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COVID19

Aarogya Setu Android App Is Now Open Source

The App has over 114 million users, which is more than any other Contact Tracing App in the world.

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NEW DELHI: On April 2, 2020, India launched Aarogya Setu mobile App for helping augment the efforts of limiting the spread of COVID19, with an objective of enabling Bluetooth based contact tracing, mapping of likely hotspots and dissemination of relevant information about COVID19.

The App has over 114 million users as on May 26, which is more than any other Contact Tracing App in the world.

The App is available in 12 languages and on Android, iOS and KaiOS platforms. Citizens across the country are using Aarogya Setu to protect themselves, their loved ones and the nation.

Setu has been transparency, privacy and security and in line with India’s policy on Open Source Software, the source code of Aarogya Setu has now been made open source.


The source code for the Android version of the application is available for review and collaboration at:
https://github.com/nic-delhi/AarogyaSetu_Android.git

The iOS version of the application will be released as open-source within the next two weeks and the server code will be released subsequently. Almost 98% of Aarogya Setu Users are on the Android platform.

Aarogya Setu’s development has been a remarkable example of collaboration between Government, Industry and Academia and citizens.


With the release of the source code in the public domain, the government is looking to expanding collaboration and to leverage the expertise of top technical brains amongst the talented youth and citizens of our nation and to collectively build a robust and secure technology solution to help support the work of frontline health workers in fighting this pandemic together.

The App offers a comprehensive suite of interventions against COVID-19 and has registered several firsts in the eight weeks since its launch.

The App possibly has the most reach and impact when compared to all other COVID-19 contact tracing and self-assessment tools combined globally, while pioneering new data driven epidemiological flattening of the curve through syndromic mapping.

Of the more than 114 million registered users, two-thirds have taken the self-assessment test to evaluate their risk of exposure to COVID-19.

The App has helped identify about 500,000 Bluetooth contacts. Those who are identified as Bluetooth contacts of COVID19 positive cases or are classified as needing assistance based on their self-assessment are contacted by National Health Authority.

So far, the platform has reached out to more than 900,000 users and helped advise them for Quarantine, caution or testing.

Amongst those who were recommended for testing for COVID19, it has been found that almost 24% of them have been found COVID19 positive. Compare this to the overall COVID19 positive rate of around 4.65% – 145380 COVID19 positives from a total of 3126119 tests done as on 26th May 26, 2020.


This clearly illustrates that Contact tracing is helping focus efforts on those who need testing and this will greatly augment the efforts of the Government in containing the pandemic. Analytics of Bluetooth contacts and location data has also helped identify potential hotspots with a higher probability of COVID cases allowing State Governments and District Administration and Health authorities to take necessary steps for containment of the pandemic, early, which is critical for controlling the spread of the pandemic.

This approach of syndromic mapping, a novel approach of combining principles of path tracing and movement patterns of COVID-19 positive people, population-level epidemiology modelling and the prevalence of COVID-19 in different regions of the country, the Aarogya Setu team has identified more than 3,500 hotspots across the country at the sub-post office level.

The Aarogya Setu data fused with historic data has shown enormous potential in predicting emerging hotspots at the sub-post office level and today around 1264 emerging hotspots have been identified across India that might otherwise have been missed.

Several of these predicted hotspots have been subsequently verified as actual hotspots in the next 17 to 25 days.

As an example, a district with 3 cases on a particular date when Aarogya Setu engine predicted it as a hotspot registered 82 cases in the next 15 days. The precision achieved by this unique combination of Bluetooth-based contact tracing and identification of hotspots may hold the key to effectively breaking the chain of infection, flattening the curve and saving lives.

Releasing the source code of a rapidly evolving product that is being regularly used by more than 114 million users, is challenging. Developing and maintaining the source code is a huge responsibility, both for Team Aarogya Setu and the developer community.

The repository now being shared is the actual production environment. All subsequent product updates will also be made available through this repository.

The process of supporting the open-source development will be managed by National Informatics Centre (NIC).

All code suggestions will be processed through pull request reviews. Aarogya Setu’s source code has been licensed under Apache License

Version 2.0, and is available on “As-Is” basis. Any reuse of the source code with changes to the code requires the developer to carry a notice of a change.

More details can be found in the Frequently Asked Questions document available at:
https://www.mygov.in/aarogya-setu-app/


While making the code Open Source, Government of India also seeks the developer community to help identify any vulnerabilities or code improvement in order to make Aarogya Setu more robust and secure.

