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New Delhi, March 28: Confirmed Covid-19 cases shot up by 149 in India on Saturday morning, taking the total count to 873 as the country recorded its biggest jump in a 24-hour period, the Union health ministry said.
In the updated list, the number of active Covid-19 cases in the country stood at 775. It added that 78 people were either cured or discharged, and that one had migrated from India. The health ministry said there were two new deaths – one each in Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh.
The data said 19 people have died in India, where a 21-day nationwide lockdown has been enforced to stop the fast-spreading Sars-Cov-2 virus, which causes the deadly infection. Maharashtra topped the list with 177 cases, followed by Kerala at 165.
Till date, the number of deaths due to Covid-19 have been reported from Maharashtra (5), Gujarat (3), Karnataka (2), Madhya Pradesh (2) and one each from Tamil Nadu, Bihar, Punjab, Delhi, West Bengal, Jammu and Kashmir and Himachal Pradesh.
According to Worldometer, a global case tracker which says it gives live statistics, India has 887 infections and 20 deaths as of Saturday morning.
The health ministry’s Friday morning data said there were 724 cases and 17 deaths in the country.
The number of cases in India has spiked to over 800 from just 50 a little over two weeks ago. The first death was reported on March 11.
The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) maintains that there is no community transmission in the country. Community transmission is that phase the outbreak when the source of an individual’s infection can’t be traced and isolated.
On Friday, Kerala reported 39 new cases, sparking fears of community transmission. Kasargod district reported 34 of the 39 cases, in an indication that the disease may have spread deep.
India has taken unprecedented steps to fight the disease – the latest being a complete lockdown and increased surveillance.
“When the disease has spread to 192 countries, it means screening at entry points will serve no purpose. India anyway is in a state of lockdown that will show benefits if people follow the dos and don’ts. Since the disease is here, what we need to do now is improve our case management and strengthen surveillance within the community. Our efforts now are concentrating on not letting it spread further,” Lav Aggarwal, joint secretary in the Union ministry of health and family welfare, said on Friday.
Hospitals across the country have also started preparing for a possible surge in the number of cases. (Courtesy: HT)