Overall, India has 331,146 active cases—or patients still under treatment—as of Thursday morning, while 24,915 deaths have been attributed to the infection, the health ministry data showed. Active cases rose 21% in the last seven days, compared to 20% in the week-ago period (2 July to 9 July). The seven-day spike in deaths is 18%, compared to 19% in the preceding week. The seven-day rolling averages have been considered for these calculations since they minimize the effect of volatile and delayed reporting.
For over a month, new infections and deaths have been rising faster in India than in most other badly-hit countries. The country has the third highest number of active cases, after the United States and Brazil. The toll is the eighth highest in the world. Among high-fatality countries (more than 10,000 deaths), India has recorded the biggest spike in deaths as well as active cases over the past week.
With cases rising, India’s health facilities and workforce continue to be under severe strain. The risk of further spread is higher now as the economy has started to reopen and most public movement is allowed.
Among states, Maharashtra (10,928), Delhi (3,487), Tamil Nadu (2,167), Gujarat (2,079) and Uttar Pradesh (1,012) have reported the most deaths. These states together account for 79% of all covid-related deaths in India so far. However, only two of them, Tamil Nadu and Uttar Pradesh, have seen a bigger spike than the national average in the last seven days.
Of the 12 states with the most active cases, Assam, Karnataka and Bihar have reported the biggest percentage jumps in deaths. In terms of active cases, Bihar, Karnataka and West Bengal led the surge in this period, based on the seven-day rolling averages.
It is worth noting that data quality on cases and deaths vary across countries and regions because of factors such as differences in testing standards, and in protocols being followed for recording covid-related deaths. For example, the rise in cases in Telangana in recent weeks may simply reflect a reporting effect—it ramped up testing after it was criticised for not testing enough.
However, Telangana remains one of the states with the fewest tests per million population. Among states with more than 10,000 cases so far, Delhi and Andhra Pradesh have conducted the most tests per million population as per the latest data, and Telangana and Bihar the least, data collected by The Hindu showed.
Among the 15 districts with the highest number of new cases in the last 48 hours, the biggest percentage spikes were reported by Guntur (19%) and Kurnool (16%) in Andhra Pradesh (19%) and Bengaluru in Karnataka (16%). In absolute numbers, Pune and Thane in Maharashtra and Bengaluru in Karnataka reported the biggest increase in cases during this period, data compiled by howindialives.com last evening shows.
So far, at least 489 out of over 700 districts in India have had at least one covid-related death. Mumbai (5,467 deaths) has reported the most, followed by Thane (1,806), Ahmedabad (1,525), Chennai (1,318), and Pune (1,228). Kolkata in West Bengal, Bengaluru in Karnataka and Jalgaon, Solapur and Aurangabad in Maharashtra are the other districts with more than 350 deaths. This list does not include Delhi, where the government does not provide district-wise data. State-level data shows Delhi (3,487 deaths) has the second-worst toll after Mumbai.
The number of coronavirus infections is likely to keep increasing in the coming days, with India now consistently testing over 300,000 samples per day. According to the Indian Council for Medical Research, over 12.7 million samples have been tested as of Wednesday, compared to 10.7 million samples a week ago.
India has reported 968,876 coronavirus cases in all since the beginning of the outbreak in late January. If the pace of increase in cases since mid-June sustains, India can hit the 1.5 million mark in 13 days’ time.
Out of all confirmed cases, 63%, or 612,815 had been discharged by Thursday, as compared to 53% a month ago. India’s case fatality rate—2.6 deaths per 100 infections—is lower than the global average of 4.3% at the moment.
Meanwhile, the global coronavirus case count has crossed 13.5 million, including nearly 585,000 deaths and more than 7.5 million recoveries (56%).