Coronavirus doubling rate improves to 7.5 days; 18 states and UTs do better

Customers queue up outside an electronics showroom on the opening day of a once in a week market, during ongoing Covid-19 lockdown in Kozhikode. Photo: PTI
The pace at India’s coronavirus cases double has improved to 7.5 days in the past week, compared to 3.4 days before the country was locked down to contain the disease, said health ministry on Monday.

As per data on April 19, at least 18 states and union territories (UT) did better than the national average, said Lav Agarwal, joint secretary in the health ministry at a media briefing in Delhi.

He said that the states and UTs where the doubling time is less than 20 days are Delhi where it is doubling in 8.5 days, Karnataka in 9.2 days, Telangana 9.4 days, Andhra Pradesh 10.6 days, Jammu and Kashmir 11.5 days, Punjab 13.1 days, Chattisgarh 13.3 days, Tamil Nadu 14 days and Bihar 16.4 days.

Places where the doubling time is between 20 days to 30 days include Andaman and Nicobar Island where it was 20.1 days. In Haryana, the cases are doubling in 21 days, in Himachal Pradesh 24.5 days, Chandigarh 25.4 days, Assam 25.8 days, Uttarakhand 26.6 days and Ladakh 26.6 days.

Odisha and Kerala reported 39.8 days and 72.2 days as their doubling time, Agarwal said.

He also said that a total of 1,553 cases and 36 deaths have been reported in the last 24 hours taking the total number of cases in the country to 17,265 and death toll to 543 so far.

Also 2,546 people have been cured and overall around 14.75 per cent people have recovered, he stated.

Apart from Mahe in Puducherry and Kodagu in Karnataka, Pauri Garhwal district from Uttarakhand too have not reported any fresh case of coronavirus infection during last 28 days, he said.

There are 59 districts in 23 states and UTs where no case has been reported in the last 14 days, he said.

Agarwal also said that in some good news, all the patients in Goa have been discharged. No further active cases have been reported in the state yet, he said.

He also expressed concern over the news of some journalists in Mumbai testing positive for the virus and said that when they attend their call of duty, they should take the required precautions.

"Follow the norms of social distancing and wear face masks," Agarwal said.

A representative from the Ministry of Agriculture said that the FCI has moved double the average quantity of food grains during the lockdown period and that face masks and hand sanitizers have been brought under Essential Commodities Act.

She also said that NGOs have been permitted to buy food grains directly from FCI for relief operations.

"Sown area of summer crops has registered 36 per cent increase over last year; farming has been exempted from lockdown but social distancing has to be maintained," the Agriculture Ministry official said.

She also said that the government has hiked MNREGA wages in the wake of the pandemic and the the average increase is Rs 20.

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