Health officials credit the widespread screening conducted by health workers at Dharavi to the fall in cases of Covid-19 in the area. (Vijayanand Gupta/HT PHOTO)
Health officials credit the widespread screening conducted by health workers at Dharavi to the fall in cases of Covid-19 in the area. (Vijayanand Gupta/HT PHOTO)

Zero daily Covid-19 cases in Mumbai’s slum area of Dharavi for second time since pandemic started

For the second time since the first Covid-19 case was reported in Dharavi in April last year, no case was reported in the area on Friday
By HT Correspondent, Mumbai
PUBLISHED ON JAN 23, 2021 12:01 AM IST

For the second time since the first Covid-19 case was reported in Dharavi in April last year, no case was reported in the area on Friday. Before this, on December 25 zero cases were reported in a day. Dharavi, one of Asia’s largest slums, was once known as a prime hotspot, with hundreds of cases being recorded daily.

The first case of Covid-19 in Dharavi was recorded on April 1 last year when a 56-year-old man tested positive. He succumbed to the virus within a few days. The total death toll in Dharavi has reached 312.

Since June, there has been a sharp decline in daily Covid cases. The area’s average daily case count had come down from 47 in May 2020 to 18 in June 2020. The count had peaked at the start of May, with 94 cases recorded in a day on May 3. The number started plunging since June 1. The highest number of cases in June did not go beyond 34, as recorded on June 1.

BMC officials say that Dharavi has come full circle in its fight against Covid-19. Kiran Dighavkar, assistant municipal commissioner of G-North ward (Dharavi), said, “A lot of hard work has been put in by the frontline workers since the first Covid case in Dharavi. There has been a sharp drop in cases since June. There was a small spike following the Ganesh festival, which was concerning, but it dipped later.” For the past several weeks, Dharavi has been recording only single-digit Covid cases daily.

Active cases at present in Dharavi are at an all-time low, with just 10 at present. The total count in Dharavi has reached 3,904, while 3,582 patients have already been discharged.

The Dharavi slum, spread over 2.4sqkm, has 850,000 residents and a population density of 354,167 per sqkm, making it one of the most cramped spaces in Mumbai, itself the world’s fifth most densely populated city.

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