Delhi recorded its biggest single-day jump of 8,593 Covid-19 cases on Wednesday that took its infection tally to over 4.59 lakh, while 85 new fatalities pushed the national capital’s death toll to 7,228, authorities said.
The total number of cases in the city stands at 4,59,975, according to the latest health department bulletin.
These fresh cases came out of 64,121 tests — 19,304 RT-PCR and 44,817 rapid antigens — conducted the previous day. This is the highest number of RT-PCR tests conducted in a day to date, the bulletin said.
The city’s positivity rate stood at 13.4 percent, it said.
Delhi’s previous highest single-day spike of 7,830 cases was recorded on Tuesday. It had also reported 83 deaths. The city recorded 85 fatalities on Wednesday which pushed the death toll to 7,228. The only time it recorded a higher number of deaths was on June 16 (93). The active cases tally on Wednesday rose to 42,629 from 41,385 the previous day, the bulletin said.
Dr. Randeep Guleria, Director, All India Institute of Medical Sciences Delhi (AIIMS) indicated that super-spreader events can be the reason behind the recent surge in Covid-19 cases in Delhi.
“What happens is if in a crowd one does not wear a mask, a person who may be asymptomatic and is highly infectious he can spread the disease to a large number of people in the crowd. If they get the disease, they will take it to the area they go to, their own family members, their relatives, and they will again spread the disease,” he added.
The Delhi High Court also pulled up the AAP government for relaxing safety norms for public gatherings. A bench of Justices Hima Kohli and Subramanium Prasad also noted that the wearing of masks has not been made mandatory in Delhi. The court also asked the government why it has increased the number of people allowed at weddings, public transport, etc.
Earlier on Wednesday, Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain told reporters that the third peak of the spread of Covid-19 in the national capital has been longer than the previous peaks but it may subside in the next few days.
The number of containment zones in Delhi increased to 4,016 on Wednesday from 3,947 on Tuesday, the bulletin said. The number of people in home isolation increased to 24,435 from 24,178 the previous day, it said.
The sudden spike in Covid-19 cases comes amid the festive season and rising pollution level. While Durga Puja celebrations ended on October 25, Diwali and Chhath Puja are days away.
The National Centre for Disease Control, in a report drafted recently, had warned that Delhi needs to be prepared for about 15,000 fresh cases of Covid-19 per day taking into account the upcoming winter season, related respiratory problems, a large influx of patients from outside, and festive gatherings.