting chaired by chief secretary today. It was further decided to limit Thrissur Pooram to rituals only. Public will not be allowed to enter the festival ground. Only the organisers can take part in the festival.Meanwhile 13,644 new Covid cases were confirmed today. The test positivity rate is 15.63. Presently 1,03,004 persons are undergoing Covid treatment in Kerala. Mayusha for AIR News from Thiruvananthapuram."

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Former Prime Minister and senior Congress leader Manmohan Singh has been tested positive for COVID-19. He has been admitted to the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in New Delhi for treatment.

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In the wake of COVID -19, the BJP will not hold any big rallies and public meetings in West Bengal. Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other senior leaders will address small meetings in the state with maximum 500 people.


In a statement, the party said, all these public meetings will be held in open spaces following COVID19 guidelines. The party has also set a target to distribute 6 crore masks and sanitizers in the state.

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Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) has deferred the tests and interviews of some examinations. The Commission held a meeting today to review the situation prevailing due to COVID-19 pandemic and decided that it will not be possible to conduct examinations and interviews at the present.

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Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has developed a  system, which is of great value not only to the Indian Army soldiers fighting in the Extreme High Altitude Areas but also would be a boon to the country in this extreme crisis of Covid-19 pandemic.


The Defence Bio-Engineering and Electro Medical Laboratory, Bengaluru of DRDO has developed SpO2 - Blood Oxygen Saturation supplemental Oxygen Delivery System. This automatic system delivers supplemental oxygen based on the SpO2 levels and prevents the person from sinking in to a state of Hypoxia, which is fatal in most cases, if it sets in. 

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Indian Railways has refuted claims made by few media platforms about huge rush building up at Railway Stations. Officials of the Railway Ministry have termed these claims as mere rumors. The Railways have informed that in fact less than normal traffic is seen at Railway Stations as people have presumably chosen to defer travel plans in light of the COVID surge. The Railways urged everyone not to fall prey to speculative media reports and has reiterated that Train services will not be stopped in the country.

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In view of the prevailing coronavirus situation, the visit of UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson to India has been mutually agreed to be postponed. Mr. Johnson was scheduled to visit the country later this month.

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External Affairs Minister Dr S Jaishankar today defended government's move to export COVID-19 vaccine. Responding to the questioning of government over the issue, the Minister asserted that it was not that India was not prioritizing its people. He termed the criticism as short-sighted. Dr Jaishankar alleged that only irresponsible people can make this kind of argument.

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The Campaigning has ended for the sixth phase of assembly elections in West Bengal. The state is witnessing eight-phase election. In view of rising cases of COVID-19, the Election Commission had decided to curtail the campaign timing for the remaining three phases of the eight-phase Assembly Elections. It extended the Silence Period from 48 hours to 72 hours before polling for the remaining phases and as a result, the campaign ended this evening.


43 assembly constituencies spread over four districts will go to polls in sixth phase on the 22nd of this month.

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Polling concluded peacefully for the second phase of Panchayat elections in 20 districts of Uttar Pradesh today. The districts where polling was held today include Lucknow, Varanasi Azamgarh, Etawah, Chitrkut, Baghpat, Muzaffarnagar, Gautam Buddh Nagar, Gonda and Maharajganj. No untoward incident was reported from any part of the state barring few sporadic incidents at some places. Uttar Pradesh Panchayat elections are being held in four-phases while the counting of votes will take place on 2nd of May.

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The Indian Navy has confiscated over 300 kilograms of narcotic substances worth three thousand crore rupees. Indian Naval Ship Suvarna while on surveillance patrol in the Arabian Sea, encountered a fishing vessel with suspicious movements. The ship’s team conducted search operation on the vessel which led to the seizure of  narcotic substances.

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In Jammu and Kashmir, two terrorists were killed in an encounter with security forces at Zeipora area of Shopian district today. The identity of the slain terrorists are being ascertained. The search operation is underway in the area when last reports came in. Further details are awaited.

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In BJP today approached Election Commission accusing TMC Chief and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee of instigating her supporters to gherao Central Security Forces deployed to ensure free and fair assembly polls in the state. Citing a reported  audio tape related to alleged conversation between


Mamata Banerjee and TMC candidate from Sitalkuchi, the party alleged that the TMC chief was trying to  aggravate the differences between the two communities on religious lines after the violence incident in the area on the poll date.

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External Affairs Minister Dr S Jaishankar today spoke to his US counterpart Antony Blinken. The conversation covered recent developments in India’s immediate and extended neighbourhood. Dr Jaishankar said both sides exchanged views on the United Nations Security Council- UNSC agenda and also discussed issues pertaining to  health cooperation between the two countries.

