In a massive surge of COVID-19 infections, Kerala clocked over 20,000 fresh cases accounting for more than 50% of India’s daily rise in active cases. India registered 43,654 new cases on Wednesday, more than half of which were contributed by the Pinarayi Vijayan-led state. Even as the nation slowly recovers from a deadly second wave, Kerala has been troubled with a rising infection tally.
The top five states which registered maximum cases are Kerala with 22,129 cases, followed by Maharashtra with 6,258 cases, Mizoram with 1,845 cases, Tamil Nadu with 1,767 cases and Odisha with 1,629 cases. More than 77 per cent of the new cases were reported from these five states, with Kerala alone accounting for 50.69 per cent of the new infections. With this, Kerala has also become the first state in more than 50 days to record over 20K cases. Maximum casualties in India were reported in Maharashtra (254), followed by Kerala with 156 daily deaths. India’s recovery rate now stands at 97.39 per cent. With Kerala spiraling into a COVID crisis, BJP has hit out at the Chief Minister blaming Eid relaxations as a major cause of the spike. BJP IT cell chief Amit Malviya stated that Muslim-majority areas such as the Malappuram district had clocked over 4000 cases in a day. Blaming it on the relaxations announced by the CPI-M government for Eid, Malviya said that the ‘silence of secularists was deafening.’ The Kerala state government’s decision to relax COVID-19 norms ahead of the Eid celebrations had invited severe criticisms.
The state had allowed a three-day relaxation ahead of Bakrid and had withdrawn lockdown restrictions on June 17. This allowed several establishments to remain open from July 18-20 from 7 am to 8 pm in category A, B, and C areas following the state decision.