Bengal’s infections cross 2000 in a day for first time since June 20
Bengal on Thursday reported 2,128 new infections, above 2,000 in a 24-hour window for the first time since June 20, 193 days ago, during the second wave.
Of these, over 51 per cent or 1,090 cases are from Calcutta alone. The last time Calcutta reported over 1,000 new infections in a day was on June 2.
Even a week ago, Bengal reported 550 new cases in a day of which 217 were from Calcutta.
On Thursday, Bengal reported 1,067 recoveries and 12 deaths, including four from Calcutta, resulting in a rise by 1,049 in active cases to 8,776, back almost to where it was on September 1, 120 days ago.
As a result, Bengal’s recovery rate fell overnight to 98.25 per cent (from 98.32 per cent on Wednesday), lower than the national rate of 98.38 per cent.
New infections reported on Thursday indicate those infected between December 21 and 25. The surge, restricted for now to Calcutta and its surroundings, has been attributed by sources in the state government to the disregard for Covid-19 safety among revellers around Christmas.
“A week ago, positive confirmation rate was 1.49 per cent. Today (Thursday), it is 5.47, nearly four times higher,” said a government source.
Calcutta and its immediate neighbourhood of North and South 24-Parganas, Howrah, Hooghly and Nadia accounted for 1,801 or 84.63 per cent of new infections reported in 24 hours till 9am on Thursday.
“At this moment, unless there is a lot of discipline over the next few days, we are likely to reach over 10,000 new cases daily in days. Positive confirmation rate could go past 10 or even 15. If that happens, this surge won’t stay confined to Calcutta and its neighbourhood,” added the source. Seventeen districts reported zero deaths on Thursday.
The state’s mortality rate is 1.21 per cent, while that of the nation is 1.34 per cent.
Bengal now has over 16.35 lakh Covid-19 cases, since the first was logged in March last year. The total includes more than 16.06 lakh recoveries and 19,757 deaths.