Centre Rushes Teams to States as Maha, Kerala, 4 Others Account for 86% of Daily New Covid-19 Cases

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Maharashtra, Kerala, Punjab, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Gujarat have shown a surge in new COVID-19 cases, contributing to nearly 86 per cent of the fresh infections reported on Wednesday, as per government data.

At least 14,989 cases were registered across the country on Wednesday. Of these, Maharashtra added 7,863 cases while Kerala reported 2,938 cases, followed by Pujab with 729 cases.

On a week-on-week basis, Maharashtra, Punjab, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Delhi, Haryana and Karnataka have shown the maximum increase in new cases, as per the Union health ministry.

“Maharashtra alone accounted for a weekly increase of 16,012 cases, in terms of the number of cases. In percentage terms, Punjab reported the weekly increase of ” the health ministry said in a statement.

Centre has rushed teams to these states to assist local authorities in managing the situation. The Central teams are also trying to get to the cause of the surge and according to initial observation, large gatherings and drop in overall testing could be behind the rising number of cases.

The three-member teams, headed by joint secretary-level officers in the health ministry, have been rushed to Maharashtra, Kerala, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Punjab, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal, and Jammu and Kashmir.

“States/UTs have been advised to maintain a continued rigorous vigil for containing the spread of Covid-19 such the gains of collective efforts are not squandered away. Need for effective testing, comprehensive tracking, prompt isolation of positive cases and quick quarantine of close contacts are strongly emphasised,” the health ministry said.

Meanwhile, the cumulative number of COVID-19 vaccine doses administered in the country has crossed 1.63 crore, the Union Health Ministry said on Wednesday. The countrywide vaccination drive was rolled out on January 16 with inoculation of healthcare workers (HCWs), while for frontline workers (FLWs) it started from February 2.

The next phase of vaccination commenced from March 1 for those over 60 years of age and for people aged 45 and above with specified co-morbid conditions. A total of 1,63,14,485 vaccine doses have been given, as per the provisional report till 7 pm on Wednesday, the ministry said.