In 24 hours Mumbai reported 5,185 new Covid-19 cases – the city’s biggest ever single-day spike, and a nearly 48 per cent increase from the previous period – government data showed on Wednesday evening. The city also reported six deaths linked to the virus in the same period. It’s the first time that Mumbai has reported over 5,000 Covid cases in a single day.
On Tuesday evening the Greater Mumbai Municipal Corporation recorded 3,512 new cases – an eight per cent increase over Monday. On Sunday the city registered 3,775 new cases.
With the constant spike in Covid cases, Mumbai is in great trouble. The city has banned the celebration of Holi – which falls on March 28 and 29 – in public or private places. Those found meddling the order will be charged under the Epidemic Diseases Act and Disaster Management Act.
Maharashtra – the worst-affected state – is leading what is rapidly becoming India’s second wave of Covid cases; there are over 2.3 lakh current cases in the state and over 53,000 have died so far.
At a press announcement earlier today the Union Health Ministry signalled the Covid situation in Maharashtra and Punjab as one of “grave concern”. The ministry also confirmed that a “double mutation” tension of the coronavirus had infected over 200 people in Maharashtra alone.
The ministry also said, though, it was too soon to conclude that the “double mutant” strain, or any of the other mutant strains, was behind the spike in cases in Maharashtra or elsewhere.
Dr Sujeet Kumar, Director of the NCDC (National Centre for Disease Control) said, “Pandemic fatigue is still the main cause behind the surge,” referring to the indifference that has crept in regarding safety measures like wearing of masks or social distancing.
The centre has forced states and union territories that are seeing a rapid rise in Covid cases to ensure that people follow Covid-appropriate behaviour.
They have also been asked to limit functions in public places – theatres, halls and offices will function at 50 per cent capacity till March 31 as well – and quicken vaccination for priority population groups in districts reporting a higher number of new cases.