According to NBC Finance, as several states are struggling to cope with the increase in Omicron infections, the number of COVID-19 cases in India has risen again.
On January 4, India reported 37,379 new COVID-19 cases within 24 hours. This is the largest number of infections in a single day since September, a significant increase from the 6,358 cases on December 28.
Maharashtra, where Mumbai, the financial center of India, is located, has so far detected 568 cases of the Omicron variant. At the same time, 382 Omicron cases have been reported in the Delhi metropolitan area. These two regions account for about half of Omicron cases in India.
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal stated on January 4 that he had tested positive for COVID-19 and showed “mild symptoms”. He added that he is self-isolating at home and urged those around him to do the same and get tested.
The Omicron variant was first discovered by scientists in Southern Africa in November 2021, and the variant quickly spread to all parts of the world, especially in countries such as the United States and the United Kingdom.
Preliminary data released in South Africa, England and Scotland last month showed that people infected with Omicron have a much lower risk of being hospitalized than people infected with other COVID-19 variants such as Delta.
But scientists emphasize that it is too early to determine whether Omicron is lighter. A large number of Omicron infections will still burden the hospital.
Last year, India suffered a massive wave of COVID-19, partly due to the Delta variant, religious activities and mass protests that were first discovered in the country in October 2020. The daily COVID-19 infection rate and death rate are alarming, and this crisis has pushed India’s health system to the brink.
Since then, India has stepped up its efforts to vaccinate against COVID-19. Last October, the country reached the milestone of 1 billion doses of vaccine. Currently, approximately 44% of the Indian population is fully immunized.