The number of coronavirus cases crossed the 700-mark in Assam on Wednesday after 32 more people tested positive for the disease, state Health and Family Welfare Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said.
With these new patients, including a resident of Kamrup (Metro) who recently returned to the state capital from Ahmedabad by plane, the number of COVID-19 cases rose to 714 in the state, he said.
"Ten more new cases of COVID19+ reported taking the total to 714," the minister said in a tweet.
Of the 10 cases, nine were from Charaideo and one from Sivasagar districts, he added.
Earlier in the day, Mr Sarma tweeted: "18 new cases of COVID19+ including first air carrier, a resident of Kamrup Metro, who travelled from Ahmedabad to Guwahati; 14 Golaghat, 2 Karbi Anglong, 1 Lakhimpur."
In addition, three cases from Nagaon and one from Dhemaji were also reported, he said.
The number of active cases in Assam now stands at 645, while 62 people have recovered from the disease and three have migrated to other states.
Four persons have died of the disease in the state.
After the inter-state movement through road and rail network was allowed during the lockdown, Assam saw a significant increase in COVID-19 cases.
A total of 327 cases have so far been reported this week.
The state recorded its highest single-day spike of 156 cases on Monday, while 139 people tested positive for COVID-19 on Tuesday.
Mr Sarma said most of the latest cases are returnees from other states.
He said swab samples are collected from people soon after they arrive from outstation, and most of the positive cases in Assam are imported and not home-grown.
Ten domestic flights are scheduled to arrive and depart from the Lokopriyo Gopinath Bordoloi International Airport on Wednesday, an airport spokesperson said. The domestic flight services resumed on Monday.
On Tuesday, the state cabinet stressed on strict quarantine for the people coming from outside in view of the reported spike in coronavirus cases.
Everyone coming from outside will be sent for institutional quarantine and no home quarantine will be allowed for the first seven days, till the results of the swab tests are received.
Meanwhile, a microbiology laboratory has been set up at the Institute of Advanced Study in Science and Technology (IASST), Guwahati as an annexe of the Guwahati Medical College and this facility shall increase the number of sample testing for COVID-19 to a large extent, Mr Sarma said.
He said the laboratory will start functioning soon.
Assam has seven other laboratories, where 72,564 samples have been tested for COVID-19 so far.