West Bengal on Saturday recorded a record rise in cases for the second straight day as 3,340 infections pushed up the case count to 2,66,974.
This record increase in infections came on a day Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee accused the Centre of failing to tackle the Covid-19 pandemic. At a rally in Kolkata, Banerjee said it seemed that community spread of the disease had started as people had contracted the infection despite staying indoors and not venturing outside.
Though the latest cases pushed the active caseload past 27,000 to 27,130, the recovery rate continued to climb. On Saturday, it was up to 87.92 per cent, propelled by the discharge of 3,013 patients from treatment facilities.
According to the health bulletin, in which figures are updated till 9 am, 62 deaths took the toll up to 5,132. Of these, 44 fatalities occurred in the South Bengal epicentre of the pandemic that also registered about 56 per cent of the latest infections. While Kolkata’s active caseload increased by two to 5,590, in North 24 Parganas the discharge of 640 patients resulted in active cases dropping by 18 to 5,929. These two districts still account for the most patients in the state.
In the two Medinipur districts, the situation remained alarming as active caseloads increased while nine deaths occurred. Meanwhile, in Nadia, active cases rose to 1,037. This week, the district has added 777 cases till now.
In North Bengal, there was not much cheerful news for the health authorities as only three of the eight districts — Kalimpong, Uttar Dinajpur, and Dakshin Dinajpur — reported drops in active cases. After a period of recovery, the number of patients has been climbing in both Malda (527) and Darjeeling, which has the highest active caseload with 735.
The health bulletin reported that 41,128 tests were conducted in 24 hours, with the test positivity rate rising marginally to 7.96 per cent. This is the first time since August 21 that the positivity rate has increased, even if slightly.
According to the Department of Health, 2,433 patients are still in government quarantine while 79,609 people remain in home quarantine. There are 1,320 people in safe homes.
With PTI inputs
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