The overall COVID-19 situation in the country is stabilizing and the government will work towards ensuring further stabilization, NITI Aayog member V K Paul said on Saturday.
At a press conference on Saturday, top health officials said 10 states account for 85% of the total coronavirus cases in the country.
The Union Health Ministry said 11 states have over one lakh active COVID-19 cases, 17 have less than 50,000 cases while eight have active cases between 50,000 and one lakh.
It also said Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat, and Chhattisgarh, which are recording a high number of novel coronavirus cases, are also reporting a decline in the number of active cases.
Maharashtra recorded 34,848 new Covid-19 cases, 59,073 discharges, and 960 deaths in the last 24 hours. The state’s active case count currently stands at 4,94,032.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi chaired a high-level meeting to take stock of the country’s Covid-19 situation on Saturday. Following reports of ventilators lying unutilized, Modi called for an immediate audit of those provided to the states by the Central government. He also said that states should be transparent while reporting their cases as high numbers do not mean that they have not done enough to contain the virus.
The West Bengal government on Saturday announced a complete lockdown across the state for a fortnight from 6 am on Sunday, May 16 to 6 pm on May 30. It also imposed a night curfew, which will be observed every night from 9 pm to 5 am, beginning Sunday night.
Lav Agarwal, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Health, said a total of 18.04 crore vaccine doses have been administered so far in the country. This includes 12.74 crore people above the age of 45 years, 1.62 crore healthcare workers, 2.25 crore frontline workers, and 42.59 lakh people between the age of 18-44 years who have received their first dose.
Agarwal also said the containment efforts of the government is working and the overall COVID-19 positivity rate in India, which stood at 21.9% last week, has now fallen to 19.8%.
AIIMS Director Randeep Guleria also warned against the spread of mucormycosis and recommended that with COVID-19 cases increasing, it’s of paramount importance that protocols of infection control practices are followed at hospitals.
“It is been seen that secondary infections like fungal and bacterial are causing more mortality,” Mr. Guleria said.
The black fungus infection, also known as mucormycosis, is caused by a fungus called mucor.
Recently, several states have flagged cases of COVID-triggered mucormycosis, especially among patients who are diabetic.
India reported 3,26,098 new Covid-19 cases and 3,890 deaths in the last 24 hours ending 8 am on Saturday, as per Union Health Ministry. It also reported 3,53,299 recoveries during the same period. With today’s count, the total number of coronavirus cases in the country has reached 2,43,72,907 and the number of fatalities stands at 2,66,207. Active cases dropped by more than 31,000 cases to 36.73 lakh.