Home » India » Covid 'Incidental' in Delhi Deaths, 'Fast' XBB Behind Spread, Says CM; 3,095 New Cases in India

Covid 'Incidental' in Delhi Deaths, 'Fast' XBB Behind Spread, Says CM; 3,095 New Cases in India

Curated By: Sumedha Kirti


Last Updated: March 31, 2023, 13:50 IST

New Delhi, India

Covid-19: The surge is driven by the XBB variant of the coronavirus and its sub-variants and there is no new variant. (Image/Getty)

Covid-19: The surge is driven by the XBB variant of the coronavirus and its sub-variants and there is no new variant. (Image/Getty)

Covid-19 Spike: Addressing the press conference, Arvind Kejriwal said that XBB.1.16 'spreads fast and evades vaccine' but is 'not severe'

Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal on Friday said that “100% cases" of Covid-19 are sent for genome sequencing. He added that that the surge is driven by the XBB variant of the coronavirus and its sub-variants.

Addressing the press conference, Kejriwal said that XBB.1.16 “spreads fast and evades vaccine" but is “not severe". Elaborating on the preparations by the government, he said that 7,986 beds have been readied, including oxygen and ventilators. The CM said that of these, only 66 are occupied as of now. He further said that the three deaths in Delhi were not Covid-related. The patients had other ailments and coronavirus was “incidental".

Other state governments are also ramping up testing for Covid-19 and encouraging the increased use of masks and social distancing as the recent uptick in virus tally continues, with daily case count breaching record of nearly six months. India on Friday saw 3,095 fresh infections in 24 hours.

From Uttar Pradesh to Maharashtra and Kerala, hospitals have been put on alert. Saurabh Bharadwaj, health minister of the national capital, was reportedly told that the genome sequencing of samples has shown that the XBB is behind the spike and there is no new variant.

India’s toll has risen to 5,30,867 with five deaths — one each reported by Goa and Gujarat and three reconciled by Kerala — in a span of 24 hours, the data updated at 8 am said.

The daily positivity was recorded at 2.61 per cent while the weekly positivity was pegged at 1.91 per cent. The total tally of Covid cases was recorded at 4.47 crore (4,47,15,786).

The active cases now comprise 0.03 per cent of the total infections while the national recovery rate has been recorded at 98.78 per cent, according to the ministry website. The data further stated that 220.65 crore Covid vaccine doses have been administered under the nationwide drive so far.

Covid Situation in Delhi

The state health minister has asked the people not to panic due to the high positivity rate. Addressing a press conference on Thursday, Bharadwaj said they were getting some indicators about the spike in Covid cases but they are fully prepared.

“Last night, chief minister Arvind Kejriwal called me to discuss about the Covid situation and he asked me to convene an emergency meeting on Thursday. In the meeting , epidemiologist, genome sequencing expert, special secretary (health) were present and we analysed the situation closely," he said.

Covid Situation in Maharashtra

Maharashtra reported nearly 700 fresh Covid-19 cases on Thursday, the highest single-day detection in over five months. The jump in infections has pushed the count of active cases in the state beyond the 3,000-mark, which doubled in just nine days.

Solapur and Sangli districts have topped the positivity chart in Maharashtra with 20.05 per cent and 17.47 per cent rate, respectively, in March.

“Four weeks back, the state had a positivity rate of 1.05 per cent but between March 22 and 28, it reported 6.15 per cent. The districts with a rise in positivity rate include Solapur (20.05 per cent), Sangli (17.47 per cent), Kolhapur (15.35 per cent), Pune (12.33 per cent), Nashik 7.84 per cent and Ahmednagar (7.56 per cent)," said the state department in a statement.

The daily reporting of Covid-19 cases is high in districts such as Mumbai, Pune, Thane, Raigad, Nashik and Sangli, it added. The department confirmed the new Covid-19 variant — XBB.1.16 — has been found in swab samples of 230 patients in the state so far.

In view of the rising cases, Thane Municipal Corporation (TMC) chief Abhijit Bangar has initiated a plan to create 25 more beds along with the special ward at Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Hospital (CSMH) in Kalwa.

The TMC chief has also instructed the officials to conduct a ‘death audit’ to ascertain the number of patients who passed away, and to increase the number of coronavirus tests in public places, markets, railway stations and malls.

Covid Situation in Uttar Pradesh

The Uttar Pradesh government on Thursday put all the frontline workers working in government as well as private hospitals on ‘alert mode’, while stepping up precautionary measures.

As of March 28, the districts affected by Covid-19 are Gautam Budh Nagar (57), Ghaziabad (55), Lakhimpur Kheri (44), Lucknow (27), Bijnor (12), Lalitpur (9) and Saharanpur (8). Officials have been directed to carefully monitor the situation in these districts.

Directions have also been issued for increasing testing and treatment in the affected districts and taking special precautions in districts that were most affected in the previous Covid-19 waves.

Situation in Kerala

According to an official statement from the health minister’s office, Ernakulam and Thiruvananthapuram districts have the highest number of Covid cases. “The positive cases are increasing in the state and hence an alert has been issued. It has been found that Omicron is spreading in the state and the samples have been sent for genomic sequencing," Kerala health minister Veena George said.

Covid Situation in Haryana

The Haryana government has issued fresh guidelines and asked all health facilities to record travel history of a suspected case having travel history to a country or an area where the virus has been reported.

“In addition, the history of coming in contact with a suspected or confirmed case of Covid-19 shall be recorded and information of all such cases should be given to the office of the Civil Surgeon of the district immediately," said the health department notification.

Situation in Goa

Goa reported 108 fresh coronavirus cases on Thursday, while one more patient succumbed to the infection in the state, said the health department. With these additions, the state’s overall Covid-19 tally rose to 2,59,813, while the death toll increased to 4,014, said a department bulletin. On Wednesday, the state had registered 97 new infections.

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    (With inputs from PTI)

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    first published:March 31, 2023, 08:23 IST
    last updated:March 31, 2023, 13:50 IST