Coronavirus: Most new infections, deaths in Kerala and Maharashtra
India on Wednesday reported over 38,000 new COVID-19 cases along with more than 600 fresh fatalities. New infections and deaths are concentrated in the states of Maharashtra and Kerala, while other regions have largely contained the outbreak. However, experts and the government have repeatedly warned against an imminent "third wave" of the viral disease, observing a general laxity with COVID-19 appropriate behavior.
India's tally crosses 3.09 crore; 4.11 lakh dead
According to the Union Health Ministry, till Wednesday morning, India reported a total of 3,09,46,074 COVID-19 cases. The death toll has reached 4,11,408. So far, 3,01,04,720 patients have recovered, while 4,29,946 cases involve active infections. In the past 24 hours alone, India recorded 38,792 new infections, 41,000 more discharges, and 624 fresh fatalities. 38,76,97,935 vaccine doses have been administered so far.
India's outbreak peaked with 4+ lakh infections in May
India's second wave 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 2020. Although infections have declined since the second wave peaked, India crossed the three crore-mark on June 23. India had crossed the one crore-mark on December 19, 2020, and the two crore-mark on May 4, 2021.
37% new cases from Kerala
Maharashtra reported 7,243 new COVID-19 cases along with 10,978 more recoveries. Kerala, the second worst-hit state after Maharashtra, reported 14,539 new cases and 10,331 discharges. Meanwhile, the third worst-hit Karnataka added 1,913 new cases and 2,489 recoveries. Tamil Nadu, the fourth worst-hit state, reported 2,505 new cases and 3,058 recoveries. Andhra Pradesh reported 2,567 new cases and 3,034 recoveries.
31% new deaths reported in Maharashtra
Of the 624 deaths recorded, 196 or 31% were reported from Maharashtra, while 124 or 20% occurred in Kerala. Experts say the first and second waves had begun with a surge in Maharashtra, where infections have stagnated after a sharp decline was observed in May.
Indonesia's daily count surpasses India's
Separately, the epicenter of the COVID-19 outbreak appears to be shifting in Asia as Indonesia has surpassed India's daily COVID-19 figures. Indonesia has reported over 40,000 new infections for two days straight, with 47,899 fresh cases on Tuesday. The outbreak has been blamed on the Delta variant, which was first detected in India. However, experts warn a third wave could hit India by September.
India's first COVID-19 patient tests positive again
On a related note, a Kerala woman—who was India's first COVID-19 case—has tested positive for the disease again. Her illness is, however, mild and she has isolated herself at home. Meanwhile, the Pune-based Serum Institute of India (SII) is slated to begin production of the Russian COVID-19 vaccine, Sputnik V, in September. The SII has entered a deal to produce 300 million doses annually.