Prior to this, the state’s biggest daily surge had been on July 12 (1,560).
Chief minister Mamata Banerjee has urged people to be cautious. “In these two months, the contamination will be at its peak, say experts. Figures are rising in all places. Bengal is a big state… moreover, the population of Kolkata is very high and it is a congested city, so we need to be cautious,” she said.
The Bengal cabinet has also decided to salute Covid warriors (doctors, nurses, policemen, cleaning and conservancy staff) who have died in the line of duty. The CM said a family member would be given a job, and the family Rs 10 lakh in compensation. The government will also pay Rs 1 lakh to each Covid warrior who has recovered from Covid.
Of the 20 deaths recorded in the last 24 hours, Kolkata had the highest share (9), while six deaths were reported from North 24 Parganas, three from Howrah and one each from Hooghly and West Burdwan.Of the 1,589 fresh case-load, too, Kolkata had the lion’s share, with 425. North 14 Parganas had 347 new cases, while South 14 Parganas and Howrah had 174 and 151 new cases in the past 24 hours.
The positivity rate, too, has gone up to 5.3%. Hospital occupancy has risen to nearly 32% overall in the state. In Kolkata, however, the bed occupancy varied between 70% and 100% across government and private facilities.
The Global Advisory Board on Covid-19 Response Policy, which includes Nobel laureate Abhijit Banerjee, said in a statement: “Despite many of these good efforts… Covid-19 continues to spread in West Bengal, as in much of the rest of the country.”