New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: Ahead of the crucial Assembly elections in five states, Union Health Ministry Secretary Rajesh Bhushan and Dr VK Pual, Member (Health), Niti Aayog will be meeting the team of Election Commission of India officials today to discuss the election process and the situation of COVID-19 in the country.

This will be the second time when Bhushan will brief the EC top brass on the emerging COVID-19 situation in the country and in Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Goa, Punjab and Manipur in particular.

Earlier on December 27, 2021, the meeting was held between Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan and Poll officials where they held discussions over the steps needed to conduct polls in the safest manner during the Omicron pandemic, a variant of COVID-19.

The officials also sought suggestions and a detailed report from Union Health Secretary Bhushan on improving its Covid-19 protocol for poll campaigning, polling days, and the dates of counting.

The Election Commission is prepared for the assembly polls and is expected to announce the dates soon of Goa, Punjab, Uttarakhand, and Manipur legislative assemblies are ending on different dates in March and Uttar Pradesh will end in May.

The meeting came as India on Thursday saw the biggest single-day jump of 495 Omicron cases, taking the total number of infections of the new variant of coronavirus to 2,630. Of the total cases, Maharashtra has the maximum at 797, followed by Delhi at 465, Rajasthan 236, Kerala 234, Karnataka 226, Gujarat 204 and Tamil Nadu 121.

The country reported 90,928 fresh coronavirus infections, the highest in over 200 days, that pushed its caseload to 3,51,09,286. As many as 91,702 new infections were reported on June 10 last year. The death toll climbed to 4,82,876 with 325 fatalities, the ministry said.

The number of active cases stands at 2,85,401, comprising 0.81 per cent of the total infections. An increase of 71,397 cases was recorded in the active caseload in a day. The national COVID-19 recovery rate decreased to 97.81 per cent, it said.

The daily positivity rate was recorded at 6.43 per cent, while the weekly positivity rate stood at 3.47 per cent, according to the ministry. The number of people who have recuperated from the disease surged to 3,43,41,009. The case fatality rate was recorded at 1.38 per cent, the ministry said.

Posted By: Talibuddin Khan