Maharashtra on Thursday witnessed a slight drop in daily cases, with 3,580 new infections and 89 Covid-19 deaths in the last 24 hours, pushing its tally to 19,09,951 with 49,058 fatalities. The active cases in the state have dropped to 54,891. “Of the 89 deaths reported today, 43 occurred in the last 48 hours and 18 in the last week. The remaining 28 deaths are from the period before last week. Out of the 28 deaths,13 occurred in Nagpur, 5 in Nashik, 4 in Palghar, 2 in Latur, 1 each in Aurangabad, Pune, Thane and Jalna,” said Dr Pradip Awate, state surveillance officer.
Mumbai, meanwhile recorded 643 new cases and 12 Covid-19 deaths on Thursday. Thus, increasing the total count to 2,89,204 with 11,045 fatalities so far. The doubling rate of cases has now increased to 366 days, while weekly growth has dropped to 0.21 per cent.
The state officials said they are taking all precautions to prevent the spread of the new variants of Covid-19.
Suresk Kakani, additional municipal commissioner, said there could be an estimated 3, 000 UK returnees across Maharashtra, 30 per cent of which will be in Mumbai. “We are preparing a list of all such returnees in the city and will contact them through ward war rooms,” he said.
The state government has already announced measures to arrest the spread of the new variant of the virus. It has stopped flights from the UK and enforced compulsory quarantine for passengers arriving from Europe, Middle East and South Africa.
State health department officials heaved a sigh of relief as the cases continue to remain under control. Against the projection of the rise in the cases in December, the cases continue to be below 4,000 over the last few days.
Experts expect a surge in the second week of January. “The risk of the second wave is still there. It may not be as high as it had been after the Ganpati. We still expect a surge in cases 15 days after Christmas. I do not think the new strain found in the UK, Europe and other countries will have any impact here. We have already started taking precautions. The district administrations have already been told to contain the spread because of the crowding,” said Dr Avinash Supe, who heads the state-appointed death audit committee.