Coronavirus in Maharashtra: State records more than 16,000 cases for second time in a row
BL Soni

Mumbai: For the second consecutive day, Maharashtra reported more than 16,000 cases on Sunday with 16,408 new cases being reported, taking the total count to 7,80,689. The death toll of the state also went up to 24,399 after 296 deaths were reported, of which, 220 were in the past 48 hours, 43 deaths were from the past one week, while the rest 33 were from the period before.

Of the total deaths, 79 were from the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR), followed by 51 in Kolhapur, 50 in Pune, 45 in Nagpur, 33 in Nashik, 16 in Latur, 10 each in Aurangabad and Akola, while one dead was from another state.

Meanwhile, Mumbai, for the fifth consecutive day, witnessed more than 1,000 cases, with 1,237 new cases and 30 Covid-19 deaths, increasing the total count to 1,44,768 with 7,623 deaths so far. The recovery rate has now increased to 80.49 per cent, while mortality rate is still highest with 5.26 per cent.

Authorities are wary about further spike in cases over the next few weeks amid the relaxations and the free movement of people due to the festivals. The state government is facing pressure from various fronts for relaxations from lockdown curbs and opening up religious places, gymnasiums, inter-district transport etc.

“In the wake of more relaxations rolled out from the first week of September, we expect this leading to the rise in numbers in coming weeks. Though we have been claiming to reach the plateau by mid-October, the number of rural areas is still rising and it may make it difficult to expect the infection to stabilise by then. This has been the reason we have been planning to go for the aggressive surveillance and tracking of high and low-risk contacts under our ‘chase the virus’ programme in September. Our entire focus would be on reducing the fatalities even if the number of infections kept rising,” said an official from the health department.

Senior health officials said that though reducing the number of infections was not possible immediately, the government should focus on awareness among the people. “Now you neither can continue with the lockdown nor expect the number to come down immediately. By using alternative manpower to replace the existing workforce, which is under stress, the government should aggressively go for surveillance so that suspected patients are traced to the early stage. People should be educated about the guidelines and self-hygiene so that the spread is contained at maximum level and fatalities are controlled,” he said.

So far, a total of 40.84 lakh tests have been conducted in the state, of which nearly 19 per cent were positive. There are 13.09 lakh people in home quarantine and over 35,373 in institutional quarantine.

DASHBOARD

Mumbai

Cases: 1,44,768

Deaths: 7,623

Discharged: 1,16,352

Mortality Rate: 5.26%

Recovery Rate: 80.49 %

Maharashtra

Cases: 7,80,689

Deaths: 24,399

Discharged: 5,62,401

Mortality Rate: 3.12%

Recovery rate: 72%

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