Within three days, the COVID-19 death toll in Maharashtra crossed the 20,000 mark, with 288 fatalities being recorded on Sunday, taking the total to 20,037. Meanwhile, the state also added 11,111 cases, taking the total count to 5,95,865 until now. However, the state is short of 5,000 cases to breach the six lakh mark. With some of the cities and districts witnessing a spike in cases after a drop in the past few weeks, state authorities are wary of a second wave.
Of the 288 deaths, 233 were from the last 48 hours, 31 from the last week, and 24 from the period before last week. Of the total deaths, 86 were from the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR), followed by 77 in Pune, 52 in Kolhapur, 34 in Nashik, 19 in Nagpur, seven each in Latur and Akola, and five in Aurangabad, while one death were reported from another state
In some of the districts and civic bodies, such as Malegaon, Solapur, Kolhapur and Jalgaon, a sudden spike in cases was witnessed after a drop for a few weeks. A few experts termed it as a second wave. “It is a second wave, as the antibodies developed against the virus decrease and end in about four months. In some areas like Dharavi, more than 50 per cent patients have found antibodies developed against viruses, but those may not remain for long. Rise in cases in some parts of the state is an indication of a second wave in some parts of the state,” said experts.
According to the public health department of the BrihanMumbai Municipal Corporation, the city has reported 1,010 cases and 47 deaths on Thursday. Taking the total count to 1,28,726 with 7,130 deaths so far.
Dr Shashank Joshi, member of the 11-member task force, constituted by the state for the clinical management of critical patients, said the peak is owing to the aggressive and ramped up testing in the state. “State is at its peak and there could be a modulating pattern for the next few days in infections. I would not say it is a second wave, but we should be very careful to avoid any such wave. We can arrive at a specific conclusion about the peak only if the pattern sustains for a couple of weeks,” he said.
So far, a total of 31.62 lakh tests have been conducted in the state, of which nearly 18.84 per cent were positive. There are 10.53 lakh people in home quarantine and over 38,203 in institutional quarantine.