Akola: City streets wear a deserted look after the administration announced complete restrictions citing an increase in COVID-19 cases, in Akola, Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021.(PTI Photo)(PTI02_23_2021_000154B)(PTI)
Akola: City streets wear a deserted look after the administration announced complete restrictions citing an increase in COVID-19 cases, in Akola, Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021.(PTI Photo)(PTI02_23_2021_000154B)(PTI)

What led to Covid-19 rise? Centre deputes teams to 10 states for probe

These teams will work with the state/UT administration and ascertain the reasons for the recent surge in the number of cases.
By hindustantimes.com | Edited by Poulomi Ghosh
UPDATED ON FEB 24, 2021 12:43 PM IST

The Centre has deputed high-level, multi-disciplinary teams to Maharashtra, Kerala, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Punjab, Karnakata, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal and J&K to find out what led to the recent spike in the number of Covid-19 cases. These teams will work with the state/UT administration and ascertain the reasons for the recent surge in the number of cases, apart from coordinating with the authorities for requisite measures to break the chain of transmission, news agency ANI reported.

Though India's active Covid-19 cases continue to remain below 1.50 lakh, several states, starting with Maharashtra, reported a sudden surge since the beginning of this month. According to the Union health ministry's data, 12 states, including Maharashtra, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Punjab, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, West Bengal, Telangana, Delhi and Haryana, have reported more than 100 average daily new cases. Among them, Kerala and Maharashtra both report more than 4,000 average daily new cases in the past one week.

Mutations of Sars-Cov-2 found in Maharashtra, Kerala samples: Officials

On Tuesday, Maharashtra reported the highest daily infections with 6,218 Covid-19 infections, followed by Kerala (4,034), Tamil Nadu (442), Punjab (414), Karnataka (383) and Gujarat (348).

Chhattisgarh on Tuesday reported 274 new infections while Madhya Pradesh reported a single-day tally of 248.

West Bengal registered 189 new cases on Tuesday and Jammu and Kashmir logged 94 fresh cases.

While an overall laxity in maintaining Covid-19 appropriate behaviour followed by a fall in the cases at the beginning of the year is being blamed for the surge in cases, the ministry is now looking to narrow down on specific reason, if any, behind the surge.

The presence of mutant virus strain, detected in Maharashtra, Kerala and Telangana — has been dismissed as a contributing factor to the sudden spike. No link between the mutant strains and the sudden spike has been scientifically established as some of the strains were present in India since last year.

"Based on the information and as analyzed and understood by a very eminent scientific advisory group of Indian SARS-CoV-2 Genomics Consortium (INSACOG), we would like to underline the fact that we do not see attribution of mutant strains to the upsurge of the infection being seen in some districts. But this is a work in progress. We will continue to watch the situation with full responsibility," NITI Aayog Member (Health) V K Paul said on Tuesday.

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