India on Tuesday recorded 1,61,736 new cases of the coronavirus, according to numbers released by the Ministry of Health. The country’s overall tally of infections since the pandemic broke out in March 2020 rose to 1,36,89,453.

The toll rose to 1,71,058 with 879 deaths in the last 24 hours. India has 12.64 lakh active cases as of Tuesday.

Ten states – Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Delhi, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Rajasthan and Kerala – accounted for 80.80% of the new cases reported in the last 24 hours, the health ministry said in a statement. Maharashtra alone accounted for 44.78% of the total active caseload of the country.

(Image source: PIB)

Over 40 lakh people received a vaccine in the last 24 hours, according to ministry data. This takes the total vaccine doses administered so far to 10,85,33,085. The Centre also said that eight states accounted for 60.16% of the total doses given so far in the country.

(Image source: PIB)

India is in the midst of a severe second wave of the virus, with Delhi reporting 11,491 new cases on Monday. Positivity rate in the Capital has risen to 12.44%, up from 9.43% on Sunday.

Besides this, lakhs of pilgrims have also congregated for the Kumbh Mela in Uttarakhand. Police officials claim social distancing cannot be implemented as it may cause a stampede. So far, at least 102 pilgrims have tested positive at the festival, according to The Indian Express. No thermal screening has been arranged for, and masks are not being work either, the report added.

On Monday, the Centre also approved Russian vaccine Sputnik-V, amid complaints of vaccine shortages in several states. Kerala joined the list of states experiencing a vaccine shortage, asking for 50 lakh shots immediately.

Meanwhile, Union minister Santosh Gangwar tested positive for the coronavirus. “I do not have any kind of symptoms, request that everyone who has come in contact with me, please follow the coronavirus safety rules,” he tweeted. “Together we will overcome this pandemic.”

State updates

  • People’s Democratic Party chief Mehbooba Mufti said her younger daughter Iltija has tested positive for the coronavirus. Mufti said Iltija has isolated herself and is taking all necessary precautions as advised by the doctors.
  • Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa has ruled out the imposition of a lockdown in the state and called an all-party meeting on April 18 to discuss the coronavirus situation, reported ANI. “Technical advisory committee has said that positive cases will increase here till May 2 hence people must abide by Covid-appropriate behaviour,” he added.
  • Maharashtra Health Minister Rajesh Tope said that residents of the state need to mentally prepare themselves for an impending lockdown, reported The Indian Express. Tope added that the state government would give them adequate time to prepare for the lockdown.
  • The Delhi government has made it mandatory for devotees visiting the Kalkaji temple to get an e-pass as the Navaratri festival begins, reported ANI. “Devotees will be given a particular day and time to visit the temple,” the head priest said. “Link available on temple website.”

Global scenario

  • Globally, the coronavirus has infected more than 13.65 crore people since the beginning of the pandemic and killed 29,44,771 people, according to the Johns Hopkins University. More than 7.77 crore people have recovered from the infection.
  • Ireland’s vaccine taskforce has recommended limiting the AstraZeneca coronavirus jab to people aged over 60, after the European drug regulator ruled earlier this month that the vaccine could be linked to rare blood clots, reported AFP.