Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Sunday said that the COVID cases are rising because people are not following guidelines seriously and that is why strict steps like lockdown are needed to be considered.
At a meeting with senior health officials and COVID task force, Uddhav instructed them to prepare for restrictions similar to lockdown if people continue to violate COVID-related rules.
On Saturday, the number of Covid-19 deaths in Maharashtra crossed the 54,000-mark as the state again retreated into stringent semi-lockdown style restrictions from Saturday night.
The state recorded 166 new deaths, pushing up the total number of fatalities to 54,073, just 10 days after zooming past the 53,000-mark on March 17.
The state also added another 35,726 new cases – down from the highest ever tally of 36,902 recorded on March 26, taking the overall caseload to 26,73,461, the highest in the country.
Simultaneously, the state’s recovery rate dropped from 87.02 per cent to 86.58 per cent, while the death rate stood at 2.02 per cent, compared to 2.04 per cent recorded a day earlier. The number of active cases in Maharashtra presently stands at 3,03,475.
The situation has worsened faster than state Health Secretary Pradeep Vyas’ prediction 12 days ago, that the state could have more than 3 lakh active cases by April first week.
Of the 166 deaths reported on Saturday, Akola and Nagpur led with 20 fatalities each, followed by Nandurbar (15), Pune (14), Mumbai and Thane (12 each), Nashik (10), Raigad (8), Parbhani (7), Amravati (6), Solapur, Aurangabad and Wardha (5 each), Jalgaon (4), Latur, Osmanabad, Beed and Buldhana (3 each), Nanded and Gadchiroli (2 each), and Palghar, Kolhapur, Sangli, Ratnagiri, Washim, Gondiya and Chandrapur (1 each).
Mumbai Circle set a new record of fresh infections – 10,638, – taking up the total to 847,827, besides reporting 20,193 deaths till now.
Next is Pune Circle with 7,482 new cases, pulling up the total to 636,885, besides reporting 12,036 fatalities. Nashik Circle notched up 6,199 fresh infections, dragging up the total to 376,633, plus 5,558 fatalities till date.
With 4,487 new cases, Nagpur Circle’s total shot up to 309,155, besides 5,184 fatalities till now.
Aurangabad Circle notched 2,347 new infections and 2,175 deaths, Latur Circle recorded 2,152 new cases and 2,653 fatalities, Akola Circle 2,090 fresh infections and 2,067 deaths, while Kolhapur Circle recorded the lowest new cases — 331 — while its death toll stood at 4,113.
Meanwhile, the number of people sent to home isolation shot up from 14,29,998 to 14,88,701 while those shunted to institutional quarantine increased from 14,578 to 15,644 on Saturday.