The Centre on Wednesday classified districts across the country into three categories – hotspots, non-hotpots, and green zones – as the number of coronavirus cases rose to 11,933 and the toll increased to 392, the health ministry said in its daily press briefing. Earlier in the day, the Centre issued revised guidelines on the nationwide lockdown, which has been extended till May 3.

Districts where the number of cases is more, and the rate of growth of cases is faster will be identified as hotspots, while areas that record fewer cases are non-hotspot districts. Green zones are areas that have not reported fresh cases for some time, the health ministry said.

“While 170 districts have been classified as hotspots, a total of 207 districts have been declared as non-hotspots,” Lav Agarwal, joint secretary of the health ministry said. “Door-to-door surveys are being conducted in hotspots. Curbs will gradually be eased in the districts that have been identified as green zones,” he added.

The cabinet secretary on Wednesday held a video conference with state officials and discussed the field-level implementation of containment strategy. States have been issued instructions for dealing with Covid-19 hotspots, Agarwal said. No movement will be permitted in containment zones except for those related to essential services. Special teams will be formed to undertake contact tracing in these places, he added.

The health ministry official reiterated that no cases of community transmission have been reported in India so far. “There are only local outbreaks and cluster cases in hotspots,” he said. “To contain the spread of the virus and to break the chain, we need to engage the community. Our major challenge is to implement our containment strategy amid the lockdown and also ensure social distancing.”

Of the total 11,439 Covid-19 cases reported on Wednesday, 9,756 are active, 1306 people have been discharged, and 377 have died nationwide, the health ministry said. A total of 1,176 cases were reported in the last 24 hours, it added.

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