India reached a grim milestone on Wednesday as the total number of coronavirus infections in the country crossed the 30 million mark. Since the pandemic began in January 2020, India has recorded 3,00,28,709 infections.
India surpassed the 10 million cases mark on December 19, and the 20 million mark on May 4.
As many as 50,848 cases were added over the past 24 hours. This is a 19% increase since Tuesday, when 42,640 cases were reported.
The recovery rate has improved to 96.56%. According to the data from the health ministry, the active cases have dropped to 6,43,194 – the lowest in 82 days.
The death toll in India rose by 1,358 to 3,90,660. However, independent media houses, Opposition parties and health experts alleged that the death tally is significantly more than the official figure.
India is now only the second country, after the United States, which has 33 million cases, to reach this landmark.
Coronavirus has claimed the lives of more than 3.8 million people and infected over 179 million globally.
Delta Plus variant
India reported 40 cases of the Delta Plus variant of the novel coronavirus. Most of the cases were found in Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Kerala and Tamil Nadu, government sources told ANI news agency.
The union government on Tuesday termed the Delta plus strain of the coronavirus a “variant of concern”, hours after Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan and NITI Aayog (Health) member VK Paul said it was only a “variant of interest”.
A “variant of concern” has the highest threat perception among other coronavirus variants because of its increased transmissibility, infectivity, or resistance to vaccines. The threat perception for a “variant of interest” is comparatively lower.