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Mumbai, March 15, 2020
With the number of coronavirus (COVID-19) positive cases shooting to 32, Maharashtra has emerged as the worst-hit state in India by the global pandemic.
With 15 cases -- 7 in Pune city and 8 in Pimpri-Chinchwad, Pune district has emerged as the coronavirus hotbed in India.
Unwilling to take any chances, Mumbai police have clamped prohibitory orders banning assembly of five or more persons in the city till March 31.
Five new cases were detected in Pimpri-Chinchwad in Pune district, late on Saturday night, and a new case detected in Aurangabad on Sunday, Health Minister Rajesh Tope said.
He announced that testing and treatment facilities available in Mumbai and Pune for coronavirus will be enhanced over the next 15-20 days.
"We shall get new machines, for testing blood samples to quicken up the process of getting the tests reports. We shall also set up new testing labs in Sangli, Dhule and Solapur," Tope added.
Presently, there are 15 cases in Pune, five in Mumbai, four in Nagpur, two in Yavatmal, and one each in Thane, Raigad, Ahmednagar, Aurangabad, Kalyan, and Navi Mumbai.
Meanwhile, three coronavirus suspected cases who had fled from the isolation ward in Ahmednagar Civil Hospital on Saturday, returned to the facility early on Sunday.
Similarly, the four coronavirus suspects who ran away from Mayo Hospital in Nagpur have also returned, and undergoing treatment.
Tope said that security at all treatment centres is being increased to prevent any patients from bolting.
Maharashtra has gone into a shutdown mode with closure of all schools, colleges, malls, swimming pools, gymns, public places, cancellation of all public events, religious processions, etc. till March 31 as a precaution.
Mumbai's Deputy Commissioner of Police Pranay Ashok said all tours -- private or through professional organisations -- have been banned in the city with immediate effect till March 31.
The IIT-Bombay has also suspended all classroom and laboratory instructions till March 29 besides imposing other stringent rules for its students, hostel residents, faculty, staff, visitors, etc.