Delhi recorded 2,790 fresh COVID-19 cases on Thursday, the highest daily count this year while nine more people died due to the coronavirus infection, taking the death toll to 11,036, according to the city health department. The positivity rate also mounted to 3.57 per cent amid a massive surge in cases in the span of the last few weeks.
In the wake of rising COVID-19 cases in Delhi, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal will hold an “urgent" meeting with the health minister and officials of concerned departments to prepare an action plan to meet the challenge. “CM office to hold an urgent meeting at 4 pm tomorrow (Friday), Health Minister Satyendar Jain and other department officials to remain present," said a statement from the chief minister’s office. The chief minister will deliberate on preparing an action plan to fight the pandemic, including issues like number of containment zones, vaccination drive, and requisite availability of hospital beds, it said.
“The chief minister is keeping a close eye on the situation in Delhi, and is ensuring a daily review by receiving regular updates from the officials," it said. According to orders given by Kejriwal, the health department has increased its vigilance measures, and has taken a number of monumental steps to combat the COVID-19 pandemic, it said.
In 33 private hospitals, there has been an increase of 25 per cent in the number of ICU beds as well as those in the normal wards, the statement said. Surveillance and monitoring teams have been sternly observing the situation at the district level, it said.
Moreover, tracing of up to a minimum of 30 contacts of those who have been tested positive will be done, it said. They will also be required to isolate themselves so that the spread can be contained at the initial stage, the statement said.
It has been observed that the stated protocols and guidelines by the Delhi government are not being followed at a number of public places, and some people have been showing negligence regarding wearing masks, it said. The chief minister has announced that stringent action will be taken against those found without masks in public, it said.
After the orders given by the chief minister, the daily target of conducting as many as 80,000 tests has been set, it said. COVID-19 vaccination centres have been increased to around 600, the statement said.
Vaccination of people above the age of 45 started from Thursday. Those who could not register for vaccination can directly walk-in into a centre between 3 pm and 9 pm and get injected, it added.
Meanwhile, the Delhi government announced that students of any class should not be called to schools physically in the new academic session till further orders. The Directorate of Education (DoE) also told schools that teaching and learning activities may commence from April 1 for students through digital mode for academic session 2021-22.
“It is clarified that students of any class should not be called physically in school for the academic session 2021-22 till further orders. However, teaching learning activities may be commenced from 1t April 2021 for the students through digital modes for the new academic session," the DoE said in an official order. The directive by DoE comes following a surge in coronavirus cases in the national capital.
Delhi had reported 1,819 coronavirus cases on Wednesday with a positivity rate of 2.71 per cent, while 11 more people succumbed to the infection. The number of cumulative cases on Thursday stood at 6,65,220. Over 6.43 lakh patients have recovered from the virus.
The city had recorded 992 cases on Tuesday, 1,904 cases on Monday and 1,881 cases on Sunday. It had reported 1,558 cases on Saturday, 1,534 cases on Friday, 1,515 cases last Thursday, 1,254 cases a day before that and 1,101 cases last Tuesday, when it had crossed the 1,000-mark for the first time since December 24.
On December 8, last year, the city had recorded 3,188 cases and 2,706 on December 6. According to the latest bulletin, nine more people died due to the disease, taking the toll to 11,036, it said.
The number of active cases rose to 10,498 from 8,838 a day before. A total of 78,073 tests, including 47,026 RT-PCR tests and 31,047 rapid antigen tests, were conducted a day ago, the bulletin said .