India reports over 60,000 new cases after gap of 160 days

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As many as 62,258 more people tested positive for Covid-19 across the country in the last 24 hours, taking the cumulative tally to 1,19,08,910, said the Union health ministry on Saturday.

This is the biggest spike in new infections recorded in the country this year and the highest in over 160 days. India had last seen over 62,000 new cases on 16 October last year.

Five states — Maharashtra, Punjab, Karnataka, Chhattisgarh and Gujarat — have reported a surge in new infections.

Among these, Maharashtra continues to be the biggest contributor to daily tally of the country as the state clocked in 36,902 fresh infections in the last 24 hours.

In addition to this, the death toll in the country has reached 1,61,240 with 291 more people succumbing to the disease in the same duration. The number of fatalities have gone up as compared to yesterday when it rested at 257.

As many as 30,386 recuperated from the disease in the last 24 hours, taking the total number of recoveries to 1,12,95,023.

As a result, the active cases in the country stand at 4,52,647. The active tally breached the four-lakh mark on Friday, when the number was 4,21,066.

India had crossed the three-lakh mark of active tally on 21 March, making this the fastest one-lakh increase in active infections since Covid-19 broke out in the country.

India’s Covid-19 tally had crossed the 20 lakh mark on 7 August, 30 lakh on 23 August, 40 lakh on 5 September and 50 lakh on 16 September. It went past 60 lakh on 28 September, 70 lakh on 11 October, crossed 80 lakh on 29 October, 90 lakh on 20 November and surpassed the one-crore mark on 19 December.

Vaccinations in India

The country has so far administered 5,81,09,773 anti-Covid shots. The five-crore mark in vaccination was crossed on 23 March.

The countrywide vaccination drive was rolled out on 16 January with healthcare workers getting inoculated and vaccination of the frontline workers started from 2 February.

The next phase of Covid-19 vaccination commenced on 1 March for those who are above 60 years of age and for people aged 45 and above with specified comorbid conditions.

Further expanding the gamut of the inoculation drive, Union Minister of Information and Broadcasting Prakash Javadekar on Tuesday announced that everyone above the age of 45 years can get themselves vaccinated from 1 April.

Multidisciplinary teams to states

Following a surge, the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare rushed two high-level multidisciplinary teams to Chhattisgarh and Chandigarh on Friday.

“These teams shall work with the respective state/UT Government to ascertain the reason/s for the surge, assist in undertaking gap analysis and recommend requisite Covid-19 control and containment measures,” the ministry said in a statement.

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