After recording over 1,000 Covid-19 cases for three consecutive days, new cases in Mumbai on Saturday dropped marginally to 987 on Saturday, taking the city’s total cases to 3,24,864. The city reported four Covid-19 related deaths, taking the toll to 11,465. There are 9,496 active patients in the city at present.
The cases recorded in the last three days have been highest since November, when the decline in cases began. In the first week of February, the number of new cases was fewer than 400, but there was a steady rise from February 10 onwards, when the number of cases rose to over 500. Some attributed the spike to the resumption of local train networks for all commuters. Local trains were open for all with restricted time slots since February 1.
Mumbai also saw a three-month high in daily Covid cases this month. It reported 1,167 new infections, the highest in 119 days, on Wednesday. The last time the city had over 1,167 cases was on October 28, when 1,354 new cases were detected. It is also after 88 days since November 28 (1,063) that the city has added over 1,000 cases in a day.
A per data provided by the civic body, while the daily cases have been rising since February 10, there has been no marked rise in deaths.
The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has instructed all wards to improve ‘testing, tracing and treatment’. Between Friday and Saturday, BMC traced 7,099 high-risk contacts of Covid-19 patients. Most are under home isolation.
Last week, Additional Municipal Commissioner Suresh Kakani had directed all jumbo facilities to keep stock of medicines, equipment, oxygen and staff in case patient admissions rise. As of Saturday, of 13,662 beds, 4114 were filled with Covid-19 patients and the bulk of beds were vacant. Also, out of the 1,550 ICU bed capacity, 873 are available, whereas out of 931 ventilator beds, 498 are available.
Besides, BMC has reserved 286 CC1 facilities (hotels, lodges and 144 CCC2 (government centres with doctors and nurses 24×7), which can be reactivated when needed. NESCO jumbo facility has 3,000 beds ready, of them till now only 1,700 have been activated; in BKC jumbo facility, an extra 700 beds are ready and can be activated at a short notice.
High-rises and residential complexes in Mumbai’s western suburbs – Borivali, Kandivali- Malad and Andheri – continue to pose a challenge to the civic body in managing the situation. As per BMC data, the highest number of sealed buildings are located in K-West, which covers Juhu, Andheri West and R-Central ward, which covers Borivali and Gorai areas, which have recorded the highest active cases.
The western suburbs have been registering an increase in the number of coronavirus cases since June 2, when the lockdown restrictions started to be relaxed in the city. The situation was similar in November, last year.
As of February 26, the number of active cases in the R/Central ward stood at 672, the highest in the city, followed by K-West, at 632, R/South ward that covers Kandivali with 573 active cases.
BMC has sealed 1,849 buildings and 127 floors. As per the current rule, BMC seals a building if there are five and more Covid-19 positive cases from a single building.
K-West, which also has a few famous tourist attractions, has the highest number of facemask violations. On February 26 alone, 1,559 citizens were caught without masks in K-West.
In nearly 10 months, the BMC has caught 16,76,640 people without masks and collected a fine of Rs 33.89 crore from across the city. BMC levies a fine of Rs 200 for not wearing masks since April last year.
Meanwhile, the Mumbai Police, on a complaint by the civic body, has registered an FIR against three marriage halls in Kalina for violating Covid-19 rules.
All three halls, located on CST Road in Kalina, had at least 200 guests inside each of them on Friday. Social distancing norms were not adhered to and many of the guests were even spotted moving around and interacting with others without masks. Amid rising infections last week, the civic body had issued a circular that police complaints will be registered against any marriage hall found with more than 50 people inside.