The West Bengal government on Monday said a senior district official was among the 24 latest Covid-19 fatalities that took the toll to 956.
The week started on a bad note for the government as the state added over 1,000 cases for the fifth straight day on Monday. With 1,435 new infections, the state’s case count rose to 31,448. It now has an active caseload of 11,279.
Of the latest deaths 23 were reported from the five South Bengal districts of Kolkata, North 24 Parganas, South 24 Parganas, Howrah, and Hooghly. A bulk of the latest infections were also detected in these areas.
The situation also continued to remain grim in Darjeeling, which added 73 infections to its caseload. Along with Malda, which has an active caseload of 400, Darjeeling has the biggest active case count outside the pandemic epicentre in South Bengal.
Meanwhile, the government said Chandannagar Deputy Magistrate Debdatta Roy was among those who died in Hooghly. The 38-year-old is the first senior government official to have succumbed to the virus.
Roy’s family said she had been suffering from fever for the past few days. After testing positive along with her husband, the bureaucrat opted for home isolation. She was admitted to Shramojibi Covid hospital in Serampore on Sunday evening as her condition began to deteriorate. She died on Monday morning.
Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee condoled with Roy’s family, and wrote a personal letter to her husband, expressing her gratitude for the official. Banerjee called Roy an “outstanding Covid warrior”.
“In the forefront of our fight against Covid-19, Debdatta was an outstanding warrior who fought this crisis with extreme courage and determination. I salute her great spirit and sacrifice for the state,” the Chief Minister wrote.
A 2011 batch WBCS executive officer, Roy had worked as a Block Development Officer in Purulia. She was then appointed Chandannagar deputy magistrate. As migrants started returning to the state amid the pandemic, she was in charge of a special quarantine Centre in Dankuni. She is survived by her husband and a four-year-old child.
With a surge in infection in the last couple of weeks, the recovery rate in the state has dropped while the test positivity rate has climbed. The discharge rate fell further to 61.09 per cent on Monday, while the overall positivity rate was up to 5.01 per cent.
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