Amit Shah calls meeting to review COVID-19 situation in Delhi
Union Home Minister Amit Shah will hold a meeting to review the COVID-19 situation in Delhi. Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan, Lieutenant-Governor Anil Baijal, and Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal will reportedly attend the meeting. Of late, Delhi has seen a massive spike in coronavirus infections in what has been termed the "third wave" of the outbreak by Kejriwal. Here are more details.
Shah-Kejriwal to meet at 5 pm
Reportedly, the meeting will be held at the Home Minister's office at the North Block at 5 pm. Sources told NDTV that Shah had been concerned about the recent spike in COVID-19 cases in Delhi. Earlier, reports had said that Kejriwal will seek additional hospital beds in the central government-run hospitals in Delhi, along with the cooperation of other states to combat pollution.
How bad is the outbreak in Delhi?
Until Saturday, Delhi had reported 4,82,170 COVID-19 cases, including 7,519 deaths and 4,30,195 recoveries. It had registered 7,340 new infections on Saturday. The daily positivity rate stood at 14.78% with 49,645 tests conducted on Saturday. The death rate, based on data from the past 10 days, was 1.13%. Currently, Delhi is reporting the highest number of daily infections for any Indian state/union territory.
Availability of ICU beds with ventilators hits all-time low
On Thursday, the Delhi High Court had allowed the Delhi government to reserve 80% of Intensive Care Unit (ICU) beds for COVID-19 patients in 33 private hospitals. In Delhi, the availability of ICU beds with ventilator support has reached an all-time low, even as the number of active COVID-19 infections has reached 44,456. Just last month, this figure had dropped to 20,000.
High Court pulls up Delhi government for relaxing norms
The HC also pulled up the Delhi government for relaxing all norms, such as allowing up to 200 people to attend public gatherings instead of lowering the cap, or allowing public transportation to operate at full capacity.
Shah had earlier intervened when infections had first spiked
Shah and Kejriwal have met at least twice in the last few months to discuss the COVID-19 situation in the national capital. The Home Minister had first intervened when the city witnessed its first spike in June-July. After a brief lull in infections, Delhi witnessed a "second wave" of COVID-19 in September. Kejriwal has said the ongoing "third wave" will pass in 7-10 days.