PATNA: An massive surge in COVID-19 cases taking the count to over 2.95 lakh on Thursday has evidently alarmed the state of Bihar.
Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Thursday said that the Covid positives is also being reported from rural areas apart from urban pockets and the state is badly falling in the second wave in India.
Speaking to the media after taking the second jab at IGIMS on Thursday, Kumar said that the state government is keeping strict vigil on the emerging trends of the pandemic and would go to any extent to check it after the all party meet on April 17 chaired by the governor.
"Our officers and the minister also are speaking to everyone within and outside the state and ensuring immediate returning of all those who want to return to Bihar from other states," he said, replying to a specific query regarding imposition of either curfew or lockdown in the state ahead.
He stated that the COVID-19 has started spreading in some rural pockets apart from urban, which has made the state government to enforce the safety guidelines across the state.
"We have now ramped up the testing count to nearly 1 lakh daily and hoping to exceed it soon. We will act strongly if the situation continues persisting worsening," he hinted about the state's move to be taken ahead.
Meanwhile, reliable sources said that the state government may place five to six cities including Patna under curfew or a week long lockdown after April 17.
The cities apart from Patna ikely to be placed under curfew or lockdown are Muzaffarpur, Gaya, Bhagalpur, West Champaran, Saran, Begusarai and Munger.
On Thursday, Bihar reported the highest single day spike in positive cases - 6,133 - the highest of second wave.
In Bihar, everyday 7 to 10 patients die in Patna besides deaths reported from other parts.
As many as 24 COVID patients died in the last 24 hours in the state till Thursday evening, drastically reducing the recovery rate to 89.79% from over 97%.
The shortage of oxygen cylinders in the hospitals is also impending to such an extent that the DM Patna had to depute magistrates to monitor the supply.
The Patna DM ordered the agencies to supply 90 per cent of total production of oxygen cylinders to Patna through the state industry department.