New Delhi [India], February 13 (ANI): As COVID-19 third wave appears to be abating with new cases dropping below 50,000-mark for the first time in nearly one and a half months, according to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare's data on Sunday.
The COVID cases had begun to show a significant rise following the emergence of the Omicron variant last year.
As many as 44,877 fresh COVID-19 cases were reported across the country in the 24-hour period, the lowest since January 4 when 37,379 new cases were recorded. The daily COVID spike breached 58,097 cases mark on January 5
A total of 75.07 crore tests have been conducted so far in India, with 14,15,279 tests held in the last 24 hours, as per ministry data.
With this, the country's active caseload currently stands at 5,37,045 which accounts for 1.26 per cent of total cases. At present, Kerala (1,82,118) has the highest number of active COVID-19 cases followed by Maharashtra (56,206) and Tamil Nadu (47,643).
The daily positivity rate in India has been recorded at 3.17 per cent and the weekly positivity rate at 4.46 per cent, as per the bulletin.
A total of 1,17,591 patients have recovered in the last 24 hours and the cumulative tally of recovered patients since the beginning of the pandemic is now at 4,15,85,711, stated the bulletin. India's recovery rate now stands at 97.55 per cent.
The country reported 684 deaths in the past 24 hours, taking the toll to 5,08,665
After witnessing the second wave in April-May last year, COVID-19 cases in India started declining in subsequent months and daily infections spike reached as low as 5,326 new cases on December 21. Meanwhile, the Omicron variant (B.1.1.529), a new variant of the coronavirus, was first reported in Botswana on November 11, 2021, and appeared on November 14 in South Africa. India detected its first Omicron case on December 2 last year in Karnataka.
Following the emergence of the Omicron variant, daily cases began rising by December-end and breached the 1-lakh mark on January 7 when 1,17,100 fresh infections were reported.
In a written reply in Lok Sabha on February 4, 2022, Minister of State in the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare Dr Bharati Pravin Pawar stated that "an upsurge of COVID-19 cases in the country was observed by the end of December, 2021 which was primarily driven by the Omicron variant".
The peak of the current surge was recorded on January 21, 2022, when 3,47,254 new cases were recorded in a 24-hour period.
Meanwhile, 172.81 crore COVID-19 vaccine doses have been administered so far under nationwide vaccination drive. (ANI)