India recorded 152,879 fresh cases of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) in the last 24 hours, which took the nation's total infection tally past 13.35 million, according to figures released by the Union ministry of health and family welfare on Sunday morning.
For the past week, India has been reporting a daily spike of more than 100,000 cases in the second wave of the pandemic across the country, which has forced several states and union territories (UTs), including Maharashtra and Delhi, to impose stricter curbs to prevent the virus from spreading.
As of Sunday, the active Covid-19 caseload in the country stood at 1,108,087, which accounts for 7.93% of the total confirmed cases. Fatalities related to the viral disease are also on the rise with 839 deaths reported in a day.
With an aim to vaccinate the maximum number of eligible people against coronavirus, the government has launched a four-day vaccination festival called Tika Utsav, following Prime Minister Narendra Modi's call for mass inoculation during the meeting with chief ministers of all states and UTs earlier this week.
"We should vaccinate as many eligible people through a special campaign and decide on zero wastage. If there is zero wastage in four days during 'Tika Utsav', it will also increase our vaccination capacity. We should make optimum utilization of vaccination capacity. And for this, if we have to increase the number of vaccination centres, we should do it. Let's see how we can mobilize things from April 11 to 14 and there will be the satisfaction of achievement. It will greatly help in changing the situation," PM Modi said at the meeting.
As the youth is not currently covered in the immunisation campaign, the Prime Minister as state authorities to make the younger generation aware of precautions. "Rather than forcing the youth for the vaccination, we should inspire them to follow protocols. If the youth decide to take it as a challenge, he will not only follow the protocols but will make sure that others also follow the same," he said.
Meanwhile, as Maharashtra continues to report the maximum of daily Covid-19 cases (55,411), chief minister Uddhav Thackeray on Saturday hinted at putting the state under a lockdown to stop the surge. He will chair a meeting of the Covid-19 task force later in the day to discuss the situation.