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As many as 1,03,558 more people tested positive for Covid-19 across the country in the last 24 hours, taking the cumulative tally to 1,25,89,067, said the Union health ministry on Monday.

This is the first time that the country has crossed the one-lakh mark in new infections since the pandemic broke out. The previous high in daily infections stood at 97,894 on 16 September last year.

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Maharashtra continues to be the worst-affected state in the country as it reported 57,074 fresh coronavirus infections on Sunday -- the highest single-day spike so far since the pandemic broke out.

The state has announced a weekend lockdown from 8 pm on Friday and a shut down of private offices, except in the banking and insurance sectors, from Monday night with employees allowed to work from home.

In addition to this, 478 more people succumbed to the disease in India in the last 24 hours, taking the death toll to 1,65,101.

The fatality count has decreased again as compared to Sunday when it stood at 513. The number had claimed to 714 on Saturday, the highest in nearly six months.

A total of 52,847 more people have recuperated from the disease. The total number of recoveries now stands at 1,16,82,136.

As a result, there are 7,41,830 active infections across the country currently. As the second wave rages, India added over one lakh cases to the active tally in three days, the shortest duration so far.

Containment measures

In view of the spiking cases, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has directed that central teams consisting of public health specialists be sent to Maharashtra, Punjab and Chhattisgarh, where the situation was of serious concern.

They are among 10 high burden states and UTs are contributing 91.4% of the total cases and 90.9% of the total deaths in the country.

The officials are attributing the sharp rise in cases to the severe decline in compliance of Covid-appropriate behaviour, especially in the use of masks and social distancing, pandemic fatigue and lack of effective implementation of containment measures at the field level.

It was noted in PM's review meeting that the exact contribution of mutant strains to the escalation of cases in some states remains speculative. But the measures to control the pandemic remain the same, and hence the implementation of various protocols for Covid-19 management is all the more critical in those areas.

Vaccination in India

The country has so far administered 7,91,05,163 anti-Covid jabs.

The inoculation drive in India was rolled out on 16 January with healthcare workers (HCWs) getting inoculated and the vaccination of the frontline workers (FLWs) started on 2 February.

The next phase of Covid-19 vaccination commenced on 1 March for those who are above 60 years of age and for people aged 45 and above with specified comorbid conditions.

India extended the drive to include everybody aged 45 and above from Thursday.

In Maharashtra, 73,54,244 doses have been administered, which alone accounts for 9.68% of the total vaccinations in the country, according to a Sunday night statement.

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