New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: Creating another world record, India, during the last 24 hours, nearly 3.50 lakh new infections of COVID-19, the third day in a row when the country registered over 3 lakh new cases. Along with the record number of cases, India also recorded its highest one-day death toll with over 2,600 new fatalities during the same span of time.  

According to the data by the Union Health Ministry on Saturday morning, India recorded 3,46,786 new COVID-19 cases taking the overall coronavirus cases in the country to 1,66,10,481, while 2,624 fatalities in the span of 24 hours took the death toll in the country to another grim milestone of 1,89,544. 

This is the third day in a row when India reported over 3 lakh COVID-19 cases and over 2,100 COVID-19 deaths. On Friday, the country had recorded 3.30 lakh COVID-19 cases while 2,263 fatalities were reported during the same span of time. India had recorded 3.14 lakh COVID-19 cases and over 2,100 death on Thursday. With this India has now reported close to a million new cases (9.94 lakh) in just three days.

The fresh surge in the COVID-19 cases also took the active caseload in the country to another grim milestone of over 25 lakh cases. Registering a spike for the 45th consecutive day, the active cases in the country reached 25,52,940, which is the highest-ever recorded active caseload since the start of the pandemic last year. 

The active cases comprise 15.37 per cent of the total infections, while the national COVID-19 recovery rate has further dropped to 83.49 per cent. The number of people who have recuperated from the disease rose to 1,38,67,997, while the case fatality rate has dropped to 1.14 per cent, the data stated.

This comes at a time when the country is facing an oxygen crisis due to the overwhelming of cases and grappling hospital infrastructure. On Saturday, Delhi's Jaipur Golden Hospital informed that around 20 patients have died overnight due to the lack of oxygen supply to the needy. 

However, to combat the acute oxygen shortage, the government has started Oxygen Express trains which will take the oxygen tankers to different parts of the country where the life-saving gas is needed. A train carrying 30,000 litres of liquid medical oxygen arrived in Lucknow from Bokaro, Jharkhand today morning. The government has also roped the India Air Force (IAF) for carrying oxygen tankers to different parts of the country. 

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday also held a high-level meeting with chief ministers and representatives of 11 worst-hit states and union territories (UTs) and asked them to ensure that O2 tankers, meant for any state, are stopped or should not get stranded.

Assuring the Centre's full support to all states, PM Modi stressed that the country needs to work together and coordinate with one another to fulfil the requirements relating to oxygen and essential services to fight the deadly COVID-19 infection.

Posted By: Talibuddin Khan