India staring at fresh Covid surge, Mumbai worst hit


The Covid count in the Indian city of Mumbai breached a five-month high, as India looked at close to 10,000 cases in a day.

In Mumbai, 2,293 new Covid-19 cases were reported on June 15, the highest since January 23, when the city’s count was 2,550.

The state of Maharashtra, which is leading the Covid tally in the country recorded 4,024 new coronavirus cases, a hike of 36 percent since the previous day along with two deaths. For the state of Maharashtra this was the highest since February 12, when 4,359 cases were reported. On Tuesday, June 14, the state had recorded 2,956 new cases.

“The spike in cases is restricted to certain districts in Maharashtra like Mumbai, Thane, Pune, Raigad and Palghar districts. The hospitalization rate, despite the spike, is at two to three percent,” said Rajesh Tope, the Maharashtra health minister.

The state also reported four more cases of B.A.5 subvariant of Omicron from Mumbai, Navi Mumbai, Thane and Pune, taking the total tally to 19. The four patients were between the ages of 19 and 36 and had tested Covid positive on June 9. Their condition is reported to be stable.

In the national capital, Delhi the number of cases reported in the last 24 hours stood at 1,375, the highest since May 8 this year, a rise by 257 since the previous day. Wednesday was the second consecutive day when 1,000-plus cases were recorded in a single day.

“This particular covid surge is not countrywide, it’s at the district and state level. Basically, this is district-level uptick or site/locality specific upsurge,” said Dr Samiran Panda, additional director general, Indian Council of Medical Research.

“Those who are elderly, immune-suppressed or have co-morbid conditions should continue to use masks and avoid crowded places. India is doing constant genomic sequencing and tracking Severe Acute Respiratory Illness (SARI) and Influenza-Like Illness (ILI).” Panda added.

The Union government has asked all the state governments to follow robust genomic surveillance and track SARI and ILI cases in hospitals.

The health authorities suggest people lower their guards against the virus which brought the world to a standstill two years ago and an increase in the number of travelers during the summer vacation were the factors responsible for the rise in numbers. In most major cities of India, restrictions have been relaxed and wearing masks being made optional.