NEW DELHI: Coronavirus cases in India have been increasing for the past several days, triggering speculations that the country might witness a second wave of the pandemic.
The latest rise in cases is localised to six states that have contributed over 85% of the cases in the last 24 hours.
Maharashtra and Kerala appear to be witnessing a second wave of the virus with experts expressing apprehension that a similar rise is bound to happen in other parts of the country as well.
Dr V Ramasubramanian, infectious diseases specialist, Apollo Hospital, Chennai said: "I don’t see any reason why India will not have a second wave. But it’s possible the severity of a second wave would be milder in India compared to other countries because the population in India is much younger."
Active cases have surged in 10 states
India’s active caseload was 1,55,986 on Thursday, comprising 1.41% of the total positive cases.
The number of active cases has surged in 10 states and Union territories in the last seven days while rising by nearly 15,000 nationally to more than 1.5 lakh.
The current rise in active cases is largely being reported from Maharashtra that contributed nearly 5,000 active cases in the last 24 hours.
In the past week (February 18-24, till Wednesday), Maharashtra saw an explosive spike of 21,358 in active cases, followed by Punjab (866), Madhya Pradesh (407) and Karnataka (379).
86% of new deaths reported from six states
A total of 1,56,825 deaths have been reported in the country so far, includingÂ 51,993 from Maharashtra, 12,483 from Tamil Nadu, 12,316 from Karnataka, 10,905 from Delhi, 10,260 from West Bengal, 8,723 from Uttar Pradesh, and 7,168 from Andhra Pradesh.
The Health Ministry stressed that more than 70 per cent of the deaths occurred due to comorbidities. According to the data, the Union Territory of Lakshadweep has reported its first death.