Indian PM says COVID-19 impact to linger

This handout photograph released by India's Press Information Bureau shows Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi speaks during a via virtual meeting with leaders of central Asian countries, in New Delhi, India, Jan 27, 2022. (PRESS INFORMATION BUREAU VIA AP)

NEW DELHI / HANOI / MANILA / SINGAPORE / KUALA LUMPUR – Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday said the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic would not go soon.

Modi made the remarks while launching an employment fair where he distributed 75,000 appointment letters among government job aspirants.

"The side-effects of the once-in-a-century pandemic will not go away in 100 days," said the Indian prime minister.

Modi said his government was working toward softening the blow from the pandemic on India's economy. 


Malaysia reported 2,618 new COVID-19 infections as of midnight Saturday, bringing the national total to 4,880,005, according to the health ministry.

There are seven new imported cases, with 2,611 cases being local transmissions, data released on the ministry's website showed.

Four new deaths have been reported, pushing the death toll to 36,444.

ALSO READ: Singapore reports 7,247 new COVID-19 cases


Myanmar confirmed 262 new COVID-19 infections and two more deaths from the virus in the past 24 hours, according to the Ministry of Health on Saturday.

The number of COVID-19 infections in the country rose to 630,445, while the death toll reached 19,475, the ministry's release said.

A man shops for face masks in Divisoria, a local shopping district in Manila on May 17, 2022. (JAM STA ROSA / AFP)


The Philippines reported 1,702 new COVID-19 infections on Saturday, bringing the total number of confirmed cases in the Southeast Asian country to 3,993,148.

The Department of Health said the number of active cases dropped to 23,713, while 36 more patients died from COVID-19 complications, taking the death toll to 63,742.

Metro Manila, the capital region with over 13 million people, tallied 503 new cases.


Singapore reported 6,339 new cases of COVID-19 on Saturday, bringing the country's total tally to 2,059,709.

Of the new cases, 642 were detected through PCR (polymerase chain reaction) tests and 5,697 through ARTs (antigen rapid test), according to statistics released by the Ministry of Health.

Among the PCR cases, 619 were local transmissions and 23 were imported cases. Among the ART cases with mild symptoms and assessed to be of low risk, there were 5,463 local transmissions and 234 imported cases.

No new deaths from COVID-19 were reported on Saturday, taking the total death toll unchanged at 1,660. 

ALSO READ: Cambodia reports zero COVID-19 death since April: PM


Vietnam recorded 475 new COVID-19 cases on Saturday, down by 107 from Friday, according to its ministry of health.

All the new cases were locally transmitted, said the health ministry.

The newly reported infections brought the total tally to 11,496,829. The country reported no new deaths from the pandemic on Saturday, with the total fatalities staying at 43,159.