A health worker sanitizes an area near the Nizamuddin mosque in New Delhi, India, on April 10. (Photo: Xinhua)
NEW DELHI, May 7 (Xinhua) -- India, on its 44th day of lockdown on Thursday, crossed the 50,000 mark in terms of COVID-19 cases, and the death toll reached 1,783 across the country.
Out of the total 52,952 cases, 15,267 people were cured and discharged, which is nearly 29 percent.
The southwestern state of Maharashtra is the worst hit with more than 16,758 cases and 651 deaths, followed by the western state of Gujarat with 6,625 cases and nearly 400 deaths, and Delhi with 5,532 cases and 65 deaths. The central state of Madhya Pradesh recorded 185 deaths.
More than half of COVID-19 cases are concentrated in three states -- Maharashtra, Gujarat and Delhi, while nearly two-thirds of deaths were reported from the states of Maharashtra, Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh.
During the 24 hours till 8 a.m. (local time) on Thursday, a maximum spike of 3,561 cases were recorded.
According to Professor Shamika Ravi, a former member of Prime Minister's Economic Advisory Council, five states namely Maharashtra, Gujarat, Delhi, Madhya Pradesh, and West Bengal were pulling up the national average, while Gujarat and Maharashtra had much higher average than others. Delhi has managed to stabilise its COVID-19 death rate despite high case load, and the state of West Bengal witnessed large increases.
Over the past few days, a fresh second wave of COVID-19 cases was witnessed in Haryana and Tamil Nadu.
Director of the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) Dr. Randeep Guleria on Thursday stated that the number of COVID-19 cases is likely to peak in the coming months, after which the numbers will start to come down.
"Going as per the trend, the peak of coronavirus outbreak in India is expected to be in June," Guleria was quoted as saying.
Guleria, however, said it was difficult to predict how long the pandemic outbreak will continue.
India has been under the lockdown since March 25. Medical and health facilities are being ramped up as new COVID-19 dedicated hospitals are coming up. Medical researchers and scientists are said to be working on vaccines which were in "different stages of development", with a few going on to the trial stages.
The production of personal protective equipment (PPE) for medical and health workers, ventilators for patients undergoing treatment at hospitals, and face masks for the general public, has also been ramped up within the country.