Coronavirus LIVE Updates: As the states swing into action to curb the sudden, worrisome upward trend in coronavirus cases, Prime Minister Narendra Modi is set to hold two back-to-back meetings today — one with eight states with high caseloads and another with states and UTs to discuss vaccine distribution strategy. The meeting comes a day after the Supreme Court as the Centre and all states to file within two days the status reports detailing steps taken to deal with the current Covid-19 situation, noting that the pandemic has "worsened".
While the national daily COVID-19 case count has remained below 50,000 for some time, several urban centres have witnessed a surge, resulting in enforcement of several measures, including curfews in some cities. The Himachal Pradesh government imposed a night curfew in four districts from Tuesday, while Maharashtra made it mandatory to undergo RT-PCR test for all passengers landing in Mumbai from Delhi, Gujarat, Goa and Maharashtra. Uttar Pradesh is already testing Delhi residents at its border. The Yogi Adityanath government also capped the wedding guest limit to 100 on Monday.
On Sunday, high-level central teams were deputed to Uttar Pradesh, Punjab and Himachal Pradesh to support them in Covid-19 response and management. These states have been either reporting a rise in the number of active cases — those who are hospitalised or are in home isolation under medical supervision, or demonstrating a rise in the daily new cases of coronavirus infections, the Union Health Ministry said.
The prime minister, till now, has held several virtual meetings with states over the coronavirus situation. The leaders who would attend today's meeting include Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, sources said.
The central government has also been putting in place measures for quick and effective distribution of coronavirus vaccine when it becomes available. Five vaccine candidates are in advanced stages of development in India, out of which four are in Phase II/III and one is in Phase-I/II trials.
India's Covid-19 caseload went past 91,39,865 with 44,059 coronavirus infections being reported in a day, while the recoveries surged to 85,62,641, according to the Union Health Ministry data on Monday.