The overall numbers, however, are still relatively low and there has been no increase in virus deaths, which have totaled six in the past seven days.
India reported 524 new cases on Saturday, the highest daily tally since November 18 last year. In the past seven days, 2,671 new cases have been registered, up almost 50% from the total of 1,802 in the previous seven days. Covid cases have risen steadily in the country over the past four weeks, which represents the longest sustained increase in infections since the previous wave of the pandemic in June-July last year.
Maharashtra and the southern states continue to record the majority of new cases. In the past seven days ending on Saturday, three states have reported more than 500 new cases: Karnataka (584), Kerala (520) and Maharashtra (512).
Of the states that reported at least 100 new cases during this period, Gujarat has seen the highest spike in infections. Cases in the state have increased four-fold, from 48 in the previous seven days (February 26-March 4) to 190 in the past seven (March 5-11). Maharashtra recorded a peak of 86% in the period, Tamil Nadu 67% (224 cases) and Telangana 63% (197 cases).
Cases are surging in several other states, but weekly numbers are still below 100. Delhi, for example, reported 97 new cases, up from 72 in the previous seven days.
The seven-day average of daily cases in India has doubled in the past 11 days, from 193 on February 28 to 382 on March 11. At the start of the month, the doubling rate was close to 16, indicating that cases have been rising at a faster pace in recent days. The weekly death toll has remained below 10 for some time now. India has each reported six deaths in the past two seven-day periods.