The Health Ministry Thursday expressed concerns over the rising cases of Covid-19 in Maharashtra and advised the affected districts to intensify vaccination of eligible individuals.
“We are worried about rise in cases in Maharashtra. Covid-appropriate behaviour, containment strategy, vaccination are a must to fight this pandemic. We advise districts, where cases are on the rise, to intensify, prioritise vaccination of eligible individuals,” NITI Aayog member (Health) V K Paul said while addressing a press conference.
The Ministry further said that active Covid-19 cases have almost halved in Kerala while they have more than doubled in Maharashtra.
Earlier in the day, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray said a strict lockdown will need to be imposed in some places and that the decision will be taken in the coming days. “A strict lockdown will need to be imposed in some places. We will take a decision in the next two days and the lockdown will be imposed wherever required,” CM Thackeray said after he took the first shot of Covaxin at the JJ Hospital in Mumbai.
His statements came hours after Nagpur district guardian minister Nitin Raut announced that Nagpur city and some adjoining areas will enter a strict weeklong lockdown from March 15.
On Wednesday, Maharashtra recorded 13,659 new coronavirus cases, the highest one-day spike this year, which took the state’s caseload to 22,52,057. The state has so far reported 52,610 deaths due to the disease, as per official data.
NITI Aayog member (Health) Paul too referred to the lockdown imposed in Nagpur from March 15 to 21 and said, “We are reaching a situation where these approaches (to tackle the spread of COVID-19) are being brought back.” Expressing concerns about Delhi and its neighbourhood, Paul said the national capital is seeing a rise in positivity rate, so is Gurgaon, Faridabad and to an extent Gautam Buddh Nagar and Ghaziabad.
Urging people to get vaccinated, the central government warned them against taking the virus for granted. “Be careful, watchful as the pandemic is not over yet. Don’t take this virus for granted. Please embrace vaccines available.”
Giving out the numbers, the government said 2,56,90,545 vaccine doses have been administered till Thursday 1 pm. This includes 67,86,086 elderly and those aged 45-60 with comorbidities. Of the total Covid-19 vaccine doses administered so far, 28.77 per cent was in private facilities, while 71.23 per cent in public facilities, the ministry added.