Deaths due to COVID-19 pandemic crossed the 150,000 mark in India on Wednesday, reaching 150,114, said the data released by the federal health ministry.
As many as 264 deaths took place during the past 24 hours, according to the data.
According to it, the total number of COVID-19 cases rose to 10,374,932, even as 18,088 new cases were registered since Tuesday.
There are still 227,546 active cases in the country, while 9,997,272 people have been successfully treated and discharged from hospitals.
India continues to be the second worst-affected country globally by the pandemic, after the U.S.
Meanwhile, the federal government has ramped up COVID-19 testing facilities across the country, even as more than 170 million tests have been conducted so far.
As many as 177,463,405 tests were conducted till Tuesday, out of which 931,408 tests were conducted on Tuesday alone, the latest data issued by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) showed on Wednesday.
Delhi, which has been one of the most COVID-19 affected places in the country, has been witnessing a downward trend over the past few days.
As many as 442 new cases and 12 deaths were registered in the national capital through Tuesday.
So far, as many as 10,609 people have died in the national capital due to COVID-19, confirmed the Delhi’s health department.
Indian scientists have developed two COVID-19 vaccines and the process of vaccination is about to begin any time this month.
Last Sunday the Drugs Controller-General of India (DCGI) had given its approval to these two vaccines for emergency use.
DCGI Dr. V.G. Somani said that the permission was granted for “restricted use in emergency situations.
“The Subject Expert Committee (SEC) of Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) met on Jan. 1 and Jan. 2 and made recommendations in respect of a proposal for restricted emergency approval of the two COVID-19 virus vaccines.”
“The two COVID-19 vaccines developed by ‘Serum Institute of India (SII)’ and ‘Bharat Biotech’ respectively, as well as Phase 3 clinical trial of the third one developed by ‘Cadila Healthcare Limited’ were part of the recommendation.”
The SII, situated in southwestern city of Pune, had presented its Recombinant Chimpanzee Adenovirus vector vaccine (Covishield) encoding the SARS-CoV-2 Spike (S) glycoprotein with technology transfer from AstraZeneca/Oxford University, said a DCGI statement.
Last week, a Pan-India dry run was carried out in a bid to assess the overall preparations in place for the vaccination drive, often described as one of the biggest such drives in the world. (NAN)