By late Wednesday night, India had recorded 13,155 new cases during the day, with data from two states yet to come in. The tally on Tuesday was 9,155, which was an increase of nearly 47% over the previous day’s numbers (6,242), as per TOI’s Covid database.
On each of the last two days, Covid cases have risen by more than 40%. Such high rates of growth over two successive days are unprecedented, although cases have previously jumped by a higher percentage on Tuesdays following a customary dip in detections on Mondays due to lower testing over the weekend. During the second wave, the highest growth rates (over two successive days) were recorded on March 31 and April 1, when cases spiked by 35% and 13.5%, respectively.
The explosion of cases has been sudden and widespread since overall Covid numbers had been falling till last week. At least 18 state and Union territories, spread across the country except the northeast, have registered a rise in cases this week as compared with the corresponding days of the previous week. The notable exception to the rise so far is Kerala, which reported a higher count in the first three days of the previous week.
Maharashtra recorded the highest daily jump in cases, logging 3,900 fresh infections, nearly double the number recorded on Tuesday (2,172). This was the highest single-day rise in cases in the state in 110 days, with Mumbai accounting for 2,445 new infections on Wednesday —by far, the highest daily number reported in any Indian city in the past several months. Maharashtra also posted the highest single-day Covid count for the first time since June 7.
Other states where infections have surged sharply include Delhi (923 cases, up from 496 on Tuesday), Bengal (1,089, from 752), Karnataka (566, from 356), Gujarat (548, from 394), Jharkhand (344, from 155) and Haryana (217, from 126). Cases are also on the rise in Uttar Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Odisha, Rajasthan, Telangana, Bihar, Punjab and Goa.
While the surge coincides with the rise of the Omicron variant in the country, there’s no concrete evidence yet (based on studies or numbers) linking the two in India. The country has so far recorded less than 1,000 Omicron cases. Meanwhile, deaths remained below 100 for the sixth consecutive day, with 68 fatalities on Wednesday. This toll excluded old deaths added by Kerala.