With 95,551 new cases of COVID-19 being reported across the country in the past 24 hours, the Union Health Ministry has informed that close to 74 per cent of the total active cases are from the nine-most affected states. The total number of active cases across the country now stands at 9,43,480 while the number of deaths has reached 76,271. The three most affected states, as per the Health Ministry, are Maharashtra, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh which acount for 4,60,692 active cases amounting to 48.8 per cent of the total active cases in the country.
The other six states impacted severely by COVID-19 include Uttar Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Odisha, Assam and Chhatisgarh. "95,551 new cases have been reported in the last 24 hours. Of this, Maharashtra alone has more than 23,000 and Andhra Pradesh has more than 10,000 cases," the Health Ministry said. These are the same states that account for almost 60 per cent of the recovered cases. The total number of cases in India has crossed 45 lakhs and currently stands at 45,62,415.
COVISHIELD trials on hold
After Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) issued a show-cause notice to vaccine manufacturer - Serum Institute of India (SII) on Thursday, confirmed that the India trials of 'Covishield' have been paused till their UK partner AstraZeneca resumes trials. SII - which is conducting Phase-2 & 3 trials of 'Covishield' in 19 locations across India, was questioned by DCGI as to why they were continuing trials inspite of their UK trials paused as a volunteer developed an ‘unexplained illness’. SII's 'Covishield' is one of the three leading COVID-19 vaccine candidates currently under trial in India.
COVAXIN begins phase 2 trials
On the other hand, Phase 2 of the human clinical trial of Bharat Biotech's COVAXIN, India’s first indigenously developed vaccine against COVID-19, began at Post Graduate Institute (PGI) Rohtak on Wednesday. The trial is being conducted on 50 volunteers at PGIMS, Rohtak, of the total 380 volunteers across the country.
Twelve volunteers, between 12 and 65 years of age, were administered the first dose of Covaxin on Wednesday morning. The Covid-19 vaccine is being developed Bharat Biotech in collaboration with the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and National Institute of Virology (NIV).