As many as 17,407 fresh coronavirus cases were reported in a 24 hour period on Thursday morning, continuing a worrying upward trend that has manifested over the last two weeks. India’s total tally of Covid-19 infections is now 1,11,56,923, while there were 89 fatalities in the same period, taking the Covid-linked death toll to 1,57,435, the Union Health Ministry said.

After a peak of nearly 98,000 fresh daily Covid-19 cases in September 2020, the number of new cases reported per day had fallen steadily to reach below 10,000 in mid-February, but the trend has reversed in the last two weeks.

In mid-February, officials had said that the average daily new infections oscillated between 9,000 to 12,000 while daily deaths were between 78 to 120. On 9 February, India had reported 9,110 new cases, the lowest this year so far.

The number of active cases has also been rising gradually, and now account for 1.55 per cent of all reported cases. As per the Health Ministry’s data, there are 1,73,413 active cases at present after 14,031 patients were discharged in a day. Till now, 1,08,26,075 persons have been discharged so far. The recovery rate has reduced to 97.03 per cent.

Maharashtra, Kerala, Punjab, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat and Karnataka account for 85.51 per cent of fresh cases, with Maharashtra seeing 9,855 cases added during a 24-hour period, the highest such number reported in the state since 10 October 2020.

So far, 1,66,16,048 doses of Covid-19 vaccine have been administered in the country since the drive began on 16 January after approval for ‘Covishield’ and ‘Covaxin’. The third phase of vaccination against Covid-19 pandemic began on Monday covering 27 crore of people above 60 and those above 45 years of age with comorbidities at 10,000 government and over 20,000 private vaccination centres.

Delhi sees uptick in cases: Delhi has continued to witness an uptick in new coronavirus cases. It today recorded 261 fresh Covid cases and one coronavirus linked fatality, according to the Delhi government’s latest health bulletin. The city’s Covid toll mounted to 10,915, the bulletin said.