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Though India's daily new Covid cases have remained under 50,000 for the better part of November, there has been a steady rise in active cases, or number of patients currently being treated for COVID-19.
This number stood at 4.4 lakh this morning on the back of spike in infection rate in many smaller states including Rajasthan, Haryana, Chhattisgarh and Punjab.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi said people's lax attitude was responsible for rise in cases. People have started thinking, India has a good recovery rate so we will recover even if we get Covid, he said after discussing vaccine distribution with chief ministers of all states.
States have been urged to keep their distribution infrastructure, such as cold storages, ready even though it was not yet known which vaccine would be launched in India and at what price.
PM Modi made it clear that in the first stage, coronavirus vaccine will be given to frontline health workers, the second to police and sanitation workers, in the third to people above 50 and to those with co-morbid conditions in the fourth stage.
The Serum Institute of India, which is making the Oxford vaccine candidate for India, US and UK, said it would first focus on supplying its home market in the next few months.
Meanwhile, Delhi continued to log the highest number of daily Covid infections at 6,224, followed by Maharashtra, Kerala, West Bengal and Rajasthan.
The national capital also recorded the highest daily deaths at 109, followed by West Bengal (49), Haryana and Uttar Pradesh each with 33 Covid fatalities, Maharashtra (30), and Kerala (24).
Amid rising cases and the need to increase RT-PCR testing, the Supreme Court has sought a response from the Centre on a plea seeking directions to cap the cost of such tests at Rs 400 across the country. The plea claimed that the cost of the test actually works at just Rs 200, when labs across states were charging anything between Rs 900 to Rs2,800.
The global COVID-19 case count has crossed 6 crore with 14 lakh deaths. USA remains the worst-hit nation with 1.3 crore cases followed by India, Brazil and France.