31 Mar 2021: COVID-19 situation going from 'bad to worse': Health Ministry
The COVID-19 situation in India has gone from "bad to worse" over the last few weeks, the Union Health Ministry said on Tuesday.
Since early-February, when India was reporting as little as under 9,000 fresh single-day infections, India has seen a surge in infections.
As of Tuesday morning, India reported nearly 1.21 crore infections, including 1.62 lakh deaths and 1.13 crore recoveries.
Details: 'Trends show virus is still very active'
VK Paul, the Chairperson of the National Expert Committee on Vaccine Administration, said during a press briefing on Tuesday, "Trends show the virus is still very active and enter our defenses, just when we think we can control it, it sparks back."
Paul denied that mutated strains of the virus had a role to play in the surge of infections.
Fact: Paul denies there is Indian variant of virus
Paul said, "There is a concept of virus shift and virus drift. There is no such thing as an Indian strain. It is not a cause to panic." Mutations are sporadic and not significant, he said.
Regions: 8/10 high-burden districts in Maharashtra
Taken as one district, Delhi is among the top 10 COVID-19 high-burden districts, eight of which are from Maharashtra.
"Punjab is neither doing an adequate number of tests nor is isolating infected people properly," Paul added, "Karnataka needs to improve testing and isolation."
States are now being told to enforce COVID-19-appropriate behavior, including the use of masks, he said.
Vaccination: All private facilities must be utilized for vaccination
Paul said all private facilities must be utilized optimally for vaccination.
The facilities must have functional cold chain storages along with an adequate number of verifiers and vaccinators.
They must also have facilities to address adverse events following immunization.
India has vaccinated 6,24,08,333 people as of 7 pm on Wednesday, and 12,94,979 vaccine doses were administered on the day.