Coronavirus: India records 37K+ new cases; vaccinations dip
India on Monday reported over 37,000 new COVID-19 cases along with over 700 fresh deaths due to the viral disease. The total number of patients who have recovered from COVID-19 in India has now crossed the three crore mark. However, vaccinations have seen a dip over the past few days, even as experts say full vaccination is important against the Delta variant of SARS-CoV-2.
According to the Union Health Ministry, till Monday morning, India reported a total of 3,08,74,376 COVID-19 cases. The death toll has reached 4,08,764. So far, 3,00,14,713 patients have recovered, while 4,50,899 cases involve active infections. In the past 24 hours alone, India recorded 37,154 new infections, 39,649 more discharges, and 724 fresh fatalities. 37,73,52,501 vaccine doses have been administered so far.
To recall, India's second wave had peaked on May 7, when 4.14 lakh single-day cases were reported, over four times the number of cases reported during the first wave in mid-September. Although infections have declined since then, India crossed the three crore-mark on June 23. Notably, India had crossed the one crore-mark on December 19, and the two crore-mark on May 4, 2021.
Maharashtra reported 8,535 new COVID-19 cases along with 6,013 more recoveries. Kerala, the second worst-hit state after Maharashtra, reported 12,220 new cases and 12,502 discharges. Meanwhile, the third worst-hit Karnataka added 1,978 new cases and 2,326 recoveries. Tamil Nadu, the fourth worst-hit state, reported 2,775 new cases and 3,188 recoveries. Andhra Pradesh reported 2,665 new cases and 3,231 recoveries.
Worryingly, India administered just 12 lakh vaccine doses on Sunday. Although Sundays traditionally witness less number of doses, the figure is a significant dip from a record 86 lakh on June 21. Earlier, the Centre had aimed to administer one crore doses a day by July. Further, India has fully vaccinated just 5.5% of its total population, while over 22% has received one dose.
Meanwhile, a peer-reviewed study by French researchers—published in the journal Nature—has found that both doses of a two-dose vaccine are important particularly against the Delta strain (B.1.617.2), first detected in India. A single shot would "barely" offer any protection, said the study, which looked at samples from people who received the Pfizer-BioNTech or AstraZeneca vaccine. Recovered patients' antibodies were four-fold less effective against Delta.