Coronavirus (COVID-19) Tracker Updates: The ICMR Thursday said the government was carrying out 24 tests for one positive case even as the coronavirus cases in India neared the 13,000 mark, including 420 deaths and 1,488 recoveries. “Japan tested 11.7 people per one positive; for Italy the number is 6.7, in US its 5.3; UK its 3.4. Here we do 24 tests for one positive. Can’t say we are testing less,” ICMR’s Dr R R Gangakhedar said.
The ICMR also said rapid testing kits would not be used for diagnosis but for surveillance, especially in hotspots. In its daily briefing, the Health Ministry said over 10,500 isolation beds had been made available by the Railways and 325 districts in the country had no cases of the novel coronavirus. The ministry also said 325 districts in India have no cases of the novel coronavirus.
The number of coronavirus cases in India rose to 12,759 on Thursday, including 10,824 active cases, 420 deaths and 1,514 recoveries. Maharashtra is the worst-hit state with 3,202 cases now and 194 deaths. The government has identified 170 districts across the country as COVID-19 ‘hotspots’ or ‘red zones’, and another 207 districts as ‘potential hotspots’.
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, interacting with the media, said the government’s decision to impose a nationwire lockdown was like “a pause button”, and would not help in solving the crisis. He advised the government to scale up testing, and called for a decentralisation strategy, in which chief ministers had more say as the fight against COVID-19 was at a state and district level.
Globally, the total number of COVID-19 cases has crossed 2 million, including over 136,000 fatalities, with Europe accounting for more than two-thirds of the deaths. Europe has reported 88,716 deaths, while the United States has the single highest toll at 26,950, followed by Italy (21,645), Spain (18,579) and France (17,167). (Click here to follow our coverage of Covid-19)