New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: Delhi recorded 871 fresh COVID-19 cases and 18 deaths in the last 24 hours, even as the case positivity rate slipped 0.99 per cent. The 24-hour fatality tally is the lowest since September 8, when 19 deaths were reported in a day.  

This was the third consecutive day when the daily rise in cases remained below the 1,000 mark. On Tuesday, 939 new instances of the viral infection was reported, while the previous day the rise was 803, the lowest since August 17 when 787 cases were recorded.

These 871 new cases came out the 87,861 tests, including 45,816 RT-PCR tests and 42,045 rapid antigen tests, conducted the previous day, according to the latest bulletin issued by the Delhi health department.

The infection tally in the city mounted to over 6,19,618 and the death toll rose to 10,347 on Wednesday, officials said. The tally of active cases on Wednesday dropped to 8,003 from 8735 on Tuesday.

Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain today said people who have arrived here from the UK are being rigorously traced and tested for any COVID-19-like symptoms.

He asserted that the coronavirus situation in the city is under control with the positivity rate plummeting to below one per cent.

Interacting with reporters, Jain said the suspension of flights to and from the United Kingdom was a prompt move by the Centre and will help in containing the spread of the new coronavirus strain detected in that country.

Asked about the new COVID-19 strain threat and the Delhi government's preparedness to combat it, Jain said, "Only ICMR and scientists can give us insight into this new strain. They say it's more contagious and some scientists conjecture the coronavirus strain in circulation in India may have already reached the new mutative state".

"The coronavirus mutates with time and the best shield from any strain is to wear masks and observe safety norms," he added.

He reiterated that the Delhi government has made storage and logistics preparations and trained staff too as it awaits the arrival of a COVID-19 vaccine.

On Centre contemplating to not vaccinate children against COVID-19 at this stage, Jain said, "The idea is to eliminate the virus and the vulnerable sections are being preferred first."

"So, the healthcare workers, frontline workers, people above 50 years and those below 50 years with serious ailments are the first ones who will get the vaccine," he said.

Sources on Tuesday had said that an institutional quarantine facility was being set up at the LNJP Hospital for passengers found positive at Delhi airport, amid mounting concern over the new strain of the virus.

The Civil Aviation Ministry on Monday had said all flights from the UK to India and vice versa will remain suspended from Wednesday to December 31 in view of the emergence of a mutated variant of the coronavirus there.

Six passengers travelling on Air India's London-Delhi flight tested positive for COVID-19 on arrival, a senior government official had said on Tuesday.

In the last two weeks, about 6,000-7,000 people have landed at the Delhi airport, many of whom would have travelled to other places like Punjab from thereon, Jain had said on Tuesday.

Posted By: Abhinav Gupta