A police constable undergoes thermal screening in a mobile clinic van at CBD Belapur in Navi Mumbai.(BACHCHAN KUMAR/HT)
A police constable undergoes thermal screening in a mobile clinic van at CBD Belapur in Navi Mumbai.(BACHCHAN KUMAR/HT)

Maharashtra reports over 6,000 Covid-19 infections after a gap of 26 days

The active caseload in the state stood at 84,464, of which 51,121 cases or 60.52% of the cases were from MMR and Pune district.
By Swapnil Rawal, Mumbai
UPDATED ON NOV 26, 2020 12:04 AM IST

Maharashtra on Wednesday reported over 6,000 Covid-19 infections after a gap of 26 days (October 30) as 6,159 fresh cases pushed the tally to 1,795,959, amid an upward trend in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR) and Pune district’s share of active cases.

The active caseload in the state stood at 84,464, of which 51,121 cases or 60.52% of the cases were from MMR and Pune district. An analysis of the week-on-week data from September 11, when Maharashtra achieved its peak with 24,886 cases in a day, showed that the share of active cases from these two regions dipped to 48.14% on September 25, but since then it has been on an upward trend even as the daily caseload stabilised.

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Maharashtra also reported 65 fatalities on Wednesday, of which nine occurred in the past week, to take the death toll to 46,748. Health department officials said Covid-19 had spread in the semi-urban and rural part of the state between June and September, which has gradually stabilised and tapered down in many districts.

Also read: Mumbai mayor’s warning: ‘Follow Covid safety norms or we will have no choice but to impose lockdown’

“Mumbai, its surrounding cities, and Pune district are densely populated areas. They would naturally have more cases and therefore active cases are higher. The testing in these areas is also higher given more population. Having said that, the festive season resulted in an increased movement of people, coupled with the careless behaviour of people not wearing masks, among others. The result is a gradual increase in cases from these areas,” a state health department official said, requesting anonymity.

The state government and the administration have projected that cases would go up post-Diwali and the state would hit its second peak by December-end of in January-February 2021. Since November 16 (a day after Diwali weekend), Maharashtra has added 46,182 cases. Of these, 22,497 cases or 48.71% have come from MMR and Pune district.

MMR and Pune district were one of the hotspots during the first peak in the state. Health department officials said that the two regions could become hotspots once again if Covid-appropriate behaviour is not followed by people.

Dr Sanjay Pattiwar, public health expert, said, “People in the slum pockets of Mumbai have developed some antibodies, so people living in the buildings and high-rises are now more susceptible to catching the infection. Similarly for Thane, Navi Mumbai and Pune district, these are densely populated areas. With increased movement of people, work-travel in public transport, cases are expected to rise.” He said that people need to take masking and hand sanitisation even more seriously if another surge in cases is to be prevented.

Also read: Maharashtra in safe zone compared to other states for Covid-19, says state health minister

Meanwhile, Mumbai on Wednesday reported 1,144 fresh cases, taking the city’s tally to 278,597. The city reported 17 fatalities, pushing the toll to 10,725. The active cases in Mumbai stood at 13,734. Kalyan-Dombivli reported the highest cases in MMR with 215 fresh cases, followed by Navi Mumbai with 189 cases and Thane city with 186 cases.

Pune city reported 418 fresh cases and two fatalities, while its rural areas reported 378 cases and three deaths. Pimpri-Chinchwad reported 229 new cases and one death. Nagpur city reported 235 cases and five deaths, while its rural areas saw 73 cases and two fatalities.

On Wednesday, 4,844 patients were discharged, taking the total tally of recovered patients to 1,663,723. The recovery rate in the state is 92.64%. The state has so far tested 10,456,962 and has an overall positivity rate of 17.17%. In the past 24 hours, 90,383 samples were tested. Currently, 529,344 people are in home quarantine and 6,980 people are in institutional quarantine.

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