India’s Covid count nears 61 lakh

India became the second country after the US to register 6 million Covid-19 cases on Sunday, amid signs that the pandemic could finally be slowing down in the country, at least for now.

It took 12 days for India’s caseload to go from 5 million to 6 million, a day more than the previous 1-million rise.

Indian population is still far from achieving herd immunity against Covid-19, Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan said on Saturday citing ICMR’s second sero-survey.

The minister was addressing his followers on social media when he responded to various questions related to the pandemic and other key issues. On Sunday, India’s coronavirus tally neared the 60-lakh mark with a spike of 88,600 fresh cases in a day, according to the Union Health Ministry data. India also recorded 1,124 deaths, taking the death toll due to coronavirus in India to 94,503.

The states of Maharashtra, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh have seen a dip in the R value or the reproductive number during the last week, according to a recent study.

Reproductive number is the number of people getting infected by an already infected person on average.

This value has gone below 1 in these high-burden states in the week starting September 19, according to the Institute of Mathematical Sciences, Chennai, and this has helped flatten India’s Covid-19 curve. However, the R value in Maharashtra and Karnataka has begun creeping up again, said Sitabhra Sinha, a researcher at the institute.