West Bengal’s Covid-19 caseload on Wednesday increased by 2,725 to 1,04,326, and the toll rose to 2,203 after 54 new fatalities.
In Kolkata, the total fatality count stood one short of 1,000. The capital city; its adjoining districts North 24 Parganas, South 24 Parganas, Howrah; and Hooghly are the pandemic’s epicentre in the state. On Wednesday, more than 60 per cent of the deaths, and 38 of the deaths occurred in these five districts.
Due to the severity of the pandemic in the epicentre, state secretariat “Nabanna”, located in Howrah, is regularly sanitised as part of protocol, according to an official. The secretariat will remain closed on Thursday and Friday because of the sanitisation drive. The 14-storied building will undergo an intense cleaning and sanitisation process.
Three deaths each occurred in Purba Medinipur, Nadia and Jalpaiguri, two people each died in Jhargram and Paschim Bardhaman districts, while one fatality each was recorded in Purulia, Darjeeling, and Alipurduar districts.
With Jhargram reporting its first two deaths, only Bankura and Cooch Behar districts are yet to report any fatalities. Jhargram had become Covid-free for the fourth time last month, but in August it has seen the infection growth increase.
Meanwhile, the situation continued to remain grave in Purba Medinipur, but the active caseload was brought down due to the release of 131 patients. This was the first fall in the number of active cases since August 1, when it was 349. The district has 1,192 active cases, still the highest outside the epicentre.
In North Bengal, all the districts except Malda and Dakshin Dinajpur saw their active cases increase. As a result, Darjeeling again overtook Malda as the district with the heaviest active caseload in the region. It has 721 patients at present.
The recovery rate rose to 72.96 per cent on Wednesday. As many as 2,725 people were declared recovered in 24 hours, taking the cumulative number to 76,120.
The state health authorities conducted a record 27,712 tests in 24 hours. This was the second straight day that more than 27,000 samples were examined. Since July last week, the health authorities have stepped up testing on CM Mamata Banerjee’s instructions. Due to this increased testing, the test positivity rate has also climbed consistently. It was 8.79 per cent on Wednesday.
With PTI inputs
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