India logs biggest daily spike of 2 lakh COVID-19 cases

Maharashtra CM in letter to PM urges him to declare the pandemic as natural calamity and use state disaster response funds

COVID-19
The country reported 2,00,739 cases on April 15, the highest single-day spike so far since the pandemic broke out | File Photo: PTI

India recorded over two lakh new COVID cases in the last 24 hours on Thursday (April 15), taking its tally to over 1.4 crore. India has been the world’s worst-hit country since April 2, forcing states to impose tough restrictions to control the virus.

The country reported 2,00,739 cases on Thursday (April 15) — the highest single-day spike so far since the pandemic broke out. The April 15 single-day spike comes a day after 1,84,372 Covid-19 cases were recorded on Wednesday in the last 24 hours, according to Union health ministry data. India had first recorded over 1 lakh cases in a single day 10 days ago on April 5.

As many as 1,038 people have died in the last 24 hours, raising the total fatalities to 1,73,123. The country’s tally of over 1.4 crore cases is the second-highest globally, behind the US and ahead of Brazil’s.

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India’s rising COVID graph has seen over 1.5 lakh new cases for the fifth day. The US took 21 days to reach the daily count of two lakh daily cases from one lakh per day, India reached that milestone in just 11 days.

In worst-hit Maharashtra and Mumbai, restaurants are shut and public gatherings of more than five people are banned. The state reported 58,952 fresh cases, taking the tally to 35,78,160, while 278 deaths pushed the death count to 58,804.

Media reports said Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray has written to PM Modi to declare the latest wave of the deadly pandemic as natural calamity and use the State Disaster Response fund to provide benefits to individuals affected by it.

The CM has asked government officials to focus on setting up a jumbo COVID treatment centre, increase oxygen production and break the chain of the virus to flatten the curve. Except for essential services, all activities will stay shut till May 1 in Maharashtra.

Also read: As states face Remdesivir crunch, people turn to black market to save kin

In Gujarat, images of long queues of ambulances with COVID patients waiting for admission at the Civil Hospital in Ahmedabad and another similar scene outside the Jahagirpura Crematorium in Surat captured the grim situation in the state on April 14.

Gujarat on April 14 reported 6,690 fresh cases and 67 deaths in a day. Surat has now become the COVID epicentre of Gujarat. While the state health department claimed 22 fatalities in Surat on Wednesday (April 15), local officials and sources said the actual number was higher.

Maharashtra is followed by Kerala, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh as far as total caseload is concerned. Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Rajasthan, Haryana, West Bengal and Bihar are the nine states which recorded their highest cases in the last 24 hours. Delhi logged 17,282 fresh cases of coronavirus on Wednesday (April 14).

Also read: ‘More testing, increasing vaccine output key to fighting COVID wave’

In Uttarakhand, thousands of people continued to throng the Kumbh Mela in Haridwar. Officials have said the religious gathering will not be curtailed and that it will continue till April 30.

Uttar Pradesh’s Varanasi administration has urged domestic and foreign tourists to skip visiting the city till the end of April. Varanasi logged in 1,585 cases on April 14 and has over 10,000 active cases, the third highest in UP after Lucknow and Prayagraj.

On the vaccination front, more than 11.4 crore vaccine doses have been administered, according to latest data from the Union Health Ministry.

The Education Ministry on April 14 deferred CBSE Class 12 board exams and cancelled the Class 10 exams amid growing concerns over the surge in Covid-19 infections in the country. For the Class 12 exam, the Ministry will review the situation on June 1.

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