India coronavirus cases: More than 26 lakh people in India were infected with the novel coronavirus in the month of September, which comprises a 71 per cent rise over the number at the end of August.
Not surprisingly, almost six lakh of these cases in September were reported from Maharashtra, while Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka contributed about 2.6 lakh each. Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, Kerala and Odisha were the other states that saw their total numbers rise by at least one lakh in September.
Twelve states doubled their total case numbers during this period. The biggest rise, in relative terms, was recorded in Kerala and Chhattisgarh, the two states which have grown the fastest in September. The number of confirmed infections in Chhattisgarh more than tripled in the last one month, increasing from about 31,000 at the end of August to over 1.1 lakh now.
Kerala, which is the fastest growing state right now, saw its numbers increase by over 160 per cent, from about 75,000 at the end of August, to 1.96 lakh now. A big chunk of this rise in Kerala has happened in the last two weeks, during which time it has consistently been reporting more than 4,000 new cases a day. In fact, on Wednesday, Kerala recorded a new high, when it reported over 8,800 cases. In the last one week, almost 48,000 new cases have been detected in the state.
The states that had the smallest rise during September were Tamil Nadu and Bihar. These two states have been slowing down throughout the month, and their current growth rate has dropped below one per cent a day. Tamil Nadu’s numbers grew by a little under 40 per cent in September, from 4.28 lakh to 5.97 lakh.
Bihar, which at point in August showed signs of a major surge, increased its number by 34 per cent in September, from 1.36 lakh to 1.82 lakh. Tamil Nadu and Bihar both are among the states doing very well on testing, though Bihar has been relying more on rapid antigen tests. But it is not clear as yet whether the slowdown could directly be attributed to greater number of tests being carried out.
At least one state that has been carrying out many more tests has not been showing the same kind of slowdown. Uttar Pradesh has conducted the highest number of tests in the country, though most of it, like in the case of Bihar, is rapid antigen testing, which is not considered as accurate as the RT-PCR tests. In fact, on Wednesday, the testing number in Uttar Pradesh crossed one crore. It is testing more than 1.5 lakh samples every day, almost double the number in Maharashtra on most days. The case numbers in Uttar Pradesh grew by 73 per cent in September, 2.3 lakh to almost four lakh now.
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More than 33,000 coronavirus deaths were reported in September, over 1,000 a day.
On Wednesday, almost 87,000 new cases were reported from across the country, taking the total number of confirmed infections to 63.12 lakh. Over 52.73 lakh of these, or 83.5 per cent, have recovered from the disease. The death count has reached more than 98,000.
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