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Kerala on Thursday reported 42,464 new COVID-19 cases, highest single-day spike, taking active tally to 3,90,906, state health bulletin reported. On Wednesday, the state had reported 41,953 new infections in the span of just 24 hours.

Meanwhile, the death toll reached 5,628 as 63 related fatalities were recorded today. Also, the total number of recoveries crossed 13,89,515 with 27,152 people being discharged from hospitals in last 24 hours.


Earlier in the day, Kerala government announced to impose a lockdown in the state from May 8 to contain the spread of the virus. Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan took to Twitter to say, "The entire State of Kerala will be under lockdown from 6 am on 8 May to 16 May. This is in the background of a strong 2nd wave of COVID-19."

The 9-day-lockdown would come into force on May 8 morning and extend up to May 16. Strict lockdown-like restrictions are already in place in the southern state.

The chief minister on Wednesday highlighted the "serious situation of COVID" in the state and indicated the possibility of a lockdown, saying that the "situation calls for imposing more restrictions in the state".

"Kerala is going through a serious situation with COVID spreading rapidly in the state. The test positivity rate (TPR) is not coming down. The situation calls for imposing more restrictions in the state," said Vijayan.

Meanwhile, the Kerala High Court on Thursday directed the state government to take steps to introduce a uniform tariff rate for COVID-19 treatment at private hospitals across the state. Expressing concern over the high treatment charges in private hospitals, a division bench of the high court, comprising Justices Devan Ramachandran and Kauser Edappagath, emphasised the need for rationalising COVID-19 treatment tariff in such facilities in the state.

In his remarks, Justice Devan Ramachandran said, "When the public is putting all their life savings (for treatment), the private hospitals can also sacrifice."

The court expressed hope that this situation will continue only for a few months. It directed the state government to take a decision on the matter by Monday. The court was considering a plea alleging that private hospitals and testing centers were charging high bills to "exploit the pandemic situation and fear of people in the society."

(With inputs from agencies)

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