Health Ministry raises concerns over 'worsening COVID situation'

India reported 56,211 new COVID-19 cases in the last 24 hours.

Credit : Twitter

Aditi Bagaddeo


India reported 56,211 new COVID-19 cases in the last 24 hours, informed the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on Tuesday evening. With this, the total cases in India have reached 1,20,95,855.

In a routine press briefing held on Tuesday, the Union Ministry expressed concern that the COVID situation is going from bad to worse. The Ministry announced that the weekly national average positivity rate is 5.65 percent. Maharashtra has a weekly average of 23 percent, followed by Punjab at 8.82 percent, Chhattisgarh (8 percent), Madhya Pradesh (7.82 percent), Tamil Nadu (2.50 percent), Karnataka (2.45 percent), Gujarat (2.2 percent) and Delhi (2.04 percent).

 "There are 10 districts across the country that have the most number of active cases. They are Pune, Mumbai, Nagpur, Thane, Nashik, Aurangabad, Bangalore Urban, Nanded, Delhi and Ahmednagar," said Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan during the routine briefing. Eight of these districts are in Maharashtra that currently accounts for the maximum number of active cases in the country. The state has imposed lockdown restrictions from 8 pm to 7 am when all the public places will remain strictly closed.

While Punjab has 24,143 active cases with an average death rate of 12 on deaths daily basis, NITI Aayog member VK Paul said that the state is not doing an adequate number of tests and nor is isolating infected people.

However, despite the severity of the surge in the number of fresh COVID cases across the country in the second wave, several problems that people, as well as the administration, faced last year seem to be repeating.

In a viral photo of Nagpur Government Medical College, two COVID patients were seen sleeping in the same hospital bed.  It was then observed that this was reportedly the case of several beds at the said hospital. The hospital's top medical officer said the situation has been resolved since the photo was taken. Unavailability of beds, especially ICU and Oxygen beds for COVID patients continues to be a problem across the state.

In a viral video from Mumbai’s Marine Drive, Mumbai police officials were seen punishing four residents by making them squat and walk for not wearing a mask. In Delhi, 29 Delhi Metro passengers were penalised for not wearing face masks properly and violating social distancing norms. “To ensure our travel guidelines are being followed, Delhi Metro's Flying Squads penalised 29 commuters on 29 March 2021 for not wearing a face mask properly & following social distancing," the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) tweeted, urging commuters to follow "protocols and politely counsel others to do the same."