India recorded a huge jump in the daily Covid deaths (666) today as Kerala revised its data with 291 more deaths added to the state's overall count. So far, 4,53,708 people have died of Covid in India. India saw a single-day rise of 16,326 new COVID-19 cases, taking the tally to 3,41,59,562, while the active cases have declined to 1,73,728, the lowest in 233 days, according to the Union health ministry's data updated on Saturday.
Daily cases remain well below 50,000 (for 118 consecutive days) and 30,000 (for 29 consecutive days).
Kerala reported over 9,000 cases in 24 hours. Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu each reported over 1,000. The other major contributor to daily new cases was Mizoram with 745 reported. These four have the highest active caseloads among all states.
Overall, active cases are now approximately 0.51 per cent of total infections - the lowest since March last year. The recovery rate is 98.16 per cent - the highest since the same time. There were 17,677 recoveries over the past 24 hours, the Health Ministry said.
As active caseloads drop states continue to slowly re-open; Maharashtra has said cinema halls, theatres, and auditoriums can open with 50 per cent capacity. Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar said the limit could be raised if things were under control after Diwali
Over 68.48 lakh vaccine doses were administered in the past 24 hours. According to CoWIN nearly 40 lakh of these were the second of the two required doses. The total number of vaccines administered in the country is more than 101.3 crore.
India administered its billionth vaccine on Thursday. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, addressing the nation a day after, said it was "not just a number" but the symbol of the country's ability and of a "new India". India's critics had been silenced, the PM said.
On the subject of vaccines, the World Health Organization has still not granted Bharat Biotech an EUL, or emergency use listing, which is needed for other countries to recognise Covaxin as a valid COVID-19 vaccine. A top WHO official was quoted by PTI as saying the process sometimes takes time and it wanted to be absolutely sure.