India

Bollywood star questioned in India’s drug case

Padukone was among six people - including two other actresses - to be summoned for questioning over the case.

Rajput's girlfriend, Rhea Chakraborty, was arrested earlier this month for allegedly buying drugs for him - claims she has denied.

The case has fuelled months of media coverage and speculation in India.

The Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) widened its investigation of the case on Saturday, questioning Padukone for six hours in Mumbai.

India infections top five million mark

The virus is spreading much faster in India than any other country, with daily cases crossing 90,000 for the five days up until Tuesday.

More than 80,000 people have died, amid reports of shortages of intensive care beds and oxygen supplies.

But the death rate is lower than in many countries with a high caseload.

The rise in infections comes as the government continues to lift restrictions throughout the country to try to boost an economy that lost millions of jobs when the virus hit in March.

India in shock over 86-year-old grandmother's rape

In one particularly shocking case, police in the capital, Delhi, have arrested a man in his 30s for the rape and assault of an 86-year-old grandmother.

"The woman was waiting outside her home on Monday evening for the milkman when she was approached by her attacker," Swati Maliwal, head of the Delhi Commission for Women, told the BBC.

"He told her that her regular milk delivery man wasn't coming and offered to take her to the place where she could get milk."

India surpasses US for highest single-day rise in Covid-19 cases

The nation, the world's third-most infected, on Sunday reported 78,761 new cases in 24 hours, passing the number posted in the US on 17 July.

The rise comes as the government continues to lift restrictions to try to boost an economy that lost millions of jobs when the virus hit in March.

An upsurge of Covid-19 in many rural areas continues to be a major concern.

On Sunday, global infections passed the 25 million mark, with 843,000 deaths. The US remains the most affected nation, closing in on six million infections, according to Johns Hopkins University research.

Amazon launches online pharmacy in India

Amazon Pharmacy will make its debut in Bangalore and it may be trialled in other Indian cities.

The move comes as the online drugs business has been given a major boost during the coronavirus pandemic.

This year US technology giants have invested billions of dollars in the Indian economy.

The Amazon Pharmacy service offers prescription, over-the-counter and traditional Ayurveda medication as well as basic health devices.

India becomes third country to pass two million cases

The country confirmed the last million cases in just 20 days, faster than the US or Brazil which have higher numbers.

Testing has been expanded considerably in India in recent weeks but the situation varies across states.

Spurred by a low death rate, the nation continues to reopen even as new hotspots drive the surge in cases. But some states have imposed restrictions.

The recent measures include local, intermittent lockdowns, sometimes limiting activity in specific cities or districts.

10 die drinking sanitiser after Indian state shuts liquor shops

The village of Kurichedu has been placed in lockdown after a local surge in cases of coronavirus.

District police chief Siddharth Kaushal said the people who died had mixed the sanitiser with water and soft drinks.

They were alcohol-dependent, he added, and had started drinking the mixture about 10 days before they died.

"We are investigating whether the sanitiser had any other toxic content," Mr Kaushal told reporters.

He added that they had sent samples of the sanitiser away for chemical analysis.

India to hold human trial of coronavirus vaccine in July

An unspecified number of people will have the vaccine, as part of a trial by Hyderabad-based firm Bharat Biotech.

Tests in animals suggest the vaccine is safe and triggers an effective immune response.

The trials are among many across the world - there are around 120 vaccine programmes under way. Half a dozen Indian firms are developing vaccines.

This is the first India-made vaccine and developed from a strain of the virus that was isolated locally and weakened under laboratory conditions.

Kolkata devastated as cyclone kills scores in India and Bangladesh

Amphan made landfall on Wednesday, lashing coastal areas with ferocious wind and rain. The storm is weakening as it moves north into Bhutan.

Thousands of trees were uprooted in the gales, electricity and telephone lines brought down and houses flattened.

Many of Kolkata's roads are flooded and its 14 million people without power.

The storm is the first super cyclone to form in the Bay of Bengal since 1999. Though its winds had weakened by the time it struck, it was still classified as a very severe cyclone.

India enters 'total lockdown' after spike in coronavirus cases

The restrictions came into force at midnight local time (18:30 GMT) and will be enforced for 21 days.

"There will be a total ban on venturing out of your homes," Mr Modi said in a televised address.

He appealed for people not to panic - but crowds quickly mobbed stores in the capital, Delhi, and other cities.

Correspondents say it is not clear how - or even if - people will now be allowed out to buy food and other essentials.