NEW DELHI: The death toll due to COVID-19 rose to 686 and the number of cases climbed to 21,700 in the country on Thursday, with 34 more deaths and 1,229 fresh cases being reported since Wednesday evening, according to the Union Health Ministry.
The number of active COVID-19 cases stood at 16,689 as 4,324 people were cured and discharged, and one patient migrated, the ministry said.
Thus, about 19.93 per cent of the cases have recovered so far, a Health Ministry official said.
The total number of cases include 77 foreign nationals.
A total of 34 deaths were reported since Wednesday evening of which 18 fatalities were reported from Maharashtra, eight from Gujarat, three from Andhra Pradesh, two from Rajasthan and one each from Delhi, Telengana and Madhya Pradesh.
Of the 686 deaths, Maharashtra tops the tally with 269 fatalities, followed by Gujarat at 103, Madhya Pradesh at 81, Delhi at 48, Rajasthan and Andhra Pradesh at 27 each and Telengana at 24.
The death toll reached 21 in Uttar Pradesh, 18 in Tamil Nadu while Karantaka has reported 17 cases.
Punjab has registered 16 deaths while West Bengal has reported 15 fatalities.
The disease has claimed five lives in Jammu and Kashmir, while Kerala, Jharkhand and Haryana have recorded three COVID-19 deaths each.
Bihar has reported two deaths, while Meghalaya, Himachal Pradesh, Odisha and Assam have reported one fatality each, according to the ministry data.
However, a PTI tally of the figures reported by various states as on Thursday showed 21,673 cases and 689 deaths in the country.
There has been a lag in the Union Health Ministry figures, compared to the number of deaths announced by different states, which officials attribute to procedural delays in assigning the cases to individual states.
According to the Health Ministry data updated in the evening, the highest number of confirmed cases in the country are from Maharashtra at 5,652, followed by Gujarat at 2,407, Delhi at 2,248, Rajasthan at 1,890, Madhya Pradesh at 1,695 and Tamil Nadu at 1,629.
The number of COVID-19 cases has gone up to 1,509 in Uttar Pradesh, 960 in Telangana and 895 in Andhra Pradesh.
The number of cases has risen to 456 in West Bengal, 443 in Karnataka, 438 in Kerala, 407 in Jammu and Kashmir, 277 in Punjab and 262 in Haryana.
Bihar has reported 148 coronavirus cases, while Odisha has 83 cases. Forty-nine people have been infected with the virus in Jharkhand and 46 in Uttarakhand.
Himachal Pradesh has 40 cases, Chhattisgarh has 36, while Assam has registered 35 infections so far.
Chandigarh has 27 COVID-19 cases, Ladakh 18, while 17 cases have been reported from the Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
Meghalaya has reported 12 cases, and Goa and Puducherry have seven COVID-19 cases each.
Manipur and Tripura have two cases each, while Mizoram and Arunachal Pradesh have reported a case each.
"Our figures are being reconciled with the ICMR," the ministry said on its website.
States wise distribution is subject to further verification and reconciliation, it said.