Delhi: The national capital has hit the peak of the third wave of coronavirus and the number of cases suggests that it has been the worst since the pandemic arrived in the city, Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain said on Sunday.
He said the government had no plans yet to rope in hotels and banquet halls to augment the bed capacity for COVID-19 patients as the AAP dispensation had increased the number of beds in hospitals of Delhi.
The national capital has been witnessing a fresh surge in coronavirus cases amid the festive season and rising air pollution.
On Friday, Delhi recorded over 7,000 COVID-19 cases for the first time. The city on Saturday reported 79 deaths, the highest number of fatalities in over four months.
Jain, who is on an official visit to Rajasthan’s Dungarpur, said the first wave had hit its peak around June 23 and the second on September 17.
“The third wave of COVID-19 is at its peak in Delhi. The number of cases suggests it is the worst wave so far. But the cases will come down soon,” Jain told reporters here.
Delhi reported its first case on March 1, when a businessman in East Delhi was diagnosed with COVID-19 after returning from Italy.
The minister cited aggressive testing and contact-tracing among reasons for the sudden spike in the number of cases being reported.
Jain, however, said laxity on the part of the people has also been a major reason behind the surge.
“Some people think nothing will happen to them if they don’t wear a mask. They are wrong. Mask is the only medicine for COVID-19 till a vaccine is developed,” he added.
The National Centre for Disease Control, in a report drafted recently, had warned that Delhi needed to be prepared for about 15,000 fresh COVID-19 cases daily taking into account the winter season-related respiratory problems, a large influx of patients from outside and festive gatherings.
On Friday, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had said that like the previous two waves of coronavirus, the third one would end soon in Delhi as he urged Delhiites to make wearing masks a movement to arrest the spread of COVID-19.
“Till there is a vaccine for corona, consider face masks as the vaccine. These are the biggest protection against COVID-19 infection. We need to promote wearing face masks as a movement,” he had said.
The national capital on Saturday recorded 6,953 new cases of the infection.
Daily cases began rising in the city in September. It started to come down a bit by the last week.
The number of people in home isolation in the city stood at 24,100 on Saturday.