New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: Coronavirus cases witnessed a sharp rise in India last week (March 8 to 15) as fresh weekly cases saw a spike of 33 per cent, the highest surge since July last year. Similarly, COVID-19 deaths in India increased by 28 per cent last week which is also the highest weekly spike in the number of fatalities since January this year.

As per the data provided by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, nearly 1.56 lakh COVID-19 cases and over 870 deaths were reported in India from March 8 to March 15.

Currently, active COVID-19 cases in India stand at 2.19 lakh while over 1.10 crore people have recovered from the infection, taking the country recovery rate to 96.68 per cent.

Coronavirus cases had started declining in India in October last year. However, cases have been rising in India since February second week again, especially in Maharashtra, Punjab, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh and Kerala.

Amid the sudden spike in cases, several states and union territories (UTs), including Maharashtra, have reimposed COVID-19 restrictions. In Maharashtra, night curfew and partial lockdown have been imposed in several districts.

Similarly, a night curfew has been imposed in eight Punjab districts while the Madhya Pradesh government is mulling imposing a lockdown in Bhopal and Indore. The state governments in Karnataka and Kerala are also considering reimposing restrictions with a spike in coronavirus cases.

The Union Health Ministry last week also expressed concerns over spike in coronavirus cases across the country and urged states to ensure that all necessary protocols against the virus are followed.

"Make optimal use of the available vaccine doses and focus on critical districts, and collaborate with the private hospitals to open up vaccination time-table for a minimum of 15 days and maximum of 28 days at a time," the Union Health Ministry said in its meeting with states last week.

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma