Coronavirus India Updates: More Than 59,000 Fresh Cases Take Active Infections To 4.2 Lakh
A lab technician places a sample into a reader during an ITI Ltd. and Thalamus Irwine demonstration of smart Covid-19 testing at Vidya Ankur in New Delhi. (Photographer: Anindito Mukherjee/Bloomberg)

Coronavirus India Updates: More Than 59,000 Fresh Cases Take Active Infections To 4.2 Lakh

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India reported the biggest spike in Covid-19 infections in five months, prompting the government to curb vaccine exports to refocus its immunisation efforts at home.

Authorities detected more than 59,000 new cases in 24 hours — for the first time since Oct. 18, 2020 — taking the total tally above 1.18 crore in the world’s second-worst infected country, according to the Health Ministry’s update as of 8 a.m. on March 26.

That’s significantly higher than the 33,000 recoveries over the same period, causing a spike in active infections to 4.2 lakh.

Key Figures

  • Total confirmed cases: 1,18,46,652
  • Total number of active cases: 4,21,066
  • Total patients cured/discharged/migrated: 1,12,64,637
  • Total deaths: 1,60,949
  • Fresh cases in 24 hours: 59,118
  • One-day recoveries: 32,987
  • One-day deaths: 257

India has administered more than 5.55 crore vaccination shots since the immunisation drive began in January, according to government data. More than 23 lakh beneficiaries were given the jab in the last 24 hours. The third phase of the country’s inoculation drive will begin on April 1, where everyone above the age of 45 would be eligible for the shot.

To ensure adequate domestic supply for the expanded vaccination plan, the government has decided to cut down exports, an official with knowledge of the matter told Bloomberg News.

The country has exported or donated more than 60 million shots as part of its vaccine diplomacy efforts so far. Although put on the back-burner, a schedule for vaccine exports is in place until March 28, said another official.

Maharashtra Adds Over 35,000 Cases In a Single Day

Authorities in Maharashtra reported 35,952 cases of Covid-19 in a matter of 24 hours, the highest detected in a single day ever. That took the state’s total tally to 26,00,833, while active infections stood at 2,64,001, according to the Union Health Ministry’s update on March 26.

Maharashtra continues to contribute more than half the fresh coronavirus infections in the country, prompting the government to announce renewed restrictions, especially going into the festival of Holi. The Mumbai and Pune civic authorities have banned public and private celebrations of the festival of colours in the respective cities to avoid a large outbreak.

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