Mumbai: BMC denies suppressing COVID-19 death toll
Mumbai: BMC denies suppressing COVID-19 death toll

The Mumbai civic body has denied allegations of suppressing the COVID-19 death and infection figures and said it was recording the number of fatalities as per protocols laid down by the WHO and ICMR.

BJP leader Devendra Fadnavis on Saturday accused the Shiv Sena-ruled Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) of under-reporting COVID-19 fatalities and "manipulating" the viral infection rate in the city.

In a statement issued on Sunday, the BMC said it was completely transparent in reporting the number of COVID-19 fatalities and cases, and in conducting the tests.

The civic body rejected the criticism that it was creating a false picture that the pandemic situation in Mumbai was being brought under control.

"The allegation is completely baseless and the BMC administration rejects it. The COVID-19 testing and recording of deaths due to the infection were being done as per the criteria laid down by the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR)," it said.

The BMC said the civic administration was committed to "mission zero", which aims to bring the COVID-19 situation under control step-by-step.

In a letter to Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, Fadnavis had said the BMC was attributing the deaths of some COVID-19 patients to 'other reasons' and thus, suppressing the real toll of the viral infection.

The leader of opposition in the Maharashtra Assembly had also alleged that the BMC was manipulating the infection rate by relying more on Rapid Antigen Tests.

Notably, the Supreme Court recently praised the BMC for managing the second wave of COVID-19 efficiently.

With the addition of 2,403 cases on Sunday, Mumbai's COVID-19 tally rose to 6,76,475, while 68 deaths pushed the toll to 13,817, an official said.

It was the second consecutive day that the country's financial capital saw a daily addition of fewer than 3,000 cases.

A total of 3,375 people were discharged during the day, raising the overall recovery count in Mumbai to 6,13,418, as per official figures.

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