India reports 77 COVID-19 deaths in 24 hours, highest in a day

Total number of confirmed cases rises to 35,043

Students from Kota arrive in Kolkata on a bus during the nationwide lockdown | Salil bera Students from Kota arrive in Kolkata on a bus during the nationwide lockdown | Salil bera

India has reported as many as 77 deaths due to COVID-19 in the last 24 hours, the highest in a single day, the health ministry informed in its daily media briefing on Friday evening.

So far, a total of 8,888 people have been cured, taking the total recovery rate in the country to 25.37 per cent. The total number of confirmed cases rose to 35,043, with 1,993 new cases having been reported since Thursday.

The ministry said several actions have been taken by the Union government along with the states and the Union territories for prevention, containment and management of COVID-19, through a graded, pre-emptive and pro-active approach. 

“All the districts of the country have been divided into green, orange and red zone. State/UTs and district administration through focused efforts are required to ensure that the districts where cases have come up i.e. red and orange zones can break the chain of transmission through effective and stringent containment measures,” the ministry said in a statement.

Containment zones should be delineated duly taking into account mapping of cases and contacts; geographical dispersion of cases and contacts; areas with a well-demarcated perimeter; and enforceability, it said.

The ministry said states and UTs have been advised that containment zones can be residential colony, mohallas, municipal wards or police station area, municipal zones, towns etc. in urban areas as appropriate. In case of rural areas, zones can be village or clusters of village or group of police stations, gram panchayats or block etc. as appropriate.

“States/UTs also need to clearly demarcate the buffer zones and containment zones. In containment zones, stringent perimeter control, active search for cases through the house to house surveillance by special teams formed for the purpose, testing of all cases as per sampling guidelines, contact tracing and clinical management of all confirmed cases need to be done while in case of buffer zones, extensive surveillance for cases through monitoring ILI/SARI cases in health facilities needs to be done,” it said.

The health ministry reiterated that for breaking the chain of transmission, it is important to follow hand hygiene, to disinfect and regularly clean all frequently touched surfaces such as table-tops, chair handles, keyboards, mouse, mouse pad, etc. “Everybody should wear a mask or face cover as appropriate, download the corona tracker app Arogya Setu for self assessment of risk; and maintain physical distancing,” it said.