Coronavirus Death Toll in India Climbs to 20 After First COVID-19 Patient Dies in Kerala
Coronavirus cases | (Photo Credits: PTI)

New Delhi, March 28: A 69-year-old man died of the novel coronavirus on Saturday in Kerala, the first fatality in the state. The man died at a government hospital in Kerala's Ernakulam district. With this, the nationwide death toll due to coronavirus rose to 20. According to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, India has reported 873 coronavirus cases so far. Of the, at least 775 are active at present. Coronavirus Outbreak Live News Updates on March 28.

The country recorded 149 fresh coronavirus cases in the last 24 hours. While Maharashtra with 180 cases has the most number of COVID-19 patients, Kerala comes second in the list with 173 confirmed cases as of 9:30 am on Saturday. Apart from one death in Kerala, five were reported in Maharashtra and three from Gujarat. Karnataka and Madhya Pradesh recorded two deaths each, according to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare. Migrant Workers Continue Journey on Foot to Reach Homes in UP, Haryana, Rajasthan.

Bihar, Delhi, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir. Punjab, Tamil Nadu and West Bengal saw one death each. At least 78 people recovered and were discharged from different hospitals. On Friday, the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare said that it has given orders to Public Sector Undertakings to provide ventilators in order to handle the surge in novel coronavirus cases in the country.

"The government is taking pre-emptive and proactive approach to tackle the situation. In order to upgrade the number of ventilators in the country," adding "We have given an order to PSU to provide 10,000 ventilators. Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL), which is one of the Defence Ministry's PSs, has also been requested to purchase 30,000 additional ventilators in 1-2 months," Joint Health Secretary of the Health Ministry Lav Agarwal said.

He added that at least 1.4 lakh companies have allowed their employees to work from home as per the government's request. "Around 1.4 lakh companies allowed employees work from home after our appeal of social distancing and lockdown."