India added a record 2,17,353 new Covid-19 infections in the last 24 hours, marking the biggest one-day jump so far and taking the total number of cases to 1,42,91,917, while the active count surpassed the 14 lakh-mark, the Union Health Ministry informed on Thursday.
1,185 people dying of Covid in the last 24 hours pushed the country’s death count to 1,74,308. This is the second straight that that the country is reporting over two lakh cases and the sixth straight day of over 1.5 lakh daily cases.
Maharashtra, the country’s worst-hit state, reported 61,695 fresh coronavirus cases, taking the tally to 36,39,855, while 349 new fatalities pushed the death count to 59,153. The state is under a strict curfew till the end of April. In terms of the total caseload, Maharashtra is followed by the southern states of Kerala, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh.
Kerala has decided to do mass testing of people for COVID-19. The state is aiming to conduct 2 lakh to 2.5 lakh tests between today and tomorrow.
Karnataka and capital Bengaluru saw the highest single-day spike so far in the pandemic, with 14,738 new cases in the states. Of these, 10,497 are from Bengaluru. While Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa has called an emergency meeting today to discuss the situation, his government has ruled out the possibility of a lockdown.
The Delhi government has imposed a weekend curfew and has ordered shopping malls, gyms and spas to stay shut from this evening to Monday morning after it recorded the over 17,000 Covid cases on Wednesday. On Thursday, the capital saw 16,699 fresh cases.
30 sadhus participating in the mega Kumbh Mela in Uttarakhand’s Haridwar have tested positive for COVID-19. Amid criticism over holding the massive religious gathering in which lakhs of people gathered and took a dip in the Ganges, officials said the Kumbh Mela will not be cut short.
Rajasthan too has announced a weekend curfew in the state from 6 pm today to 5 am on Monday because of the rising COVID-19 cases. The state registered 33 Covid deaths and a record 6,658 new cases of the disease.
The government on Thursday said 100 new hospitals will have their own oxygen plant under PM-CARES Fund and another 50,000 metric tonnes of medical oxygen will be imported. This comes at a time hospitals in several states reported shortage of oxygen supply.
The centre has given permission to the Maharashtra government-owned Haffkin Institute in Mumbai to manufacture Covaxin, an anti-coronavirus vaccine of Bharat Biotech that is one of the two vaccines being administered in India currently.
This week, India overtook Brazil to become the country with the second-highest number of cases worldwide, after the United States.