NEW DELHI: India recorded 24,492 new COVID-19 cases, registering more than 20,000 cases for the sixth day in a row, taking the infection tally past 1.14 crore, the Union health ministry said on Tuesday.
The total cases in the country rose to 1,14,09,831, while the death toll increased to 1,58,856, with 131 fresh fatalities, the ministry data updated at 8 am showed.
Registering a spike in cases for the sixth day in a row, the active caseload has increased to 2,23,432, which now comprises 1.96 per cent of the total infections.
The recovery rate has further dropped to 96.65 per cent, it said.
As many as 26,624 new infections were recorded in a span of 24 hours on December 20.
The number of people who have recuperated from the disease surged to 1,10,27,543, while the case fatality rate dropped to 1.39 per cent, the data stated.
India's COVID-19 tally had crossed the 20 lakh-mark on August 7 last year, 30 lakh on August 23, 40 lakh on September 5 and 50 lakh on September 16.
It went past 60 lakh on September 28, 70 lakh on October 11, 80 lakh on October 29, 90 lakh on November 20 and surpassed the one crore-mark on December 19.
According to the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), 22,82,80,763 samples have been tested till March 15, with 8,73,350 samples tested on Monday.
Out of the 131 new fatalities, 48 deaths were reported from Maharashtra, 27 from Punjab and 11 from Kerala.
A total of 1,58,856 deaths have been reported so far in the country, including 52,909 from Maharashtra, 12,551 from Tamil Nadu, 12,397 from Karnataka, 10,944 from Delhi, 10,295 from West Bengal, 8,748 from Uttar Pradesh and 7,185 from Andhra Pradesh.
The health ministry stressed that more than 70 per cent of the deaths occurred due to comorbidities.
"Our figures are being reconciled with ICMR," the ministry said on its website, adding that state-wise distribution of figures is subject to further verification and reconciliation.
On the other hand,
More than 30 lakh people were inoculated against COVID-19 on March 15, the highest in a day so far, taking the total number of vaccine doses administered in the country to 3,29,47,432, the Union Health Ministry said on Tuesday.
The vaccination of beneficiaries aged over 60 has crossed 1 crore within 15 days, the ministry said.
Of the total 30,39,394 doses given in a span of 24 hours on March 15, day-59 of the vaccination drive, 26,27,099 beneficiaries have been administered the 1st dose across 42,919 sessions and 4,12,295 individuals have been given the 2nd dose, according to the data compiled at 7 am.
The 26,27,099 beneficiaries include 19,77,175 beneficiaries aged over 60 and 4,24,713 individuals aged 45-60 years with comorbidities.
A total of 3,29,47,432 vaccine doses have been administered through 5,55,984 sessions, as per the provisional report till Tuesday 7 am.
These include 74,46,983 healthcare workers (HCWs) who were administered the 1st dose, 44,58,616 HCWs who were given the 2nd dose, 74,74,406 FLWs who have received the 1st dose and 14,09,332 FLWs who have taken the 2nd dose.
Besides, 18,88,727 beneficiaries aged more than 45 years with specific co-morbidities and 1,02,69,368 beneficiaries aged more than 60 years have been given the 1st dose.
The ministry also said that Maharashtra, Punjab, Karnataka, Gujarat and Tamil Nadu continue to report a surge in the COVID-19 daily new cases, adding that 79.73 per cent of the new cases are reported from these states in a span of 24 hours.
"Maharashtra, Kerala and Punjab cumulatively account for 76.57 per cent of India's total active cases," the ministry said.
The total tests conducted in the country have surpassed 22.8 crore (22,82,80,763).
The cumulative national Positivity Rate currently stands at 5 per cent, the ministry said.
A total of 131 deaths were reported in the last 24 hours.
Seven states account for 82.44 per cent of the new deaths.
Maharashtra saw the maximum casualties (48).
Punjab follows with 27 daily deaths and Kerala reported 11 deaths in a span of 24 hours.
Sixteen states and UTs have not reported any COVID-19 deaths in the last 24 hours.
These are Rajasthan, Chandigarh, Jammu and Kashmir, Odisha, Jharkhand, Lakshadweep, Sikkim, Ladakh (UT), Daman and Diu and Dadra and Nagar Haveli, Meghalaya, Manipur, Tripura, Nagaland, Mizoram, A&N Islands and Arunachal Pradesh.