Covid-19: India’s active cases breach 11 lakh mark

NEW DELHI, 11 Apr: The active Covid-19 cases in India breached the 11 lakh mark for the first time after a record high of 1.52 lakh new infections while a massive vaccination push, dubbed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi as the beginning of another major war against the coronavirus, was launched on Sunday in a bid to abate the surge.

The active caseload was at its lowest at 1,35,926 on 12 February and at its highest at 10,17,754 on 18 September, 2020.

Amid an unprecedented burden on health infrastructure in 15 states and Delhi, which are witnessing an upward trajectory, authorities have started reserving more Covid hospitals and taking steps to address any shortage of medical supplies, besides enhancing curbs on the movement of people.

The Centre announced a ban on export of Remdesivir, used in coronavirus treatment, and its active pharmaceutical ingredients, and asked all domestic manufacturers to display on their website details of their stockists and distributors.

There were some reports of shortage of drugs from a few states.

India’s Covid-19 tally of cases climbed to 1,33,58,805, and the death toll increased to 1,69,275 with 839 daily new fatalities, the highest since 18 October, 2020, the data updated by the health ministry on Sunday morning showed.

While the cumulative number of Covid-19 vaccine doses administered in the country has crossed 10 crore after 85 days, the ‘vaccination festival’ was started till 14 April.

“Anyone eligible for the vaccine should get the jab, and for this the society and administration have to make full efforts,” Modi said, pitching for “zero vaccine waste” and urging the people to follow Covid-appropriate behaviour.

“This festival is, in a way, the beginning of another major war against corona. We have to lay special emphasis on personal hygiene as well as social hygiene,” he said.

Five states – Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, Karnataka, Uttar Pradesh and Kerala – cumulatively account for 70.82 percent of India’s active Covid-19 cases, while Maharashtra alone accounts for 48.57 percent, the union health ministry said.

Besides these states, Delhi, Tamil Nadu, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Haryana, Rajasthan, Punjab, Telangana, Uttarakhand, Andhra Pradesh and West Bengal are displaying an upward graph in daily new cases.

In a statement, the prime minister on Sunday urged people to keep four things in mind – “each one, vaccinate one”, “each one, treat one” and “each one, save one.”

Elderly people or those who may not be much educated should be helped in getting the vaccine, he said, and also asked people to help those Covid-19 patients in getting treatment who may lack resources or information.

By wearing masks, people can save themselves and others, Modi added. (PTI)