Towards this objective, the government has also launched a Bug Bounty Programme with a goal to partner with security researchers and Indian developer community to test the security effectiveness of Aarogya Setu and also to improve or enhance its security and build user’s trust.

Details of the Bug Bounty Programme along with the rewards therein are being shared separately. Details of the Bug Bounty Program is available on the innovate portal of MyGov at:
https://innovate.mygov.in/

The Government of India, by opening the product design and code, has also demonstrated its strong commitment to contributing to the global good. India is keen to share learnings from our approach to technology to fight COVID-19 and make the benefits of the solution available to the rest of the world and any government can use it for fighting the pandemic.

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Covaxin, India’s First COVID-19 Vaccine Gets DCGI Approval For Human Trials

This marks the first regulatory approval for India’s domestic vaccine to enter trials.

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HYDERABAD (Telangana): India-based biotechnology company Bharat Biotech has secured regulatory approval from the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) to advance its COVID-19 vaccine candidate, Covaxin, into human clinical trials.

The Drug Controller General of India CDSCO (The Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation), Ministry of Health & Family Welfare granted permission to initiate Phase I & II Human clinical trials after the company submitted results generated from pre-clinical studies, demonstrating safety and immune response. Human clinical trials are scheduled to start across India in July 2020, the release said.

This marks the first regulatory approval for India’s domestic vaccine to enter trials. DCGI’s approval will enable the company to conduct Phase I and II studies, which are set to begin next month.


Covaxin has been developed in partnership with the Indian Council of Medical Research’s National Institute of Virology. The inactivated vaccine was manufactured in Bharat Biotech’s facility at Genome Valley in Hyderabad, India.

Bharat Biotech chairman and managing director Krishna Ella said: “We are proud to announce ‘Covaxin’, India’s first indigenous vaccine against Covid-19.

“The collaboration with ICMR and NIV was instrumental in the development of this vaccine. The proactive support and guidance from CDSCO have enabled approvals to this project.”


Bharat Biotech’s track record in developing vero cell culture platform technologies has been proven in several vaccines for Polio, Rabies, Rotavirus, Japanese Encephalitis, Chikungunya and Zika. The company is proficient in conducting extensive multi-centre clinical trials, having completed more than 75 trials in over 300,000 subjects globally, the release said.

In April this year, Bharat Biotech partnered with FluGen and University of Wisconsin–Madison (UW-Madison) to develop and evaluate a Covid-19 vaccine candidate, CoroFlu.

CoroFlu will be administered intranasally with an aim to induce multiple immune responses.

Later in May, Bharat Biotech entered into an exclusive agreement to develop a Covid-19 vaccine candidate created at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia, US.

Thomas Jefferson professor developed this vaccine candidate in January using an existing deactivated rabies vaccine as a vehicle for coronavirus proteins.


Besides Bharat Biotech, at least five other Indian companies are working on a vaccine for the deadly coronavirus while similar efforts are underway in different countries.

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COVID-19 Unblock 2.0: Metro Rail, Schools, Colleges, Cinemas, Gyms To Remain Shut

International air travel of passengers has been permitted in a limited manner under the Vande Bharat mission. 

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NEW DELHI: The Centre has issued new guidelines for Unlock -2 to open up more activities in areas outside the Containment Zones. The new guidelines will come into effect from tomorrow and the process of phased re-opening of activities has been extended further. As per the new guidelines, the lockdown will continue to be implemented strictly in the Containment Zones till July 31.

The Home Ministry has said that the new guidelines are based on feedback received from States and UTs, and extensive consultations held with related Central Ministries and Departments.

Under the new guidelines of Unlock -2, Metro Rail service, operation of Cinema halls, gymnasiums, swimming pools, entertainment parks, theatres, bars, auditoriums, assembly halls and similar places will not be allowed.


Salient features of the new guidelines for Unlock 2

  • Domestic flights and passenger trains have already been allowed in a limited manner. Their operations will be further expanded in a calibrated manner.
  • Night curfew timings are being further relaxed and curfew shall be in force from 10.00 pm to 5.00 am. Further, relaxations in night curfew have been given for the seamless operation of industrial units in multiple shifts, movement of persons and goods on National and State Highways, loading and unloading of cargo and movement of persons to their destinations after disembarking from buses, trains and aeroplanes.
  • Shops, depending upon their area, can have more than 5 persons at a time. However, they have to maintain adequate physical distance.
  • Training institutions of the Central and State Governments will be allowed to function with effect from July 15, 2020.  SOP in this regard will be issued by the Department of Personnel and Training, Government of India.
  • After extensive consultation with States and UTs, it has been decided that schools, colleges and coaching institutions will remain closed till July 31, 2020.
  • International air travel of passengers has been permitted in a limited manner under the Vande Bharat mission.  Further opening-up will take place in a calibrated manner.
  • All activities, except the following, shall be permitted outside containment zones:
  1. Metro Rail.
  2. Cinema halls, gymnasiums, swimming pools, entertainment parks, theatres, bars, auditoriums, assembly halls and similar places.
  3. Social/ political/ sports/ entertainment/ academic/ cultural/ religious functions and other large congregations.

