Odisha reports record 6,215 new COVID-19 cases, 8 fresh fatalities

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Bhubaneswar, Apr 23 (PTI) Odisha's COVID-19 tally mounted to 3,94,694 on Friday as the state reported its highest-ever single-day spike of 6,215 new cases, while eight fresh fatalities pushed the coronavirus death toll to 1,973, a health department official said.

Of the fresh cases, 3,604 were reported from quarantine centres and 2,611 detected during contact tracing.

The new cases were registered in all the 30 districts of the state, he said.

Khurda district, which comprises the state capital Bhubaneswar, recorded the maximum number of new cases at 950, followed by Sundargarh (684), Kalahandi (682), Nuapada (446), Cuttack (383), Puri (306), Bargarh (268), Sambalpur (263), Jharsuguda (261), Nabarangpur (257) and Bolangir (211).

Taking to Twitter, the Health and Family Welfare Department said, 'Regret to inform the demise of eight COVID positive patients while under treatment in hospitals.' Two coronavirus-positive patients each died in Ganjam and Kalahandi, while four others from Balasore, Bolangir, Kandhamal and Khurda succumbed to the disease, the official said.

Fifty-three other COVID-19 patients have also died due to comorbidities, he said.

Odisha now has 39,117 active cases, while 2,165 patients were cured of the disease in the last 24 hours, taking the total number of recoveries to 3,53,551.

The state government has so far conducted over 97.93 lakh sample tests, including 41,538 on Thursday, and the positivity rate now stands at 4.03 per cent.

The government will not conduct the ongoing vaccination programme during the weekend shutdown imposed in all urban areas of the state, the official said.

Health and Family Welfare Department PK Mohapatra wrote a letter to all the district authorities on Thursday, requesting them to sanitise all the vaccination centres on Saturdays and Sundays.

'In view of the weekend shutdown in all urban areas of the state and inadequate supply of COVID-19 vaccine, it has been decided to conduct the immunisation programme from Monday to Friday (including holidays) every week across the state till further order,' he said in the letter.

Meanwhile, the opposition BJP and Congress demanded that the government should arrange for free vaccination for all the citizens of the state.

Ruling BJD leader Debi Prasad Mishra said the state government will take a decision in this regard at an appropriate time.

The state government may have to bear an additional cost of Rs 1,600 crore if 'free vaccination for all' is announced, sources said.

Meanwhile, at least 11,000 vials of Remedesivir injection required for critical COVID-19 patients were allocated to Odisha till April 30, the official said. PTI AAM SBN BDC BDC