Pune, one of the worst-hit cities in the country in terms of the number of COVID-19 cases, has been witnessing a spike in infections. Over the last few days, the city had surpassed Mumbai in the number of fresh cases. Pune saw its biggest spike of around 13,000 cases (one-third of the total number of cases) in the last ten days.
As of July 21, Pune had reported a total of 39,872 cases and 1,041 deaths, according to the Maharashtra government’s daily bulletin. The number of active cases stood at 15,434, while 24,246 patients had recovered. The district administration had imposed a 10-day intense lockdown starting from July 13.
However, of the total number of cases, 13,015 were reported during the lockdown. This is higher than the number of cases reported in the last 10 days in Mumbai, which is one of the worst-hit cities. Mumbai had clocked 11,962 cases during the same period.
On July 15, Pune (1,139) surpassed Mumbai (954) in the number of new cases. The number kept on increasing in the succeeding days. On June 20, Pune reported the highest single-day spike of 1,812 cases.
Besides these absolute numbers, even the growth rate of COVID-19 cases in Pune was much higher than the capital city. Since July 13, the rate of daily increase in cases in Mumbai ranged between 1 and 1.5 per cent, while, in Pune, it was between 3.2 and 4.9 per cent. On July 17 and 20, the city clocked the highest rate of increase at 4.9 per cent.
Pune and Mumbai have a recovery rate of 60.81 and 70.93 per cent respectively. However, Mumbai’s death rate at 5.62 per cent is much higher than that of Pune (2.61 per cent). The two cities have reported 511 and 186 deaths respectively. The number of active cases in the state capital is 23,728, while Pune has 15,434 active cases.
Pune Collector Naval Kishor Ram on Monday (July 20) said the administration had no plans of extending the lockdown in the city. However, he said, “Some restrictions will be in place to avoid crowding at public places.”
The number of samples sent for testing, beds and intensive care units has been increased during the lockdown period, he told reporters. “Restriction in public movement and the opening of shops on Saturdays and Sundays is under consideration,” he said.
Meanwhile, BJP MLA Siddharth Shirole wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeking the Centre’s intervention in the control of the spread of coronavirus in the city.
#Pune is a few days away from a medical catastrophe. State Govt. has failed. I on behalf of every Punekar have written to Hon. PM @narendramodi ji, Hon. HM @AmitShah ji, Hon. MoHFW @drharshvardhan ji, Shri. @Dev_Fadnavis ji and sought intervention from the Central Govt. (1/n) pic.twitter.com/bqDWKBwVWP
— Siddharth Shirole (@SidShirole) July 16, 2020
He mentioned about the shortage of hospital beds, misleading projection of numbers as well as over-reliance on private players by the state administration.