On Thursday, India's COVID-19 caseload crossed the 63 lakh mark with a 24 hour spike of 86,821 infections. 52,73,201 people have recuperated so far, and the recovery rate stands at 83.53 per cent. The total tally has reached 63,12,584, while the death toll climbed to 98,678; the virus claimed 1,181 lives in a span of 24 hours till Friday.
A total of 98,678 deaths have been reported in the country so far. Top 10 states, by casualties:
Maharashtra: 36,662 deaths
Tamil Nadu: 9,520 deaths
Karnataka: 8,864 deaths
Andhra Pradesh: 5,828 deaths
Uttar Pradesh: 5,784 deaths
Delhi: 5,361 deaths
West Bengal: 4,958 deaths
Gujarat: 3,540 deaths
Punjab: 3,406 deaths
Madhya Pradesh: 2,316 deaths
Taken on a larger monthly timescale, India's COVID-19 trajectory is still in an upward motion. The tally had crossed the 20 lakh mark on August 7, 30 lakh on August 23, and 40 lakh on September 5. It went past 50 lakh on September 16, and crossed 60 lakh on September 28. However, the Union health ministry has pointed out that there are comforting signals in the micro level. For the 10th successive day on Thursday, active cases of coronavirus infection in India went below 10 lakh, while the country's steady trend of posting high levels of daily recoveries continued. India is at number one position in terms of the number of recovered coronavirus cases, followed by Brazil and the US, according to the Johns Hopkins University, which has been compiling COVID-19 data from all over the world.
Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan said that India was faring better than most advanced countries in its fight against the coronavirus. "In all parameters of COVID-19, India is faring better than many developed countries. The continuously rising recovery rate and progressively falling case fatality rate have proven the success of the COVID-19 containment strategy followed by all states and UTs. This is a result of the combined efforts of all organisations and citizens of the country."
A look at the numbers
After the first positive case of the coronavirus infection was reported in Kerala on January 30, over 63 lakh cases have been reported in the country so far. Of those, September alone recorded 26.21 lakh infections, accounting for 41.53 per cent of the total tally. The month also saw 33,390 deaths due to the disease, which comes to around 33.84 per cent of the total 98,678 deaths recorded so far.
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It took 110 days for the COVID-19 cases in the country to reach one lakh mark, while it had taken 59 days more to go past the 10 lakh post. The cases jumped from 10 lakh to 20 lakh in 21 days, then it took 16 more days to outstrip 30 lakh, 13 days more to cross the 40-lakh mark, 11 days to go past 50 lakh and 12 days to cross 60 lakh.
India is the second worst hit nation in terms of COVID-19 cases after the US, while it is in the third spot in terms of fatalities globally after the US and Brazil, according to the Johns Hopkins University data.
India's recovery rates now stands at 83.53 per cent, with 85,376 people having recuperated from COVID-19 in a span of 24 hours. Total recoveries in the country now stand at 52,73,201. The health ministry highlighted this statistic: "The rise in total recovered cases has been steep. The last 10 lakh recoveries were added in just 12 days." It said that 77 per cent of the total recovered cases were in 10 states and UTs—Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, West Bengal, Odisha, Bihar and Telangana.
Maharashtra has contributed the highest number to the total recovered cases, followed by Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu. There are 9,40,705 active cases of coronavirus infection in the country, which comprises 14.90 per cent of the total caseload. The ministry said 76 per cent of the active cases were in 10 states and UTs—Maharashtra, Karnataka, Kerala, Andhar Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Assam, Odisha, Chhattisgarh, Telangana.
Southern states in trouble?
The southern states are witnessing worrying numbers. On Thursday, caseload in Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu crossed the seven lakh and six lakh marks respectively, while Kerala saw its tally breaching two lakhs. Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu are among the high virus caseload states in the country, Maharashtra and Karnataka being the others. Kerala, which received accolades from many for initially curbing the spread of the contagion, has seen a rapid spike in the number of infections in September, causing concern. Incidentally, the virus surge went past six lakh in Karnataka on Wednesday, while Telangana is inching closer to the two lakh mark with the tally rising to 1,93,600.
Tamil Nadu, with an addition of 5,688 new infections on Thursday, crossed six lakh cases, while the toll mounted to 9,586 with 66 more deaths. The tally of positive cases stood at 6,03,290, but the active cases were only 46,369, reflecting the high recovery rate achieved by the state, which reported its first positive case in March. Over a span of nearly three months, the state has added a whopping 5,00,569 cases after it had crossed the one lakh mark on July 3.
Kerala, which has been witnessing a rapid spike in new cases in recent weeks, had crossed the one lakh mark on September 11, seven months after India's first case was reported from the state, when a Wuhan-returned medical student tested positive for the virus. The total cases touched 1.50 lakh on September 24 with the pace of the spread further increasing. While the coronavirus count touched 2,03,241, a total of 1,31,052 people have recovered, including 2,828 on Thursday.
-Inputs from agencies