The number of coronavirus cases in the country has crossed the 80,000 mark, data received from the states showed this evening. Updated figures from 11 states showed that the total across the country was 80,759 -- a jump of 10,000 in roughly two days.
The spike comes as the country is prepping to step into another phase of lockdown after May 17.
Earlier today, Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan had said the doubling time of COVID-19 cases has slowed down to 13.9 days over the last 3 days.
Maharashtra is still the state with the highest number of cases -- 27,524 -- a spike of 1,602 over yesterday's figure. A chunk of them is from Mumbai, where Dharavi -- the largest slum in Asia --is fast becoming a hot spot with more than 1000 cases.
Next to Maharashtra is Tamil Nadu with 9,674 cases. The figures from Gujarat, which had 9,267 cases, are yet to arrive.
Earlier today, Delhi crossed the 8,000-mark with 472 new cases -- the biggest spike in 24 hours. The overall number in the national capital is now 8,470, of whom 3,045 people have recovered and 115 patients died.
After Maharashtra, Gujarat and Tamil Nadu, Delhi has the highest number of coronavirus cases. The rate of doubling is 10 days. The authorities said the spike is because of more testing, but they also admitted that the relaxations since May 4 are a factor.
Mentioning the fourth extension of the lockdown in his address to the nation on Tuesday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said it would come in a "completely different form", with new rules.
"Corona will be with us for a long time but our lives cannot revolve around it. We will wear masks, we will follow doh gaj doori (six-foot distance), but we won't let it derail our targets," he stressed.
This morning, data from the Union health ministry showed that since Wednesday, another 134 deaths were reported.
Of these, 54 were in Maharashtra, 29 in Gujarat, 20 in Delhi, 9 in West Bengal, seven in Madhya Pradesh, four in Rajasthan, three in Tamil Nadu, two each in Telangana and Karnataka and one each in Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Jammu and Kashmir and Uttar Pradesh.
According to the ministry website, more than 70 per cent of the deaths are due to comorbidities, meaning chronic illnesses which the patients had.