New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: Issuing a warning over the fourth wave of the coronavirus pandemic, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Tuesday said that more than 13,500 COVID-19 cases were reported in the national capital in the last 24 hours, the biggest-ever single-day spike since the beginning of the crisis.

Urging citizens to donate plasma, Kejriwal, while addressing a virtual press conference, said that the fourth wave of the pandemic is far "dangerous" than the previous ones.

"As per the report available with me, 13,500 cases have been reported in the last 24 hours. During the peak in November, 8500 cases were reported, compared to that we are already reporting 13,500 cases," Kejriwal was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.

"As per the data of last 10 to 15 days, 65 per cent of the patients are below 45 yrs of age. Your health and life is very important to us. So, I'd like to appeal to the youth to step out of the house only when it is necessary and follow all COVID protocols," he added.

Though coronavirus cases are rising across the city-state, Kejriwal has refused to impose a lockdown in Delhi but stressed that appropriate COVID-19 behaviour must be followed. Notably, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had also asked the state and union territory (UT) governments last week to focus on micro-containment zones and night curfews to break the chain of the infection.

Meanwhile, the Delhi Chief Minister, who held a crucial meet on Monday to discuss the situation in the city-state, has also asked the central government to remove the restrictions on age to ramp up the vaccination drive in the country.

Kejriwal has also urged the central government to cancel the class 10th and 12th CBSE board exams this year amid the spike cases, noting that the safety and health of the students is "very important".

"Some alternative methods could be thought of. Children can be promoted this time on the basis of either an online method or internal assessment. But CBSE exams should be cancelled," ANI quoted Kejriwal as saying.

Meanwhile, Delhi had recorded 11,491 COVID-19 cases and 72 deaths on Monday. On Sunday, the city had reported 10,772 cases and 48 deaths.

It recorded 7,897 COVID-19 cases and 39 deaths on Saturday. The positivity rate had also mounted to 10.21 per cent, breaching the 10-per cent mark for the first time this year. The positivity rate was above 15 per cent in mid-November last year.

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma