New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: The number of confirmed cases of coronavirus in India and the death toll in the country touched grim milestones of 31,000 and 1,000 respectively on Wednesday. According to Health Ministry data, total cases have rised to 31,332 while the number of deaths has reached 1,007. 

The last 24 hours have reported a new record of 73 deaths - the highest single-day spike in the country. Meanwhile, the cases jumped past 31,000 mark with 1,897 new cases in the last 24 hours. The last biggest single-day spike was reported on Tuesday with 1,543 fresh cases and 62 fatalities due to the deadly virus. 

Maharashtra continues to be the worst-hit state in the country and has so far reported 9,318 confirmed cases and 400 deaths. Gujarat is second on the list with 3,744 confirmed cases and 181 deaths so far.  

Delhi stand third on the list with 3,314 cases reported till date. However, the national capital has not reported any fatality in the last three days and its death toll remains at 54. 

Delhi has already announced implementation of the Ministry of Home Affairs guidelines of easing the lockdown. This includes opening of standalone neighbourhood shops, permitting services provided by self-employed people like electrician, IT repairs, plumbers and carpenters and water-purifier service men.

The alarming spike and the 1,000-mark of deaths come even as the country remains under a stringent lockdown announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on March 24. Several states have demanded a further extension of the lockdown after May 3 in wake of the continuous rise in cases and new hotspots.  

PM Modi has also hinted that the lockdown may continue with tough restrictions in Red Zone areas which continue to report new cases of coronavirus. According to government sources, educational institutions and public transport are likely to remain shut after May 3. Meanwhile, some relaxations could be allowed in areas which have not reported any fresh cases in the last 14 and 28 days - Orange and Green Zones respectively. 

Meanwhile, hopes for any immediate cure were dashed after the Health Ministry said there is not enough evidence as yet to back plasma therapy as its treatment.

The Ministry also cautioned there could be life-threatening complications if proper guidelines are not followed in administering the plasma therapy, in which blood plasma is transfused from a recovered COVID-19 patient to a critically-ill person.

There has been a widespread hope that plasma therapy can be a possible treatment for COVID-19 after the Delhi government said it has seen encouraging results on some patients, while few other states including Rajasthan and Karnataka have also begun the trials.

Posted By: Abhinav Gupta