Active COVID-19 cases in India rose for the fifth consecutive day after Maharashtra, Kerala, Chhattisgarh, Punjab and Madhya Pradesh reported a spike in the daily infections. The daily active cases went past the 1.5 lakh mark after a gap of 17 days, taking the total caseload to more than 1.10 crore in the country, the union health ministry informed on Monday.
Only two states, Maharashtra and Kerala, account for 75.87 per cent of the total number of active COVID-19 cases, as per the union health ministry.
Maharashtra reported 5,210 fresh infections on Monday after logging over 6,000 cases for three days in a row. Mumbai, which has recorded a 36.38 per cent rise in active COVID-19 cases since February 8, saw 760 new cases after reporting over 900 infections daily for two consecutive days. The state government has banned religious, social, and political gatherings in view of the rising COVID-19 cases.
The Madhya Pradesh government has asked district collectors to mandatorily conduct temperature-based screening of people coming from Maharashtra. Madhya Pradesh reported 294 coronavirus-positive cases yesterday, taking its tally to 2,59,721.
Gujarat reported 315 cases of coronavirus infection on Monday. The state government has decided to set up border check posts to screen people coming from neighbouring states, including Maharashtra, through roads to stem the spread of COVID-19.
Besides, Gujarat has also decided to start screening passengers arriving at major railway stations like Ahmedabad, Vadodara, Surat, Rajkot and Bhavnagar from different parts of the country by trains. The government has announced to strengthen the services of 'Dhanvantri Rath', a network of mobile vans providing non-COVID-19 essential healthcare services at the doorsteps of people in cities.
Karnataka reported 317 new cases of COVID-19 and five related fatalities on February 22, taking the total number of infections to 9,48,466 and the death toll to 12,299. In Karnataka, Health Minister K Sudhakar cautioned people against negligence towards observing COVID protocols, and of stricter steps if the number of cases increases. He said marshals would be deployed to monitor weddings as they were taking place without any norms or guidelines being followed. The state government has also mandated RT-PCR certificates not older than 72 hours for those arriving in the state from neighbouring Kerala and Maharashtra.
Kerala logged 2,212 new COVID-19 cases, including two who returned from the UK, and 16 deaths, taking the total caseload to 10,37,218 and the toll to 4,105 as of February 22. The COVID-19 death toll in Punjab rose to 5,769 on Monday with 15 more fatalities, while 389 new cases pushed the infection count to 1,78,847.
Meanwhile, Union Home Minister Amit Shah reviewed the ongoing COVID-19 vaccination drive in the country. The review meeting was attended by Health Minister Harsh Vardhan, Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla, and top officials of the two ministries.]