A day after Niti Aayog Member (Health) Dr V K Paul hinted that the third wave of COVID is fast approaching, India has recorded 38,079 new coronavirus cases and 569 more deaths, showed Union health ministry data updated on Saturday. While the number of cases have saw a slight dip from that of Friday's numbers, the death toll has seen an increase.
Saturday's figures have taken the infection tally to 3,10,64,908, while the death toll reached 4,13,091.
The active cases have declined to 4,24,025 and comprise 1.36 per cent of the total infections, while the national COVID-19 recovery rate stands at 97.31 per cent, the data updated at 8 am showed. It said that active COVID-19 cases have decreased by 6,397 in a span of 24 hours.
The ministry said that 19,98,715 tests were conducted on Friday, taking the total cumulative tests conducted for detection of COVID-19 in the country to 44,20,21,954. The daily positivity rate was recorded at 1.91 per cent and it has been less than three per cent for 26 consecutive days, it said.
Meanwhile, addressing a press conference on Friday, Paul said the world is moving towards a third wave of Covid and even the prime minister has mentioned this and said it is a warning that everything cannot be taken for granted. He said the next 100-125 days are going to be critical.
"The question of the third wave keeps coming back. This is because our population is still very vulnerable. We still have not reached the stage of herd immunity nor have we reached the stage of infection and we do not want to acquire herd immunity through infections. We are progressing in terms of vaccines and nearly 50 per cent of our most vulnerable group above the age of 45 years is protected. This will also impact mortality and it will come down, but the infection can spread. We are vulnerable, the virus is still around," he said.
According to the health ministry, the weekly positivity rate stands at 2.10 per cent. The number of people who have recovered from the disease has risen to 3,02,27,792, while the case fatality rate has increased to 1.33 per cent, the data stated.
The total vaccine doses administered has reached 39.96 crore under the nationwide vaccination drive.
(With PTI inputs)