With the threat of a surge in COVID-19 infections and deaths looming large, the Union health ministry has urged citizens to celebrate the upcoming festivals of Ganesh Chaturthi, Diwali and Eid at home without gathering in large numbers.
Notably, the request from the Centre comes as fresh COVID-19 cases driven by the Delta variant of the virus is surging in several parts of the world, including in the US and European Union nations. The fresh surge in these countries has led to growing uncertainties regarding the pace of economic recovery from the lows of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Member of Niti Aayog and head of the government task force on COVID-19, Dr VK Paul, during the health ministry’s press conference on the pandemic said, “Festivals are like Ganesh Chaturthi, Diwali and Eid coming. This year too, like the last year, they will need to be celebrated in a restrictive manner, and it is our appeal to all to stay at home.”
He added, “Like last year, festivals need to be celebrated in a subdued manner. Wearing masks is an absolute must while in any public place.” Similarly, ICMR chief Dr Balram Bhargava said that the country is still facing the second wave of the pandemic and urged people to abide by the local COVID-19 guidelines and follow COVID appropriate behaviour.
Highest surge in COVID infections in 2 months
The health ministry on Thursday informed that 47,092 fresh cases of COVID-19 have been reported in India in the past 24 hours. The addition of the fresh cases has taken the COVID-19 case tally past 3.28 crore. It is the biggest surge in infections in the last two months.
The ministry also informed that over 66.30 crore COVID-19 jabs have been administered so far. Of it, over 81.09 lakh people were vaccinated on September 1. It is the highest number of jabs administered in a single day.
India has already surpassed Brazil in terms of cases. It is now the second-worst hit nation due to the coronavirus pandemic after the US.
To read the latest news in Gujarati click here