Indonesia capital Jakarta conditionally eases some coronavirus restrictions

Jakarta governor Anies Baswedan said some public transport networks would resume normal operations on Friday. (AFP)
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Updated 04 June 2020

Indonesia capital Jakarta conditionally eases some coronavirus restrictions

  • Some public transport networks would resume normal operations
  • Houses of worship would reopen but with social distancing restrictions

The governor of Indonesia’s capital said on Thursday that movement restrictions to stem the spread of the coronavirus would be extended in Jakarta, but June would be a transition period with some rules conditionally eased.
“The movement restrictions status is still (in place) while we await for the transition into a healthy, safe, and productive condition,” Anies Baswedan told a video briefing, referring to large scale social restrictions in place since mid-April.
Starting Friday, Baswedan said some public transport networks would resume normal operations, while houses of worship would reopen, both with new social restrictions in place.
There has not been an official lockdown across Indonesia, which has recorded the highest rate of deaths from COVID-19 in East Asia outside China, but cities like Jakarta have been allowed to impose restrictions.


Priest who shared stage with Modi tests positive; India sees record number of cases

Updated 13 August 2020

Priest who shared stage with Modi tests positive; India sees record number of cases

  • Nritya Gopal Das, an 82-year-old Hindu priest, was the latest public figure to test positive
  • Television footage showed Modi holding Das’ hands and bowing before him

LUCKNOW, India: India reported another record jump in its surging coronavirus cases on Thursday with nearly 67,000 new infections, among them a religious leader who shared a stage with Prime Minister Narendra Modi during a ceremony to launch construction of a grand temple.
Nritya Gopal Das, an 82-year-old Hindu priest, was the latest public figure to test positive after a string of Modi’s top cabinet colleagues were stricken with COVID-19, including interior minister Amit Shah.
With Thursday’s jump of 66,999 cases India now has nearly 2.4 million infections, according to the Health Ministry, behind only the United States and Brazil. For the last fortnight, it has been reporting 50,000 cases or more each day as it opens up the country after a months-long lockdown. Its COVID-19 death toll stands at 47,033.
Modi and Das were among 170 people who attended the Aug. 5 launch of the temple construction in the northern town of Ayodhya.
Dr. Murli Singh, director of information in Ayodhya, said Das had tested positive and was being moved to a hospital near Delhi. But he added that at the time of the ceremony the priest tested negative and so had not posed an infection risk to Modi.
Television footage showed Modi held Das’ hands and bowed before him. Modi’s office did not respond to a request for comment.
Singh said people invited for the launch were all clear of the virus at the time.
“Guidelines were sent to all that only COVID-19 negative people will be allowed in the ceremony,” he said, adding doctors on the ground in Ayodhya had run tests before the event started.
The planned temple at Ayodhya is on a disputed site where Hindu groups have campaigned for decades.
Separately on Wednesday, a government committee said that the country would utilize its large vaccine manufacturing capacity to urgently deliver any potential COVID-19 vaccine to its neighbors and low-income countries.