Dates for the opening of these will be decided separately, based on the assessment of the situation.

  • Lockdown shall continue to be implemented strictly in the Containment Zones till July 31, 2020. Containment Zones are required to be carefully demarcated by the State/ UT Governments with a view to containing the spread of COVID-19, after taking into consideration the guidelines issued by the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare (MOHFW).  Within the containment zones, strict perimeter control shall be maintained and only essential activities allowed.
  • These Containment Zones will be notified on the websites of the respective District Collectors and by the States/UTs and information will also be shared with MOHFW.
  • Activities in the Containment Zones shall be monitored strictly by the State/UT authorities, and the guidelines relating to containment measure in these zones shall be strictly implemented.
  • MOHFW will monitor the proper delineation of Containment Zones and the implementation of the containment measures.

States to decide on activities outside Containment Zones


  • States and UTs, based on their assessment of the situation, may prohibit certain activities outside the Containment zones, or impose such restrictions as deemed necessary.
  • However, there shall be no restriction on inter-State and intra-State movement of persons and goods.  No separate permission/ approval/ e-permit will be required for such movements.

Night curfew

  • Night Curfew shall continue to remain in force, between 10.00 pm and 5 am, except for essential activities and other relaxation given in Unlock 2.

National Directives for COVID-19 management

  • National Directives for COVID-19 management shall continue to be followed throughout the country, with a view to ensuring social distancing.  Shops will need to maintain adequate physical distancing among customers. MHA will monitor the effective implementation of National Directives.

Protection for vulnerable persons

  • Vulnerable persons, i.e., persons above 65 years of age, persons with co-morbidities, pregnant women, and children below the age of 10 years, are advised to stay at home, except for meeting essential requirements and for health purposes.

Use of Aarogya Setu

  • The use of Aarogya Setu mobile application will continue to be encouraged.
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COVID19

COVID-19: India’s Coronavirus Cases Tally Is Now 5.5 Lakh

12,010 people have recovered from Covid-19 in the past 24 hours, taking the recovery rate to 58.67%.

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NEW DELHI: India’s coronavirus count has crossed the 5.49-lakh mark as the highest-ever single-day spike of over 19,000 COVID-19 cases were reported over the past 24 hours.  At the time of writing this report, the country’s total number of COVID-19 cases stands at 5,49,197 on Sunday, with 2,10,880 COVID-19 patients cured so far.

India is now just behind the United States, Brazil, and Russia in terms of the total confirmed cases. It is, therefore, the biggest epicentre of the coronavirus disease pandemic in Asia and the fourth worst-affected nation in the world.

Providing the silver lining to the dark cloud, however, the government today said that a total of 3,21,723 people affected with coronavirus have been cured in the country so far.


In the past 24 hours, 12,010 people have recovered from Covid-19 and with this, the recovery rate has reached 58.67 per cent.

The Health and Family Welfare Ministry said that a total of 19,459 new cases of Covid-19 have been reported in the country within 24 hours.

In a single day, 380 deaths have been reported taking the nationwide toll to 16,475.


Presently, the total number of active corona cases in the country is 2,10,120.

Maharashtra is the most affected state, followed by Delhi and Tamil Nadu. Delhi has crossed Mumbai in terms of the number of coronavirus cases.

The global COVID-19 case total has surged past 9.8 million after a single-day record of 189,077 cases were registered worldwide over the past 24 hours, the World Health Organisation (WHO) said on Sunday (local time).

Meanwhile, the Indian Council of Medical Research, ICMR said that 1,70,560 tests of coronavirus samples were conducted by the various laboratories in the country within 24 hours. So far, 83,98,362 tests have been conducted.

ICMR is continuously scaling up its testing facilities for Covid-19 by giving approval to government and private laboratories.


As of now, a total of 1,047 laboratories across India have been given the approval to conduct the test for Covid-19. This includes 760 government laboratories and 287 private laboratory chains.

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