reported a significant jump in new Covid-19 cases and fatalities on Wednesday, continuing with the rise that started 10 days ago. A total of 8,807 cases, the highest in 129 days (since 9,060 on October 18) were added to the state’s daily tally. The state reported 80 deaths, highest in two months (since December 24, when 89 deaths were reported). With this, the total cases in the state jumped to 21,21,119 and the toll touched 51,937.
Mumbai also saw a three-month high in daily Covid-19 cases. It reported 1,167 new infections, the highest in 119 days. The last time the city had more than 1,167 cases was on October 28, when 1,354 were detected and Mumbai was merely coming out of the peak. It is also after 88 days since November 28 (1,063) that the city has added over 1,000 cases in a day. The only silver lining for the city was that deaths continued to be in single digits (4). Mumbai’s total toll is now 11,458.
Of the 80 deaths in the state, 27 occurred in the last 48 hours and the rest are older than a week, the state update said.
Intensivist Dr Rahul Pandit, a member of the state Covid task force, said the rise in cases was “concerning”. “A rise in critical cases or deaths is seen 7-14 days after a surge in cases,” he said, adding that the next 10 days would be make or break for Mumbai. Additional municipal commissioner Suresh Kakani said over 21,000 tests were carried out on Wednesday. “Yes, there is a jump in cases and in positivity rate, which is at 6%. We are keeping a close eye on the situation. We have asked all jumbo facilities to reactivate beds,” he said.
There was a detailed presentation in the state cabinet meeting where data on the Covid-19 surge and the ongoing vaccination drive was presented. Nawab Malik, minister for skill development, said CM Uddhav Thackeray instructed all districts to increase testing and contact tracing. The health department said in the meeting that despite a rise in average cases in February, the case fatality rate (CFR) is low. The daily average of cases in January was 2,973 and the case fatality rate was 1.7%. The daily average cases are 3,347 and total deaths reported in February are 775, taking the CFR to 0.4%.
Mumbai circle on Wednesday reported 2,018 cases, highest in the state, followed by Pune circle with 1,811 cases. Akola and Nagpur circles from Vidarbha region that is currently the eye of the storm saw 1,679 and 1,323 cases, respectively. The
Nagpur municipal corporation
reported a dozen deaths.
Dr Shashank Joshi, another member of the state task force, said the coming 10 days will tell if the state was staring at a second wave. “This surge has started from Vidarbha, and it is hard to believe that mutant variants didn’t have a role to play,” he said. Another plausible explanation for the rise, he said, was that people who didn’t get infected in the previous months have all started moving freely. “Double masking is an absolute must to prevent coronavirus,” he said.
From the MMR,
saw a sharp rise in Covid-19 patients. It reported 165 fresh patients and two deaths. There were 130 cases and two deaths within NMMC areas on Wednesday. The PCMC areas reported 55 fresh cases and one death on Wednesday.
(Inputs by Pradeep Gupta,
, BB Nayak)