Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be holding a meeting shortly to discuss the coronavirus crisis in the country as India battles an unprecedented surge in cases that saw a new record daily high today with over 2.73 lakh fresh infections.
The meeting is scheduled to begin at 11.30 am today, hours after India crossed another grim milestone to report the highest surge in cases ever from the beginning of the pandemic last year.
This is the second consecutive day the Prime Minister is holding a meeting over the Covid surge.
On Sunday, PM Modi reviewed the Covid situation in Varanasi, his Lok Sabha constituency, and stressed on the need for vaccination for people over 45 years of age.
According to a statement, PM Modi emphasised on implementing ”tracking, tracing and testing”, saying this has to be fully followed to check the virus’ spread in the same manner the first wave was curbed. The Prime Minister also asked the administration to ensure that preventive measures like social distancing and the use of masks are practised.
Days ago, PM Modi was also briefed about the efforts being made by the government to import medical grade oxygen to bridge the demand-supply gap amid the recent massive surge. At a review meeting comprising senior officials of several ministries, PM Modi suggested that the production of medical oxygen should be scaled up, a government statement said.
India also reported 1,619 deaths in a new record high today. The total caseload is now 1.5 crore; 1.78 lakh people have died so far. This is the fifth straight day that over 2 lakh cases were reported.
Maharashtra, Delhi and Karnataka saw the biggest single-day surge in the last 24 hours. Maharashtra logged 68,631 infections, Delhi reported 25,462 new cases while Karnataka saw a spike of 19,067 cases.
As the second – and more deadly – wave of coronavirus grips the country, several strict measures have been implemented, including curfews, across states to tackle the crisis.
Delhi will be under complete curfew from tonight to next Monday morning amid a record rise in cases. The capital had earlier imposed a weekend curfew.
Maharashtra also announced tough restrictions till May 1 that include a ban on gatherings and only essential activities to break the chain of infection.