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In charts | India’s vaccination drive records a new high as COVID-19 cases surge

India achieved a new record of vaccinating over 4.3 million people a day after the number of new cases jumped to the highest in a day since the pandemic began. Maharashtra topped both the charts with the highest number of new infections and the largest number people inoculated

April 06, 2021 / 10:00 AM IST
Medical staff inoculates a senior citizen with the ‘Covishield’ vaccine at the Rajawadi Hospital in Mumbai, Maharashtra. (Image: AFP)

Medical staff inoculates a senior citizen with the ‘Covishield’ vaccine at the Rajawadi Hospital in Mumbai, Maharashtra. (Image: AFP)


India recorded a new high of administering more than 4.3 million COVID-19 vaccine doses in a single day on April 5, taking the country’s tally to over 83 million on the 80th day of the inoculation drive, according to the latest official update.


Of the total vaccine doses administered till date, 87 percent are recipients of the first dose while rest have received the second dose. About 5.3 percent of India’s population (based on 2021 projection) has received at least one vaccine dose. Maharashtra has administered the most 8.1 million or 9.8 percent of the total vaccine doses, followed by Gujarat (7.7 million) and Rajasthan (7.3 million).

Healthcare and frontline workers account for 34 percent or 28.3 million of the total vaccinations so far, while senior citizens account for 42 percent or 34.9 million, followed by those above 45-years of age (24 percent or 19.9 million).

The Indian Medical Association (IMA) has written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, asking him to expand the vaccination drive to include everyone above 18 years of age as coronavirus cases continue to surge in the country.

Yesterday, the daily new cases crossed the 100,000 mark for the first time since the pandemic began as per the health ministry’s April 5 update. India ranks third in the world with more than 12.6 million COVID-19 cases recorded till date, after the US and Brazil.

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COVID-19 Vaccine

Frequently Asked Questions

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How does a vaccine work?

A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.

How many types of vaccines are there?

There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.

What does it take to develop a vaccine of this kind?

Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.

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Currently, there are 788,223 active cases in India, with an increase of 46,393 cases in the last 24 hours as per the April 6 update. Maharashtra--the worst affected state--reports the most (452,777 or 57 percent) of the active cases in the country, followed by Chhattisgarh (44,296) and Karnataka (42,502).

Maharashtra reported the most (47,288 or 49 percent) new cases in the last 24 hours, followed by Chhattisgarh (7,302), Karnataka (5,279), Uttar Pradesh (3,974) and Tamil Nadu (3,672). These five states account for 70 percent of all the new cases reported in India.

Total recoveries in India are now over 11.7 million while total deaths now stand 1,65,547 as per April 6 update. The mortality rate in the country is at 1.3 percent with Punjab reporting the highest, 2.8 percent. India’s recovery rate has fallen to 92.5 percent while its positivity rate stands at 8 percent. India carried out more than 250 million tests as on April 5, second highest in the world after the US.

India has reported about 490 deaths every day on an average over the last seven days. As per the official update on April 6, Maharashtra reported the most 155 or 35 percent of the 446 new deaths reported in India, followed by Punjab (72), Chhattisgarh (44) and Karnataka (32). These four states account for 68 percent of all the new deaths reported across the country.

Amidst the rising daily new cases and deaths, the Union government has constituted 50 high level multidisciplinary public health teams, to be deployed across 50 districts in Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh and Punjab. These teams will assist the State Health Department and local authorities in COVID-19 surveillance, control and containment measures.
Chaitanya Mallapur
first published: Apr 6, 2021 07:00 pm

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