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COVID-19 community spread has started, cases in rural areas a bad sign: IMA

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New Delhi, July 18: The Indian Medical Association (IMA) on Saturday said community transmission of Covid-19 in India has started and the situation looks bad.

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Speaking to ANI, Dr V K Monga, the Chairman of IMA Hospital Board of India, said: "This is now an exponential growth. Every day the number of cases is increasing by more than around 30,000. This is really a bad situation for the country. There are so many factors connected with it but overall this is now spreading to rural areas. This is a bad sign. It now shows a community spread."

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The statement is significant as the central government has been maintaining that community transmission of Covid-19 has not started yet in India.

"In Delhi, we were able to contain it, but what about interior parts of the country in Maharashtra, Karnataka, Kerala, Goa, Madhya Pradesh (which may be the new hotspots)?" Dr Monga, was quoted as saying.

The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on Saturday said that India recorded more than 34,000 cases of the coronavirus disease for two days in a row as the country's infection tally mounted to 10,38,716.

According to the health ministry, 34,884 fresh COVID-19 cases and 671 deaths were reported in the last 24 hours. On Friday, the country recorded 34,956 cases of the coronavirus disease.

There are as many as 3,58,692 active cases of the viral disease and 26,273 people have succumbed to the novel coronavirus to date.

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The number of people who have recovered from the coronavirus disease crossed the 6,50,000-mark after 17,994 patients were cured between Friday and Saturday morning. The recovery rate was at 62.93 per cent, down from Friday's 63.33 per cent, as 6,53,750 patients were cured in a single day.

According to reports, the government has said that India has 727.4 cases per million. Globally, the cases per million population in India are four to eight times less than some European countries.

Even as Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Delhi are reporting thousands of coronavirus cases every day, four eastern states have emerged as the biggest concerns for the Centre in tackling the coronavirus crisis.

West Bengal, Odisha, Assam and Bihar have shown high case positivity rates despite low levels of testing and the emergence of new virus clusters.

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