Mint Covid Tracker: India’s coronavirus curve spikes up, with cases doubling in five days4 min read . Updated: 31 Mar 2020, 03:47 PM IST
Delhi, Tamil Nadu, and Jammu and Kashmir saw biggest spikes in coronavirus cases on Monday
The number of confirmed covid-19 cases in India rose by 17 percent in 12 hours to reach 1,251 yesterday evening, the latest data from the ministry of health and family welfare (MoHFW) shows. The number of active cases rose 18 percent over the same period to 1,117. The ministry hasn’t posted any update so far today, in a break from the usual practice of posting morning updates.
Yesterday’s spike meant that the case count rose faster in half a day than what it did during the entire 24-hour period preceding this period, when the number of cases had risen by 15 percent to 1,071.
India’s trajectory is now flatter than that of the US, which is emerging as the new global epicentre of covid-19. Yet, it is not as flat as that of Singapore or Japan, which have managed to flatten their coronavirus curves through a combination of focused surveillance, screening, and the effective use of masks to contain the pandemic.
Given the volatility in India’s daily data over the past few days, it is too early to say whether the current trajectory will sustain, rise, or flatten in the coming days. It is worth noting that the US had a flatter trajectory compared to China till recently but as testing expanded, cases spiked up, with the US now overtaking China as the country with the most confirmed cases of covid-19.
India’s erratic scheduling of data releases also fails to inspire confidence. Mint has reached out to senior health ministry officials to ascertain the reasons behind the delay in publishing today’s update. Their response is awaited, and this story will be updated based on their response.
India’s case count is now roughly double what it was five days ago. At this trajectory, the number of cases could shoot up to 10,000 over the next 16 days, and India’s hospitals could get overwhelmed by the end of May.
At 182, Kerala leads in terms of the number of active cases of covid-19, according to the latest health ministry update. Active cases exclude deaths and recoveries from the list of confirmed cases. Maharashtra has the second most number of active cases (165), followed by Delhi (79). At 75 active cases, Karnataka has the fourth-highest number of active cases, followed closely by Uttar Pradesh (71).
In the north-east, two states have reported covid-19 cases so far: Manipur and Mizoram, with 1 confirmed case each in both states. Other north-eastern states have not reported any case so far. Jharkhand hasn’t reported any confirmed case either.
Delhi and Tamil Nadu have seen the biggest spikes in active cases over the past 12 hours. The number of active cases rose from 45 to 79 in Delhi and from 45 to 62 in Tamil Nadu.
So far, the provisional district wise details are available for 979 confirmed cases nationally. In this list, Mumbai (81 cases) has reported the most number of cases nationally, and also leads in the state of Maharashtra.
Kasargod district (78 cases) has reported the most number of cases in Kerala. Bengaluru (43 cases) has reported the most cases in Karnataka and Hyderabad district (27 cases) has reported the most cases in Telangana. Gautam Buddh Nagar district (22 cases) has reported the most number of cases in Uttar Pradesh.
More than seven hundred eighty thousand people have now been detected as covid-19 patients globally even as severe parts of the world, including India, have taken severe lockdown measures in a bid to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus.
So far, covid-19 has claimed 37,829 deaths globally, of which Italy has accounted for the most deaths (11,591), followed by Spain (7,716). These countries have overtaken China --- where the virus originated --- in the number of deaths. China, which has seen 3,309 covid-19 deaths has been able to contain the spread of the disease, and has seen fewer deaths since March. It has only reported 436 deaths since the month began.
After Europe, the US has emerged as the new hotspot for covid-19. The US has reported 3,170 deaths so far but these numbers are expected to spike as the US has lagged behind other countries in testing and identifying covid-19 patients. At 1,64,610 confirmed cases so far, the US has already surpassed China in the total number of confirmed cases.
In India, there have been 32 deaths so far but this could change in the coming weeks. Testing criteria in India have been stringent so far and are gradually being relaxed even as new labs begin testing.
It is likely that cases will continue to mount over the coming days as testing expands, even if the lockdown has lowered the rate of transmission of the virus. The full impact of the lockdown can be gauged only after a few weeks. If the lockdown phase is used effectively to ramp up testing, this could help India flatten the curve in the coming weeks. If not, cases could spike once the lockdown ends.