India crosses 1 Cr Vaccination Milestone amidst rising concerns over Second Wave of Pandemic

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In a huge milestone for the country, India has crossed 1 crore COVID-19 vaccinations in almost a month since the vaccination drive began last month on January 16th.

In the largest such drive ever, frontline health care workers were administered by India’s two COVID-19 vaccines, Covishield and Covaxin.

The Health Ministry further aims to vaccinate a total of 3 crore people by the end of next month. India ranks 3rd in the world in its vaccination coverage, after the USA and the UK.

However, the distribution of vaccinations has been uneven with several states including Tamil Nadu, Delhi, and Punjab inoculating less than 50% of its target healthcare workers.

This comes amidst rising concerns over a second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in the country, after the average daily cases once again saw a rise for the fourth consecutive day in a row, after almost 3 months.

India reported 13,179 fresh COVID-19 cases on Thursday, the highest since the last 25 days. This is also the first time since January 30 that the cases crossed the 13,000 mark. The country’s total caseload now stands at over 1.09 crore.

While the increase very isn’t large, it has broken the trend of a continuous decline in cases that had been holding uninterrupted since the last surge in November 2020.

The rise reflects the resurgence of the virus in Maharashtra, which has seen an increase of 47% in the average daily cases, taking the national average from 11,430 to 11,825.

To control the situation from further deteriorating, restrictions have been reimposed in five districts of Maharashtra’s Amravati, Akola, Yavatmal, Buldana, and Washim — with a partial lockdown in two of them. The viral activity in Amravati and Akola districts has been seen to trigger early onset of pneumonia in COVID patients.

Apart from this, Punjab and Madhya Pradesh have also seen an increase in average cases by 25% and 20% respectively. Adding to this, COVID-19 variants detected in South Africa and Brazil were found in five persons who had returned to India on Tuesday.

Despite India being on the path to re-open again after months of lockdown, the resurfacing of the virus is a reminder of the fact that the pandemic is still as real as ever and stringent precautionary measures on our part still need to be taken.

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