The number of coronavirus cases in India crossed 1.6 lakh on Thursday, making it the ninth worst-hit country by the deadly virus infection, while the number of deaths crossed China’s official count, data from states governments and America’s Johns Hopkins University showed.
With 1,65,386 cases, India has reported nearly double the number of cases in China at 84,106, an online real-time tally maintained by Johns Hopkins University showed. India also surpassed China with as many as 4,711 deaths, compared to 4,638 by Thursday night, the data showed.
The first case of the novel coronavirus emerged in China last December and since then it has spread to virtually all parts of the world infecting more than 59 lakh people globally. More than 3.5 lakh have died too across the world, but very few new cases are being reported in China for the last few days.
In terms of total number of confirmed cases, the US is the worst hit with over 17 lakh cases, while other countries with more cases than India are Brazil, Russia, UK, Spain, Italy, France and Germany. While Turkey is now ranked 10th, China is at 14th place and below Iran, Peru and Canada.
The US also tops the number of deaths with more than 1 lakh fatalities, followed by UK, Italy, France, Spain, Brazil, Belgium, Mexico, Germany and Iran in the top 10. India is ranked 13th now after Canada and Netherlands at the 11th and 12th places, respectively.
The count of cases has spiked up in India this month, with widespread movement of people via special trains and flights and also because of easing of various restrictions during the ongoing fourth phase of the nationwide lockdown. Many states have attributed the rising numbers to the influx of people from outside.
The lockdown has been in place since March 25, which was initially imposed for 21 days but has been extended thrice already and the fourth phase will end on May 31.
A decision on the future course of action on the lockdown is expected soon and officials said Union Home Minister Amit Shah spoke to all chief ministers over telephone to seek their views on extension of the lockdown.
The Union Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba also held a meeting with municipal commissioners and district magistrates of the 13 worst hit cities in the country, including Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata and Chennai.
Delhi reported a record number of 1,024 new cases to take its tally to 16,281, while its number of deaths rose to 3,165. This is the first time that the national capital has registered over 1,000 new cases in a day.
The worst-hit state Maharashtra reported 2,598 new cases to take its tally to 59,546, while deaths rose to 1,982 with 85 more fatalities reported during the day.
Gujarat reported 367 new 19 cases, pushing its tally to 15,572; while 22 more patients died, taking the tally to 960.
West Bengal recorded its biggest single-day spike of 344 fresh COVID-19 cases on Thursday, taking its count to 4,536.
More than 33 lakh COVID-19 tests have been conducted so far in India, as compared to over 1.5 crore in the US, over 97 lakh in Russia, nearly 40 lakh in Germany, close to 38 lakh in the UK, over 36 lakh in Italy and over 35 lakh in Spain.
When it comes to the quantum of tests in proportion to the population, India does not figure even among the top-100 countries, news agency PTI reported.