Yesterday, India crossed the worrying four lakh cases in a day mark and with the peak of the second wave yet to come, the China-made pandemic is extracting a heavy toll. The western state of Maharashtra which had become the hotspot of the first wave has seemingly remained the hotspot of the second wave as well. The state reported 62,919 new Covid-19 cases on Friday. However, the test positivity rate in Mumbai, for the first time entered the single-digit mark (9.94), down from the 20.85 per cent positivity rate, set a few months back, as only 4,328 tested positive out of 43,525.
By publicizing the heck out of Mumbai’s steady decrease in caseload in the last few days, the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government is trying to pat its back. However, the reality is that the battle with the virus is far from over. It was our complacency that allowed the invisible enemy to fashion a second comeback and cause significant damage but the Uddhav Thackeray government has not learnt its lesson.
Moreover, Maharashtra is not only Mumbai, there are other cities as well which are not faring well currently. According to Maharashtra’s health department, Pune has the highest share of active cases at 15.15 per cent while Nagpur accounts for 11.19 per cent of the state’s active cases. About 10.75 per cent are in Thane and Nasik accounts for 7.59 per cent of the state’s active cases. The average positivity rate in Maharashtra still stands at a harrowing 25.59 per cent.
According to an Indian Express report, between April 19 and 25, the Sindhudurg district in the Konkan region reported the highest mortality rate of 3.66 per cent. Nanded in Marathwada recorded a 3.46 per cent mortality rate. It was 2.46 per cent in Osmanabad, 2.43 per cent in Solapur, 2.14 per cent in Amaravati. The average mortality rate in Maharashtra is 0.94 per cent.
The highest positivity rate was reported in Palghar 36.03 per cent. Gadchiroli reported 35.25 per cent, Nasik 35.17 per cent, Nagpur 34.17 per cent, Oamanabad 35.43 per cent in Oamanabad. The average positivity rate in Maharashtra was 25.59 per cent.
Health Minister Rajesh Tope says that the third wave might strike by August, but we are ready for it. The statement shows the lax attitude of the government which has comforted itself by accepting the decreasing case count in Mumbai as the reality of the entire state. By constantly evoking the example of Mumbai, the MVA government is trying to prove that in all other areas of Maharashtra, the situation is improving, while the reality is diametrically opposite.
Uddhav Thackeray needs to wake up from his deep slumber and act fast to reduce the case count in other cities and districts. The coronavirus does not see state or country boundaries and while Mumbai might be breathing easy at the moment, it cannot let its guard down, until the case count in neighbouring cities has gone low.