India on Saturday detected 39,742 new cases of coronavirus infections. As many as 535 deaths were recorded, taking the overall toll to 4.2 lakh.
Kerala continues to be the top contributor with 18,531 infections, contributing more than 46 per cent of all cases in the country. The active cases show a marginal decline. There are 4.08 lakh active cases in the country right now.
Meanwhile, the empowered group of officers, tasked with formulating the nation’s Covid emergency strategy has asked the government to ensure that the daily count doesn’t cross 50,000. It has also asked the Centre to prepare itself for a level of 4-5 lakh cases per day in the next surge.
This is significant as this guidance, effectively, sets a new benchmark for the overall system to go on alert, sources said, an element missing in the run-up to the brutal second wave.
Significantly, as vaccination rolls out, the group has put on record that the pandemic level be kept at a level of 50,000 per day by “non-pharmacological” interventions that include Covid-appropriate behaviour — mask hygiene and distancing — and carefully calibrated lockdowns.