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A Hindu devotee wearing a mask as a precaution against the coronavirus performs rituals during solar eclipse at Banganga in Mumbai, India. (AP)
A Hindu devotee wearing a mask as a precaution against the coronavirus performs rituals during solar eclipse at Banganga in Mumbai, India. (AP)

Mint Covid Tracker: At current trajectory, India’s case count likely to reach half a million by weekend

India’s death count is the eight highest globally. Maharashtra, Delhi, and Gujarat together account for 73 percent of the 13,699 deaths so far.

The number of reported coronavirus cases in India rose 8 percent over the last two days to 425,282, latest data from the ministry of health and family welfare (MoHFW) showed.

The death toll has reached 13,699 after growing 6 percent over the last two days. The rate of growth of infections and deaths is in line with the trend from the previous 48 hour period.

The death count in India has nearly doubled in the last fifteen days. The number of infections is now twice what it was eighteen days ago, and given the rate of growth in this period, could hit the 500,000-mark in five days.

The continuing rise in cases poses a severe challenge for India’s strained medical capacity and overburdened health system.

Over the past few weeks, new infections and deaths have been rising faster in India than in other badly-hit countries. The country’s death toll is now the eighth worst in the world. Among countries with more than 5000 deaths, India has recorded the biggest spike in deaths and the biggest jump in confirmed cases over the past week.

Maharashtra now has 6,170 deaths, and Delhi’s toll has risen to 2,175. Gujarat is next on the list with 1,663 deaths, followed by Tamil Nadu (757) and West Bengal (555). These five states have recorded 83 percent of all covid-related deaths in India so far. Deaths have surged the most in Haryana, Tamil Nadu, and Delhi in the last seven days.

The case fatality rates vary widely. At 6.1 percent, Gujarat has the worst fatality rate, followed by Maharashtra, where 4.7 percent of those who tested positive for coronavirus have died. Madhya Pradesh is next with 4.3 percent. India’s case fatality rate is 3.2 percent. Among all states and union territories that have had deaths, the case fatality rates are the lowest in Tripura (0.1%), Ladakh (0.1%), and Assam (0.2%).

It is worth noting that data quality on cases and deaths vary across countries and regions because of factors such as differences in testing standards, and in protocols being followed for recording covid-related deaths.

Maharashtra has 60,161 patients still under treatment, the most in the country, followed by Tamil Nadu with 25,866 active cases and Delhi with 24,558. Gujarat is fourth on the list with 6,248 active cases and Uttar Pradesh fifth with 6,186 cases. Out of the 174,387 active cases in India as of Monday morning, the top five states together have 71 percent and the top ten states account for 83 percent. Active cases exclude deaths and recoveries from the list of confirmed cases.

As many as 237,196 patients (56%) have now been discharged in India.

Among the ten states and union territories with most active cases, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, and Tamil Nadu have seen the highest percentage spike over the past seven days.

Among districts, Chennai, Thane, Mumbai, Pune, and Hyderabad have seen the biggest jump in confirmed cases in the last two days. These five districts account for 42 percent of the new cases over this period, data compiled by last evening shows. Other districts that have seen a sharp spike over the past two days are Ahmedabad in Gujarat, Kancheepuram in Tamil Nadu, and Palghar in Maharashtra.

Source: MoHFW
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Source: MoHFW
Source: NDMA
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Source: NDMA

So far, 388 districts have had deaths in the country. Mumbai (3,602 deaths) has reported the most deaths among all districts, followed by Ahmedabad (1,330) in Gujarat, Thane (704) and Pune (629) in Maharashtra, and Chennai (602) in Tamil Nadu. These five districts now account for 61 percent of deaths in the country.

Kolkata (329) in West Bengal, Indore (196) in Madhya Pradesh, Aurangabad (189) in Maharashtra, Jaipur (186) in Rajasthan, and Jalgaon (183) in Maharashtra, are the other districts with the highest tolls. The top ten districts account for 71 percent of all the deaths nationally. District-wise data for Delhi are unavailable and hence not part of this list.

The number of coronavirus infections is likely to keep increasing in the coming days, as India’s testing numbers continue to grow. According to the Indian Council for Medical Research, over 6.9 million samples have been tested so far, including 143,267 on Sunday. Meanwhile, the global coronavirus case count has crossed 8.9 million, with close to 500,000 deaths, and more than 4.4 million recoveries (49%).

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