Indian Air Force aircrafts fly over Rajpath to show solidarity with frontline warriors fighting against coronavirus in New Delhi. Reuters
India's air force flew aircraft low over more than a dozen cities on Sunday, part of a nationwide campaign by the armed forces to thank healthcare workers and other essential services personnel fighting the coronavirus outbreak.
So far India has recorded nearly 40,000 coronavirus cases and more than 1,300 deaths amid a weeks-long nationwide lockdown to contain the spread of the virus.
In the southern city of Bengaluru, a helicopter showered flowers over Victoria Hospital, as doctors and other medical workers in hospital gowns and masks cheered on, local television showed. A military band played alongside.
A helicopter throws rose petals on the medical staff to pay tribute in the fight against coronavirus in Mumbai. AFP
In the financial capital of Mumbai, television showed fighter jets roaring over the famous Marine Drive, which runs parallel to the Arabian Sea, as some residents craned for a view from their balconies.
Later on Sunday, navy and coast guard ships will line up along more than 30 locations on the Indian coast, with some vessels lit up and firing flares.
But the celebrations were dampened by news of the death of four Indian army personnel, including two officers, as well as a police official during a gun battle with militants in the northern Kashmir region on Saturday.
The five were killed while freeing hostages in Kashmir's Kupwara district, an Indian Army spokesman said. Two militants were also shot dead, he added.
One of the new cases was detected in the capital, New Delhi, while the other was in the southern state of Telangana, the government said in a statement.
These doctors belong to the SCTIMST (Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology) in Thiruvananthapuram, an institution of national importance under the Central government's Department of Science and Technology.
The lockdown is now largely being enforced in high-risk areas while authorities have partially restored train services and domestic flights and allowed shops and manufacturing to reopen.
In a statement, the Ministry stressed its aim to continue expanding the scope of testing nationwide to facilitate the early detection of coronavirus cases and carry out the necessary treatment.
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