India’s coronavirus case count on Saturday rose to 1,03,05,788 after 19,079 new infections were reported in 24 hours. The toll stood at 1,49,218, with 224 deaths in a day. There are 2,50,183 active cases and 99,06,387 people have recovered from Covid-19 so far.

The country’s mortality rate due to Covid-19 was recorded at 1.45%, and recovery rate at 96.12%. India has tested 17,39,41,658 samples for the coronavirus till Friday, and 8,29,964 of them were analysed on Friday alone, according to the Indian Council of Medical Research.

The central government began the second round of Covid-19 vaccination dry run in all states to assess the readiness for the roll-out programme, with health authorities checking everything – from their technology platforms to the storage infrastructure – that will be required to inoculate millions. The massive exercise came a day after a government-appointed panel of experts held a meeting to review the applications of vaccine candidates.

Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan on Friday held a review meeting with officials of the Delhi government to discuss preparations for the dry run. Vardhan referred to the pulse polio drive in 1994 in Delhi, and said that relevant stakeholders had to be mobilised. The health minister also stressed on the requirement for adequate security arrangements at session sites, cold chain points and vaccine transportation.

Everyone arriving in India from the United Kingdom between January 8 and January 30 will be subjected to paid Covid-19 tests on arrival, the Union health ministry said in a Standard Operating Procedure released on Friday.

In the United Kingdom, the administration has ordered all primary schools in London to remain shut for the start of the new term next week to rein in a rise in hospitalisations due to the mutant strain of the coronavirus, reported The Guardian.

Covid-19 has infected more than 8.39 crore people and killed over 18.27 lakh, according to the Johns Hopkins University. Over 4.72 crore people have recovered from the disease.