Covid-19: Pune, Thane, Mumbai Emerge Among Four Worst-hit Places in India

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With more than 1.5 lakh active Covid-19 cases and 14,800 deaths so far, Maharashtra continues to battle the crisis

Ashok Kumar | Clarion India

MUMBAI — Three of India’s four worst-hit urban conglomerations in the Covid-19 crisis are in Maharashtra – Pune, Thane and Mumbai – accounting for more than a lakh of active cases on Friday.

According to the state health department, there are almost 1.5 lakh active Covid-19 cases in Maharashtra. And the three cities and their neighbouring towns make up for more than a lakh of these active cases.

The state also saw 266 deaths on Thursday, taking the total to almost 14,800. According to official estimates, there is one death in the state every five minutes.

Worse, with the addition of more than 11,000 cases on Thursday, the total number in Maharashtra topped the 4-lakh figure, placing the state sixth on Worldometer’s Covid-19 data – after the US (46.35 lakh), Brazil (26.13 lakh), India (16.43 lakh), Russia (8.39 lakh) and South Africa (4.82 lakh). Maharashtra has overtaken Mexico (4.16 lakh) and all other countries with the spurt in Covid-19 cases.

While in the past Mumbai topped the list in India, it has now been replaced with Pune (the entire district), which has 48,815 active cases, way above Bangalore (at 36,523), which ranks number two in India.

Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray and deputy chief minister Ajit Pawar rushed to Pune on Thursday, considering the fact that the city was recording 1,000 new Covid-19 cases daily over the past few weeks.

Thackeray’s first trip to Pune since he became the chief minister in November last year comes in the wake of the continuing rise in Covid-19 cases. Pune district accounts for nine per cent of the 5.43 lakh active cases in India. It also accounts for a third of Maharashtra’s total number of active cases.

According to Rajesh Tope, the state’s public health minister – who was also in Pune – the district is expected to witness a surge in Covid-19 cases over the next week to 10 days, before things hopefully stabilise.

Thane, which is adjacent to Mumbai, has seen the setting up of a 14-member task force comprising medical experts to tackle the spurt in the number of cases in the district, which has recorded more than 87,000 cases so far.

Kalyan-Dombivali accounts for the largest numbers (at more than 21,000), with Bhiwandi-Nizampur for the lowest (3,700).

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