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France has recalled 15 diplomats from Pakistan in the wake of violent protests and clashes involving a banned group. The Pakistan government banned the Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) under the Anti-Terrorism Act last week after the group organised violent protests across the country for three days and challenged the authorities. At least two policemen were killed in clashes with TLP supporters.


Le Figaro newspaper reported today that a total of 15 French diplomats, mostly secretaries and aides to department heads, have already left Pakistan or are set to return to Paris over the next few days. On Thursday, France advised its nationals and companies in Pakistan to temporarily leave the country because of the violent anti-France protests by TLP in many cities.

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NASA's Mars helicopter has made history with successful flight on the Red Planet. As per the US space agency NASA, the miniature robot helicopter Ingenuity performed a successful take off and landing on Mars earlier today. This first powered, controlled flight by an aircraft over the surface of another planet.


The robot rotorcraft was programmed to ascend 10 feet (3 meters) straight up, then hover and rotate in place over the Martian surface for half a minute before settling back down on its four legs. Officials said data returned from Mars showed that this had in fact occurred.

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The Sensex and the Nifty today plunged around 1.8 percent amid resurgence of Coronavirus case in the country. A report from the business world:


"The Sensex tumbled 883 points, or 1.81 percent, to trade at 47,949. The Nifty also fell 258 points, or 1.77 percent, to trade at 14,359. Oil prices fell as rising coronavirus infections in India and other countries prompted concerns that stronger measures to contain the pandemic will hit economic activity. In intra-day trade, Brent crude prices were trading around 66 dollars and 70 cents per barrel. And in the forex market, the rupee weakened 52 paise to close at 74 rupees and 88 paise against the US dollar. NISHIT KUMAR FOR AIR NEWS."

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The Government has termed as misleading a headline of a news report which claims that India's double mutation covid virus variant is worrying the world. Press Information Bureau clarified that the double mutation has been found in several other countries as well.

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In IPL Cricket, the match is underway between Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals at Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai.

Chennai were 131 for 5 in 15.3 overs a shortwhile ago. Earlier Rajasthan Royals won the toss and elected to field.


Yesterday, Delhi Capitals defeated Punjab Kings by 6 wickets at Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai. Chasing a victory target of 196 runs, Delhi Capitals made 198 for 4 in 18.2 overs. 


In the other match yesterday, Royal Challengers Bangalore defeated Kolkata Knight Riders by 38 runs in Chennai. Chasing a massive target of 205 runs, KKR kept losing wickets at regular intervals and could not build a winning partnership.

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Weather Forecast for Tomorrow:-


National Capital Delhi will have Dust storm or Thunderstorm. The temperature will hover between 19 and 37 degree Celsius.


Mumbai will have mainly clear sky. The minimum temperature will be 24 degree Celsius while the maximum is expected to be around 34 degrees.


Chennai is expected to have partly cloudy sky. The temperature will vary between 28 and 37 degree Celsius.


Kolkata will have mainly clear sky. The city will observe minimum temperature of 26 degree Celsius and a maximum of around 37 degrees.


Srinagar will have a generally cloudy sky. Temperature will hover between eight and 20 degree Celsius.


Jammu will also have a generally cloudy sky with Light rain. The minimum temperature will be 18 degree Celsius while the maximum will be around 31 degrees.


Leh is expected to have partly cloudy sky. Minimum and maximum temperature will be between one and 10 degrees Celsius.


Gilgit will have generally cloudy sky with light rain. The temperature will hover between 10 and 15 degree Celsius.


Muzaffarabad is also likely to have generally cloudy sky. The minimum temperature will be 12 degree Celsius and maximum will be around 25 degrees.


Dehradun will witness partly cloudy sky with possibility of rain or Thunderstorm or Duststorm. The minimum temperature will be 18 degree Celsius while the maximum will be around 34 degrees.


Chandigarh will have generally Generally cloudy sky with one or two spells of rain or thundershowers with the temperature likely to hover between 19 and 32 degree Celsius.


Hyderabad is likely to have partly cloudy sky. Minimum temperature will be 26 degree celsius while the maximum will be around 39 degrees.


Ahmedabad will have partly cloudy sky. The minimum temperature will be 25 degree celsius while the maximum will be around 40 degrees.


Patna will have mainly clear sky. The minimum temperature will be 23 degree celsius and the maximum will be around 40 degrees.


Guwahati will have partly cloudy sky with one or two spells of rain or thundershowers. The minimum temperature will be around 21 degree Celsius while the maximum will be 34 degrees.

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