In view of the alarming rise in coronavirus cases, Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla on Thursday asked Delhi and its neighbouring districts to strengthen their health infrastructure, maintain buffer stocks of essential drugs and ensure that oxygen supply equipment is fully functional, PTI reported.

At a review meeting with district administrations of the National Capital Region, Bhalla also advised ramping up of Covid-19 testing. He reviewed the Covid-19 situation in Delhi and nine border districts of Uttar Pradesh and Haryana.

The home secretary noted that due to the close-knit urban structure of the National Capital Region, it was necessary for the authorities to formulate a unified strategy to deal with the surge in cases, PTI reported.

On Thursday, Delhi reported 15,097 new Covid-19 cases, a rise of 41.55% as compared to Wednesday’s count of 10,665 cases. The test positivity rate in the city also increased steeply to 15.34% from 11.88% a day earlier.

Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain has announced that the third wave of coronavirus has set in India, adding that the Omicron variant was now the dominant strain in the city. On Friday morning, he said that the city was expected to record over 17,000 cases in the last 24 hours, PTI reported.