New Delhi: The unprecedented surge in COVID-19 cases in India, possibly hinting at the second wave, has raised concern for the Centre. The country has been reporting more than 60,000 infections for the past few days and the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare's data on Monday (March 29) showed that India registered 68,020 new cases. This was also reportedly the highest single-day rise in over 5 months.
The Centre stated that 8 states namely Maharashtra, Karnataka, Punjab, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Chhattisgarh, accounted for 84.5% of the new cases.
Maharashtra, the worst coronavirus-hit state in India, recorded the highest daily new cases at 40,414 and was followed by Karnataka (3,082) and Punjab (2,870).
India's total COVID-19 active count has also soared to 5.21 lakh. The MoHFW said that the present active caseload now stands at 4.33% of India's total positive cases.
Maharashtra, Kerala, Punjab, Karnataka and Chhattisgarh also account for 80.17% of the total active cases in India, whereas, 19 states and UTs have higher coronavirus cases per million than the national average.
Earlier on March 27, the Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan chaired a high-level meet with 12 states and UTs that are reporting a surge in cases. According to the MoHFW, the states were informed that the country has seen the sharpest rise in weekly COVID-19 cases and fatalities since May 2020 (7.7% and 5.1% respectively).
The states and UTs were advised to focus on stringent containment and public health measures in 46 high burden districts.
The following five-fold strategy was also laid out for adoption by the states and UTs for effective containment and management of the COVID-19 pandemic:
1. Increased testing and vaccination
2. Effective tracing
3. Prompt isolation
4. Efficient clinical treatment, and
5. Adherence to COVID Appropriate Behaviour.