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India reports 21,257 new Covid-19 cases and 271 deaths in 24 hours. The country's active caseload stands at 2,40,221--the lowest in 205 days. However, the death toll has surged to 4,50,127 which is 1.33% of the cumulative Covid-19 cases.

So far 3,32,25,221 people have recovered from Covid-19 in the country, taking the recovery rate to 97.96%. It is the highest recovery rate since March 2020.

India has continued to report a decline in Covid, allowing states to ease the Covid-19 restrictions. Amid the festive season, several states have lifted Covid curbs for the public by reopening religious places and extending the shops' timings. Devotees in Maharashtra, West Bengal, Delhi, Gujarat can now visit the places of worship during the Navratri and Dussehra festival by following Covid-19 protocols.

However, the Centre has warned that the Covid cases might be dwindling, the the second wave still continues. Yesterday, Lav Agarwal, joint secretary of Union health ministry said five states – Kerala, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Mizoram and Karnataka – have over 10,000 active Covid-19 cases at the moment. Kerala alone has over 1 lakh active Covid-19 cases currently.

He said, "The challenge of Covid has not ended yet. To some extent, we say that we have not controlled the second wave of Covid. We need to make continuous efforts".

Separately, the Central government has decided to allow foreign tourists into the country from October 15. Foreign tourists travelling by chartered flight can visit India from October 15. While tourists entering into India by flights other than chartered aircraft would be able to do so only with effect from November 15, 2021, on fresh tourist visas, the union home ministry said. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, all visas granted to foreigners were suspended last year.

Meanwhile, the cumulative number of Covid-19 vaccine doses administered in the country crossed 93 crore. Over 67.21 crore people have received the first dose of vaccines and 25.90 crore have received second doses.

India started its Covid-19 vaccination drive on January 16 with the healthcare workers (HCWs) getting inoculated in the first phase. The vaccination of the frontline workers (FLWs) started from February 2.

The next phase of COVID-19 vaccination commenced from March 1 for people over 60 years of age and those aged 45 and above with specified co-morbid conditions. From April 1, India launched vaccination for all people aged above 45 years

And from May 1, the Centre expanded the Covid vaccination drive by allowing everyone above 18 years of age to get jabbed.

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