Our Bureau

Even as large metros such as Delhi and Mumbai begin to show a dip in Covid-19 cases, the Centre has cautioned that the number of districts reporting over 10 per cent test positivity rate (TPR) has close to tripled in a week.

About 314 districts in 33 States showed a TPR of more than 10 per cent between January 10 and 16, compared to 120 districts in 29 States in the preceding week, said the Health Ministry. The largest number of such districts were in Maharashtra (26), followed by Tamil Nadu (23), Assam (22) and West Bengal (21).

Weekly TPR

The number of districts reporting weekly TPR between 5-10 per cent also increased at 150, compared to 106 in the previous week. The rise in TPR is seen as a fallout of the new testing advisory from Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), which prioritised testing only for those showing symptoms. Notably, India's average weekly TPR has almost doubled to 14.41 per cent in a week. This, even as daily positivity rate stood at 19.65 per cent.

Taking stock

States such as Karnataka and Telangana, for instance, took stock of the Covid-19 scenario in the respective regions. According to news agency reports, Karnataka Revenue Minister R Ashoka expects Covid cases to peak on January 25 and then fall gradually. A decision on extending weekend curfews would be taken later in the week, he said, even as Bengaluru police commissioner Kamal Pant banned rallies, demonstrations and protests and congregation of more than 200 people in open places and 100 people in closed places during marriages till January end, the report said.

Cases rise and fall

The slide in cases continued in some of the larger metros. Cases in Delhi dipped with 12,527 new cases being reported in 24 hours. The number of deaths reported were 24, and daily positivity rate increased to 27.99 per cent.

Mumbai also reported a sharp dip in new cases at 5,956 on Monday, with TPR sharply lower at 12.5 per cent. The financial capital reported 12 deaths.

West Bengal also registered a further decline in new Covid-19 cases at 9,385 against 14,938 on Sunday. Deaths stood at 33. Following the decline for the second day in a row, West Bengal government announced further relaxations. Gyms were allowed to remain open with 50 per cent capacity, up to 9 pm, provided everyone was fully vaccinated or had tested negative. It also allowed Jatra in a “restricted manner”, besides allowing outdoor shooting for films and TV programmes with Covid protocols.

Gujarat, however, added 12,753 new cases, against 10,150 yesterday. The State reported five deaths and 5,984 recoveries, while cases on ventilator support has increased to 95 from 29 a week ago. Similarly, Tamil Nadu added 23,443 new cases, 20 deaths and 13,551 recoveries in the past 24 hours. Chennai reported 8,591 new cases and nine deaths.

India tally

In 24 hours ending Monday morning, India reported 2,58,089 new cases and 385 deaths, compared to 2.71 lakh new cases on Sunday. The Omicron tally increased to 8,209 cases in this period, with Maharashtra reporting 1,738 Omicron cases, West Bengal 1,672, Rajasthan 1,276 and Delhi 549 cases.

After completion of a year of Covid vaccination drive on Sunday, total vaccinations reached 157.20 crore doses. On Monday, the country had crossed 75 lakh vaccination at 7.30 pm.

(With inputs from Kolkata and Hyderabad Bureaus)

social-fb COMMENT NOW