India reported 1,071 fresh cases on Saturday, the first time since November 9 last year that the daily count had topped 1,000. Nearly 5,000 fresh cases have been recorded in the past seven days (4,929 during March 12-18), up 85% from the previous seven-days’ total of 2,671. The country reported 19 Covid deaths during this period, up from six in the preceding period.
Rise in cases among sharpest in Gujarat
The seven-day average of daily Covid cases in India has doubled in the last eight days, rising from 353 on March 10 to 704 on March 18, as per TOI’s Covid database. Last week, the doubling rate was close to 11 days, indicating that infections have spread more rapidly in the current week.
As of Sunday, the number of active cases in the country had crossed 6,000, rising from 3,778 last Sunday. The test positivity rate (TPR) — the percentage of test samples that are positive — was still low for the country as a whole, which indicates that cases aren’t rising yet in many parts of India. The daily TPR crossed 1% on Saturday, although the seven-day average was around 0.8% but rising gradually.
In the past seven days, Maharashtra displaced Karnataka as the state recording the highest number of fresh cases. Maharashtra reported 1,165 new infections during the period (March 12-18), a 2.3-fold increase from the previous seven-day period. Kerala reported 739 cases, up from 520. The rise appeared to be slowing down in Karnataka, with the state logging 656 cases, up from 584 in the previous seven days.
The rise in numbers was among the sharpest in Gujarat, which reported 660 cases in the seven-day period ending Saturday, a 3.5 times increase over the previous seven days when the state had recorded 190 cases.
Numbers rose steadily in the national capital too. Delhi reported 235 new cases during the period, up from 97. On Sunday, 72 more new cases were added to Delhi’s tally. Although the numbers were lower, infections were on the rise in Rajasthan, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Punjab and Uttarakhand.
There were 19 fatalities reported in last seven days.